by naomi fiddes-baron
Being in a campervan, whether you’re full time vanlifers, weekend warriors, or having an alternative campervan holiday, is one of the most awesome things to experience. Of course, one of the best things about being in a campervan is that you’re in a rolling home that provides you the perfect base to go exploring. But sometimes, these cosy cabin-like spaces are just too snuggly to leave. And who could blame you? With fairy lights, a view of your choosing and, perhaps hopefully, no internet signal, this is the perfect space to relax and unwind in.
Of course, whilst inclement weather doesn’t mean you have to put off going exploring, sometimes it’s nice to stay indoors and listen to the gentle patter of the raindrops on your skylight as you light up the log burner and choose to stay warm and dry!
What are the Best Ways to Entertain Yourself in a Campervan?
Space might be more limited than in your bricks and sticks home (Twister is probably out of the question!) but you absolutely do not need to resort to eye-spy to have a good time in a camper van! We’ve asked around the vanlife community for people’s top ways of spending the evening inside their home on wheels.
- Number of players – 2 to 8
- Age range – 7yrs +
I love this game! Unfortunately, not everyone loves playing with me. The basic premise is that it’s very similar to Scrabble. But rather than having one board where you all take turns to play a word, everyone works on their own individual word grids simultaneously.
You are given 15 or 21 starter tiles (depending on how many people are playing the game) and the aim is to use up all your starter letter tiles by creating as many interconnecting and legitimate words as possible. As soon as you have used up all your initial tiles, you say ‘peel’, and everyone has to take a tile from the centre pile and create more and more words, until there are not enough tiles left in the centre for everyone playing to take one each.
You can rearrange your word grid as many times as you like, you can even dump letters in return for picking up three more, but beware the risks of being a rotten banana if you claim victory with an incorrectly spelled or void word in there!
This game can be fast and furious, which is probably why whenever I play now, I have to have a time penalty before I am allowed to get stuck in and start creating words!
- Number of players – 2 to 5
- Age range – 8+
Monopoly often brings back Christmas Day memories of family arguments as someone inevitably lands on Park Lane and is bankrupted by a gloated player. It’s not a game designed to bring out the best in people! However, Monopoly Deal is a space-saving card pack only game that has a great twist on the original.
Sure, you still have to collect property sets and you can still build houses and hotels in a bid to alleviate your fellow players of their funds. But in this version, you can also play action cards that mean you can steal properties off other players, even entire sets! There’s no change in this game meaning if you owe someone £1m and all you have is a £5m card, well, that sucks!
The person who seems like a clear winner can lose it all in an instant, which is why this card game version of the classic Monopoly is fairer, and inevitably more fun! It’s the perfect campervan card game!
If board games aren’t your thing, maybe you’ll feel musically inspired whilst you’re at one with nature? It might seem like a cliché, but a campfire sing song or a gentle strum on a ukulele goes hand in hand with a campervan mini break.
Turning the Pages
I’ve often found that being on holiday is the only time I really get to read, and read, and read! I have my trusty Kindle with me at all times when I’m in the campervan, because it’s a great space saver. However, nothing quite beats the feel of reading a “real” book! Some of our top suggestions for brilliant “campervan themed” books are:
- The Culture of Vanlife – The Rolling Home. This is a great read, not just because it features some our lovely owners vans in it, but also because it is a beautifully and imaginatively put together book that spans the whole spectrum of van lovers!
- The Wild Guide books are brilliant for some original and different ideas of places to see and things to do in lots of areas in the UK and Europe. The Wild Guide Wales and Scotland are two of our favourites!
- The Campervan Cookbook is a great read, especially if this is your first foray into two-burner cooking! You’ll be amazed what you can cook up with two gas burners!
- Campervans make you happy. It’s a fact. Do you know where the happiest nations in the world are? Scandinavia! That’s why we love The Little Book of Hygge, which you can read in the happiest place, learning all about how to sustain those feelings and embrace the Danish lifestyle when you get back home!
- If a taste of vanlife has got you itching for more – we really recommend How to Live in a Van and Travel for a super inspirtaional, maybe life changing read!
Ready to give van life a go? Take a look at our campervans available for hire.