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Camping 46 days

28 Oct 2007 jess******* said

Hey guys, i just returned from the 46 camping trip, it was seriously the best time of my life! If your even thinking about doing a camping trip i would say go for it, if you have any questions just ask away...
  • Read the responses 11 responses so far
  • 21 Jun 2012 MissAllanah said


    Hi there
    I see that this was posted ages ago I hope you’ll reply still..
    So I’m going on this tour, Big Chill, starting 23rd march just a few questions pretty please.
    Do you know how much you spent all up excluding food? I’m trying to budget exactly and most people say 100ish Eu/day but I’m not sure they’re including the food and drink or not. Are the tents easy to put up, and comfortable enough to sleep in? the only camping Ive ever done in my life has been one or two nights at school camps and I’m not that out-doorsy, I fear I’ma be that useless girl. Do you feel it was too fast-paced, or did you get enough free time around the towns? I’m intending so far to do all of the optionals but a little worried that’ll leave me almost no time for general exploring. I hear that some of the campgrounds are a little way out of the town centres, did you notice much about that? how often do you get the chance to do clotheswashing? I see answers for this on other threads but all of those are talking about concept or tiem out tours, yours is pretty much the 1st I’ve seen for the camping 46days. And finally the mornings- I’ve seen comments about 6am etc, but is that the time you should set your alarm, or the time that the bus leaves? does it take long each morning to set up the tents and all?
    If you could answer just some of these it’d be a HUGE help man, I’m absolutely bouncing off the walls and my trip is still moonths way =)

  • 21 Jun 2012 Dirk said


    I did the big chill last year, was awesome best thing ive ever done… doing the camping expedition this year in august then octoberfest, i budgeted 100 euro a day for food drinks etc and there was only a few nights i went over, in paris etc, unless ur a big drinker u could probably get away with $100aus,buy cheap booze duty free every opportunity, supermarkets etc, paris and italy are excpensive, 50c beers in spain and eastern europe… tents are pretty good and comfy, blow up mattresses etc, bring a warm sleeping bag and a proper pillow it got a bit cold at night, plus makes a good deck table on the bus for cards…plus u get the chance at a few campsites to upgrade to a cabin if u want for 5-10 euro always nice to sleep in a bed…
    u could definitely spend more time in a few places, my favourites eg barcelona, prague, munich,lauters etc
    some campsites are abit out of town, but bargain the taxi drivers and between 4 it shouldnt be more then40euro…
    theres a few places to do washing, atleast once a week, but make sure u pack extra socks and undies,
    i think we only had one early start and that was from corfu, most days u get up bout 7 and bus leaves at 8-9, once u get the hang of it u can pack up pretty quickly, tent does taking getting some use to, but get the boys to help, we’re always happy to lend a hand, hope u have as much fun as i did! =)

  • 25 Jun 2012 MissAllanah said


    hey Dirk thanks for that,
    also when in the year did you go? I’ll go april 23rd – june 6th (i said the wrong date in the earlier comment) and really not sure how much warm clothing to take. If possible i’ll spend all my time in dresses and skirts etc. i know i’ll need jeans for swiss alps but aside from that i have no idea. ill also be kicking round from london right before big chill and as far as moscow until july 8. finding what to pack is more difficult than i thought..
    Any comments would be appreciated please

  • 27 Jun 2012 Dirk said


    hey allanah, how ru?
    yeh i went the first big chill of the year 19th april – 3rd june last year, we had awesome european/uk summer weather… i think it rained only a few days, most of the time i was in a singlet, shorts and flipflops, but i dont feel the cold all that much, (european skin) i would suggest definitely take a warm jacket and a pair of trackies so ur comfortable and warm while at the campsites…. on the bus etc… also u can buy a contiki hoody to keep u warm, if its cold… up jungfrua mountainin switzerland went snowboarding in singlet and trackies on a sunny clear day, but it did get pretty cold in the valley at night where u camp, but the bunker and strawpedos should help out, plus u can get a cabin for a bit extra, heater etc… definitely go swimming in barcelona, isle of capri(get a group and hire a boat) to see the grottos amazing! corfu and croatia water was awesome! if u have any other questions feeel free to ask =)

  • 29 Jun 2012 Rachel Allen said

    Rachel Allen

    Hi Dirk
    Just wondering did most people travel with a suitcase or backpack, and which was easier to travel with etc as far as lugging it round?? Im looking at doing the big chill June 2013 followed by the UK & Ireland tour.


