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Trip Planning?

 
 
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Wollys World :)
Mud Obsessed


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Odometer: 2273
Location: radcliffe/manchester


1992 Suzuki Samurai

PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 12:59 pm    Post subject: Trip Planning? Reply with quote

For all those adventurers out there, a bit of advice please if you will as i still want to drive over to Spain, but it has now gone a bit further to Portugal, not much further though.
I am ok for the minute with vehicle prep, but i need to work out the overall cost of the trek, the most important as this is a one time and life time trip, and help with which way/best way to go over to France, either by chunnel or ferry, its planned for 2014 and 3 week long trip, so a bit of time to plan it.
Not sure of the route yet either, i was thinking through France to Barcelona then through Spain to Central Portugal Cascais, a good 2600 miles trip i think. Where would advise to go for the scenic route, its planned in a 4x4 camper, if that fails it will be with a caravan, not to keen as it will be a slow and tiring drive with a caravan.

any help on making plans would be welcome Wink

Wolly Very Happy

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CarpeDiem
Just got MTs


Joined: 11 Mar 2007
Odometer: 297




PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2012 6:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

use this route planner, it'll give you some idea of distances;

http://maps.google.co.uk/maps?hl=en&tab=wl

I tend to use the Portsmouth - Santander ferry (24hrs on a Brittany ferries), from Southampton - Santander via Dover is about 1000mls each way. I done that route through France a couple of times and it is a trek, but as your in no hurry you'll see more that way and to save money stay off the toll roads.

Portsmouth - Le Havre - St Nazaire - Gijon is LD lines "land bridge" also an option and cheaper than the ferry above.

Sort a rough route/s first, then choose how to get there, you'll find you'll need about a week to go Manchester - Portugal just to get there (about 1,500ml each way) round trip via dover, unless you drive through the night.

We're off there in Aug and using the ferry, if i can help further just ask, cheers mark

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"For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move." -- Robert Louis Stevenson
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Wollys World :)
Mud Obsessed


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Odometer: 2273
Location: radcliffe/manchester


1992 Suzuki Samurai

PostPosted: Thu Jun 07, 2012 10:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Mark, thanks for the help.

I have been looking at routes for a long time and cant decide which to take, only as we have never been to France or much of spain, and never Portugal, but i think it is best from what i have been reading, is to stay in North Portugal, the reason is they are better with English speaking/British folk. I am on a Portuguese forum and i can see that it is true.
As you know then we are in no rush and want to visit as much as we can but by no means want to everything, not possible is it realy LOL.

My main concern is the cost, i have redone the fuel cost and it going to be around £1100, i have found camp sites are same price as over here which is good, i even found some in the -£10 per night rate.

Any places anyone can say is a worthy place to visit, not sure on Paris yet though.

wolly Very Happy

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CarpeDiem
Just got MTs


Joined: 11 Mar 2007
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 6:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,

Yes fuel costs will be the highest expense, although France I was paying recently €1.35 a ltr and Spain and Portugal will be a bit cheaper, but your covering a lot of miles. It's only 3 weeks, don't try and fit too much in, you won't see it all!

If your looking to stop at Paris (personally I'd give it a miss and go there on a cheap flight) and other places throughout France and then Barcelona and places throughout Spain even before you get to Portugal, that could take nearly a week just to get there.

Have you thought of driving there and getting a ferry back from Santander/Bilbao/Gijon? That'll give you more time in Portugal.

Camping is so much easier and cheaper in Europe, and you won't have a problem finding campsites, there everywhere. Municiple campsite in France are excellent, also ACSI website and if you can sleep inside, on the French tolls roads you can stay in their service areas.

Have fun planning, that's half the enjoyment of the trip for me, cheers Mark

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Sman
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Joined: 21 Aug 2009
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My advice if you are new to camper/touring, sorry if this comes across as patronising but I dont know how much experience you have.

First off, it takes some time to adjust to the pace of a camper if you're not used to it. Try to keep deadlines to a minimum, treat touring in a camper is a holiday from the start, dont rush about from place to place but enjoy the journey. avoid motorways unless you want to keep the hammer down and cover some miles, navigate town to town on A or B roads using a map, this way you get to avoid the stressed out commuters, see any camp sites you pass and enjoy the open roads and good scenery.

