Caravan Guard’s essential touring guide – France

Published in Motorhoming Top Tips, Places to visit on   - 12 Comments

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  1. Jane says:

    We toured France and Spain this year in our caravan. We went down to Barcelona. It was really easy to do. The service areas are superb. Next year we have booked to go to Malaga taking the overnight ferry to Satander. I am really looking forward to it, there is something special about being in a warm country in your own caravan with all the comforts you like and need.
    Any tips for the journey from Satander to Malaga would be much appreciated.

    • Liz Harrison says:

      Great to hear about your travels Jane. Anyone got any tips for the journey Santander to Malaga they would like to share…?

  2. Peter Pillai says:

    I actually agree that euro tunnel is perfect for motorhomes, especially having our dog. We prefer to go through France to Spain and it is a very pleasant journey, using stopovers in some very beautiful village ( remember to find stopovers early as it can get full in summer). Even the service areas and parking areas are well organised with tons of picnicking spots. As the previously mentioned the fuel is a bargain especially in town areas and on major routes. I rarely use motorways as the N10 road is mostly dual carriage. One unfortunate thing is the lorries, they tend to become a problems as sometimes you may have to overtake a long line of lorries and as you get to near Bordeaux traffic jam is highly possible. I agree that driving in France is a dream compared to our traffic jam and super markets are everywhere. The French are serious motor-homers and this is reflected in the way services are laid out. I wish good holidays to all who go there, may be I might see you there.

  3. Andrew Harcourt says:

    The Eurotunnel shuttle is much easier for motorhomes than ferries and much less risk of damage to vehicles?
    I thought we could not use Le Shuttle because LPG is not allowed in the tunnel. Or am I misinformed?

    • Lucie @ Caravan Guard says:

      Hi Andrew,
      Many thanks for getting in touch. Vehicles powered by LPG are not allowed on Le Tunnel, but motorhomes/caravans etc can carry cylinders used to power their appliances, as long as they’re turned off for travel. There’s more information on the Eurotunnel website, click here for details.
      I hope this help,

      Many thanks


  4. David Noble says:

    Your article has got my mouth watering! My wife and I regularly go to France – the country on and off the motorway system is very motorhome friendly. We always use the shuttle, not least because our dog can then travel with us while in transit. We are members of ACSI (Association of Campsities International – a Dutch organisation) – and get great out-of-season discounts. ACSI inspects some 9 – 10,000 campsites across Europe annually, including many in France. We find the ACSI website accessible to all – as an invaluable tool for planning our motorhoming holidays.

    • Lucie @ Caravan Guard says:

      Hi David, thanks for getting in touch. Great to hear you enjoyed the article, especially as a seasoned tourer of France!

  5. Clive Drake says:

    I am not sure I agree with the comments about driving in France.

    1. Their road numbering system is a mess. There seems to be 2 classes of roads, the A roads which might or might not be toll roads and D roads which are all of the rest. I have driven on dual carriageways which are D and single lane tracks which are also D. The old Route National signs have been replaced by D numbers. We never saw a ring road sign which told us which roads branched off the ring road (as we have here) does. You simply followed the D road and hoped to meet the road you wanted.

    2. Roundabouts. What in this country would be a simple T junction or crossroads in France qualifies for a roundabout, even in the middle of nowhere; in villages they are a nightmare. I tried to avoid motorways (and tolls) so we could enjoy France but in the end after so many gear changes (thus ruining my MPG figures) going round the roundabouts which seemed to be only hundreds of meters apart, I reluctantly decided to pay the toll, it made the journey much less stressful and we reached the campsite in daylight.

    • Chris Hamson says:

      Driving in France in my opinion is much less stressful than the UK. I take the point about signage, but it’s a thing you get used to. I use a Satnav to help get round towns, and this pretty well always helps. If we need to get a move on we’ll use toll motorways, but generally we’re happy to cover a bit less ground in a day – after all it’s a holiday we’re after! With a bit of planning you can use motorway-standard roads, often designated as N roads and cover ground quickly and cheaply. Diesel is so much cheaper too – this Easter was about 88p. Can’t recommend France highly enough – and the people are so friendly as well!

  6. Mark Tanner says:

    The Eurotunnel shuttle is much easier for motorhomes than ferries and much less risk of damage to vehicles. I did not see it mentioned in the article let alone preferred

    • Craig @ Caravan Guard says:

      Really good point Mark

    • Paul Pennington says:

      I’ve used Eurotunnel once to cross to France with my motorbike. I found it quick but boring and expensive. In the last 7 years I’ve taken my Motorhome by ferry at least twice each year by the Dover Calais route, never paying more than £35 each way. I find the ferry pleasant, interesting, inexpensive and part of my holiday.

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