Trip Announcement! Exploring Portugal by Campervan

I cannot believe I’m really writing a submit about an impending journey! Lately, our updates have been all about quarantine and lockdown, but a whole lot can come about in just a few of months. 

We’ve been in Portugal considering that February 22nd and although we have been capable to travel all-around Lisbon and see and do a ton in the starting, that slowly modified. 

Listed here we are much more than 3 months later on and we have but to see anyplace else in Portugal! Not even even further than a few blocks from our apartment.

We’ve felt so welcomed, risk-free and blessed to be listed here in Lisbon during this pandemic, and we’re very joyful with our decision to have stayed place all through all of the chaos. 

Just after extra than 2 months of remaining in a Point out of Crisis, we’re now in a Condition of Calamity which sounds negative, but it’s basically a action in a positive way.

It appears to be like there is ultimately some mild at the close of the tunnel.

Places to eat have opened up, so we went to this a single with a view

While measurements are continue to in location (modifications in business enterprise several hours, mandatory use of masks, lower capacity in dining places, and hand sanitizer use), things are improving below in the place.

We’ve been going through a gradual opening of places to eat, gyms, cinemas, malls, seashores, shops….and CAMPSITES!

Even though we’ve been taking edge of the opening of dining establishments and facilities in Lisbon (beverages with a rooftop view and steakhouse visits!), considering the fact that staying in our apartment and in a city for so extensive, we’re definitely craving nature, which Portugal has in spades.  

Look at Out Our Announcement Video clip out?v=s1ergJLsgRA

The Serendipitous E mail

Nick and I have never ever travelled by campervan. We have moved all over the environment by airplane, coach, bus, boat, scooter, car, horse, camel, and foot but have never ever explored by campervan.

The amusing detail is, around the yrs we’ve talked various instances about 1 working day owning a van and perhaps dwelling “Van Life”.

Mates of ours have carried out it, or are at present doing it, and we know of a lot of people today who rent campervans to travel all-around the nations around the world they check out. 

But for some reason, we just haven’t expert this way of travel. However.

During the lockdown, we ended up exploring and binge-watching YouTube video clips about van daily life (we had a large amount of time on our arms), and had thought that would be a wonderful way to get around when things open up up.

On Could 5th we received an electronic mail from Indie Campers, which is a Portuguese organization with campervans around Europe (Spain, France, Italy, Iceland, Germany…to identify a handful of).  

indie campervans
The Active product with Indie Campers

They had observed our web site and observed that we have been digital nomads presently in Portugal and have been fascinated in collaborating with us. 

This electronic mail pretty much came just days soon after we have been searching the internet for means to travel that did not include things like boarding an airplane. And in simple fact, we experienced been on the Indie Campers website as nicely. 

It was unbelievably serendipitous, and following a bit of back again and forth, it was agreed that when Portugal opened up for domestic vacation, we’d strike the road in a single of the Indie Campers’ campervans! 

The Campervans

There are a extensive wide range and variations of campervans to pick out from on Indie Campers site, but following examining out a handful of and figuring out which types were readily available below in Lisbon, we have decided on the Active product. 

This is not a van that we prepare on residing in without end, it’s a getaway vehicle, so we desired anything compact that would permit for straightforward driving, maneuvering by means of slender roadways, and parking.

Additionally, we (I) really wanted to make confident the van experienced a toilet. 

Among the other functions, The Energetic has a shower, rest room, electrical cooler, curtains for privateness, a cleaning kit, a bedding kit, kitchen area package, a fuel stove, and a big bed. Additionally, roadside aid is bundled, which is a reward.

indie campervan active

Because it’s intended for 4 folks, there are essentially two beds in this van usually (form of like bunk bed design and style). But the 1 we’re leasing will be transformed so we’ll just have the a person mattress — which is wonderful as it’ll make the van feel much more open up, shiny and roomy.

We’re also getting a pair of insert-ons. A very little BBQ and an out of doors desk with chairs which will be fantastic for having and performing at, as well as a wifi router to assist us carry on jogging the businesses(es) while on the highway.

When we decide up the campervan, we’ll get a full rundown on how to fill the drinking water tanks (thoroughly clean and grey), vacant the bathroom and manage the auxiliary battery use. 

The Itinerary 

Bordered by absolutely nothing much more than the Atlantic Ocean and the nation of Spain, the little, compact state of Portugal has a ton to offer you. 

Although there are 7 areas in the state, Portugal is almost certainly most well known for the Algarve which is property to some breathtaking rocky cliffs and the turquoise Atlantic Ocean. This is a holiday hotspot for Portuguese men and women and many other European nations as very well.

For wine-lovers, some fo the finest wine to at any time touch our lips has been from listed here in Portugal!

wine in portugal
99 bottle of wine on the wall, 99 bottles of wine…

From the Douro Valley and Alentejo to Lisboa and Beira, there are wineries and exceptional grape varietals found in distinctive wine districts all all-around the nation. 

Then, there are the mountains and Nationwide Parks — which is what we approach to target on through our 10-working day street vacation.

Central Portugal is a area of contrasts. Torre, the country’s maximum mountain in the Serra da Estrela vary (1,993 meters / 6,539 toes), sits together with amazing coastal towns.

The location is home to forests, shorelines, wine routes, and Portugal’s famous sheep cheese —  queijo da serra.

Eventually, we system to pay a visit to the Northern reaches of the place to enjoy the normal beauty of the Peneda-Gerês National Park. Even though Portugal is household to many Normal Parks and Reserves, this is the only Nationwide Park in the country.

In addition, the north is regarded for its small conventional villages and gastronomic delights.

regions of portugal

Considering that we’ve lived on a magnificent Caribbean island for several decades, we never system to verify out the shorelines of Portugal (still), but as a substitute, we’re wanting forward to staying in campsites and making the most of the rivers, lakes, and forest.

Our climbing equipment and Nick’s fishing rod are packed and ready to go!

Is It Safe to Vacation Appropriate Now?

We’re not advertising or recommending vacation at this time. Always abide by the rules and measurements set in place by the place, city, or municipality you are living in. 

Obtaining reported that, considering the fact that items have opened up here and the authorities has announced that it is harmless and permitted to travel close to Portugal, we are pretty snug minimally touring around domestically by campervan. 

What superior way to observe social distancing than by travelling with our have motor vehicle — which also functions as our restaurant and lodging?!

Ordinarily, on a 10-working day road journey, we would in all probability make about 5 stops, but due to the fact we want to get the job done though we’re travelling close to, and due to the fact it is critical to restrict our interaction with individuals, we really don’t want to move all around way too a lot. 

We’ll possibly only devote time in 3 different campsites (and discovering the surrounding locations!) right before returning to Lisbon.

fishing gear
Nick’s fishing gear is all set and waiting!

There are however cleanliness measurements in position and we have masks that we’ll have on when coming into into any stores, or when we will need to discuss with other individuals. 

When it will come to travelling, I believe relocating about by campervan is the most secure and most handy way proper now.

We’re All set For The Highway!

With all the limitations in put around the globe right now, and with people today worried about getting unwell, or not currently being equipped to attain travel insurance coverage protection, I consider domestic travel by land will be the new norm for a whilst. 

Renting a campervan is the exceptional way to vacation securely, although being self-enough when it will come to feeding on, drinking, sleeping, and shifting around.

We’re seriously searching ahead to enduring this design and style of vacation and sharing it with you. Keep tuned for tips and assistance for travelling by campervan, the do’s and don’ts, what rentals consist of, the over-all price tag, execs & drawbacks, and itinerary details from Portugal as properly.

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By Michelle Pompei

British expat, living aroung the world.