The freedom of wild camping is like no other. To wake up to the quiet serenity of nature is an experience that will keep you coming back for more. Planning to wild camp can be quite nerve wracking, especially if its your first time or you’re going solo. To help you make the most out of your wild camping trip here are our top 5 tips for wild camping in your campervan or motorhome.
1. Do your research.
I totally understand the appeal of driving off with no plans, to see where the wind takes you. This isn’t always a good strategy in reality, especially if you are going somewhere you aren’t familiar with. It’s a good idea to do your research and plan your campervan wild camping.
Campercation can help you plan your wild camping adventure. Have a look at our places tab to see where other people have wild camped and where there are services available. You can also find campsites, so you can have a break from wild camping and use a shower or recharge batteries. Your road trip route can be mapped out and then shared with your friends and family so they can see what you’re a planning.
Google maps satellite view and street view can also be great tools for having a look at potential wild camping locations. You can see if there are houses nearby, how big the road is and get a general feel for the area. It’s never a good idea to wild camp in your van if there are houses nearby.
2. Be prepared.
Feeling like you have forgotten something, or you are missing something important, can quickly cause anxiety to build up. Make sure you are well prepared and bring all the essentials. It’s a good idea to have a checklist that you can run through before setting off to give you peace of mind that you have packed everything. Here are a few of the most important things to get you started on your checklist.
Water, minimum 4 litres per person per day.
Food- Breakfast, lunch, and dinner for each day, plus some snacks.
Cooking pots and pans.
Plates, cooking utensils and cutlery.
Gas bottle and ring for cooking.
Lighter or matches to light cooking stove.
Washing up sponge and eco-friendly soap.
First aid kit.
Portable phone charger.
Flashlight or headtorch.
Food and water for your four-legged friend.
Big bags for rubbish.
This is by no means an exhaustive list so add your own items to this checklist. Run through your list before you leave as this will help you feel more confident and ready to go.
3. Safety First.
This may be more applicable if you are going solo, but it can still apply to a couple. Wild camping in your campervan or motorhome in the middle of no-where can be intimidating. It can make you feel isolated and vulnerable. It can help you feel safe if you tell someone where you are going to be and for how long.
This goes back to point one about being prepared, because having a good idea of where you plan to wild camp allows you to tell a friend or family member in advance. Tell them you will check in with them at certain times of day. Knowing that someone is looking out for you will significantly boost your feeling of security. It may sound obvious but double-checking doors and windows are locked before going to bed will also help with this.
When you park up for the night, it’s a good idea to put away any valuables. Leaving cameras, wallets or phones lying around could invite unwanted attention. Having a secure place to store your valuables acts as a deterrent. You could also look at fitting an alarm system to your campervan or motorhome for an added layer of protection.
4. Give yourself time to explore.
Don’t wait until its dark to find your campervan or motorhome wild camping spot. There will be nothing more stressful than driving down a small road in the pitch dark trying to find somewhere to rest for the night. If you are in very popular locations, like the Scottish Highlands, you might be competing with other campervan and motorhome wild campers for the best spots.
Give yourself plenty of time during the day to explore different areas and see what wild camping locations are suitable. You might also stumble across a hidden gem that no-one knows about yet, that’s part of the fun.
5. Bring Lots of entertainment.
Wild camping in your motorhome or campervan is about being able to relax and unwind. It’s the perfect time to read that book that you’ve been meaning to or play a card game. There’s only so much you can do outdoors so it’s important to have some entertainment for evenings or rainy days.
If you are going solo then download some of your favourite Netflix movies or TV shows for offline viewing. This gives you something to do when its dark or you’re relaxing in bed at the end of the day. If you are alone then loneliness will hit you hardest in the evenings. Putting on a podcast or listening to music while you cook can help create a nice ambiance in your van.
Wild camping in your motorhome or campervan can be daunting. Camping somewhere off the beaten track without explicit permission can cause some anxiety. With these 5 tips for wild camping in your campervan or motorhome you can help minimise stress and maximise fun and enjoyment. Whenever you are wild camping, please make sure you take any rubbish with you and follow leave no trace principles, you are after all in public places that shouldn’t be spoiled for others. Wild camping is a liberating activity so push your fears aside and get out there and go on a wild camping adventure.