Friday, 25 September 2015

Life inside the Caravan

Travelling and living in a Caravan for 3 months for us was wonderful. One thing for sure is you have to get on well, there is not much room to move around.  It's 'excuse me, I need to get to the fridge'.

The bed is higher than a normal house bed, there is storage underneath.  There isn't much room to move around each side or at the bottom of the bed, but you learn how to 'move'.
There is certainly plenty of storage room for us with all the cupboards. When finished with winter clothes they were all placed in a bag and put underneath the bed in storage till needed again.

Most of the knobs on the drawers came loose and had to be tightened.  The touch light in the bathroom decided not to work, so it was redone, worked for awhile, then that was it, no more!  We have ordered another to replace it.  Actually that light blew a fuse, lucky we had spares.
All lights are solar powered.

The shower was just great, don't know how life was managed with the inconvenience of going to the Amenities or Ablution block in Caravan Parks in the past.  Guess we didn't know any different before.

Hotwater to the Van was invaluable, no boiling of the kettle/jug to acquire hot water.
A/C, wouldn't be without it.  Great thing at the Top End, the nights were not that hot so we didn't leave it going.

Dirt, so much dirt and dust inside the van it was unbelievable.  The van was swept everyday and the floor washed, an easy task as there isn't much floor.

Washing machine, well that saved me heaps of money as most caravan parks charge from $4.00 to $8.00 a load to use their washing machine.  Dryers are extra.  Plus you have to take your turn, but no more..
I hang the clothes on a line underneath the awning, and they dry in no time at all.  I did the washing every few days, that way I didn't have heaps of washing for two people.

The two water tanks were great, and one grey water tank was enough to hold the grey water, when it was need.  We filled up with water before we left home and used it in places where there was not water.  If there wasn't any power we used the Gas to heat the water and keep the fridge going.
It's amazing how much frozen food can fit in the fridge.

TV!  Well I could say 'what TV'.  I recall the old caravan and analogue TV, we usually had TV, but with Digital it's a different story.  Many places didn't have TV, some places there was only a few channels, so we went for weeks without knowing what happened in the World.
Bought some DVD's to watch, and bought the whole series of Breaking Bad which we watched, still have several episodes to see as yet.  Also bought some music DVD's, they are about in the more isolated places and not so prevalent in the cities.
We have a radio in the Van, but due to the terrain we were in couldn't get anything, only once in awhile.
The TV works on both electricity and 12 volt battery.

In the morning times if not travelling we would go to the shops.
Afternoons were spent sight seeing and me taking photos usually.
Evenings, games were played on our Tablets, reading, blogging, reading blogs, commenting if there was access to the internet, mostly there was. Planning where we would go and what we wanted to see.
I crocheted making granny squares with bits of wool of all colours I took from home, the finished product will be the size of a queen sized bed and when finished will be handy in the van when the weather is cool.  I've nearly finished it.

The top of the oven has one hot plate when connected to electricity, the remainder are gas as is the oven.  We had baked meals every now and then. We ate well even having a Turkey baked dinner.
There isn't much bench space but you manage.

Seating is a problem, but with outside chairs as in camping chairs one goes outside and sits, oh yes, used to fall asleep!  Happy Hour was had some late afternoons with someone whom we didn't know, they would call us to their van or they would come to sure was a happy hour.  About 6pm we would all return to our vans. We all had something in common, 'travelling and doing the same thing'.

Bread!  Fresh bread!
You ask for fresh bread at the more isolated places and you are given frozen bread.  That's fresh bread!  Supermarkets in other places, the bread is being thawed out and of course when it's done it's not that fresh.
That's a good one, in isolated places, one asks for milk.  Frozen milk, that's fresh milk!  All other places it's normal milk.

In all we were very happy with the van, the way it towed and the vehicle which towed it.

The above photo was taken with my little camera which has a GPS.  I forgot to turn it on earlier in our trip, but this photo has it.


  1. It sounds as if you have had a great time Margaret with most amenities readily at your fingertips. I should imagine that being in the caravan is the best and most satisfactory way to explore all of those regions of Australia that you have visited. The caravan must feel like home from home, but I expect that you are pleased to be back in your own bed and home now after all of your adventures.

    1. Rosemary, it's the only way to explore that area all in the one trip.
      Always nice to get back home to my 'other home things' :)

  2. Good way to travel. The interior of the trailer , it looks pretty good without fail, the necessary elements for a good development . My travels are , of shorter duration , and always in hotels or apartments. Just once I was in a bungalow of a campsite .


    1. The van has all the necessaries that one could need. I wonder what they will be like in the way future.
      We have also done Hotels & Apartments many times, depends on where we are travelling.

