Geocaching by campervan

Campervans have got to be the best way to get around and see as much as possible of a country without having to spend hours and hours travelling backwards and forwards from a ‘home’ base. The main reason for that being that your base travels with you wherever you are.

When you’re done for the day, you pop up your roof tent and settle down for a nice meal cooked on your campervan’s built in stove, have a refreshing drink straight out of the fridge, all without the need to ‘return to base’. After a good night’s rest in the luxury of your own camper you can be up in the morning and head on to your next destination and repeat the process, exploring the world to your heart’s content.

Now this is a great opportunity for the interpid explorer but there are many other reasons to keep exploring further and further afield rather than sitting on a campsite. One great use of using a campervan as a holiday home, is to go geocaching…

Geocaching….What’s that?” I hear you say.

Check out this short introduction video to find out a bit about this great new activity that’s fun and exciting for everyone in your family whatever their age.

With over 2 million geocaches now active worldwide, and hundreds of thousands of caches to be found across the UK and Europe at large, you could travel around for months and still have plenty of new and exciting caches to find.

The picture below shows just a few of the geocaches hidden across the UK.

Geocaching  Map of Southern England!

To see if there’s any near you why not visit www.geogaching.com, it’s free to sign up.

Advertisements

Go Climbing in your Campervan

A customer came to us recently looking for a basic conversion of a van which she wanted to use primarily as a base for going rock climbing in Wales.

Here’s a few photos of what we did to a standard Vauxhall Vivaro to turn it into a small, but comfortable base from which to get around those Welsh crags.

P1040153
This is the base vehicle, as you can see we haven’t done anything too special to the basic van apart from adding windows all around so that our customer can enjoy the view. We did offer to put a pop-top on, but the customer didn’t need it (as her plan wasn’t to spend lots of time in it).

P1040145
Showing off the interior decor of the campervan, with plenty of room to relax and enjoy a cuppa after a hard climb.

P1040146
The cooking facilities, with integrated running water means there’s no need for that long trek back to a motel just for a nice cuppa!

P1040150
The all important rock and roll bed. Avoiding the epic of trying to drive home exhausted after a long day at the crag, in this van you can sleep at the crag ready to go again in the morning, or have a snooze in the back, during a break on the journey home.

(Photography by Sussex Wedding and Studio Photographer Alex White)

Little Camper…. Big Dreams

Want a campervan but still need a car?  Don’t want to drive a big van? or Just like things small and perfectly formed?  

Image

We don’t like to brag here at Sussex Campervans, but I think we’ve come up with some pretty great ideas lately, all of which I love sharing with you – so today it’s the turn of the CamperCar.

Based on the Nissan NV200, our cleverly thought out design easily fits all the campervan essentials (and a few luxuries) into a car just smaller than the average people carrier! Complete with a good size Sussex Campervan Rock’n’Roll bed system, 4 belted seats, side kitchen with 2 ring gas hob and sink with running water, removable table, elevating roof and rear glazing.  Extras include rear speakers, reversing camera, front swivel seat and roof bed but to name just a few. Just because we’ve cut back on scale definitely doesn’t mean we’ve cut back on quality Image

 

So why not check out more info – HERE, give us a call on 01403 336369 or come in and see us in Horsham – even take it for a spin.

 

Time for a Campervan Spring Clean….

Surely, by now, you’re starting to daydream about your upcoming Easter/Summer adventures in your campervan – the weather’s getting there! But before Spring hits us with a bang (we’re forever optimistic) it’s probably worth just taking half a day or so to get your campervan in tip-top shape with a Spring spruce-up and because we know you’re campervan is a precious baby – we’re not going to be using any nasties on it either!

Image

Cleaning Upholstery

  • To clean stains from the ceiling, carpet and upholstery in your campervan, mix a paste of bicarb’ and hydrogen peroxide (available at most chemists). Put 1/2 cup of bicarb’ in a small dish and mix in hydrogen peroxide by the capful until you have made a thin paste. Dab the paste onto the stain and let it sit for 2 to 3 hours. Remove the dried paste with a soft bristle brush, then vacuum the rest of the paste off with a vacuum that has a soft bristle upholstery attachment. Repeat the process if the stain is still visible.

    To remove grease bunnies, dust bunnies, dirt and debris, use a vacuum with a soft bristle attachment. You can also use a tape-style lint brush. Lint rollers easily snag debris from the ceiling when you don’t feel like getting out the vacuum.

Cleaning Windows, Blinds and Vents

  • To clean the windows, blinds and air vents in your campervan, all you need is an old sock, a small paint brush and some all-purpose cleaner. Put the sock on your hand and mist it with all-purpose cleaner. Slide your sock-covered hand between each slat of the blinds to wipe them clean. Then, use the paint brush to brush between the slats in the air vent and down the track of the windows. To clean the glass on the windows, make your own glass cleaner by mixing 1/3 cup vinegar and 1/4 cup water in a 2 liter bottle. After adding the ingredients, add water until the bottle is filled. Pour some cleaner into an empty spray bottle, mist the windows and wipe clean with a paper towel.

