Tag Archives: road trip

Camping survival gadgets

Nothing gives stronger sense of freedom than fun and adventurous road trip. I always want things to go as smooth as possible, but for that a preparation is required. Camping survival gadgets can go a long way and make a trip much more enjoyable. Check out this road trip checklist with the essentials items that can help in many ways. Make the trip more comfortable, safe and enjoyable. Stay ready, stay sharp! For the tent buying guide check out the link here.

The content below includes links to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases without extra cost to you.

✅ Traveling after dark with Sun power

Sun powered inflatable light, note – there is no batteries. Will not work without sun charging. Luci is original brand of inflatable solar light, there are many cheaper products but I love the simplicity and reliability of Luci product.

✅ Coleman 360

How about something really cool: Coleman Led lantern is also a Bluetooth speaker, rechargeable and works with batteries.

Torch and headlights

Stay sharp after sunset, light up your tent and simply have an ability to move around in the darkness. The flashlight, torch or headlights have an unmatched value as an item during road trips and other activities you might engage during your journey.

You can find the independent research of the best headlamps in the Clever Hiker blog.

It might seem like a useless item at first, but the more you will travel the more you will realize why flashlight made up this list as the camping survival gadget! Don’t use the phone flashlight – that will drain the battery. Use the phone as communication mean while in wilderness.

While headlamps are becoming more and more popular as time goes, folks are still purchasing flashlights in almost record numbers – taking advantage of advanced LED technology to guarantee that they aren’t ever left alone in the dark.” The most popular torch review on Bright Ideas.

Taking advantage of C4 LED technology, this model is impervious to shock related damage. The head has an anti-roll mechanism, which prevents the flashlight from rolling away when you put it down. The IPX4 water-resistant rating means it is waterproof up to two meters.

✅ A New Age of Wireless Speakers

Bang & Olufsen Beoplay P2 Portable Bluetooth Speaker with Built-In Microphone – Sand Stone . Finally a portable speaker that offers balanced sound, customisable EQ and a compact enough size. The B&O offers an app which can be used to adjust the sound to your liking. Battery is not that great but decent for the size . I take the speaker everywhere I go (I travel with work a lot) and it keeps me company. It can go loud without distorting. It is loud enough to entertain a group of people in a small living room

✅ Sunscreen

Young or old, we simply have to take care of our skin at all times. And I’m pretty sure that chances of your road trip to be full of the sun is as high as the sun itself.

Whether you plan to climb high peaks, go sunbathing in beaches, camp under the trees or hike across countryside roads, sunscreen will come in very helpful at all situations.

✅ Power Bank

Today, our phones are just as multi-functional as those swiss army knives. They show us the way, capture the best moments, allows us to stay in touch with people and beyond. With that many aspects, comes great responsibility for your phone’s battery to keep up.

Help the battery out by packing in a portable charger, and stay in the right direction without losing the signal at the most important moments!

800 Hiluckey Solar Charger 25000mAh Portable Charger Waterproof Power Bank with 4 Solar Panels for iphone, ipad, Samsung, Smartphones and More

✅ Alternative power

How about charging phone while making a cup of tee? Burning only wood, the CampStove 2’s fan creates a smokeless fire that can cook meals and boil water in minutes while turning its heat into usable electricity. Boils 1L of water in 4.5 minutes

✅ Washing clothes

With the worlds smallest washing machine I could save €5 for each washing cycle using camping utilities, no queuing, any time, any place.

✅ Organised campsite

Avoid mess in the campsite and keep belongings organised with this simple helper. Either stretch it outside between the trees or inside the tent.

✅ Outdoors robe/jacket

Red Paddle changing coat/jacket is my most valuable investment to start and end the day when walking to the campsite communal showers. It’s great to cuddle in at the campfire. Shield yourself from the elements with the jacket, a robe designed with outdoor adventures in mind. The outline is waterproof with super soft moisture wicking fur lining – pulls water away from skin, drying you effectively and keeping you super warm . The definite thing needed for camping trip!

✅ Portable shower

If you camp in wilderness outside of civilisation and utilities are not available, take with you the portable 20 L solar powered shower bag.

✅ Privacy shelter

When you travel with tent that is not full height either pop-up tent or stingray, the privacy shelter comes very handy. You can use it to change the clothes, hang and dry the clothes, for improvised shower room or even toilet. Or just an extra storage place.

