Planning your European campervan travels, but can’t decide where to stay?
Please ensure that, when travelling, you pay attention to the latest government guidelines, which can be found here.
Fortunately, Europe is blessed with lovely camping grounds – and 11 of them have just been named as winners in the annual Campsite Awards.
So pick your perfect pitch-up spot, pack up your van, get your campervan insurance, and head south for some sun. What are you waiting for?
The award-winning campsites
Here are the winners of this year’s Caravan and Motorhome Club and Alan Rogers European Campsite Awards.
All of them are in the EU, so will be included in your campervan insurance policy.
Camping Château de Chanteloup in France has won the coveted Caravan and Motorhome Club Campsite of the Year award. Located in the grounds of a 19th century château near Le Mans, it offers a pool, fishing lake, bar, restaurant and tours by pony and trap.
Camping Turiscampo in Portugal has been named the Alan Rogers Campsite of the Year. With gym and spa facilities as well as an outdoor swimming complex, you’ll hardly want to leave the site – but the gorgeous towns, villages and beaches of the Algarve are on your doorstep.
Camping Le Pin Parasol in France has won the Progress Award. This lakeside campsite in the Vendee has two zones: one for families, and one that is more relaxed. New indoor and outdoor swimming pools and a new restaurant complete this beautiful site.
Eifel Camp in Germany has won the Welcome Award thanks to its warm, multilingual staff and the great advice they offer tourists to this national park.
Camping Fornella in Italy has won the Dog Friendly Award. Your pooches will love its Lake Garda beach, dog showers, and dedicated area for dogs to run free off their leads.
Les Criques de Porteils in France is the winner of the Seaside Award thanks to its stunning location on a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean. Staying here gives you direct access to private beaches and coves, plus a watersports centre to hire kayaks and paddleboards. For the more sedate camper, there’s a swimming pool complex and restaurant.
Resort de Arendshorst in the Netherlands has won the Country Award. It offers generous pitches around large fields in a nature reserve, plus a petting farm for kids.
Vilanova Park in Spain has won the All Year Award. Located between Barcelona and Tarragona, its pool complex, wellness centre, restaurant and social activities means you’ll have plenty to keep you entertained off-season.
Domaine de Massereau, France, is this year’s Family Award winner, and no wonder: its list of activities includes a swimming pool complex, horse riding, mountain biking, a children’s club, and a huge adventure park with circuits and zip wires. If that’s not enough to keep your children busy, a new aqua park is under construction.
Domaine des Mathevies in the Dordogne in France wins the Small Campsite Award. Book it quickly – it has only 52 pitches, so its swimming pool and café-bar are unlikely to get crowded.
Camping Les Saules in the Loire in France wins the Environmental Award. Staying here gives you the chance to sample honey from the on-site beehives and spot over 50 species of birds on the nature and fitness trail, among other eco-activities.
What to take on a campsite holiday to Europe?
Some holidaymakers like to travel light, while others pack everything including the kitchen sink.
Here are a few suggestions for items that could make a huge difference to your holiday, but are often accidentally left at home.
When it comes to clothes, it’s tempting to think you’ll be basking in sunshine all holiday – but that could well be wishful thinking.
Pack a jumper and waterproofs so you’re ready for anything, and don’t forget old shoes to wear around waterlogged campsites!
Toys and games are also essential, at least for your smaller passengers.
Tablets and chargers will keep them occupied on longer journeys, but once you pitch up at your chosen site, you’ll want to make the most of the open space and fresh air!
How about a set of boules – especially if you’re visiting France?
If you’re camping near the seaside, make sure you’ve packed body boards, swimsuits or wetsuits, paddling shoes, buckets and spades or whatever else floats your family’s boat!
And don’t forget the evenings – board games are great for family bonding.
You probably keep your camping equipment safely in your van all year round – but make sure you check it before you leave.
Camping chairs and tables, cooking equipment, gas bottles and bedding are all essential for an enjoyable campervan holiday.
Legal requirements vary from country to country, so check details before you leave.
As well as passports, driving licence, vehicle logbook and campervan insurance, you’re likely to need driving equipment including a first aid kit, breathalyser, warning triangle and reflective jacket.
Make sure you have a GB sticker on your vehicle and converter stickers on your headlights. Some cities also require you to display emissions stickers.
You could face on-the-spot fines if any of these items are missing from your van.
How might driving in Europe change after Brexit?
If you’re a seasoned traveller, you may not give a second thought to hopping in your campervan and heading across the channel.
But don’t forget that since 31st January 2020, things might have changed.
Although the UK has now left the EU, you’re unlikely to notice much difference during the transition year of 2020.
The biggest change might be that on arrival in EU countries, you may now have to join queues for non-EU passport holders, which are likely to be lengthier.
Get a quote from Motorhome Protect
No matter where you go, you need to be covered by campervan insurance.
Motorhome Protect arranges competitive insurance policies, specialising in campervan and motorhome insurance.
Policies can include unlimited travel throughout the EU, covering vans up to a value of £150,000 and camping personal effects up to £3,500.
Contact our team today to get cover for your adventures.