Caravanning – where to begin?

You’ve retired and the kids have moved out – it’s time to start exploring this great country of ours.

Whether you’re hitching up the caravan, glamping or puttering along in your motorhome, here are some tips from Tyrepower to make your trip memorable.

How often will you go and for how long? 
Whether you’re buying a new or secondhand caravan or motorhome, we love these tips from the RACV.

And if you’re not sure that caravanning is for you, consider hiring an onsite caravan as a ‘baby step’.

Where to go? 
As they say ‘the world is your oyster’ – consider how long you want to go for, how many hours you want to drive each day, and whether a booking is necessary during peak times.

Facilities at campsites vary – check if the site you book is powered, and what the toilet, shower, BBQ and kitchen facilities are like.

Websites like the Victorian Caravan Parks AssociationQueensland.com and Visit NSW list hundreds of sites – check out similar organisations in the state you’re heading to.

Many modern cars and motorhomes are fitted with GPS, as are mobile phones or you might prefer a more traditional paper map (it’s always worth having one as a back-up in case technology fails!)

What will you need?

We’ve broken it down into a few basic categories.

Shelter – will it be an onsite cabin, caravan, motorhome or even a tent? How will you keep the rain off? What will you eat under if it’s raining? There is a lot to consider so pick the brains of your family and friends and the experts at your local caravan and motorhome dealership.

Food – With no fussy kids to prepare for, now is the time to experiment with flavours. Make sure you have the basics on hand and throw in some gourmet delights from the local area as well.

Health and safety – Make sure you’re prepared for the Australia’s extreme weather with beanies, thermals, sunscreen and hats. If the weather turns nasty with extreme rain or bushfire, tune into the local radio station to understand any precautions you may need to take. Check in with your family to let them know where you will be and when. Visit your GP before departing for a health check and a copy of your prescriptions. 
Ensure your vehicle undergoes a thorough safety check including its tyres before heading on the road – the Caravanning and Camping Industry Association NSW has this excellent check list

Entertainment – now is the time to stock up on crossword puzzles, books from the library, card games and new e-books on your Kindle for those moments when you’re not exploring the great outdoors.

What have we forgotten? What are your tips for first time caravaners?

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