My girlfriend and I are heading on a trip to europe starting in June for 6 months. We don't have much of a plan except that we land in London and have 10 days there before we fly to Riga, Latvia. From there we expect to spend a lot of time in eastern europe, mainly because it's cheaper, less touristy, has loads of culture and looks spectacular. From there, we are also thinking of maybe going around the med until we get to france/spain/morocco. Of course any of this could change and we will need to probably find work somewhere along the way because we won't have enough money.
Now, the question is, would bringing a tent be worth it? Are there places to camp or would we need a car to access camp grounds? And is the extra hassle of bringing a tent and carrying it around worth the money we might save?
Any thoughts on this would be great.
The only way to really save money by way of camping in Western Europe is to do it illegally, ie away from the regular campsites out in the fields. But to do that you will need a means of getting out into the countryside, like bicycles, a motorbike or a car.
So if you have something like this, by all means take a tent, but otherwise I don't think it is really worth the hassle. But look at http://www.karmabum.com, they can give you more specific ideas.
Well I've tried this before in France but only for two weeks and I would absolutely not recommend it! Especially for 6 months, I don't think you'll save a lot of money doing it, if you didn't have to pay and did it illegally then of course you wouldn't pay anything, but you will have to pay for most places. Hostels aren't expensive at all in Eastern Europe, it depends on where you go but you can definitely find a place for 10 dollars a night (U.S). Plus you'd have to carry it around for 6 months and personally I'd be sick of sleeping in a tent all the time/trying to find a campsite. After about a week I literally just gave up, threw the thing away and stayed in hostels for the rest of the trip.
In saying that it might be better if you're more of the outdoors type, another factor that ruined it for me was that most of the places I wanted to visit were big cities - if you can imagine trying to find a campsite around Paris, it's not easy.
i dont know too much about camp grounds and their regulations, but i also travelled through europe a couple summers ago and took a tent,... let me tell you, it was definately a life saver!!
i would definately recommend taking one, just because if you are ever in the position where you don't know where you'll be staying on a particular night, or there's no space left in a hostel (this will only happen in the touristy season!!), but a tent will enable you to just set it up and sleep anywhere,... there were certain hostels that we tried to get into, but were full for the night, but we were stuck there with no place to stay, so they let us set up our tent and camp in the back yard or side lot of their property!!
most people will be accommodating if you NEED a place to stay!!
i would also suggest bringing a couple small, compact sleeping bags and pillow cases that you can stuff a sweater into to make into a pillow!!
these are just some things that came in handy for us, so hopefully this will help you too!!