While staying at Camping Paloma we took a hike around the beach towards Tarifa. Just past the river we saw a load of campervans, all shapes and sizes, parked up in a field overlooking the sea. At first it looked like folks were parking up for a day of kite surfing but returning the next day and subsequent days we saw the same vans over and over.
It turns out this place is affectionately known as the ‘pigfield’ and is home to a little community of hippies and crusties who have gravitated there and never left.
As chance would have it we picked up three travellers who were hitching from Tarifa towards Punta Paloma. They had been living at the pigfield for several months and they gave us the lowdown on the place.
It turns out the pigfield is well known in traveller circles and is frequented by many as it’s a big enough space to live comfortably and still maintain a modicum of privacy.
There are a few dwellers who have caused some problems, one guy had his van confiscated by the police so he’s currently set his furniture out in the trees and has made a lounge out of it. Generally there aren’t any issues though and the community tend to help each other out where possible.
Through the Eco Centre in Tarifa we met a couple of English travellers who invited us to their van on the site and gave us a quick tour of the area. The traveller community really does exists on the limits of exisence and many of the people living there struggle to feed themselves regularly but still manage to find tobacco, hash and booze. Here are those among them who have genuine skills and sell their wares in Tarifa on a daily basis. The other extreme are those who get by through stealing from supermarkets and shops. The desire to survive at all costs can lead desperate people to desperate measures.
By all accounts there are no problems between dwellers and they have a code and respect between each other; something about backyards and not defecating comes to mind.
The pigfield is the first commune type place we’ve encountered on our travels and while it’s a great location with some decent facilities nearby (the pizza place with its wi-fi as an example) it’s not the sort of place I’d like to stay longer than a few nights.
If you’re looking for a wild camp spot for a few nights you could do worse than stay at the pigfield but there are quieter alternatives in more convenient places nearby if you really like your privacy.
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