Motorhome Travel and the Freedom to Go

February 9, 2020

We’re a family of tent campers, with decades spent touring the country sleeping under canvas.
However, the idea of a motorhome has always appealed.

Why travel in a Motorhome?

One big adventure wagon

The idea of just touring around with canoes, boats, surfboards, bikes, and all our gear ready to hand has always appealed.
One big adventure wagon.

We’ve reached the point with our camping that taking additional items beyond our camping gear gets really difficult (and yes, we are thinking of getting a bigger car to solve that problem).

The thought of cruising along coastal roads or off to mountains, and just being able to stop and have many different adventures really appeals.

The Freedom to Go

Although we keep our camping gear and trailer ready to make a quick dash away at the weekend, the idea of a bigger ‘adventure wagon’ really appeal, with it packed full of our items so we can just head off and escape for our next adventure.

complete motorhome novices

So when our friends over at ‘Freedom to Go’ invited us to try out a motorhome, we thought it would be a great experience. And being complete motorhome novices, we would be able to answer a lot of questions you may have if you’re thinking of buying or hiring a motorhome for your own family’s travels.

So with the help of Marquis Leisure (0800 026 7777), we headed off in the October half term for a week in a motorhome.

Our Little Motorhome Adventure

One of the challenges we thought would be to find a motorhome that could accommodate a family of five, as previously we had only seen motorhomes that could transport two adults and two kids.

Fortunately, Marquis Leisure arranged for us to hire a Swift Lifestyle 686 that could easily take us all.

We headed off for their Tewkesbury branch to start our 5-day trip.

Here’s a summary of our trip. We’ll cover each of these in more detail in subsequent posts.

Winchcombe Campsite
We stayed a couple of nights at Winchcombe campsite.
This was a great first stay and not too far from where we picked up the motorhome.
We found two great pubs and some good walks from this campsite.

Family Cycling in the Forest of Dean
Next, we spend the day cycling in the Forest of Dean on this excellent 17km family cycle route.
One of the great things about the motorhome is that we could take some of our bikes too.

Bracelands Camping in the Forest
After cycling through the forest, we headed off to Bracelands.
This was actually our second visit this year though the previous visit was spent in a small 3 man tent rather than a 6 berth motorhome. We did a great circular walk from Bracelands to Symonds yat. Click here for route details and video.

Finally, before returning the Motorhome back to Marquis Leisure, we visited Puzzlewood, which is just down the road from Bracelands.
This was our second visit to Puzzlewood, which is a popular filming location for many TV programmes and films. It is believed that some scenes from the up and coming Star Wars – The Force Awakens film were shot here.

Our Thoughts after a Week

Well as die-hard tent campers, we certainly don’t consider a motorhome true ‘camping’, but we did find a number of advantages the motorhome has over camping. We will cover our thoughts on tent camping vs. motorhomes in a future post.

We really enjoyed our little trip, so much so, that we’ve even started to think about getting one. It would certainly help us as we travel around filming for Get Out With The Kids…though we’d still go tent camping too 😉

Motorhome tips

We came into this as complete motorhome novices. We’re by no means experts, but we did pick up a few tips and tricks, made a number of videos, and did quite a bit of research.

So if you’re interested in hiring or buying a motorhome for your family, stay tuned as we publish some more posts over the coming weeks.

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Gav Grayston
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Gav Grayston Contributor

Father to 3 kids, who loves getting out and about (hiking, running, camping, cycling, canoeing...) Co-founded Get Out With The Kids to help other parents enjoy the outdoors with their family.

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  1. Our children are 4 and 5. We bought a trailer tent when our eldest was born, going to the Outer Hebridies, the south of France and so many places inbetween. I put it up and taken down in gales and driving rain. In 2016 we bought a caravan and loved it. Mainly so we could get home on a Friday night and just go. However, it still didn’t give us the ultimate flexibility we really needed to make the most of our weekends and holidays So, we took the plunge in July and bought a motorhome. We’ve spent a month in Europe with it and 2 last minute weekend trips and we aren’t looking back. It is superb. We will still occasionally camp when the weather is good in our backpacking tent. Hiking stuff, wetsuits etc all live in the garage, the bkikes come with us everywhere we go and we’re now starting to find the off the beaten track places to stay. Our kids love it and so do we.

    • Hi Mark,

      That sounds fantastic.
      We’ve just got back from 2 weeks touring with a caravan in Europe, and have been wondering if doing it with a motorhome would be better.  I do love the idea of getting a motorhome with a garage. Like you, I’d fill it with stuff for all sorts of adventures.  I’d take our inflatable kayaks for a start…and get an inflatable SUP too 🙂

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