Everyone who owns their own motorhome knows they can be a lot of fun at any time of year, not just in the warm summer months. Spending Christmas in a motorhome can be just as magical as anywhere else when you’ve got those you love close to hand. However, to make your motorhome Christmas memorable for all the right reasons you need to read our top tips for a super celebration.
Just as with finding suitable motorhome insurance, with something as important as Christmas you can’t leave anything to chance! Give our helpful team of insurance elves at Motorhome Protect a call today and get your festive preparations off to the very best start!
Why spend Christmas in your motorhome?
There are lots of reasons why people choose to spend Christmas in their motorhome. Perhaps you’re lucky enough to be part of the van life movement. Or maybe you’re using the motorhome as a way to visit friends and family without having to impose too much on their hospitality. Christmas can be a stressful time when there’s a houseful of guests. So having your own happy place to retreat to can go a long way to keeping everyone happy and chilled.
And what’s better than parking up at your favourite beauty spot and enjoying Christmas right there? Getting away from all the distractions of modern life, soaking up all the great outdoors has to offer, and just enjoying some quality time together. After all, isn’t that what Christmas is all about? And when you’re in a home on wheels you’ll have all the modern conveniences to help you put on a sumptuous Christmas spread. Sounds idyllic, doesn’t it? Well, it is if you follow these top tips!
Tip 1: Make sure your motorhome is ready for winter
The number 1 priority for spending Christmas in a motorhome is to keep everyone safe and warm throughout the festivities. If you’re in the UK you need to prepare for the cold (and maybe even snow) by ensuring your motorhome is ready for the winter.
First off, make sure your motorhome has had a recent service before you set off on your winter adventure. Doing so means you can relax in the knowledge that everything is working as it should. Winter time is the worst time to break down far from home. Having breakdown cover alongside your motorhome insurance is a good idea, but wouldn’t it be better not to break down in the first place?
Next, don’t forget those pre-journey checks. Have you got enough gas to cook and keep you warm? At this time of year, you may use more than you would usually. You don’t want to get caught out when you’ve got a turkey to roast!
As well as the usual checking of lights, tyres and brakes, you’ll also want to consider how well insulated your water pipes are. Frozen pipes on Christmas morning are not much fun at all. If you’re planning on making a habit of winter touring then consider treating your motorhome to a tank heater to keep those pipes frost-free. You should also check your heating system. Being warm and toasty while on your adventures will put a smile on everyone’s face.
Tip 2: Book ahead to avoid disappointment
If you’ve had the bright idea of camping over Christmas, then thousands of others probably will have, too! So, at the top of your list has to be booking a spot at your chosen campsite. And as far in advance as possible! Many sites close for the season which means those that are open get booked up instantly.
Selecting the ideal location for your motorhome is always a big part of planning the perfect motorhome trip. But this is even more so at Christmas. Our advice is to opt for somewhere you’ve been previously, somewhere you know will guarantee you a good time. Knowing the best spots, how the site works, and nearby facilities and attractions will help make your xmas planning that bit easier.
Obviously, not everyone wants to holiday somewhere familiar. And perhaps you’d like to try somewhere a bit different this year? If so, think about what your ideal location would look like and do your research accordingly. For example, if the fabled white Christmas is what you’re wishing for then the far north of Scotland needs to be on your short list.
Be aware many sites close or restrict certain facilities during the Christmas holidays. So always call ahead to ensure the hot tubs, site bars, and club houses will still be running. And if you’re planning on staying for New Year’s Eve it might also be worth asking what activities are happening on site. You don’t want to be left out of the party if you haven’t got a ticket!
Wondering which campsites might be right for you? The Gap Decaders Phil and Izzy have five festive crackers just right for the season:
- The family run Lady Heyes Holiday Park is just two miles from the delightful market town of Frodsham in the heart of the Cheshire countryside. It’s dog friendly and perfect for a family Christmas. With generous pitches, modern 5-star facilities with under floor heating, and a fantastic range of onsite shops and other attractions. Perfect for a weary Santa to rest up after a hard day in the sleigh!
- Another luxury offering is the award-winning Wells Touring Park in beautiful Somerset. This adults-only touring park has 5 stars written all over it. If you’re looking for some peace, tranquillity and relaxation over the Christmas period then staying here is the easiest way to do it. As well as the stunning nearby cathedral city of Wells, the site is also close to Bath. While Bath’s famous Christmas Market is not on this year, it’s still a wonderful place to get a dose of Christmas cheer.
- If you’re thinking of extending your stay into the New Year then consider the Edinburgh Caravan and Motorhome Club Site just outside the Scottish capital. The city is well known as one of the very best places in the world to see in the new year. So, book your ticket to Edinburgh’s amazing Hogmanay celebration and get 2022 off to the best start possible. The great thing about the site is it’s close enough to make visiting the city centre easy. But far enough away that you shouldn’t be too disturbed by late night revelry.
