Sunday, 20 May 2007

Camperstops explained

There are over 6000 designated areas for motorhomes in Europe, providing parking, dumping of waste water and chemical toilet waste, fresh water and overnight facilities. Not all provide everything but range from just a designated parking place in a a village or town specifically for motorhomes to places that provide all of the above as well as showers and toilets. These are available only to self-contained motor-homes only (the ones in Italy allow caravans also). They are generally provided by and maintained by the local community to bring welcome tourists and can be situated in the middle of a historic town, by lovely rivers, in tiny hamlets and are often in stunningly beautiful and/or historic locations. Like the one at Jausiers near the Alpine border with Italy.

And here behind a restored monastery in Urbania, Italy.

They are known as ‘Aires or etapes de camping-cars’ in France and ‘Aree de Sosta’ in Italy. They are identified by the official motorhome symbol.


…and Italian!

We have become quite expert at spotting these!

The vast majority of these are free of charge including electricity sometimes, like the one at Pellegrue in Bordeaux and in Urbania in Italy. Some of the ones in more popular areas make a small charge no more than 5-7 Euros. These often take the form of blue cabinets that require coins or tokens to open the door to get at the various nozzles and dispensers.

The one at St Pee sur Nivelle charged via an automated credit card machine!

So between staying free of charge at camperstops and wild or free parking we can live for very little, only diesel and food to pay for!! This is well within the monthly budget afforded by the interest paid on our capital from the house sale and Peter’s pension. So no hurry really to find a house!!

No comments: