Photograph of a couple hiking

Caravan Life

I want to tell you all about our caravan. Having made the decision to buy one and knowing nothing about them I read widely and it was mostly as dull as ditchwater, so hopefully I can make this more fun. I worked out what accommodation I wanted and our budget dictated a second-hand model. I bought on park, from Haven so that I knew the history of the van from a third party. You can buy privately for less but you have to trust the owner’s honesty. Importantly, Haven don’t force you to move on if your aging caravan is in reasonable condition. We needed a double, two twins (boys and girls) and two loos (his and hers) so I didn’t keep beefing about the loo seat or the fact it was occupied for hours on end! We spent extra on a ramped deck which makes a glorious outside room as well as making our van accessible to elderly or wheelchair bound friends as well as allowing toddlers and dogs gated access to the outside.

I discovered that caravan manufacturers are all much of a muchness in terms of layout, build, finish and price. I was not looking for year round occupancy only spring and summer holidays. In my price range at the time of year when I was looking i.e. May there was only one caravan which fitted the bill. If you buy in the autumn the choice is much wider. However, the angels were looking after me that day and the only van available in our price range was a Willoughby Salsa Eco which was perfect. I keep looking at show caravans and have yet to see one that I prefer. I needed space for kids and dogs and wanted it to feel like a caravan not a mini bungalow.

The shower/toilet (snaffled quickly for the girl’s loo!) is comfortably large. The double bedroom has good sized wardrobes with ample drawers and I have slept better here than I ever do at home. To wake and watch the sun rising over the dunes is magic. The kids love the twin bedded rooms and there is a double fold out bed in the lounge for a disabled visitor, with plenty of space for wheelchair access. I love cooking so the galley kitchen is particularly important. It has plenty of worktop space and neither that nor the ample eating area is fouled by the door.

Both my husband and I are tall and being able to put our feet up comfortably in the evening on the seating is bliss. The final point is the double hall cupboard which is divided into the human and the dog side and in which we have put extra hooks which take all the coats, leads, hats, wellies etc. We do not have central heating but the installed heaters are fine and we are old fashioned enough to enjoy a hot water bottle. Thank you Willoughby for creating the perfect van for us!

Photograph of painting