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22 day camping questions - i have just returned - please ask away

2 Jul 2007 darthilicious said

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hi, i have just returned from 22 day camping - 5 th june

i had a great time, and i would be happy to help anyone else with any questions you may have before your trip, so please ask as much as you like and i will try and help
  • 1 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    hi everyone, so many questions in 1 go, i love it, but i will answer all of you in 1 message today.

    i read in contiki advice you should take a suit jacket, but its not really needed – i didnt wear it once.

    you will be going to a few evening dinners, a few restaurants and the vienna concert was great. not forgetting a night in monte carlo, so you will need a few smart shirts and trousers, but nothing really more than that, and dont forget the group photo.

    London is such a big place, and there is so much to do, so just jump on the undergroud and go searching…..
    highly recommend buckingham palace(no need to go in) just take a look from outside the gates.
    i would also ask you all to go on a duck tour. its great fun and shows you a bit of london(not cheap but worth it)
    ask me a little bit nearer to your tour and i will give you some more detailed suggestions.
    heathrow is a lomg way to contiki basement- easy to get to though
    basically jump on the underground – but dont be doing it the same day as departure of coach – its not a quick journey
    again a bit nearer your tour ask me and i will give you detailed directions of how to get there

  • 1 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    i do not advise getting a london taxi, unless you are lost and have lots of money. from london heathrow its underground all the way.

    strappy tops i wouldnt of thought would be a problem, unless your going to turkey or tunisia.
    all girls and ladies will need their shoulders covered in churches, and while we are on this line of conversation, everyone needs to have their knees covered when in rome visiting the vatican and sistine chapel – keep a pair of long somethings in your back pack

  • 9 Feb 2008 Katrina said

    Katrina

    Hi Darth!

    Can’t believe I didn’t spot this before!

    Just a few questions..

    How long did you stay on the coach really? I don’t mind long coach journeys, Ive driven through europe dozens of times but I’m just curious.

    What was it like trying to get to know the group? I sometimes get criticised for being a bit too blunt with people and I do worry I’ll offend someone!

    How long did you spend in the cities on average? I understand its fast paced I’m used to that really.

    How many hours a night did you get to spend on sleep realistically?

    Would you recommend going alone?

    Thanks! I’ll probably think of more, I’m a worrier.

  • 9 Feb 2008 Kitty said

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    Hey darth, first of all I’d like to say this is the best advice on the camping tours I;ve come across. Cheers for starting it up and answering our many questions! My partner and I are on the 16 days + croatian sailing (23 days all up) tour departing May 9th and can’t seem to find anyone at all who’s going on the contiki forums! So if anyone is let me know we’d love to chat!!

    Second I’d like to ask a few questions.
    1. I’ve heard the campsites are a little out of the way so how does everyone get back when coming home at night all at different times?
    2. Do you have to go out on your own after dinner or does the contiki guide work into the night with evening sightseeing?

    Thanks again for a great page.

    Christie and Colby

  • 10 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    hey katrina, well it depends how long you spend on coach , but as a genearal rule you spend a day just sightseing, so not more than an or two, but travel days you can be looking at 6 hours plus, but you will take plenty of refreshment stops, and the time on the coch isnt boring, as your tour manager will have planty of things planed to keep you entertained. plus you get to chat to your fellow travelers.
    you usuaky get almost a full day in some cities, but you are just doing a whistle stop tour, so its best to have some idea of what your priorities are in each city.
    its up to you on sleep, some people have early nights, and some dont – just go on tour and play each night as it comes, probably an average night for me was around 6 hours.
    would i reccomend traveling alone – well i had a great time, again it depends if you have any great friends who you think will still be friends after 3 weeks intense traveling.

    any other questions

  • 10 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    hey kitty, yeah the campsites are not close to the cities, the tour manager will always tell you ways to get to and from the city, usualy a taxi late at night, which if you share with friends wont be too expensive, however most nights you usualy go out in a big group, whih means the coach is sometimes used.
    sometimes the whole group will go out together, and if you want to carry on sightseeing you will need to go it alone, but i found the day was enough to sightsee, and the night to relax or party
    dont burn your self out in the first week, and have no energy for the rest.

    hope i answered these ok for you

    anything else i can help you with

  • 10 Feb 2008 Mick said

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    Hey Darth, in Contiki’s brochure, they recommend to bring a mircorfibre towel (quick drying towel) and a rain proof jacket. Did you take both of these items? Did you use the jacket at all? If i’m one to have a shower in the evening instead of the morning, would a normal towel work? Thanks mate.

  • 11 Feb 2008 Mick said

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    Sorry Darth, but i’ve got a few more questions for you. Did you take washing powder with you or buy it at the camp sites? And, was toilet paper available to be purchased at the camp sites or do you have to rely on your own supply. One roll or two?

