Friday 3rd May 2013

Our budget doesn't stretch to staying in campsites every night and we normally wild-camp in car parks and lay-by's - most spots we've found have been fantastic.

We have worked out that we definitely need to stop somewhere with facilities every five or six days to empty out the tanks and top up with water. We can stretch that out longer by finding safe water sources to top up the tank and we can sometimes empty the toilet tank at a petrol station when buying diesel but doing the laundry and having a really good shower means forking out for a night at a campsite.

We actually haven't had to stop at many sites to date. The first was at Fusina near Venice mainly for the convenience of being able to leave the camper parked securely for the day and get a ferry straight into the city centre. It wasn't cheap though, costing £36, considering hardly any of the facilities were open.We stayed at a couple of sites in Hungary and were delighted to find the one with a thermal pool attached. Its laundry facilities probably belonged in the 60's - Dave enjoyed the challenge of getting 2 weeks worth of washing done in a very lightweight top loader and tiny spinner. That was £12 well spent as it included the thermal pool use, the 'laundry' and free Wi-Fi.

In Romania we mainly wild-camped which was really easy. The sites we did stay at included the very basic but peaceful site in Ceahlau National Park costing £1.92 a night and Vuurplaats Campsite, run by a lovely Dutch couple, in Fundu Moldovei in the beautiful northern part of the country which set us back £12 a night. 

Serbia has proved to be a bit hit and miss to date with really limited wild-camping opportunities. On our first night we stayed in a campsite on the banks of the Danube just north of Belgrade with mozzies out in force and the camp guard dog barking all night long. Tonight however we are in the most luxurious campsite I think I have ever stayed in - in my life! It was opened 2 years ago, the individual pitches are separated by leafy trees, each section has water, electricity and a fire extinguisher. The toilets, showers are laundry facilities are still in pristine condition, spotlessly clean and just amazing, it even has an iron and ironing board! The thought that has gone into designing the site and money invested here makes the £16 fee worth every penny.

It is attached to Zasavica Nature Reserve and as I type this late at night I can hear all kinds of birds tweeting, cicadas 'singing', frogs croaking ....... and the guy in the caravan across the way snoring very loudly! It's so nearly perfect....

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