1 year road trip - information needed please





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  1. #1
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    Lightbulb 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Hello to everyone.

    I follow the forum whenever possible, but figured (as I need loads of different information) that the top way to get 'all' the FINEST information, was to ask you guys...

    So, we’re planning on immigrating (A good opportunity has arisen and we have decided to take it - not because of any other reason) so while we are in limbo between moves, we have decided to trek the kids through Southern Africa and show them the beautiful country.

    Needless to say there are loads of questions and problems I would like help on – I’ve never stayed over in a caravan before... (So this should be fun)

    1. I’ll start with the toughest problem first, so you can all laugh and we can get it out the way... We are a family of 6 - Myself, wife, daughter (6), daughter (3), Sister in law and Nephew (9) – Yeah you can stop laughing, and saying I’m crazy… lol… Ok so basically we need a 6 sleeper, or something that can sleep 6 – all 3 kids could sleep in a tent within the main tent…

    2. We would like to go to the most of SA cities and dorpies, Kruger, Lesotho, Namibia and possibly Botswana and Moz… - Are there bush places where we could go without a 4x4? (I wouldnt want to do up sides of mountain etc, more Kruger bush and ponto etc)

    3. Do we look into purchasing a caravan, tourer or 4x4 trailer?

    4. In the above, can we stay in the karoo in summer and Lesotho in winter without dying of extremities?

    5. Do I buy new or 2nd hand – I would sell it after our tour.

    6. Do we need a 4x4 or MPV – Looking at Nissan V9X (4x4 and towing good) or new Kia Grand Sedona 2.2 diesel (lots of space and a luxury) But I’m not sure about towing (200kgs) with it or getting to where we want to

    7. I would like to have a bit of luxury (Well actually a toilet / shower I can fit into without having the jaws of life cut me out – I’m 6ft2 / 130kgs)

    8. The two women would need proper kitchen facilities to make delicious meals – HA – who is laughing now!!

    9. We would possibly stay in a spot for 3 – 21 days, so taking a bit of time to assemble and break down wouldn’t be much of an issue, but the set up needs to be smooth, as being in a car with the above mentioned and having assembly problems could cause blood pressure issues (for me!)

    10. Would we need extra accessories for the tour – chairs, tables, pots etc - we would be on the road for a solid year… Obviously we could refill / clean out etc on the way

    11. We have 3 adult and 3 kids bicycles that need to go with and also have space for luggage of 6 people! (4 of them being female)

    12. How is the safety in caravan parks, resorts etc – I have a whole precious clan to protect!

    13. As I write this down I’m having doubts – I need a beer!

    I’m sure there is lots I’ve missed – or have no clue about, so please any information and suggestions or sympathy is welcome

    Thanx

    Grumpy

  2. #2
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    A lot of questions, all of which could generate debate on their own. You say you've never been in a caravan before - whew! My only advice then is to rent first and have a few practice runs. If you're still convinced after that then you'll probably have answered most of if not all your own questions in the process.

    One thing that did strike me is you have a big tour party with quite an age spread and in cramped quarters for a long time. That's going to take some managing to keep everyone entertained and on the straight and narrow.

    Would it be worth doing? I'd give my left ...... to be able to do it.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Six people? Take two vehicles. And equip each for self-sufficient camping. I would avoid caravans on a one year trip. A caravan will prove much more expensive than an extra vehicle on a long trip, and will severely limit your mobility and access to remote places.
    Tony Weaver

    1991 Land Rover 110 Hi-Line S/W 3.5l V8 carburettor
    Cooper Discoverer STT tyres, four sleeper Echo rooftop tent
    2012 Mitsubishi Outlander.

    Previously Land Rover 1968 SII, 1969 SIIA, 1973 SIII, 1983 Toyota HiLux 2litre, 2006 Land Rover Freelander TD4 HSE.

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  6. #4
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Difficult one. Going for a caravan will give you options to camp rather than stay in B&B's etc, thus saving you a loads of money. On the other hand the discomfort of having to pitch tents and tow the caravan may put you off camping forever. It also depends on what type of vehicle you have already, and how adventurous you are.