      Did you enjoy the bungalow, I wonder!

  3. It's not a monster van, yet so much seems to packed inside. What a contrast to my grandparent's caravan from the 1960s. A friend spent a few years on duty in outback Australia and will now never eat bread that has been frozen. Thanks for the really interesting snapshot of your life on the road.

    1. Many vans were larger than ours. Very different van from the 60's. I can remember a few from back then when visiting the beach and people oh holidays in a 60's van.

      Thanks and you are welcome :)

  4. Margare your caravan is great I would like top travel in it. Great adventure

  5. I loved these extra details about your trip.
    Fresh bread, fresh milk. I have been reminded to be grateful today. Very grateful.

    1. Oh yes, we don't know how lucky we are to have such things, plus mobile phone coverage and internet.

  6. Well done expose (coverage) of life on "WHEELS" !!!!

    3 months of that style of living would do me for a lifetime - but to see
    the "Top End" and the places on this trip that you visited - well the towed
    "home-away-from-home" van is the only sensible and real option.
    I can well imagine the dust that you copped - you did travel in the dry season
    but then the wet season would make some places inaccessible to visit.

    Fresh bread??? I would hardly expect bakers in the middle of bloody nowhere!
    I freeze fresh bread here - I thought that was normal.
    Fresh milk would be a problem - but that new variety of milk - "long life" or
    some such name would be the problem solver, I would expect.
    Interesting summation of life in a van - well done, Margaret.

    1. Caravans are not for everyone.
      Having stayed in Motels/Hotels/Apartments on holidays, it's lovely to have the opportunity to go in a caravan. Both ways are good.
      We would not stay in Hotels/Motels/Accommodation where we travelled, however, we would in Darwin, and only a couple of places down the West Coast. One has to sleep somewhere when travelling such long distances and there is not much offering.

      Frozen bread is not normal, except the Top End. If one wants to make fresh sandwiches I expect fresh bread, if not I toast sandwiches.

      We took long life milk and used that too.

  7. "Many places didn't have TV, some places there was only a few channels, so we went for weeks without knowing what happened in the World." End quote

    This what struck me most....too often, every day, I wish I didn't know what was going on in the world.

    1. Oh yes, the news on TV is usually not good news, and these days we seem to know more news of the world as it happens.....sad!

  8. Thanks for the insight into staying in a van for so long. I would not have thought of bread! I suppose you could always bring a breadmaker - although when packing the essentials I'm not sure that would come up high on the list ;-)

    1. Yes, could take a bread maker but not a priority. It's all part of the experience of having 'fresh/frozen' bread.

  9. An interesting post about caravaning. I can't decide whether I would like it or not. The shower inside sounds good. You sure had a great trip. I envy you.

  10. Caravans are certainly more spacious and luxurious that they used to be. I know for sure I couldn't live in one, I find my flat cramped enough. Yours looks particularly roomy and comfortable.
    Remember the small, rounded caravans of the sixties? Usually made of plywood. For three summers back then, I was friends with three kids who travelled and lived in one of those with their parents of course, every summer. Five people in a caravan about a third the size of yours!

    1. I like spaces also and have it here at home.
      I do recall those vans from the 60's. So small they were, must have been rather crammed in.

  11. Oooh!! Frozen bread dough. Take it with you, bake as needed for fresh baked bread.

  12. Oh M you are living a dream a beautiful lovely dream. I am so happy you are taking me and as a matter of fact all of us along. HUGS G xo

  13. It is lovely, Margaret, and you are so right about having to get along, especially living in such close proximity. However, I am sure you do and it is well worth it. Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Oh yes Linda, we do have to get along and we are lucky we do...

  14. Much bigger than the one we stayed in when I was a child am I showing my age.

    1. It's not that long ago when the caravans were smaller. Ours is about 20ft...some vans are just soooo big.

  15. hi Margaret, what an achievement your trip was. you would have to be super organised to pull off living in a caravan for that long not to mention the amazing places you visited. i've enjoyed reading your posts and looking at your photos while you've been away. are you planning another trip or have you had enough for a while? :)

    1. I don't know about being organized, but you have to have most things that you have in the home. Also to know where you are going, which way, where are the roadhouses or service staions, making sure you have enough water - and hope the sun shines for the solar on the roof of the van.
      And thank you.

      Yes, we are planning another trip next year to Cairns if all goes well. Then in a few weeks we are off travelling in Tasmania :) so I'm told unless he changes his mind.

  16. I enjoyed the tour of your caravan and details of daily life on wheels. $4-8.00 for a load of laundry? Yikes! I would be washing by hand in the sink, I'm afraid.


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