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Blackpool Belle

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About Blackpool Belle

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    Over 100 posts

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Thornton Cleveleys, Lancs
  • Interests
    Travel, photography, wildlife
  • Towcar
  • Caravan

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  1. Ditto for us, but on 14th May. Fingers crossed. ....
  2. We've done several, all very different, & loved all of them. The first was to Arizona & New Mexico starting/ending in Phoenix & we hired through a small company there which rents private motorhomes as an agent for the owners (no longer exists now) but there are quite a few around in many areas depending on where you want to go - just put a Google search in of "rv rental by owner" and your preferred starting point. The blog of our trip is at http://v2. travelark. org/travel-blog/blackpoolbelle/8 Our second was in the Canadian Rockies starting/ending in Vancouver & we rented through AllDrive (now also out of business), but there are many companies to choose from. We didn't want one of the large companies as they are much more expensive & their RVs seem to be covered in decals with their name & number on, advertising the fact that all your worldly goods are in the van - but they're fine if that doesn't bother you. I recommend you do your research on the companies whichever you choose. This trip is at http://v2. travelark. org/travel-blog/blackpoolbelle/11 Our third one was in Alaska, to & from Anchorage where you have much less choice - we used Great Alaskan Holidays & had a huge Winnebago with slide-outs! Very big just for the 2 of us, but we appreciated the space & at 30ft were actually quite small compared to a lot of the others. Blog http://v2. travelark. org/travel-blog-entry/blackpoolbelle/1/1392158491 Bear in mind that the vast majority of companies will not hire to you straight off an international flight so you need accommodation for at least one night. Most will collect you from/return you to your accommodation, but if not, check how far out of town the rental place is - it could be an expensive taxi ride. One of ours was 15 miles away, but fortunately they did collect. We love every minute of all our trips & thoroughly recommend this way of travelling - do PM me if you have any questions. Good luck with your planning.
  3. The ones in the UK are much fewer - 33 in England, 5 in Wales & only 2 in Scotland, all found at https://www. campingcard. co. uk/united-kingdom/ Some are all singing/dancing (obviously at a great discount) but some are much smaller - depends on your preference. We've stayed on a couple, one in Bedfordshire with fishing lakes & one in Dorset near Wool, both of which we would recommend.
  4. Mine’s arrived from ACSI - I think you must have had a late Fri afto dispatch Val, 😢 as ours was perfectly sealed & taped (no Jiffy bag or waterproof though).
  5. I've followed your blog for several years & I too mourned the loss of Travelpod - you were kind enough to help me when I first started on there. I've moved to TravelArk (which is very similar to Tpod) but I do like your new website, especially the index feature, which saves such a lot of scrolling through as LTC says. I'll look forward to the campsites reviews when they go live - I know its a labour of love getting them all uploaded. I keep my blog as a diary of where we go & what we do, & am very pleased if it helps anyone else with ideas - I have had lots of help from the blogs of others. I'm now reading your blogs of Spain & Portugal with interest, so please keep up the good work
  6. I don't like road cycling either so I always look for traffic-free routes whenever possible. The Carsington Trail around Carsington Water in Derbyshire is nice, about 8 miles, café at start/finish, - only small ups/downs & lots of flat woodland trail. You can ride straight from Carsington Water CAMC, or on a short bit of road from Carsington Fields Caravan Park. Also in Derbyshire, the Monsal Trail from Bakewell to Buxton is lovely & almost completely flat as its the old railway line. Cafes at each end plus one in the middle, but check the opening hours of that one out of season). There are 6 tunnels on the route with fairly dim lighting so a light is recommended, but the views are wonderful. Easily accessible from Chatsworth CAMC or various CLs & there are various car parks on the way so you don't have to do the whole 16 mile return if you park somewhere on the way. Link to 8 traffic free cycle routes in the Peak District: https://www. wanderlust. co. uk/content/best-off-road-cycling-routes-peak-district/ Stratford upon Avon Racecourse site has access to the Stratford Greenway, a 5 mile route to Long Marston & is flat & easy as again its an old railway line. There are a couple of narrow parts where it crosses a road with a tiny chicane but no problem if you can lift your bike just off the ground. The last 3/4 mile is on roads but they're quiet, wide country lanes & end with a nice visit to the Mason's Arms You can also cycle into the middle of Stratford traffic free, then access the towpath up the SuA canal & cycle back (on wide country roads) past Mary Arden's Farm & Anne Hathaway's cottage.