Cleaning the Exterior

  • When it comes to cleaning the exterior of your campervan, use a pressure washer if possible. Oftentimes, spraying your campervan down with a pressure washer removes dirt, debris, bugs and grime on its own without the use of an actual cleaner. You can also add 1/3 cup vinegar to a 5 gallon bucket of water. Vinegar helps clean your campervan, leaving it shiny and spot free. If all else fails – get out the bucket and sponge!

Once you’ve finished, leave your campervan to air for as long as possible – windows and doors open, then stand back and admire your hard work!

If you’ve got any great cleaning tips for your campervan – please let us know, we love sharing the knowledge – come over to our Facebook page and join in the chat.

THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN THE UK… ISLE OF HARRIS

My number 1 in the Sussex Campers ‘Top 10 Most Beautiful Places in the UK’ is the amazing Isle of Harris, situated in the outer Hebrides chain of Islands, off the West coast of Scotland.

There is an incredible diversity in the landscape, from the mountains in the North, to the numerous, unspoilt beaches in the South, the dramatic, rocky west coast and all of the glorious cliffs, moorlands, lochs and meadows. The spectacular scenery in this tranquil, idyllic getaway will really take your breath away. Although the furthest place away in my top 10 for most people, it certainly seems the most worthy of the long trip up there!

Make sure you visit the magnificent beaches of Scarista and Luskentyre, and explore the Harris Hills to discover the castles nestled in lonely bays. Get involved with some salmon and trout fishing, and a game of tennis or golf. Take a cruise to St Kilda, and the other remote islands of the Hebrides, which has been recognised as a wildlife and marine life habitat of world importance, with many different animals and plants including puffins, gannets and guillemots. Whilst sailing the ocean you are also likely to see whales, sharks, dolphins and grey seals. All of the Hebrides itself are great for many activities like sailing, sea kayaking, windsurfing and kite surfing and with the most consistent surf in Europe, the islands are a great spot for surf enthusiasts. Divers can explore a paradise of reefs, caves and forest kelps, all in beautifully clean and clear waters. The Hebrides have a wonderful, unique and spiritual civilised culture with vibrant and lively festivals, the friendly locals will make your stay all the more enjoyable. Find more info on festivals and things to do at visithebrides.com

 

 

 

Travel up through the lovely city of Glasgow, cross the Skye bridge onto the Isle of Skye and take a Calmac ferry from Uig to Tarbert. I would recommend visiting in June or July as they are the hottest months, with the longest days of sun and lowest average rainfall. There are two main campsites on the adjoining Island of Lewis that would be perfect for a trip in your campervan; Laxdale Holiday Park and Eilean Fraoich Camp Site with all that you would need from electric hook ups to clean, hot showers.

Embark on an adventure to the Isle of Harris in the Hebrides for an experience that you will never forget!

Make your holiday how you want it – that is what’s great about having a campervan- you can tailor make it to what you want! Our holidays mostly revolve around our campervan these days – flexible, fun, and family all at once! That’s why we founded Sussex Campers a few years back.

Find us on Facebook to let us know what would be in your top 10 or contact us to have a chat about making your dream camper a reality.

IN AT NUMBER 2… THREE CLIFFS BAY

Here is the next instalment of the sussex campers top 10 most beautiful places in the UK, to give you some ideas for trips away, or maybe even a tour of the UK in your campervan.

Three Cliffs bay, on Gower Peninsular in South Wales, is set in a valley, with huge limestone cliffs towering over the golden sand, surrounded by salt marshes and sand dunes, with a river running through the middle. In 2006 the BBC declared Three Cliffs bay to be ‘Britain’s Best Beach’ and it has since been nominated for Britain’s best view, and once you have visited, it is easy to see why.

As the bay is not that easy to access, it has remained unspoilt, and is a popular spot for horse riders and surfers. The three cliff provide a great challenge for climbers, and walkers and visitors get their fair share of a challenge with the steep sand dunes and cliff top walks. Walk through an archway in the cliff face, leading to the lovely Pobbles beach, or cross the stepping stones to the west side of the river, but make sure to return to the main beach before the tide comes in! Whilst visiting the bay, explore the eerie ruins of the 12th Century Pennard Castle, rumoured to be the home to many magical fairies.
Visit the nearby city of Swansea for a touch of cosmopolitan lifestyle, with its array of bars, restaurants, cafes, shops and museums, just a small selection of what this Welsh jewel has to offer.

