Before you embark on your amazing adventure, you might as well pick up at least a couple of the following publications which will make your odyssey that bit smoother. Well, that’s the idea anyhow.
By facile media
This useful guide will help you plan ‘free’ or cheap overnights throughout Europe for you, your campervan/motorhome and your hairy family. It works like a directory with details of nearest water supplies, emptying points and electric hook-up points. Most of these are free but some will charge a few measly euros. Some of the locations are a bit rough but others ain’t so bad, whilst others are pretty spectacular.
All the aires – Spain and Portugal
Another very useful collection of pulp for the wildcamper or motorhomer. A great directory of information covering locations, facilities, costs and co-ordinates to assist you in finding aires. It also tells you if there is a green area close by which is very useful should you have hairy kids. There is also an edition that covers mountains, which is great if you like mountains.
Alan Rogers Campsite Guide – Spain and Portugal
A good resource for normal campsites with colourful images, prices and lists of facilities for each site. Includes a good section at the back that lists all dog-unfriendly sites (good to know), those that are open all year, have a swimming pool and a number of other criteria. Useful in conjunction with the ASCI card directory that has meagre photos and less information on each site.
101 campsites for you and your dog
Fairly useful, particularly if you are doing a tour of Europe, as a few doggy-amicable sites are listed for each country. Lists whether the site is close to a vets, where dogs are permitted and what specific facilities are aimed at doggies etc. Note – most if not all those sites listed require that your furry progeny is kept on a leash at all times. Grump. I hate rules unless they benefit me.
Lonely Planet – Spain
Very reliable and well researched guide to one of the most beautiful countries in the world aimed at backpackers and the discerning traveller. Great for planning itineraries and for deciding what is and what isn’t worth seeing. Also lists restaurants, bars and accommodation plus the odd campsite or two. It’s worth having at least one such book to hand, otherwise you will be flying blind. Which is never a good idea. You might crash and then won’t know where you are. Terrible idea. Terrible.
Rough Guide – Spain
Another guide similar to Lonely Planet with great presentation and very similar features. Take a look at both and decide which format you prefer. Rough Guide always has the edge for me, but if you are going to spend a while in Spain – and you will want to – sunshine, beautiful vistas and relaxation are inexplicably addictive – it’s worth stocking up on a couple of guides. They are not infallible afterall.
This isn’t an exhaustive list, although I am rather tired, but a few of the books that we use whilst travelling. Check out Amazon.com for more choice. We didn’t buy all our books new either – we saved money by purchasing used guides from eBay and accepted that some of the info would be out of date. My Lonely Planet Spain guide still listed prices in pesetas. Those were the days.
If you have any books you’d like to recommend, please let us know by doing a commenty thing in the commenty box down below. You know you want to.