Spain and Portugal
Famous for tapas, la siesta, Barcelona, flamenco, paella, Valencia, Picasso, conquistadores, Madrid, wine, Dali, sangria, Spanish Civil War, football, bullfighting and more.
Famous for port wine, football, Porto custard tarts (Pastéis de nata), tiles, Lisbon, golf courses, Lagos, surfing, piri piri chicken, cork, beaches and more.
Area Autocaravans (Parking area for motorhomes and campervans)
Providing official, economical, overnight parking for motorhomes in Spain is something that is still developing.
The huge network of Aire de Service or Stellplatze seen in France and Germany is not yet developed as historically people just stopped wherever they felt safe. Although motorhoming in Spain and Portugal has long been popular, the numbers of people motorhoming now has put pressure on many long established but unofficial overnight parks and the Spanish government has moved to bring some order to this.
Their rules around self-containment differ from the situation in New Zealand where self-containment refers mainly to the plumbing of the motorhome.
In Spain it’s all-encompassing in that you must be able to live within the vehicle without stepping outside for any reason. By doing this, you are ‘parked’ and not camping, a difference that is defined in Spanish law. If you go outside to cook, or put your table and chairs or awning out, you’re camping. There are many places where you can park overnight but not “camp”. This automatically rules out the use of caravans, cars and small vans at these overnight stops.
The historical absence of free but official Aire de Service like France means that many commercial overnight parking places are springing up in Spain to fill the gap and for a charge varying between €5 and €15 you can use basic facilities and usually service your tanks and toilet. These commercial aires are a good option and an economical alternative to campsites.
An indispensable book for motorhoming in Spain and Portugal is called, 'All the Aires - Spain and Portugal'.
Published by Vicarious Books
Portugal is similar to Spain in that a network of official and economical overnight stops for motorhomes is rapidly developing although some areas in Portugal, such as the Algarve, completely prohibit overnight parking outside official camp sites or commercial aires.
However, this rule is seldom enforced outside the peak holiday period of late July/August. Historically it’s been possible to stay overnight almost anywhere in Portugal but things are tightening up.
Again the aires guide from Vicarious Books will find plenty of safe overnight stops where you’re unlikely to be disturbed.
CASTLE EUROPEAN - YOUR NEW ZEALAND MOTORHOME IMPORTING SPECIALISTS
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