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Renting a campervan in France is one of the most exciting ways to explore this diverse and varied country. The rugged, rough coasts of Brittany and Normandy in the north, the wild Atlantic with beautiful cities like Bordeaux on the west coast or the Mediterranean coast with the sun-drenched French Riviera fulfill every travel wish. However, the mainland of France also has extraordinary highlights worth seeing. The almost endless lavender fields of Provence, unique historical sites such as the medieval fortress of Carcassonne, and, of course, the pulsating metropolis of Paris. It is not only winter sports fans who are drawn to the Alpine regions around Grenoble and Annecy. In addition to ski lifts, toboggan runs, and cross-country ski trails, there is also an extensive network of hiking trails here. With its height of over 4,800 metres, Mont Blanc attracts numerous climbers and hikers to the region in south-eastern France every year. All this diversity is ideal for exploring when you rent a campervan. The well-developed road network allows campers to travel at their own pace, depending on their individual preferences. If you want to get to your next destination quickly, you can easily drive along the national roads or motorways. However, the smaller towns and unique landscapes are just as worth exploring if you take the narrow, winding country roads instead. As camping is very popular in France, there are also many good campsites. Likewise, it is possible to spend a night on a vineyard or farm with your self-sufficient campervan in many places. Another popular holiday destination for campers is the island of Corsica, which belongs to France. The sun-drenched Mediterranean island can be reached within a few hours by car ferry. Alternatively, you can travel to the island by plane and rent a campervan on-site to enjoy the rugged beauty of the "Ile de Beauté". Renting a campervan on holidays in France is becoming increasingly popular.
Not only the landscape of France is diverse, but also the climate varies from region to region. In the north, the climate is predominantly temperate, with mild winters and moderately warm summers during which rain also falls frequently. In the interior, in the Paris metropolitan region and towards Alsace, the climate becomes more continental. Here, snow is more frequent in winter, and the summer months are warmer and drier than in the north. In the mountain regions of the Alps, Vosges, and Pyrenees, the climate is alpine. Winters are cold and snowy, and the summer months from June to August are also cooler. In the south and on the Mediterranean coast of France, subtropical climatic conditions prevail. The summers are dry and hot, the winters mild. This makes the south coast of France a popular destination for campers even in winter.
Suppose you want to rent a campervan in France. In that case, you should bear in mind when planning your holiday that July and August are school holidays throughout the country, and popular locations are booked up quickly.
As almost all of France heads for the coast during the holiday months, many inland towns are virtually deserted at this time. Although some restaurants and smaller shops are closed, it is worth visiting Paris at this time. Ordinarily crowded, famous sights such as the Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, or the Palace of Versailles can be enjoyed in a more relaxed way in summer.
Due to the significant regional differences, a road trip is a good idea. Instead of renting a hotel room or holiday flat in one place, you can travel across the whole country. Renting a campervan in France is therefore ideal. Tours along the coasts are popular, through Normandy and Brittany in the north, along the Atlantic coast from Brest to Bordeaux, or along the Mediterranean coast. To ensure that the trip is relaxing and does not end in stress, you should allow at least two, preferably three weeks, for these trips. Of course, you can also circumnavigate the whole of France in one trip with a campervan, but then you won't have enough time for some of the beautiful stopovers.
Starting in Dunkirk on the border between France and Belgium, the coastal roads lead west along the English Channel. Romantic rocky coasts alternate with sandy beaches, and the sea is always within sight or earshot to the right of the campervan. On a clear day, you may even catch a glimpse of the English coast. Along the coastal road, you will find numerous campsites where you can spend the nights. A particular highlight on this route is the island of Le Mont-Saint-Michel in the Normandy region. The small, rocky island is only one kilometre from the mainland. It is home to the Mont-Saint-Michel Abbey, which dates back to the eleventh century. It has been part of St James's way in France since 1998 and is a destination for many tourists and pilgrims.
A popular destination in Brittany is the so-called Pointe du Raz. France's westernmost point opens out onto a rocky cliff that juts far into the Atlantic and is lapped by wild surf. On the journey south, the climate becomes milder with every kilometre. The Atlantic shows its spirited side with high waves and strong winds, offering ideal conditions for surfers. You can also rent equipment at many beaches. The charming harbour towns on the Atlantic coast, such as La Rochelle, Bordeaux, or Biarritz, are ideal for an extensive stopover. Centrally located campervan sites or quieter campsites among pine trees invite you to linger.