I'd not plan to drive to a new campsite every day, this can get tiring and you'll be wanting a day off to rest before long. I would not plan/attempt to travel much more than 150 miles per day between camps if you are in a slowish camper. I have done over ambitious miles on trips and its no fun after a few days.

Like he says above although France and Spain are great places to go camping its a long slog to Portugal unless you're hoofing it non stop flat out down motorways and only stopping for toilets and fuel. If you are set on going to Portugal get the ferry to Santander, book a cabin so you get some sleep on the boat.

If you're not too fussed about where you are but want to go camping abroad forget about Spain and Portugal for now and just visit France, avoid the coast in peak season (july and august) unless you like it busy and overpriced, there's loads of places to visit inland.

Prices are around 15-20] euro per night for a camper and 2 people, Most towns and small villages have a council run site "camping municipal" these can be very cheap (sometimes below 5 euro) but still adequate (its the bogs and showers and sinks which is the important thing)

Like He mentions above you can get a shower/water/ chemical disposal at "aire du servicing" free, you can also stop for one night at these spots if you are a very tight budget but I recommend you choose ones that are away from main roads for peace of mind. The aire du servicing is depicted by this sign.....



You can get a book called "all the aires in france" which does what it says on the cover.

Try to learn some phrases in the local language or at least how to say hello, please and thanks where ever you are. I find people tend to want to help more if you can attempt to converse in their own language.



Try and budget plenty of money for fuel, when I do it I use google maps to estimate the mileage, adding a bit extra for trips to town/shops etc, budget say 3-5 mpg on top than your average mpg to be safe, keep you fuel budget separate from your other money then you dont have to stress about how many miles you have done. Budget 20 euros a night for campsites and keep that separate too. food and booze cost should be similar to you household levels.

Make sure you have European breakdown cover and read through the T+C to ensure you are covered (I take a toolbox and other crap but always have breakdown insurance just incase)

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Wollys World :)
Mud Obsessed


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Odometer: 2273
Location: radcliffe/manchester


1992 Suzuki Samurai

PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 6:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good help there Sman, thanks kida, i am considering going to Santander from Plymouth but the fees by ferry are expensive at £1000 to £1200 for an inside 2 berth cabin, i got a price for the euro tunnel at £170, and as we are not in a rush it sounds a lot better, just a bit LOL

Do these sound the norm ?

We will definatley be on a go slow trip, if we dont get to Portugal it will still be a trip of a life time for us.

I am in early stages of the plan and cant stop thinking about it, we are aslo trying to learn Spanish and Portuguese, very similar, but darn hard to learn. Only just learning English Laughing

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andy4w
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Joined: 06 Dec 2009
Odometer: 75
Location: Manchester UK



PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hola ! Wayne,

Hi long time no see lol, sounds like a great trip your thinking of mate. I've been over to Brittany a few times and stayed in Gites but never driven right through France so no help there Rolling Eyes .

But years ago we went to Green Spain three times on the trot as we loved the area, went from Plymouth to Santander, we had a honda accorde them days and stayed in Parador hotels and BB's, but saw camp sites around.

Yes the crossing was steep in them days but well worth it , treat it as a mini cruise mate and get there nice and fresh for the trip, just remember Spain is a BIG place and the trerrain can be steep and the roads winding ...lol the maps dont show that bit so you might think a to b will take so long ...........wrong , add some more time.

The Picos are a great place and around that area plus you get to Portugal that way along the coast , yes learn a bit of Spanish we always got fed and watered.

Andy
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Sman
Articulating


Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Odometer: 676




PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 8:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a vid of our trip down to Switzerland about 3 years ago,

We drove through (england) france, belgium, luxembourg, germany, france, switzerland, france (back to england)

That was 3000 miles in 3 weeks, it seemed like a lot of driving.

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xa7d0f_norther...vel?search_algo=1


What is your vehicle?