  • 11 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    hi mick – got to just say mate – GREAT QUESTIONS

    i took both – although when i went in june i only wore waterproof jacket once – but if you got a light weight one – then take it.

    i highly reccomend the microfibre towel – although i emphasize it must be a large/xtra large one –you are on the move so much, a normal towel just wont dry in time – and if your not showering in the morning-just bare a thought for the person who has to sit next to you on a coach for 8 hours on travel days.
    IMPORTANT -———————
    i also advise you take some sort or washing line to hang between tents or trees or something – because otherwise there is nowhere else for you to dry your towel- whatever type you have

  • 11 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    mick – i took toilet rolls with me and washing powder
    2 toilet rolls should be enough to start – as you will find plenty of campsites have shops to top up.
    i took washing tablets instead of powder – and im glad i did – you can buy powder on most sites – but why waste time and money – take it with you
    also another top piece of advice – i took a little net bag in my luggage –
    when i had any dirty washing i stored it in this little bag in my luggage – then as soon as you get on site – you go straight to washing machine(straight away)
    picture this——
    1 or 2 contiki coaches arriving at same time – 80 people plus let alone the rest of the campsite – all trying to get washing done in 1 night with 2 machines
    im just giving you all(anyone that is taking the time to listen to me) the heads up

    one more thing
    when i was at the rome campsite they had a service wash – you pay them to wash your clothes
    its really cheap – you give them your clothes when you arrive – and pick them up the following evening – washed and dried
    top tip – take advantage of this and let them do all your clothes – really freshens them up
    but – they wash all your own clothes in one machine – so dont mix white with pink and dark colours that have never been washed before – you have been warned

  • 11 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    while i think of it my friends – the crossing from dover to calais will probably be cross chanel ferry – so if you have never crossed the english channel before – or are proned to sea sickness make sure you get some travel sickness pills- you will be thanking me later

  • 11 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    please dont forget to let me know if i have helped you with my answers

  • 11 Feb 2008 AnastaciaBeaverhoussen said

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    Darth, you have made me want to go on the camping trip. I will be booking the 21 day trip leaving of the 23rd April 08.

    www.myspace.com/anastaciabeaverhoussen

  • 11 Feb 2008 Kitty said

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    Thanks Darth! very helpful as I’ve never done anything like the camping tours on contiki! I didn’t have to ask most of the questions I had as you seem to cover everything in this thread already! Another question. Is the security pretty good at campsites? I know that some people lock their tents etc, but for example hanging a microfibre towel on a line outside your tent. Did anyone on your tour have anything stolen at any point? on the bus, at camp, out and about? Is the pick pocketing as bad as some say? Thanks again so much. Look forward to hearing from you.

  • 12 Feb 2008 Mick said

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    Darth, thanks for all of the excellent advice you’ve given us all. I can certainly say that when i go on my tour, i’ll have not a thing to worry about, cuz i’ve got your advice in my mind. And thanks for the advice about washing, i didn’t think of it like that, with all the people arriving at once and wanting to do their washing. Might have to sacrafice a night of drinking to do the washing.

  • 12 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    thanks everyone for all your nice comments, its makes it all worth it.
    i had such a great time, and i hope you will too.
    anastacia – im glad i helped you choose your holiday – please let me know how you got on

  • 12 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    hey kitty, thanks again
    security in the campsites is fine and as far as i know this hasnt changed and no one had a problem on my trip. having said that its best to be safe – if your going to be upset if something gets stolen it would be best to carry it on your person – but please dont take anything to valuable with you.
    if your going to take a money belt with you, try it out before you go to see how comfortable it is – whatever city you go to you will find pick pockets – just be sensible
    dont have anything on show
    your towel will be safe

  • 12 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    mick – giving up a night of drinking to get your washing done – are you sure mate
    just be ready as i have suggested and get it on as soon as the coach pulls up and your washing should be done and ready just after dinner – leaving you plenty of time to DRINK
    then when your drinking and the others are washing you can mention the great advice you recieved – lol
    although maybe wait till the end of your tour, otherwise they will all be doing it

    when is it your off???

  • 12 Feb 2008 darthilicious said

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    anastasia – make sure you book your holiday soon
    do you have any questions i can answer for you

  • 12 Feb 2008 Mick said

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    I think i’ll do it your way Darth and get the washing done straight away. What was i thinking, giving up a night of drinking!!
    And while i might pass on some of your wisdom to my fellow travellers, there will be a few things like when to wash, i’ll keep to myself.
    My tour will be the 46 day tour from 19 August to 3 October. I’m really looking forward to it but I don’t have to wait that long before I start my adventure. I’ll be doing the 8 day Egypt and the Nile tour before the camping tour.

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