✅ For coffee lowers

I never travel without my espresso maker, mornings have a different flavor with hot coffee. Minipresso has been designed to be the smallest, lightest and most versatile handheld espresso machine.  Minipresso is hand operated, no battery, no electric power need

✅ Cooking gear

I do not cook, but many people do. Make sure you camp with someone who knows how to use the kit. All-in-one 24pc kitchen set includes all utensils needed for any gourmet expedition

✅ Onja Stove – Primus

Thanks to the carrying strap the stove is easy to bring along and functions just as well on the city excursion to the park as on the weekend trip with the kayak. When extended the body becomes a stable cooking unit that also protects the burners from the wind. The top is covered with an oak lid that doubles as a cutting board or as a plate to serve food on. Powered by Primus 100 g, 230 g or 450 g canister gas. There is also a Duo valve version that fits most gas cartridges with a valve on the market, perfect for those who bring the stove with them when travelling.

✅ Inflatable Lounger

Perfect invention, lightweight and easy self-inflatable with swift breeze, no pump needed. Can be used when camping, in a pool or on a beach. Happy lounging!

✅ Folding washing basin

The basin holds 8,5L and is useful when cooking or cleaning the dishes. Or for washings kids 🙂

✅ Gotenna Mesh antena

Meet the sleek, lightweight device that pairs with your smartphone, and keeps your group connected when venturing off grid.

  • Send text & GPS locations without cell or wifi
  • Works with any iOS or Android smartphone
  • Typically up to 4 miles point-to-point range
  • Mesh-networking enabled to privately relay messages
  • Micro USB charging cables included
  • 1-year limited warranty

✅ Mosquito repellent

Let’s face it, as much as we love nature, bugs are simply not fun and sometimes borderline annoying! Whether it is that one fly that simply refuses to abandon either your car or a tent or group of hungry mosquitos chasing you down on your hike, bug spray is that one essential you want to not forget during your road trip!

The high tech mosquito repellent is excellent choice. Thermacell uses heat to activate a proven repellent system. A tiny amount of repellent creates a 20-square-meter “Zone of Protection” area around the user. In this way, mosquitoes and midges are stopped in flight instead of on one’s skin, so Thermacell reduces both bites and the annoyance of buzzing mosquitoes and midges. Thermacell products are highly effective and have earned the respect and trust of outdoor experts around the world. More information from producer.

✅ Sunglasses with HD recorder

HD video sunglasses are perfect to capture a SnapChat moment while you are busy with driving, climbing, rowing, etc… Exporting the footage in different formats to your phone and then the Internet is available. The footage isn’t great but definitely acceptable for a tiny camera on your face.

✅ Filter Water Bottle

This item removes 99.9% of bacteria and parasites and also softens the water and removes odor. You have to use your mouth to suck the water through the filter as you drink, so you can’t fill a cup, but the bottle holds plenty of volume to fill the equivalent of a cup obviously.  I am not going hiking that often but I do have my water bottle with me every day, and especially when I am Nordic Walking or Jogging.

✅ Smartphone Touchscreen Gloves

Isn’t that annoying when you have take off the gloves to operate your phone? There is solution for the outdoor hiking, biking, climbing, gardening etc glows

✅ The HEAT company Insole Foot Warmers

Self adhesive – Ideal for ski boots. 7 hours life, instant heat. I use them for spending time outdoors with children or dog walking.

Gopro and accessories

Ever wonder how people get those incredible split shots in the water?  The dome port is required if you want to capture half half images above and under water plus improve your camera underwater shots with wide angle. Take your photography to the next level with this underwater Go Pro accessory. Of course you need to have Gopro Hero 7/6/5/2018 as well.

✅ Swiss Army Knife

Camping survival gadgets

Once you embark on the journey, be it a quick weekend affair or a summer road trip, you never know what you will encounter. And this is where one of the most essential of the essentials comes in, the unbeatable swiss army knife!

Equipped with 12 functions such as bottle opener, screwdriver and many more, it will aid you at almost any situation you can come across in on your road trip. Swiss Army Knife is simply a must!

✅ All in one pack

Tired of nitpicking essentials? The kit below has most of it, so they claim. Practical survival tools and protective equipment – only practical, personalized customized emergency survival tools, multi-function knife, emergency blanket, silver whistle, compass, keychain light, fire starter, velvet, wire saw, Tactical flashlight (without AA batteries), object buckle, Paracord Bracelet, to meet your outdoor adventure hobbies and needs.

✅ First Aid Kit

Swiss Army knife may give you the functionality and bug spray will keep you comfortable, but safety one of another camping survival gadgets function.

You have to be ready for everything because during the road trip anything can happen. And maybe it is just a little bruise after all, but to avoid infection and stay safe, first aid kit will come in handy for sure as well as for many other instances!

If you go off-trail, take the first aid kit designed for serious outdoor adventures. The Light and Dry Nano is ideal for trail running, cycling, adventure racing or even triathlon. Includes a compact and lightweight waterproof inner bag containing all the essential but basic items so you can keep going fast while remaining safe.