The Three Cliffs Bay Holiday Park, a fantastic campsite overlooking the bay itself, is open all throughout the year, offering electric pitches, an on site shop, a toilet and shower block and laundry facilities. It has, in the past, won the title for “Number One View from a Campsite in the World” so is a fantastic place to stay.

Find us on Facebook to let us know what would be in your top 10 or contact us to have a chat about making your dream camper a reality.

OUR NUMBER 3… ST IVES

Here is my number 3 review of the Sussex campers top 10 most beautiful places in the UK, giving you ideas for places that I think would be worth while for you to visit in your campervan or car.

No top ten would be complete without St Ives in Cornwall, as it feels like you are transported to another world. It won ‘Best UK Seaside Town’ in 2012 and 2011 from the British Travel Awards and has been listed as one of the 32 most beautiful bays in the World. It is clear to see why, with the fine golden sands and the crystal clear waters- possibly the cleanest bathing waters in Western Europe.

Embark on a boat trip to Seal Island to see the grey Atlantic Seals in their natural habitat and spot some porpoises, basking sharks and dolphins on the way, or choose from one of the many different types of boat trips that may suit you, weather you just want to relax or do some birdwatching or fishing. Take surf lessons on Porthmeor Beach, one of the prettiest beaches in Cornwall, or relax on one of the many other beautiful sandy beaches in the area. The Loft Restaurant and Terrace has amazing food on offer, cooked with local produce and fresh seafood or experience the culinary delights of one of the many other restaurants, bars and cafes. Visit the Sloop Inn, one of the oldest inns in Cornwall ‘circa 1312’, on the Wharf to experience some real charm and character.

There are many other interesting sights, within Cornwall including the famous Eden Project, beautiful Trebah Garden, a sub-tropical garden with a coastal backdrop, and Carnglaze Slate Caverns and Woodland Garden.

Ayr Holiday Park is the closest campsite to the centre of St Ives, and so boasts the perfect location to explore the local area, as well as great facilities including electric hook up, shower and toilet block and a laundrette. There are more lovely holiday parks and campsites further out of St Ives itself, but still near the beach, with fabulous facilities like swimming pools and bars and restaurants, if that takes your fancy, for example, St Ives Bay Holiday Park and Polmanter Touring Park.

Find us on Facebook to let us know what would be in your top 10 or contact us to have a chat about making your dream camper a reality.

IN AT NUMBER 4… THE GIANT’S CAUSEWAY

Here is my number 4 in the sussex campers top 10 most beautiful places in the UK, to give you some ideas for fantastic trips away in your campervan… the Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland.

It is thought that the cooling of some molten lava millions of years ago created the fascinating shapes of the Giant’s Causeway or, alternatively, that a giant ripped up the rocks as he ran along the coast… whichever you believe, this is a truly spectacular sight. For something really special, visit at sunset to catch the sea mists rolling in for a magical view. Once you have seen this coastline for yourself, it is easy to understand why the Causeway Coastal route, from Belfast to Londonderry, has been voted one of the top 5 tourist drives in Europe.

When you have seen seen the Giant’s Causeway, visit Portcoon, with its famous sea cave, made popular with tales of smuggling and ghostly pipers, or take a ride on the old Causeway Tramline. If you are feeling daring, take the coastal footpath to the exhilarating, and vertigo inducing, Carrick-a-Rede rope bridge. Go over to Carrick island with its diverse birdlife and amazing uninterrupted views across to Scotland, making it well worth the scary walk!
There are so many activities to choose from in the area including horse trekking, sailing, sea and lake fishing, surfing, and coasteering. Dunluce Castle, situated on a cliff edge, is definitely worth a visit as it is surrounded by jaw dropping scenery, and gives you an insight into medieval Irish life.

The coastline, dotted with fishermen’s cottages, small sheltered harbours, isolated ruins and shoreline fields, reminds you of the hard life farmers and fishermen endured throughout history, and a new state of the art visitors centre is due to be opened in September 2012, which will allow you to really delve into understanding the history and culture of the area, and give you tips for how to explore it for yourself.

Ballyness Caravan park is ideally located for you to explore the Causeway Coast with all the usual facilities you could need, including electric, water and drainage hook ups, free hot showers and laundry room, as well as internet access and wifi.

Find us on Facebook to let us know what would be in your top 10 or contact us to have a chat about making your dream camper a reality.

OUR NUMBER 5… STANAGE EDGE

Here is the next instalment in the countdown of the sussex campers top 10 most beautiful places in the UK to give you some ideas for short trips away or perhaps even a UK tour in your campervan.

