And suddenly it’s been a year!
One year on the road as a family of four; living on 16m2, driving thousands of kilometers.
Today’s post is not only my last #vanlife recap post but also my last post in English! Enjoy my recap of our 12th month living in a motor home!
Can you believe it’s been a year since we left Germany for our little adventure!? I mean, where did time go? We’ve been through so much, went through the lockdown in our camper, travelled Spain for four months, Portugal for four months, and France for three months … and now we are actually back!
Today I want to share a recap of our last months of travels; there will be another blogpost about my learnings from this one year adventure up soon, as well as one with what will be going on in my life now … however, this post is actually my last one in English!
I decided to fully switch to German now. Most of my clients ask for German blogposts and I feel like it could be nicer to have the entire blog in German. I initially wrote my blogposts in English because I started my blog when I was living in Ohio and most of my readers back then came from the US as well. But that was seven years ago … and by now most of my readers are actually German anyway.
So our last month started in southern France where we had a lovely time strolling through small villages and lavender fields, and checking out on the mosquitos in the Camargue (sorry but I don’t think I will go there ever again in Summer!).
We took the Rhone route up towards Germany and enjoyed being close to the water at all times.
Our initial plan was to stay at the coast and go all the way to the Verdon Canyon, however, there were some bushfires around Marseille and as we already got into one bushfire, we didn’t want to take the risk and changed our plans.
As it was really hot throughout the entire time, we enjoyed the rivers and tried to get a dip into any kind of water every day; really wonderful was the swim next to the Pont du Gard which we visited on one of those hot August-days.
However, when we went to Pont D’Arc we weren’t even able to get into the water because it was so crowded! A crazy lot of people hang out at the tiny Pont D’Arc beach and we got the feeling that nobody ever heard about corona there.
We were lucky though, as we found another much quieter stony beach half an hour away from the Pont D’Arc parking.
After a few wonderful days with loads of sunshine and swimming and a bit of touristy stuff, we noticed a strange sound coming from our right tyre and we felt like we have to find a garage to get that checked. However, finding a garage that is open and has actually time to fix something when it’s holiday seasonin France is … pretty much impossible! So we didn’t even try.
Instead we decided to visit a farm that welcomes campers on their ground (in exchange for buying some local products). We thought that the farmer might be able to help us finding a garage, as farmers usually know the best ones. And we did not get disappointed; the farmer’s brother was a workshop manager and he repaired the issue (broken gear bellow (is that the right word?)) right on our parking spot. We really are so lucky!
Oh, and they had alpacas! So cute!
And then we got ready to leave France … the German border came closer and closer and we just enjoyed those last days at the Rhone river and the canals around, and went for loads of walks.
Leaving France was one of the big milestones. It didn’t mean coming home yet, as we had planned three weeks of travels in Germany before heading home. But yet, it was the last border that we had to cross.
We had decided to take things slow until the end of our journey so we didn’t want to rush home after arriving in Germany, but rather get adapted to the country slowly. I am so grateful we did it that way!
Our first stop in Germany was the black forest. A beautiful area where we’ve been before and that we like a lot. We spent a week around the black forest, went to the pool, for a few hikes, and we met friends and family for the first time!
It felt wonderful to be there – but it didn’t feel more or less at home as any other place we’ve been to. However, it’s been lovely to be back with people who actually know us since years and not only since a few days and I realized how much I missed this!
From the black forest we went to visit a friend in Tübingen and slowly made our way east to Baveria. It’s been my first time in Baveria (except for a few visits to Nuremberg) and I loved it there! Beautiful landscapes, friendly people, and overall a very nice atmosphere.
And then it was time to go north …
We’ve been so lucky with the weather by the way! We had only sunshine and warm weather throughout the entire time that we travelled Germany!
From Baveria we went to Thuringia and visited between others the Feenwelt in Saalfeld; a fairy forest for kids which is made with so much love and care! I went there with my five year old girl and she was reverent while we explored the forest; because it really was magical. There are hidden sounds, small fairy houses, and all kind of things to discover all over the forest and it’s pure magic to walk around there.
I have to say though that we’ve been all alone in the fairy woods – something that is rather unusual! I think it might be slightly less magical when there are loads of other kids running around!?
And then our next stop was Leipzig!
Again, we decided to take things slow. So before going back to the city, we spent one night at a nearby lake – a lake that we love visiting during the warmer months on the year on a regular basis and that our daughter knows well. It’s been a great decision to take things slow again and to have this quiet moment at the lake. Experiencing that we have beautiful nature around our home – where we can go with or without camper anytime – was important for us.
The next morning then we arrived back home, got our keys back and started unpacking …
And that’s it!
It’s over. One year of travels are done. That was my last vanlife recap!
Let me know if you have any questions about our trip, our future, our learnings, whatever; I will make sure to answer them all in an upcoming blogpost!
Feel free to just comment here or on instagram or to drop me an email!