Back to the easy camping road trip checklist.

Can you recommend any other essential camping survival gadgets? Do not hesitate to share the links and reviews in the comments below.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 216C4D3E-9AE1-41F6-A9D0-37C769F3A15E.jpeg

Easy camping road trip checklist

Are you open to adventures while being perfectly safe and comfortable? Keep reading – the easy camping road trip checklist is for you. Camping is not for everyone. Is it for you? Do you need to convince your significant other about the camping benefits? Check out the questionnaire below.

The content below includes links to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases without extra cost to you.

If you are experienced camping fan wondering what’s new on the market to upgrade your camping gear, press here.

Why camping? Check the list:

The questionnaire: how many YES do you collect?YesNo
Spending warm nights under the stars? YES/NO🔲🔲
Felling asleep with a quire of cicadas? YES/NO🔲🔲
Waking up with the bird songs? YES/NO🔲🔲
Hitting the road without a definite travel plan? YES/NO🔲🔲
Bounding with your significant other? YES/NO🔲🔲
Exploring the nature with children? Grandchildren perhaps?🔲🔲
Sleeping without air conditioner? YES/NO🔲🔲
Making significant savings? YES/NO🔲🔲
Can you tolerate mosquitos, ants, flys and bugs? YES/NO🔲🔲
Are you ok with communal facilities? YES/NO🔲🔲

Camping is not as challenging as you might think and it’s never too late to start. Pick the country/state with the sunny climate to begin with. I have spent quite a few nights camping as a child and on canoe trips with my children. The camping alone was my first experience recently. I picked Tuscany as the most beautiful destination pure based on epic pictures and some stereotypes. Browse through my Tuscany road trip, it really is as spectacular as the pictures. Needless to say that you don’t have to worry about the rain too much in Tuscany as seeking a shade will be your biggest challenge:)

This article and the items listed are for active people moving around to explore beautiful spots. By no means I am able to cover extreme hikes or camping on a glacier. Campervan equipment or accessories required to settle in one campsite for the whole summer is not part of the article either. Ready for the important stuff?

Before you hit the road

  1. Establish the vision for your dream vacation: beach, mountains, cities, relaxed, active….
  2. Pick the location: read the travel guides, research internet …. 
  3. Open google maps and search for the campsites around your points of interests. Read the comments that people left, it will give you the feel if it’s right for you. Browse the pictures and categorise the campsites, objects, places to visit with labels.
Camping Road trip checklist
This is how my google map looks like. I admit the Internet is one thing that is not great in Italy and you might struggle when travelling remotely in any other countries. You will not be able to research much when on the road and saved places will be handy to pick up on the go.
Good preparation is essential to give you flexibility to adopt to the local circumstances. It is much easier to make the travel itinerary later if you have plenty of collected information handy.

Road trip checklist for bare minimum camping 

The most important item is tent. The tent must be comfortable and reliable. You will get the money back by staying in the campsites instead of hotels. Waterproof quality is the must. Also ventilation plays important role to avoid the dripping condensate right on your face in the mornings.

Below you can see the major variations of tents available on the Amazon. Note: the blog is using Amazon affiliated links providing small commission to the author if you purchase the product through the link. You can buy a cheap tent in supermarkets as well that will last for couple nights if you are not sure if camping is your “thing “. However, I would recommend a tent that is easy to put up and is full heightstand-up height. The most practical solution is inflatable tent with ample storage place.

Inflatable and full size tents

Large family tent will accommodate 6-8 people, always buy a size bigger to count for the extra storage space . The plus side – you can afford the inflatable or foldable bed in the full size tent.

Both tents are very popular for festivals and family camping while the Grand Canyon tent is typically used to set up glamping accommodations at the festivals or you can surprise your guests with glamping offer in your backyard.

Example how to set up glamping in your backyard.

Heimplanet inflatable dome tent is my favourite. It’s perfect for quick set up with one inflation procedure. It is very stable and wind proof with the geodesic structure. The inflatation erects the frame, inner tent and flysheet. Be careful when buying, check the inner tent option choice for 3 or 4 seasons.

Check out the very comprehensive article describing benefits of inflatable tents www.CooloftheWild.com Click here for the link.

Off-ground tent

OFF-GROUND TENT: The tent is far away from the ground and makes the stay more pleasant, so that you no longer feel the rain and the cold on the floor. Down side – you cannot stand up there and you would need a shelter or gazebo to secure comfortable outdoors space.

The tentsile tent is also called a stingray or tree tent. Tentsiles are suspended off the ground, using 3 trees as anchor points combining the comfort and versatility of a hammock with the security of a tent. Unlike traditional hammocks, our Tentsile Tree Tents and Hammocks are great for front, back and side sleepers as they don’t sag in the middle. Check out www.tentsile.co.uk for more information.