  7. We stayed overnight on a site in Belgium a couple of years ago - large pitches demarcated by hedges but with a laminated diagram on each pitch showing how to position your caravan, complete with dimensions eg. 1m from rear hedge etc etc. We pitched slightly (and only slightly) off diagram as there was a huge muddy patch right where our door would have been - 10 mins later a warden appeared on his quad bike with a tape measure & made us move it as per diagram. When we explained he was completely unmoved & said we could borrow duckboards to step onto! Needless to say, we will not return.
  8. Another vote for the FreeGo folder - I have the identical green one! The starting power comes in as soon as the pedal is moved and the power comes in very smoothly, which was a major consideration in purchasing. So many of the cheaper bikes lurched when starting off or changing gear/speed level & felt quite disconcerting. It weighs 25kg and although probably too heavy to take on a bus, it folds up to go in the car very nicely. As Glen & Les said, the battery life is excellent, plus its position behind the saddle post leaves room for a step through and enables the use of a carrier rack on the back.
  9. We encountered that recently MalH - a nightmare, especially when you're desperate for the loo!
  10. We too would second Burstneraddict's comments on inland Slovenia - we loved the coast in Croatia & have stayed at Camping Bled, but would return to the rural areas of Slovenia in a heartbeat. This year we stayed on a very small site, more or less in someone's garden, but with great facilities, lovely views & great owners - who greeted us with a carafe of home-made wine & 2 glasses! We visited places that wouldn't appear in a guide book, took part in the village parade for Pentecost & went to the local fire brigade's party. We will be back.
  11. On the A1 going south from Leeds all the laybys (sp?) are now closed and protected by stones. The services are few and far between and the large service area at Ferrybridge (parking for over 300 cars and a large area for HGVs) has precisely 3 caravan spaces. We don't always feel like 2nd class citizens but we do here.
  12. Camping Grubhof is just about our favourite site in Austria In Croatia we can recommend Camp Borje, in the national Park close to Plitvice Lakes (wonderful place with walking trails & literally dozens of waterfalls). Spacious, nice facs, good restaurant & a free shuttle to the lakes once a day. On the coast we loved Camping Oaza Mira at Duga Resa - right on the beach in a sheltered little bay & many pitches have views of the turquoise sea. Brand new facs, lovely pool & restaurant & helpful reception, huge hardstanding shady pitches (we have a big caravan & even with the awning out we could have got 2 more cars on it!). Absolutely lovely but a bit more of a challenge for motorhomers as the only supermarket is a good 10 min slog uphill & there are no buses. Both sites are ACSI & are €19 + taxes out of season.
  13. If the site at Lofer is Camping Grubhof, its excellent & yes, its perfect for Salzburg for a day. Great bike paths everywhere & extremely scenic. Agree also with Camping Bled - it was quite wet when we were there but the site is sloping, so the pitches higher up near the top toilet block were better. We also stayed on a very small site not far from Skocjan caves which was lovely (near Lippizaner horse stables at Lipiza & the mercury mine at Idrija, plus one in the west called Lijak Active near Nova Gorica - handy for visiting the Soca Valley & WW1 stuff. We've done several tours of Austria/Croatia/Slovenia/Black Forest - have a look at my blog below, sections called Grand Tour of Europe, Unicorn to Slovenia & Adventure to Croatia, or ask anything you want to know about.
  14. If you like Bran Flakes, take some with you - we hunted in many areas & could only find ones that had chocolate bits with them!
  15. Agree with the times as above, and really do not leave it til the last minute - we left 40 mins early 6 weeks ago as all the bookings were on board.
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