Wild Camping

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May 27th 2015
Published: June 6th 2015
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Wild Camping

The French love to enjoy the outdoors.

Perhaps their apartments are small. Perhaps its because its the in thing this century. Or maybe its because their parents did it.

At any rate they appear to mostly do it in style.

At the campgrounds we have seen so far, there have been hardly any tents.

Mostly motor homes or camping cars as they are referred to here, with some tug along toys (mostly of the smaller older variety).

There are 3 main types of camp sites.

• Commercial enterprises with tariffs ranging from about 15E up toward maybe 30E.
• Municipal campgrounds run by the local council- usually of a good standard.

In each of those there are very good ablution blocks sometimes with laundry ( usually works out expensive at about 5E per load + more for drying)

Then I must comment on the fit out in the toilet and shower blocks. The ones we have seen so far have modern colourful ceramic tiling laid to a high standard. But the benches are granite. Imagine that . No ordinary laminate over chip board. None of that boring artificial Caesar stone. Solid granite. Only the best for French glampers. He standard of maintenance and cleanliness suggests that the camping population has some considerable lobbying power.

One idiosyncrasy we have learned quickly is that generally the paid campsites do not provide toilet paper.

One feature of the paid campsites is that electricity is optional. We find that we do not need electricity as Skippy has a good supply of house power.

3. Then the 3rd type of campsite is the wild camp.

local Councils allow or tolerate campers to park over night on some public land.

Sometime they actually provide a few basic services such as water and dump points.

So far we have been on the road for 11 nights and have been in wild free campsites on 5 occasions. We are ready for that now.

1. The first was in Auxere by the river near the centre of town. River views.

2. Then 2 nights in Les Seyne Sur Mer, right beside the ferry stop to Toulon. Water views.

3. Then when we could not get into a municipal or other grounds near Sete – a good site Balaruc-Les-Baine. Sea glimpses.

4. Then another night at Les Seyne Sur Mer.

All have been just a short walk to the action part of a town.

Our eyes are now tuned to spot for the possibility of a free campsite.

We now know that a realistic limit to our onboard water supply is 3 days.

By the 3rd day the indicator levels on the motor home monitoring board are showing water supply, grey water tank and dunny are nearing the red zone.

So now our eyes spot for dumpsites and places where we can refill the water tank., as those facilities may not be at our chosen free site. But they are sometimes available at highway rest stops and around some villages.


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