Setting up the tentsile is really easy, if in doubt watch this YouTube video.

The cot tent above is slightly unusual concept for Europe while it is very popular for fishing trips in USA. The downsize – you can hardly sit in there, cannot stand at all. The plus side – it is off the ground and easy to climb in and out.

Car roof tents are also classified as off-ground tent where you don’t have to worry about the surface. However there are two cons: those tents are quite expensive and they are not practical if you wish stay in one place for a longer period of time and use your car for a day trips. You will need to remove the tent every morning.

The pickup trunk tent is much cheaper but you would need to remove all your stuff out of the trunk to free up the space for tent.

Travelling light

Travelling light – the pop-up tent is four you. The Coleman lightweight tent is when space matters. For example when you are backpacking, hiking or biking. I would suggest the bigger pop-up tent when travelling alone even for one person. The pop-up tent unfolds automatically, folding back takes some practice.

Other essentials

You don’t have to sleep on the ground unless you want to. Kingsize inflatable bed is at your disposal. Or single foldable bed if you prefer.

Do not forget about the rechargeable pump from Coleman that operates on batteries as well to inflate your tent or mattress. And light led lantern with Bluetooth speaker.

Festival gear for standing out

While searching for the tents, I came up with jazzy selection of festival gear from Coleman. The combination of black and red colours will make you to stand out from the crowd. And you can always supplement the collection with other black or red items maintaining the cool look. The Dome tent in the center is full stand tent while remaining compact. It remains the most comfortable and popular tent among Coleman products with many great reviews. Unfortunately the black and red issue is sold out on Amazon.

Colman festival collection

Pick from the recommended Coleman selection above or search type Coleman or any other search word in the box below to check the items without leaving the page.

I hope this post is making your tent selection easier and is inspiring you for the next trips. Have a fun camping trip, enjoy!

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 216C4D3E-9AE1-41F6-A9D0-37C769F3A15E.jpeg

Coming next:

Road trip checklist – Camping survival gadgets

Road trip checklist – nice to have for an extra camping comfort 

Apps you might use

The fabulous road trip itinerary accros Tuscany

Inspirational road trip itinerary across Tuscany for the scenic drives.

Taking epic pictures right from the car? Scenic drive through the countryside? Vineyards, thermal springs, UNESCO World Heritage? Look no further than Tuscany.

Plan vs reality

I had very precise road trip itinerary planned across Tuscany. How difficult can it be to follow the plan? However I made the plan while I have never been in Tuscany before. Overwhelmed with the beauty of nature I could not resist changing the driving directions. I also learned about new places from fellow travellers. And I spotted signs while driving. Here I am – driving back and forth instead of following the plan.

The main deviation from the plan was. A: I did not drive to Adriatic coast as I was desperate to the iconic beauty of Tuscany. B: skipping thePortoferraio island. C: adding Cinque Terre national park.

For the next time I would go directly to Luxor Chianti Village Camping. It is conveniently located next to Siena offering easy drive to all directions. Is is worth staying longer to explore the villages of Val d’Orca. The picture on the right is the real drive with the green star for Luxor Chianti.

The historical charm

Bassano del Grappa was the starting point where the preserved medieval charm with a striking mountain backdrop simply lures you in to stay.
Dating all the way back to the year of 998 and fast-forward to the 16th century, a small town became known for its flourishing industry, especially ceramic works grappa (the strong Italian aperitif) and today it is most recognizable for its symbol – the old & soulful medieval bridge spanning over the river Brenta.
Whether it’s those little piazzas, that crisp mountain air or lovely churches with ancient castles and intriguing museums, staying in Bassano del Grappa will be your authentic and unforgettable experience and a perfect way to kickstart the around Tuscany road trip exploring vineyards and beaches .

Adriatic coast beach road

Stops 1&2 , (see the map at the end) covering 235 km – just enough for a day’s drive.

From one idyllic coast to the other, in one road trip with no hassle at all. Italy is one of the few of those unique countries that can offer that. We start off by riding along the northernmost arm of the Mediterranean Sea, the turquoise and beautiful Adriatic Sea.
First, we pass through and stop to admire Delta Po for a while, one of the largest wetland areas in the continent. Not only its where nature and people live side by side, but it is also home to more than 400 species of birds. A true paradise for nature lovers!
The road trip continues with driving close to the shore until we reach a lively and vibrant area of Lido di Savio, lined up with restaurants, camping sites, and hotels. A perfect place to finally unpack that tent!