- Close to the wonderfully atmospheric city of York, Cawood Park is a stunning Yorkshire holiday park set in 12 acres of beautiful countryside. There’s a club house, bar, live entertainment and even the excellent Mrs B’s Kitchen Restaurant serving Christmas lunch overlooking a lake.
- If you fancy a Welsh Christmas then one of the very best options has to be Bargoed Farm in West Wales. Situated between the picturesque seaside town of Aberaeron and New Town in the heart of Cardigan Bay it’s tranquil, secluded and a haven for wildlife. Opened just four years ago, the modern facilities and fully serviced pitches are second to none. If you’re lucky you might even get one of the 20 pitches that have their very own private hot tub! Located a short walk from the local village of Llwyncelyn and the Welsh Coastal Path, you just need a decent pair of walking boots for the perfect post-Christmas lunch walk.
Obviously it’s a good idea to check before you travel, especially with the ongoing Covid restrictions in place.
Tip 3: Pack right for the perfect Christmas
Packing with Christmas and winter in mind does require a bit more thought than your summer trips to the beach. But if you think ahead, then it’s pretty straightforward. Here’s a couple of ideas to add to your packing list:
- Lots of layers – Packing for winter always means lots of layered clothing so you can stay at an optimum temperature whether at rest or at play.
- Warm pyjamas – When the sun goes down and things take a turn for the chilly, you’ll be glad of these. Add some bed socks, thermal nightwear and a dressing gown, if you really want to be cosy.
- Thick blankets – Heated if at all possible. Chuck in a hot water bottle or two while you’re at it.
- Waterproof gear – When you’re away from home getting wet can be a real drag. Invest in decent wet weather gear before you leave.
- Fire pit and a Dutch oven – Sitting around and cooking food on an open fire is atmospheric no matter what time of year.
- Champagne flutes – When it’s celebration time, do you really want to be drinking out of mugs? If you’re worried about glass then how about stainless steel or hard wearing plastic?
- Presents – Yes, presents are essential. No, they shouldn’t be left behind at home. Okay, it does depend on the size and quantity of the presents. But do you really not have space for some small-yet-thoughtful gifts for your nearest and dearest? If you’re really worried, how about wrapping something to be consumed on the big day – such as wine or chocolates. Or maybe something that will come in useful on the trip itself, such as a new tablet or camera?
- Tree, fairy lights and decorations – Again, a seven-foot Norwegian fir might not be sensible. But a mini-Christmas tree with some sparkly lights and decorations won’t take up much space. And it will really make the motorhome feel homely on Christmas morning.
Be aware that with all these little extras you might want to consider your motorhome insurance coverage. For example, if you’ve got an expensive gift under the tree would it be covered should the worst happen?
Tip 4: Think outside the box when it comes to Christmas dinner
Let’s face it, a massive turkey with all the trimmings is going to be difficult for the vast majority of those enjoying Christmas in a motorhome. But if you plan ahead and think creatively there’s no reason why your Christmas nosh can’t be just as good as usual!
So, if you’ve only got a small oven, opt for a small crown or turkey joint rather than a whole bird. Extras such as pre-prepared pigs in blankets, vegetables, roast potatoes, gravy or Yorkshire puddings can save a huge amount of work on the day.
Bear in mind motorhome ovens generally take longer to cook. You probably need to allow at least 20-30 minutes longer to cook your Christmas roast dinner than you would at home.
Alternatively, if you’ve got a barbeque then how about some outdoor cooking. Adventurous, memorable and hugely tasty, why not give it a go this year? Who knows, you could have hit upon another great family tradition! Plus, when it comes to pudding, s'mores with a festive twist could be a real winner? Who says you have to stick to Christmas pudding?
Tip 5: Be nice to your neighbours
Peace and goodwill to friends is all part and parcel of Christmas. So, why not pack a few extra items to share around the campsite? Some extra mince pies and mulled wine go a long way to creating that special Christmas feeling, no matter where you’re spending the festive period. And who knows, you might make some friends for life?
Tip 6: Plan some great activities – not just for Christmas day
At Christmas time it’s important that everyone feels included. So, planning some activities beforehand to suit each of you is important. Whether trying out wild swimming for the first time (seriously, at this time of year?) or visiting a Christmas market we have some great suggestions for you.
Tip 7: Invest in motorhome insurance
Okay, it might not be at the top of your Christmas list, but having the right motorhome insurance could save you from a lot of extra stress. Touring at Christmas time can bring a range of risks for travellers and their vehicles. That’s why our ever-cheerful team of insurance specialists are dedicated to finding cover that’s just right for you.
Call us for a quote for motorhome insurance today.