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Wollys World :)
Mud Obsessed


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Odometer: 2273
Location: radcliffe/manchester


1992 Suzuki Samurai

PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is that you Andy Shocked not the Manc Andy LOL, ows you doing kida, dam long time no see or hear kida, was looking on Shropshire suzuki to other week, you still on there mate, i didnt see you, or is that wrong forum?

Sman, we will be hopefully going in the UMM, thats if/when i build a camper on it, another part of the next year plan. Wink

I will check your vid out now mate, cheers Wink

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Wollys World :)
Mud Obsessed


Joined: 28 Jan 2007
Odometer: 2273
Location: radcliffe/manchester


1992 Suzuki Samurai

PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Top vid Sman, great views you got, an di like the van, i did have one once but it was that rough it got scrapped, shame as it was the camper version.

Do you think 3 weeks is enough to get to Portugal then, with a few days in france and spain on the way, the coast run would be nice form Calais to Portugal.

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Sman
Articulating


Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Odometer: 676




PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could do it but it would be a push.

If you do an average of say 40mph during a day of good driving thats 160 miles in 4 hours,

That basically means get up around 8-9 pack up and drive for 4 hours maybe have lunch and drive some another hour or two to find a campsite (average speed will be slower)

your looking at 200 miles a day max the way we like to do it, you can do a double shift and cover 400 miles but thats 8 hours driving, its ok if you dont mind it but it tends to mean you spend a lot of your holiday on the road rather than chilling and doing fun stuff.

I would like to visit Spain myself in our van (on the Sannder ferry) but my missus gets seasickness just sitting in the bath.

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4x4rick
Off-Road Guru


Joined: 06 Dec 2007
Odometer: 1900
Location: J25 M25



PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sman wrote:
Here's a vid of our trip down to Switzerland about 3 years ago,

We drove through (england) france, belgium, luxembourg, germany, france, switzerland, france (back to england)

That was 3000 miles in 3 weeks, it seemed like a lot of driving.

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xa7d0f_norther...vel?search_algo=1


bedford cf .. we ran one years ago with a ambulance axle and a vx490 engine went like stink

any pictures of yours

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Sman
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Joined: 21 Aug 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 6:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote






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TheClunk
Off-Road Guru


Joined: 26 Jan 2009
Odometer: 1158
Location: Chippenham


1997 Vauxhall Frontera

PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Silly question. But was that Bedford red, and did/does it have a rover v8 in it?
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'96 LWB Vitara. Totally standard. - Gone to new home.
97 LWB Frontera. - Standard. - Gone to new home.
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Sman
Articulating


Joined: 21 Aug 2009
Odometer: 676




PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Na it was a two tone camper from new, I just added the wheels and arches/valance and resprayed it.

As for the engine its all show and not much go.

1998cc gm upright cam in head 4cyl with gm 3 speed auto.

There is a nice custom red one I think it has a ford 2l 16v turbo engine....


I think its this one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CU4taFos_xE

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TheClunk
Off-Road Guru


Joined: 26 Jan 2009
Odometer: 1158
Location: Chippenham


1997 Vauxhall Frontera

PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, a mate of mine was Customising one back in mid to late 90's. It definitely had a Rover V8 in it. Last time I saw it, it was mainly red with a blue door, (Awaiting respray) and I laid all the cables for the sound system he wanted. I know he finished it, but I never saw it complete. I'm out of touch with him now, but going by his previous customs it would of been good.
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'96 LWB Vitara. Totally standard. - Gone to new home.
97 LWB Frontera. - Standard. - Gone to new home.
www.darkplaces.co.uk
www.mine-explorer.co.uk
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andy4w
Winch Assistant


Joined: 06 Dec 2009
Odometer: 75
Location: Manchester UK



PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Wayne, lol yes guilty mate, still got the red jimny just dont use it much Embarassed , great little truck mind and still pop on SS but mainly for a read these days i'm sorry to say.

good luck with the planning and enjoy the local foods when you go ...........save like **** and enjoy the mini cruise Wink

Andy
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andy4w
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgot ...........that CF looks great by the way, used to love them Smile
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