Two days in the fabulous Tuscany vineyards

The next destination is only 200 km from the Adriatic cost. The two days break in itinerary. Absolutely worth of spending two days (stops 3&4) relaxing in the beautiful scenery, flying drone and tasting wine🍷 .

chin chin

Click on the picture to open the map in the new tab

One cannot claim being in Tuscany without visiting the famous wine tasting venues . It is now becoming a well oiled industry and extra marketing channel for small local vineyards. It is very nice to listen to the history and old legends while sipping wine.

I visited Villa Trasqua which is continently located 400 m from the Luxor Chianti Camping Village offering vine tasting tours. Villa Trasqua is not merely a wine, but a experience that takes root in the heart of Tuscany. Its proximity to the confines of the Chianti Classico, has enabled the Estate to unite the traditions of this ancient territory with the innovation of a more worldly outlook since more than fifty years. Book your tour in advance by calling the winery.

Luxor Chianti Camping Village

Luxor Chianti Village is the solution for your Camping in Tuscany. It is located near the top attractions including Florence, Siena, Chianti and local villages. Easy drive  to Siena. 400 meters till the wine tasting- what else can you wish for.

The 95 pitches, ranging from 60 to 100 square meters, ideal for camping in tents, campers and caravans. The campsite extends over medium-sized grounds bordered by oak trees that characterize the forest. Not all pitches has electricity but you can plug in your devices in the utility building or ask bar/ reception to charge your unit. The WiFi is at the restaurant area but I could not get it working at a reliable download speed. The utilities are in excellent condition, free showers and free access to pool with extra charge for washing machine.

Excellent campsite, enough trees and shade, clean facilities. I loved evenings in the restaurant next to swimming pool. The pool itself was big enough to accommodate all holiday lovers.

Cascate del Mulino

Only 127 km away the thermal springs are waiting, I hope for a cool weather to relax in the naturally warm water …

Just a few kilometers away from a small village Saturnia, natural and heaven-like waters spring to life. The stream rushes down to create thermal waterfalls that are cherished and admired by both locals and visitors.
Rich in Sulphur and other minerals the water comes from an underground source. There is nothing quite like enjoying a truly natural and healing phenomenon that warms your body and soul. To make it even better, the place is accessible at all the times and free of charge!
And to add the cherry on top, how about that Old Mill, perched just above the waters? All surrounded by the green lush with mountainous landscape as a backdrop to all of this? Wow!

The Cascate del Mulino (in the photograph aboveThe composition of the deposits, from the scientific point of view, are composed of “a sulphurous-carbonic, sulphate-bicarbonate-alkaline mineral water, and includes among its peculiarities the presence of two dissolved gases such as hydrogen sulphide and carbon dioxide“. The thermal waters have a temperature of 37.5 °C and therapeutic and relaxing properties.) are probably the most famous natural springs in Tuscany. The waterfalls are made of several natural pools of warm thermal water, as well as a relaxing waterfall. They are open to the public and free throughout the entire year.

Terme di Saturnia SPA & Golf Resort

The Saturnia spring origin is located in the Terme di Saturnia SPA resort. The SPA is absolutely amazing place! The luxury built around the origin of Saturnia thermal spring. The outdoor pool has a natural bottom that is 3,5m deep. There are air bubbles slowly coming to the surface along with the spring water gently tickling you 🤗 
There is also some debris floating around that apparently is good for you as people are rubbing the stuff in the skin🤣

I would highly recommend to indulge yourself with the well being even for the short period of time if the itinerary does not allow to settle. The best time for visiting is late autumn or early spring when one can benefit from cold, crispy air and the warms of the water bubling up from the depth of Earth.

Portoferraio 2 Nights break from the around Tuscany road trip

Here we go – another excitement the stop 6 after 171 km and a shot ferry ride

As vineyards and thermal waterfalls fade away in a rearview mirror the road trip is progressing. As lovely as those places were, something lovely is coming up on the horizon and it is only right that we dedicate 3 beautiful days and 2 peaceful nights in the island of Elbo, and its biggest city – the historic Portoferraio.
The former exile of Napoleon has truly a lot to offer, especially for nature enthusiasts and active travelers. Anything from exploring small picturesque villages, strong fortresses and intriguing museums to hiking up the mountains. Spending time in some of the finest beaches or even diving to discover shipwrecks. You name it!
Founded in 1548, the town of Portoferraio itself offers a diverse choice of accommodations. But there’s nothing quite like those buildings perched on steep slopes while surrounded by mountains and the sea. Island of Elbo is truly a diamond in a rough, just one step off the coast of Tuscany!

Cecina the next road trip itinerary across Tuscany

Can you feel the gentle breeze already? We are closing into the long-awaited coastline of Ligurian Sea.

