Almost all of our travel plans were scuppered this year. Luckily we did manage to visit Ben’s brother in Castelo Branco in Portugal in February, just in the nick of time before the first lockdown ensued and a short family staycation to Fishcombe Cove in Devon before the second lockdown kicked in.
We really did miss out on a summer holiday this year and having thought about it, I believe it’s the first year since me and my husband have been together that we haven’t been on a summer holiday!
Next year we really hope we can make up for what feels like lost time and lost travel experiences in 2020. This year has certainly been very different and it almost feels like many of our lives, dreams and ambitions have been put on hold.
I really hope 2021 will begin to get back to normal and travel plans can resume!
We’d been hoping to visit the Lake District for our 2020 summer holiday. A place my husband Ben is very familiar with as he was born in Penrith! He lived his childhood until age seven in the Lake District and has many fond memories.
He’s returned as an adult and is always talking about the beautiful landscape. I have never been and can’t wait to see the amazing beaches and mountains – my two most favourite natural scenes. Let’s hope this is possible in the new year.
Why a 4 berth caravan provides the perfect staycation experience
One thing we have been discussing, when we can travel again and eventually make it to the lakes, is how to create extra room for our family.
As a family of four we will one day outgrow our beloved Mazda Bongo Camper for family holidays. It’s also not practical for longer holidays. It’s best for a few days… in good weather only!
We had been discussing whether to get an awning for the camper van to provide us with some extra room and storage space. The Bongo is great, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not the ideal solution for a long holiday with the kids or for rainy weather.
We’ve only had short stays in our Bongo camper so far, like 1-3 nights camping, purely in the Bongo. Luckily the weather has always been fine, but we always discuss how different the experience would be if it were to rain, like really rain.
As we literally just have the Bongo at the moment, we’d all be cooped up inside it driving each other mad no doubt as it’s simply a multi-person vehicle and it would be like us all sitting in a car together for long periods of time!
Plus, where would we dry all our sopping wet clothes?
As much as we’ve dreamt of taking the Bongo for a couple of weeks with the kids for a staycation and to sleep in it, the dream hasn’t materialised yet as I don’t think it’s very practical with just the Bongo itself.
I wasn’t keen on Ben’s awning idea either. The whole point of the Bongo was because I really detest camping and faffing around putting tents up and down…
So then he had a genius idea!
How about a caravan?!
A 4 berth caravan would be the ideal solution for longer trips away, giving us more space as a family, more facilities and sleeping solutions.
Why a 4 berth caravan makes perfect sense for a family staycation
Investing in a caravan has so many great benefits for a family camping holiday. It solves my issue with the faff of tents and awnings by providing a readymade holiday home on wheels.
We can simply tow it along and once we arrive, it’s ready. Voila! No fiddly tents to put up and down and get in a tangle with the Great British rain!
It will give us a place to cook, eat dinner, entertain and relax, out of the rain and without feeling on top of each other.
We’d still have the car for exploring in the day too!
The kids are only five and eight years old at the moment so sleeping in the poptop of the Bongo has been fun, whilst me and Ben have slept on the folded down seats, but this won’t last.
We have a boy and a girl so there’s only so long they’ll be happy to sleep together in the poptop!
It won’t be long before they’re too big to share the space and also they simply won’t want to share the space anymore.
They’ll want their own beds and a caravan will provide this and more. It will mean separate bedrooms for us all if we want. The kids could have a bed each, as there is space to make up two single beds in the lounge of a 4 berth caravan whilst Ben and I have our own separate bedroom too. There are numerous layouts for a four berth caravan to provide privacy if needed.
And for added luxury? We’d even have a washroom! Our own private bathroom! A camper’s dream!
Which is the best caravan to invest in?
A caravan really does feel like investing in a second home, with many added benefits. It’s obviously much cheaper than buying an actual second house, but I mean it’s got all the comforts you need from a holiday house (sofas, kitchen, beds, toilet) and can be taken virtually anywhere in the UK.
It’s an amazing investment and something that will bring so much joy and adventure year after year.
If you want a taste of how a 4 berth caravan is laid out then take a look on the Bailey of Bristol caravans and motorhomes website at their 4 berth designs. It gives you a really good impression of the living space and helps to imagine just how practical a caravan can be. So much better than a tent! (Sorry to the tent lovers out there!)
There are loads of different options, including their Discovery, Unicorn Black Edition & Phoenix+ ranges, with various layouts to suit all different types of family and provide the privacy each family member might need. Check out Bailey’s Virtual Showroom where you can take a 360º tour of the caravans and motorhomes from the socially distanced comfort of your own home and really start dreaming about your caravan adventures!
The current Bailey of Bristol caravan range is built with Alu-Tech construction to give greater protection against the elements and a safer structure. They also have some of the highest classed thermal insulation “to keep you warm in the winter and cool in the summer, as well as making your vehicle more economical to own.”
Will we get a caravan?
Right now we have no idea what the future holds and how travel will change in 2021. Holidays abroad may still be tricky and UK holidays may have social distancing restrictions and other rules in place.
That does actually make caravanning a perfect solution for when holidays are permitted again, as you have your own space and can stay far away from others. In the meantime, you can check out Bailey of Bristol’s News & Events page for updates on holidays restrictions and ideas for socially distanced family fun.
I do predict that staycations will become more commonplace, and for this a caravan is the ideal way to explore the UK. It will be a home from home that we can take all over the place with ease. It sounds ideal and it’s definitely something we are considering as a future travel investment.
Collaborative post by Travel Vixta and Bailey of Bristol