Stanage Edge is the largest and most impressive of the gritstone edges in the Peak District. The beautiful backdrop and spectacular cliff edges has meant that it has become a famous location for rock climbing, and a popular spot for walkers. Picturesque views across the surrounding moors and countryside make Stanage edge well worth visiting, and many agree as it has even been featured in productions of two romantic, epic classics; Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice. See if you can spot the Highland Cattle on one of your walks, and discover to remains of the Long Causeway Roman road.

There are so many historic building in the area that I love to visit, and that I think you would like too including, historic North Lees Hall, pretty Chatsworth House and Gardens and handsome Hardwick Hall, which was featured as the Malfoy Manor in Harry Potter!

The Heights of Abraham is one of my favourite family days out in the area, with cable cars transporting you up the beautiful hillside to the Hilltop Park, with great play areas for the kids, as well as historic buildings and fascinating cavern tours, which allow you to retrace the steps of the underground miners, through passages that date back millions of years. Whilst your in the area see the residents of Meerkat Mansion and stunning falconry displays, as well as many other lovely amimals, at the Tropical Butterfly House, take a trip to the local cities of Sheffield or Nottingham, or experience thrills at the nearby Alton Towers.

Greenhills Holiday Park is in a great location for you to explore the Peak District, and is situated near Bakewell of Bakewell Tarts! It has all the facilities that you could need, as well as a cafe and shop on site, kids playground, evening entertainment and internet access.

Find us on Facebook to let us know what would be in your top 10 or contact us to have a chat about making your dream camper a reality.

CAMPERVANNING TIPS

One of the great things about having a campervan is that you get to explore the great outdoors whenever you feel like it, as well as having some home comforts wherever you are in the world.

With the luxury of being able to step outside straight into fields and onto beaches comes the small downside that there is lots of muck you and the kids might bring into the camper. The benefit of having a small campervan so you can easily get around anywhere you like, without having to worry about turning circles, height or weight restrictions, will mean that there is limited kitchen space for the preparation of fresh food. With the privilege of having running water in your own vehicle comes the need to utilise less water than you may be used to, in order to save supplies in between water tank fills ups. These few worries will easily be wiped away with a few tips from us campervan lovers over at Sussex Campers:

Help, I am running out of water!

You can have lots of different sizes of water tanks in your campervan but you will still probably need to get used to using a lot less water than you do at home- (it may even make you realise just how much water you waste at home)

For cleaning the camper

Make sure you use hot water and antibacterial washing up liquid when cleaning up after food preparation and meal times but if the rest ofyour campervan gets mucky, you don’t necessarily need much water to keep it clean- you just need a few good tools and antibacterial products.

Have packs of antibacterial wipes like Dettol or similar around so you can wipe down sides, cabinets, floors and any spillages.
Dettol antibaterial spray and kitchen roll
Get a handy spray floor mop or similar from somewhere like JML so you can easily wipe the floor down quickly, perhaps once a day, and they are usually very easy to store.

For you and the kids

Take packets of face wipes and refreshing body wipes.
Stock up on the antibacterial hand gel that doesn’t require water to use in between proper hand washes. Make sure you wash your hands with hot water and antibacterial hand was when you go to the loo or prepare food.
Take packets of face wipes and refreshing body wipes.
Keep a few bottles of drinking water as well as your water tank in case you run out and need a drink.

Help! Where do I prepare my food?

The great thing about a campervan is having your own kitchen- being able to cook whatever you want and stop for a cup of tea whenever you want. You will, however, be unlikely to have a kitchen in a campervan that is as big as your one at home but you can still easily cook pretty much whatever you want!

Chicken- Chicken scares some people but as long as you are careful and clean up properly, like you would at home, you will be fine.

Washing up and cleaning after food prep is the one place that I wouldn’t skimp on water. Boil a kettle and mix with a bit of cold water and washing up liquid to wash up everything you have used for cooking. Clean down the sides with antibacterial spray too.

If you have a small kitchenette area go for the two topped kitchen unit that we install so that you can have half of your lid down over the hob or sink to create more work surface space when you are cooking or washing up.

 

With all the food preparation you could always do some preparation at home before you leave eg chopping up vegetables, making salads or marinating meats, and then put in tupperware boxes or freezer bags and keep in your fridge or freezer. Marinating the meats before you go away also means you will get some really, lovely juicy food- pop it on a BBQ for a really tasty treat!

General Tips

Don’t leave any food out uncovered as this will attract flies.

If you are reheating food, reheat once, make sure it is piping hot and then throw away left overs (I doubt there will be left overs where you are having nice long walks!)

Make sure that you have chemical loo cleaner, available from most camp shops, rather than just ordinary toilet cleaner.

Change your hand towels more often than you would at home, take one for every day and a couple spare, or enough to last until you do a big wash.

Use this simple tip: take your shoes off before going in the camper. Have a special shoe bucket and indoor slippers/ shoes- this will minimise the need for cleaning inside.