From the first glance, Cecina might seem like a small and quite simple coastal town. In reality, it’s a treasure chest worth millions, waiting to be discovered!
Where waves rise and fall, you will find golden sand beaches surrounded by a centuries-old pine forest. The beautiful trails that invite for a fantastic outdoor recreation, whether it’s hiking, biking or horseback riding. Take your preference and discover great diversity in vegetation and wildlife together.
And to wrap it all up for nature lovers, there are campsites to pitch your tent and sleep under the stars!
It’s also an ancient land. The history goes so far back, even to the Neolithic period. There are of archeological sites, exhibitions, artefacts and ruins with roots digging deep into our world’s past.

Pizza – cannot plan the road trip itinerary across Tuscany without it

After unlocking as much treasure from Cecina as possible during our stop there, we continue onwards to our next pass-through stop, the city of Pisa. Sounds familiar?
If you have a chance to visit the iconic city and even more legendary leaning tower of Pisa, you take it! The city is must see as it hosts an unmatched sightseeing experience with history and timeless architecture. Charming rivers and mountains are present in the distance providing beautiful views.

To wrap it all up, head up to climb the famous tower that just keeps on leaning to catch some premiere vistas of the city and take the mandatory selfie 😄

Appennino Tosco-Emiliano National Park as the last stop for the road trip itinerary across Tuscany

255 km and two sightseeing stops will be busy day, a quiet evening in with two days of wilderness adventure ahead to conclude my vacation

Nature-lovers rejoice! Another jewel is on the way. A big one, in fact, taking over more than 26,000 hectares together with some of the highest peaks in the region and unique flora and fauna that thrive in these high mountain areas.
The glacier craters are sparkling with pristine lakes and wild rivers run through striking valleys. This UNESCO Biosphere Reserve breathes life with wolves roaming through rare orchids and golden eagles flying above looking down on plants and bushes that date back to the glacial era.
It presents an extraordinary chance to wake your inner adventurer up and venture out, whether it’s hiking or biking! The park is also equipped with an extensive variety of choices for accommodations, including various campgrounds, mountain huts, and even hotels. Find your peace here, in the vastness of pure nature.

As much as the wild and breathing natural surroundings invite and tempts us for wild camping overnight to get even closer to nature, unfortunately, it is illegal in Italy.
The vast area of the park hosts multiple campsites that are just as wild and close to nature as it can be, with some of them providing mountains views of a lifetime.

Solo road trip itinerary across Tuscany
Anafi 1.5.6
Count the stars, reflect on the beautiful trip or maybe even start visualizing the next one.
End of the road trip itinerary across Tuscany


Quality reads about Tuscany road trip itinerary

National Geographic

Blog FollowMeAway




The best thermal SPA in Switzerland, Italy and Austria Alps

The trip San Pellegrino – Aqua Dome starts from Bergamo airport with the duration of 600 km lasting 8 hours 45min without stops. However life is for living, hence the 4 stops to experience the beauty of nature and indulge in the best thermal SPA retreats in the Switzerland, Italy and Austria Alps.

Stop 1: San Pellegrino thermal water

30 km and 40 min from Bergamo airport and you are in San Pellegrino to enjoy a thermal bath in the world’s most famous water.

An avenue of fragrant lime trees, the ancient mescite room and a designer facade are just some of the highlights of a building that is a true monument to water. TheThe wellness pathway is structured throughout two separate buildings with over thirty spa practices including panoramic tubs, sensorial tubs, waterfalls, Kneipp therapy, Vichy showers, saunas, steam baths and a solarium garden. “Vita” spring gives us thermal waters rich in bicarbonate sulphate, calcium, and magnesium flowing pure and uncontaminated through layers of rock, from which the water erodes precious mineral salts.

Thermal SPA in the Alps
Restored frescoes, colonnades and early twentieth century ceilings merge with modern architecture.

Stop 2: Overnight in Locarno & Thermal SPA Salini in the Switzerland 

Locarno is 141km and 2hr 25 min drive away from San Pellegrino 

Locarno is an Italian-speaking resort city in southern Switzerland, on Lake Maggiore at the base of the Alps. It’s known for its sunny climate. Founded in the 12th century, the old town’s Castello Visconteo houses the Museo Civico, which showcases Roman antiquities. 

Locarno’s historical funicular is your most confortable and romantic option to visit the Sacro Monte Madonna del Sasso and the starting point for mesmerizing excursions into the hilly mountains of Locarno.

Salini & Thermal Spa Locarno Switzerland

An oasis of peace and rest that offers all the rituals for true relaxation. The Termali Salini & Spa wellness centre is one of the best thermal SPA in Switzerland Alps. Adjacent to the Lido of Locarno, the Thermal SPA boasts a remarkably wide offering of saunas and thermal spring water swimming pools.