  • 29 Jun 2012 Dirk said


    Hey Rachel,
    i took a back pack with me last time (and will this year),like most people, but there was a few people that took suitcases etc, depending on ur size/strength and willingness to carry it round if ur backpacking on ur own or just touring with groups? and the weight of ur backpack etc, suitcases are easy to wheel about, u only really need to get them from the coach to ur tent or hotel if ur on contiki etc, i would probably recommend a suitcase, its really whatever ur most comfortable with =)

  • 9 Jul 2012 MissAllanah said


    Hi again Dirk
    I’ve decided on a pack, im not sure if 70l is big enough.. is that the normal size? Also could you tell me how long your tour spent at Versailles, if you went on that optional? I’m not sure whether to go with optional or spend my own time there because me and my friend will be spending a few days in paris before the tour. And on that note, did you have any tour members starting in paris in th evening instead of london in the morning? I’m a bit anxious of coming into a group who’s already had all their introductions etc.
    One more thing, after reading several travelogues I hear there’s this ‘Day Song’ thing.. now I wouldn’t exactly call myself fussy, I have a broad taste in music, but a few that were mentioned are songs that I abolutely hate. does anyone get to vote on the day song? I’m hoping to not want to blow my brains out for being forced to listen to it godknows how many times. i guess my coming in late in paris will not help if there is a vote possible.

  • 10 Jul 2012 Dirk said


    Hey Allanah,
    yeh 70L backpack is plenty big, i have that one and fitted heaps in it (backpacked for 5months) the tour spent a few hours in Versailles, cant remember the exact length of time, but its huge so u could definitely spend half a day in there, u can also hire golf carts in there so u can zip around there and see things abit quicker =)
    theres a few other places that are cool to visit too, the catacombes, sacre couer, etc, and make sure u climb the eiffel tower in the arvo/night so u get both the sunset and night over paris, is amazing… =P
    ps nutella crepes are awesome there…
    there was no choice for the day song, the tour guide chose it, we had punching in a dream- by the naked and famous, and halfway through changed to beautiful people- by chris brown, and you also get a wake up song played 10mins before u arrive at rest stops, camp etc was stero love by edward maya, all pretty good songs but they do get repetitive after awhile lol,
    wouldnt worry or be too anxious bout meeting the group at the campsite, you will be sweet, on the bus u do like a 5mins speed dating but u only get to meet half the peeps, just try remember names by characteristics or nicknames pretty hard to learn 30-40peoples name quickly haha, mate always worked well =)

  • 15 Jul 2012 MissAllanah said


    Hello again! I just bought my 70l pack from Kathmandu, super pleased. I’ve already got the Catacombs on my to do list, im a freak for things like that as well as the Church of the capuchin monks, keen as. So now I’m just wanting to know how much you tipped the TM and Driver, and did you tip the cook too? Will they think I’m heaps stingy if i give less than anyone else? It’s hard saving up and I’m sure I’ll find it difficult letting go of any. Maybe I am.. but estimating my entire OE at NZ$34grand has made me focus so hard on money.
    I read somewhere, in someone’s travelogue that they had to pay 2euro to hire a sheet for their toga party, but the brochure states that toga costume ‘will be provided’. How’d it happen for you?

  • 15 Jul 2012 MissAllanah said


    Another thing, Do the buses have souvenir lockers? read that somewhere too but its the only time i heard of it

  • 17 Jul 2012 Dirk said


    yeah theres plenty of amazing things to see, i bought a book (eyewitness travel europe) with me last year, has alot of info, maps, pics and places that are a must see,
    Tipping is totally up to you, what u can afford etc, i gave all 3 TM, driver, cook 50euro each coz i thought they did an absolute top job, but i think anything from 20euro is ok =)
    As abit of a guideline i spent $25k last year in 5months and i went out partying nearly everynight, including flights, accomodation in hostels etc,
    umm i think we hired the toga suit in corfu, sorry cant remember, but was an awesome night out by the pool, cocktails etc…
    As far as souveneir lockers on the coach, they didnt have anything, but u could leave them on the bus most of the time in the overhead compartments,
    hope that helps ;)

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