But it doesn't always have to be the sea. Promising routes also lead across France along the great rivers Loire or Rhone. The winding roads through the river valleys lead through evergreen landscapes where hiking enthusiasts and nature lovers get their money's worth. There is also plenty on offer for the adventurous. Canoeing and white-water rafting are offered in many places, guided tours through the vineyards or historic castles. If you want to rent a campervan, you are flexible here. You can stay longer in a beautiful place or drive on to the next campsite, depending on your personal preferences.
In addition to wild, romantic landscapes and breathtaking nature, France also has art, culture, and cuisine on offer. The French savoir-vivre is not only at home in the capital Paris. The special art of enjoying and celebrating life can be found throughout the country. You can enjoy regional culinary specialities such as Alsatian tarte flambée or Burgundy wines directly on-site during your holiday in a campervan.
Even though France is a very diverse travel destination, it is worth taking a detour to neighboring countries during a holiday in France with a camper van or motorhome. In the southwest, France's border with Spain and Andorra runs right through the Pyrenees. Winding country roads criss-cross the region. On a road trip in this region of France, you can cross the green borders several times in just one day. Andorra is also easy to reach by campervan. The dwarf state enclosed by the mountain peaks is a shopping paradise and a popular ski resort in winter.
Renting a campervan in France is very easy. And so is the journey. If you are coming from Germany, you can travel by car or directly by campervan or motorhome. You can rent your campervan in Germany or directly at your desired starting point in France. If you want to start your journey with the campervan in France, you can travel by train or plane.
It is essential to know that motorways in France are subject to tolls. You can find up-to-date information on tolls at the ADAC. Refueling is also an essential topic when renting a campervan. There are two types of petrol stations in France. On the one hand, there are the classic petrol stations of the well-known suppliers, which are quite expensive.
On the other hand, almost every larger supermarket has its own petrol station, where fuel is offered at much lower prices. For food and drink during the trip, you can shop in supermarkets and hypermarkets. But farmers' markets and farm shops also offer regional specialties in France at a high quality and low price. During your holiday, you can rent a pitch for the nights at one of the many campsites or caravan parks. However, free overnight stays in car parks are also permitted in France. This way, you can spend peaceful nights in your campervan under the stars and, of course, save the costs for the rentals.
If you are planning to rent a campervan in France, choosing the right camper is essential. Whether you are traveling alone, with your partner, or the whole family, the campervan's size and equipment is particularly important. A distinction is made between different types:
A fully integrated campervan for hire in France is a good choice if you travel with the whole family. It offers the most space and the best insulation and is therefore also suitable for cooler temperatures. There is no sign of the basic vehicle here. Visually the vehicle appears to be all of one single piece. The cockpit and living area merge seamlessly. This makes a fully integrated campervan the first choice if you place a little more value on space and living comfort. However, the large body makes driving through narrow city centres a bit more challenging. Parking in multi-story car parks is usually not possible either. Renting is particularly popular for fully integrated campervans due to the high purchase price.
In the semi-integrated campervan, the basic vehicle's cockpit remains on the outside but is connected in the interior. For example, you can fully rotate the driver's and passenger's seats and use it as a seat at the dining table. Semi-integrated campervans also offer plenty of space and storage. Due to the somewhat more compact body, they are more maneuverable and easier to drive on narrow roads.
Renting a van as a camper van is ideal if you are traveling alone or as a couple. They offer a little less space but just as much comfort as integrated campervans. On the other hand, they are ideal for flexible, fast travel. Since the living space is built into the existing van, the external dimensions remain compact. This means that even a trip through the city can be managed without any obstacles.
Whether you want to rent a campervan with or without an alcove depends very much on personal preference and individual holiday planning. An alcove above the driver's cabin offers a comfortable double bed that does not have to be set up in the evening and a lot of additional storage space. However, it increases the overall height of the vehicle. Therefore, you must pay attention to the clearance height in tunnels and at barriers. The vehicle is also more sensitive to crosswinds.
In contrast to buying a campervan, you are much more flexible when renting one. Not only is the purchase price waived if you decide to rent. You can choose before each holiday which features are important to you and rent an appropriate campervan.