The building which is home to the “Termali Salini & Spa” centre, designed in the studio of Moro&Moro, is of great architectural quality and its transparency mirrors the beautiful surrounding landscape. It’s the place where architecture and beautiful landscape compliments each other.

Stop 3: Hotel 7132: the masterpiece inspiring senses

After driving 154 km, 2 hr 25 min you arrive at the tiny village Vals in the Swiss Alps. And you don’t come here to ski. You’ll find a wonderland for design buffs. 

The impressive architecture! The ancient beauty of the mountains all around! It all comes together for a total relaxation to switch off from the daily hustle. This design masterpiece is build around thermal spring water offering pools and saunas to treat your soul and body. It is certainly the best designed thermal SPA in the Switzerland Alps.

Thermal SPA in Switzerland
The Grisons architect Peter Zumthor didn’t just build the thermal baths – he created a masterpiece out of 60,000 quartzite slabs. A homage to Vals and the archaic natural setting of the 7132 Hotel. An architectural milestone that was classified as a listed building shortly after completion. Having won national and international awards, the thermal baths attract those in search of relaxation as well as architecture enthusiasts from all over the world.

The prices in Hotel 7132 starts from €600 per night. However, there is another architectural pearl – the house of Architects. The four top architects – Thom Mayne (Morphosis), Tadao AndoKengo Kuma and Peter Zumthor – have been tapped to contribute the designs. The House of Architects features a lobby and entrance designed by Morphosis Architects. And 7 different room designs are centered around a single material. The price in the house of Architects starts from €360 with access to SPA (€76) inclusive.

Stop 4: Aqua Dome the thermal SPA water jewel of the Austria Alps

In 3 hours, 239km and lunch in Liechtenstein, you can reach the final destination of the journey Aqua Dome.

As far back as the 16th century, the area was known for its healing springs. Today, the Aqua Dome uses the rediscovered healing thermal spring water for your healthy relaxation. Aqua Dome might compete for the title of the largest thermal SPA in the Alps.

According to chemical analyses, the water that flows from deep inside the earth is a sulfur spring with a divalent sulfur content of 5 mg S–/l. It is legally recognized mineral spring. With the speed of 3 to 4 liters per second, the water bubbles up to the surface. Wonderfully warm and pure, right into our thermal baths. Feel the strength of the springs!

The Aqua Dome 4* hotel offers accommodation from €288 with breakfast and dinner on Sunday nights. The thermal spa & sauna are open until midnight on every Friday ! Enjoy the moonlight buffet and prosecco in the thermal bath restaurant Einkehr from €9.80 pp.

12 pools and 7 saunas will fill your day with tranquility. There are also wide variety of SPA and beauty treatments available.

Thermal SPA in the Alps
The perfect end of the trip: DELUXE SPA EVENING
Treat yourself with the entire offer of the AQUA DOME on the exquisite deluxe spa evening. The exclusive atmosphere in the thermal spa area and sauna area as well invites to relax and regenerate.
The grand journey across the Alps: 600 km Italy, Swiss, Liechtenstein and Austria.

Mt Pilatus gondola ride from Lucerne

Switzerland is one of most beautiful countries in the world and you cannot afford remaining in one place too long to see it all. One day Mt Pilatus experience with gondola ride from Lucerne called Golden round trip is the best you can do when short in time. Lucerne is lively city on the lake well known for the preserved medieval architecture with Mount Pilatus majestically reflecting in the lake . The city burst with laughter and joy, the lakeside restaurants are full with people and many attractions available on the lake. You can rent varieties of floating devices or step on the board of cruise boat.

Enjoy a scenic 1-hour cruise in Lucerne onboard a fantastic panoramic yacht. Sit back and relax as you cruise towards Meggenhorn Castle and admire the views of luxurious villas, hilly landscapes, and the deep blue lake.

Lucerne the place where culture, history and nature collides

The most popular event is Summer Festival 16.08.-15.09.2019 offering four weeks of more than 100 classical music stars performances in one place .

For the nature admirers there is The Golden round trip that takes you to the most spectacular spots on the Mount Pilatus. Scenic boats, cogwheel railway, aerial cableway and Panorama Gondolas are at your disposal to make one day Mt Pilatus experience with gondola ride from Lucerne unforgettable. To embrace the golden round trip, you really need to stay two nights in Lucerne.

The best start of the trip is heading out to Kriens and going up to Mount Pilatus with gondola. Take the train and boat combination back to the city. You can also spend a few hours hiking and enjoying the magnificent view before heading back, if the weather is nice.

