“ Brand: Mattel / Type: Doll Accessories „
My daughter discovered Barbie dolls at school where the children are rewarded for good behaviour during the week by being allowed to play with toys on Friday afternoons. As my daughter's favourite things to play with on Fridays are the Barbie dolls (and their car), when it came to her sixth birthday I decided to buy her the Barbie Camper Van to play with at home. Although I was a Sindy girl myself I was quite looking forward to playing with it alongside her!
I very sneakily found the Barbie episode on YouTube that was made to promote this bus (Barbie: A camping we will go) and loaded it onto the computer for my daughter to watch on the day before her birthday to ensure she was still feeling enthusiastic about the toy she'd been asking for the week previously.
Her 12 year old brother put it together and added the stickers while we were busy getting ready for her birthday party so I would say that it should be pretty easy to assemble for an adult (although the hammocks are a little tricky).
The van is designed to accommodate Barbie and her sisters and their dog. Inside the camper van is everything that a gal like Barbie would need including a toilet! (Although I'm rather surprised by the way it rotates so that the occupant is suddenly outside: it is on a rotating platform alongside the shower and I haven't yet worked out why!) It also has a small kitchen: the sink and cooker swing out to reveal a fold down bench; a fold out table and there is also the ultimate luxury - a small swimming pool (or is it a large hot tub?) The driving seat at the front of the campervan unfolds to be a bed - this sort-of works but doesn't really feel very bed-like. There are also a few little cupboards to open and shut. It may be possible to store the little bits of cutlery in these but we don't seem to manage it.
The roof extends upwards to create space for the hammock etc from where Barbie can lie and watch the flat screen TV. I was worried about the concertina mechanism for opening the roof up and down but so far it's all in one piece and still working - which is one of the main criteria I use to rate my DD's toys! I do like the fact that the smaller side door to the caravan opens and even has a flap for the dog to get in and out.
It does seem a bit flimsy and some of the bits (especially the doors) frequently become detached but can be clicked back into place.
It is bigger than I'd expected and I got a bit of a shock when I saw DH come home with the gigantic box but it does need to be that size to accommodate the dolls.
Dimensions (when closed up): approx 23 inches long, 9 inches wide and 13 inches high
The full price is £80 which for me is a little too expensive but I managed to get it from Argos in a half price toy sale so it was just £40, which I think is a reasonable price
This camper van contains everything a girl needs to 'play house' with Barbie and is cheaper than buying the Barbie Dream House - and despite what I've said above, takes up a lot less space than the dream house!
UPDATED: March 2014 - this is still going strong although a few of the bits have got lost and my daughter insists on trying to balance her drink on the collapsible Barbie table!
Take the ultimate family camping trip in this colourful camper van with enough room for Barbie and three guests. The pop-up second floor includes two soft hammocks and the drivers seat converts into a comfortable double bed. The kitchen comes complete with food pieces and dishes and the bathroom includes a shower and toilet; there's even a fold-down spa pool to relax in. The set comes complete with cute puppy toy, pet bed and a doggy door. The camper is totally portable; it opens up for play and then folds up to hit the road again