The freedom of a Motorhome holiday in Italy
By Leslie Brown
Having travelled in Italy several times by train and rental car over the years, I have to say that a motorhome holiday offers several benefits. I definitely think it has more advantages than disadvantages. When staying in hotels and B&B's, if I am moving around, I have to be honest and say that I dread the packing, checking out, moving, checking in and unpacking, with the knowledge that we have to do it again the next day as well.
I have found that it is simply very relaxing to wake up in the morning, have a leisurely breakfast, do a little bit of a tidy up for safety's sake (don't want any loose dishes falling around in the cab), haul out the maps and guidebooks, decide where we are going today, and just go. It's just so much quicker.
I also do not miss lugging suitcases around all the time!
Another aspect I like is that travelling through Italy in a Campervan allows the traveller to experience parts of Italy that the ordinary tourist never sees. Since you are not tied to a specific location because of accomodation, you can simply keep driving in whatever direction takes your fancy. It's quite fascinating how many amazing sites there are in Italy, just beyond the range of a single car journey from the major cities.
I also like the fact that I am not restricted because of a pre-booked itinerary. I tend to have a vague idea of where I want to go, and a few things I would like to see. When I get to an area, it is much more fun to investigate and see what pops up. I also like the freedom that comes with not having commitments and plans that force me to make for a particular place at a particular time.
I am freed from the tyranny of having to follow a plan!
Though I have been several times, it must be said that it would take several years to see everything that Italy has to offer. A country as old and rich in history in Italy is not peeled away in a few chunks; there are a multitude of things to see and do. It is a good idea to pick an area, and concentrate just there, rather than doing too much driving to try and see all of the country in one go; that just isn't going to work.
If you decide to visit the Alps, you have a lot of choice. You can arrive in Milan, and, there in the distance, you can see the immense mountains hovering on the horizon. Take a trip up, and also go for a while to Lake Como, one of the most beautiful lakes in all of Europe. The lake is surrounded by many beaches and small villages, with an abundance of activities and tours available for visitors.
For a change of pace, how about visiting the many museums and art galleries of Florence. Florence has a long and rich history, and this is reflected in the architecture and art on display. Visit the Uffizi Gallery, or view the Ponte Vecchio, where a bridge spans the Arno River, and has shops and houses built onto it, as used to be common in medieval times. You can stay in a campground overlooking Florence called Campeggio Michelangelo. More details are available on their website. One thing to keep in mind; Florence is an amazingly popular tourist destination, so if you plan to visit, try to visit outside of the main tourist season of July and August.
Another option if you are in northern Italy is Venice, though for obvious reasons you will have to leave your motorhome at one of the many campgrounds that surround this beautiful city. Once you have settled your camper there, just grab some of the frequent public transport and head into the city. Public transport in Italy is very efficient, regular, and cheap, and is the best way to get around Italian cities; you don't want to drive a large motorhome through some of the narrow, winding streets you can come across. In fact, the larger cities have restrictions on bringing private transport into the city centre, anyway, so park and ride is your only real choice anyway.
When travelling between cities, you can take the "autostrada", which are like motorways, or German "autobahn". They are very easy to drive, direct routes between cities. You can also peel of onto secondary roads to visit small villages. It is possible to travel all the way from the north of Italy all the way to Sicily in the south by motorway, down the east or west coasts.
A point to keep in mind is that the Italians take their main holiday in the month of August, so if you visit during this time, you can expect the roads to be very busy. Italians love motorhomes (calling them campers) as well as we do, so if you want to book during August, I recommend that you book at least 6 months in advance to be sure of getting a motorhome before they are all booked out!
All in all, a motorhome holiday is easy, cheap, convenient to arrange, and very very relaxing. Please feel free to contact us here at Worldwide Motorhome Hire if you need any mroe help or information.