Mt Pilatus gondola ride from Lucerne, golden trip

Places to stay when you are visiting Mount Pilatus

In my last trip, I have chosen to stay in pedestrian part of the town where numerous hotels are located right on the lake with frontside restaurants invitingly laying right on the walkway. It’s a great choice and reasonable price if you book the last minute (€100) however you cannot park the car in the old town adding extra parking cost for the night (~€20) when parking at the train station.

The most exquisite place to stay is hotel Bürgenstock offering the Alpine Spa relaxation and wellness over 10,000 m2. This is absolutely stunning architecture master piece that you cannot skip visiting when in Lucerne.

Located in the heart of the resort, Bürgenstock Hotel offers breathtaking views of the lake Lucerne from its 102 rooms & suites
Innovative architecture and floor-to-ceiling windows reveal stunning lake and mountain panoramas. Urban. Chic. Breathtaking.

If €1000 per night seems a bit high, then you can always book a treatment in the Alpine SPA and visit the place while staying in the city centre to enjoy the lively night life.

Alpine SPA – the wellspring of vitality and a new zest for life. Wellness & wellbeing – floating between water and sky. Immersed in a breathtaking view of Lake Lucerne and the iconic Alpine landmarks, pamper yourself with an exclusive wellness experience. Enjoy the breathtaking view from the infinity edge pool and dive into a diverse spa landscape

The other hotel choices could be Cascada Boutique Hotel aprox £241 per night or Radisson Blue hotel for aprox £250 per night.

Recommended reading:
Www.livingnomads.com Lucerne travel blog — The fullest Lucerne travel guide for a great trip to Lucerne for the first-timers
www.aswesawit.comDay trip to Lucerne and Mt Pilatus
Lonely planet Mount Pilatus Summer Tour from Lucerne
Mt Pilatus experience with gondola ride from Lucerne
www.behindmyscene.comThe most beautiful SPA in Swiss Alps

The trip is over, the journey is not

The trip had a perfect ending – the stylish and comfy Indigo hotel in the center of the Shakespeare town Stratford-upon-Avon.

After the 2000 miles I certainly deserve the super comfy bed and a cup of rosebud tea provided by Indigo hotel.

Happy me

The rosebud tea, the scent could not be pictured

The Netherlands- Belgium- France- Germany-Austria-Italy-France route took 16 days and I crossed Alps twice. There is so much to see in the area – I am coming back to explore the thermal waters, see the map below.

The best Thermal SPA across the Europe

Follow me to the journey through the thermal spring places including Evian, SPA, Chaudfontaine.

The shortest return trip from Lucerne to Calais (Eurotunel) is via France. There is the famous city Reims on the way with champagne houses and vineyards- but that’s for another trip.

The drive through France was very pleasant, highway with speed restriction 135, almost no traffic. Made it in one day.

The fairytale castle

There are many rankings of the world most famous castles but Neuschwanstein is in all of them. It is called fairytale castle due to the idealised romantic architecture.

It took me 6 hours to drive 633km with average speed 106km/h and fuel consumption of 8L/100km from the stop 3 on my way to Venice. I arrived when the castle was closed and I was relieved seeing the crowds of tourists leaving. I had the castle surroundings for the exploration on my own. There might be up to 6000 visitors a day in a summer period.

Although it was getting dark and raining heavily- I managed to get some decent shots on my iPhone XS.

The last two pictures were taken from the skywalk bridge that was slippery, covered with snow and the wooden planks were bending under the weight of people exposing the depth beneath.

Despite of the looks, the castle is not medieval, Ludwig II constructed this fairytale castle in 1869 for pure pleasure and to the honour of Ludwig Wagner who never visited the place. Ludwig II himself spent only 11 nights in the castle and it was never finished even at Ludwig ‘s death in 1886 (in 17 years). Many rooms are empty and not completed today. According to the initial plans, the castle was meant to have more than 200 rooms. The unfinished part is not open to public, only 14 rooms can be visited.

The iconic Cinderella’s castle at Disney World and Sleeping Beauty’ castle in Disney Land are modeled after Neuschwanstein Castle.

Tomorrow I will continue my journey to Venice, only 4 hours to drive till the next stop in Bassano del Grappa.

Back to Amsterdam- Venice road trip

And…The Journey Begins

Don’t we all like the beautiful travel images posted on the instagram, well – at least the likeminded people that are social media savvy 😉

But what’s behind the image? How to plan the travel? What tools and apps to use? How to use the technologies to advance our life? How to make the travel effortless?

Behind my scenes blog will capture the story behind my instagram pictures by sharing the knowledge and my personal experience how to use tools for travel planning, picture editing, notes taking, gadgets and everything else that helps us to enhance our lives.

Continue reading And…The Journey Begins