    I would strongly consider buying a Bush Lapa Ratel 6 if I was you. It is a brilliant caravan that will offer you creature comforts while being reasonably towable even over rough terrain - it is actually made for off-roading (empty caravan weighs 1140 kg). It will set you back in the order of R380k, but you will get your money back after a year. Go to www.bushlapa.com and if you phone speak to JC.

    Setting up camp is quick and easy (if you own a Bush Lapa) and you can then leave your caravan there and explore the area. It will cost you a fraction of accommodation, and you will be able to get to places where there is no accommodation, if you choose to do that. If I was in your shoes, I would place an order tomorrow, but that is me, not you.

    Good luck, it certainly is a very exciting prospect.

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  8. #5
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Will you be home schooling or taking the kids out of school for a year?

    I would also opt for the two vehicles or something like a VW 4motion bus. They are not bad for general light off road conditions.
    Would also recommend renting a caravan or camper first before you take out the wallet. The other thing when taking such a long trip
    is to maybe sleep in a B&B or self catering unit every now and then, maybe a week out of every month just to keep sanity going with the kids and wife.
    Last edited by Soundadv; 2017/01/30 at 08:09 AM.

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  10. #6
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Another thing to think about is the vehicle of your choice.

    The navara might be a good tow vehicle, but with 6 people inside you are going to "struggle"

    Might need to look at some 7 seater suvs

    Pajero Sport
    Ford Everest
    Toyota Fortuner
    Nissan Pathfinder... oh did you perhaps mean this one and not the Navara

    The bicycles could fit on the roof and spare wheel carriers....

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  12. #7
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Hi guys, thanx for the responses

    Mike: I think renting a caravan sounds like a good idea, but then again a caravan and a bush trailer would be different experiences. I think the age gap is actually better as it makes everyone view and do other stuff (as I type this I have all 3 kids downstairs watching – Mickey Mouse Club house… ) So they kids of do things together. Straight and Narrow – PAVATTIKAKI

    Tony: Two vehicles would be out of the question. Interesting point that you say a caravan would be more expensive!

    Blitsbreker: Yeah your views on the camping and caravans are similar to mine. We sold our Pathfinder V9X last year, so no 4x4 at the moment. I have been looking at the bush lapa ratel 6, but I’m a little concerned over the overhang of the beds firstly, as I’m a heavy guy, secondly it’s a lil too close for comfort with the sister in law ha ha. Im glad one could get money back after a year! I have another option below… Also I’m not sure how I would feel falling asleep with the only protection being a canvas sheet between my head and a knife! (Sad but true)

    Soundadv: Yes we are going to home school the kids. Ha ha – yes sanity with the wife and kids… Please read below for my other option.

    Charlie: My bad, sorry… It would be the Pathfinder.

    I appreciate the feedback everyone. I did some reading on the forum over the weekend, and reviewed some Youtube videos too. I hear very good things about the Caravelle 4Motion. The Youtube videos of the mud and mild rock / gravel driving is what we would be doing. This is really not a cheap car though (R1mil)
    One of the sales guys I spoke to said there was a Transporter DSG 132kw 4 Motion 7 seater (R580k) in the model range – But I can’t find it (Waiting for his call back) Not sure if anyone on here knows about it…

    Anyway the Caravelle seems to tick all the boxes for our travels, cept the price range… And from what I have read you can get VW approved and fitted accessories for 4x4ing.

    As far as accommodation, while chilling with the wife I was looking on AirBnB and found some houses to rent for R200 – R350/ night for 6+ people… I’m starting to think this would be a better option (Sanity, washing machine, privacy and safety wise?) Also it would be less stressful and one could rather focus on exploring and discovering places within a 50 – 100km radius.

    Again thanx for the replies

    Grumpy

  13. #8
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    @Phazzer1234 " ..... Also I’m not sure how I would feel falling asleep with the only protection being a canvas sheet between my head and a knife! (Sad but true) ..... "

    I am a babe-in-the-woods in this game but does one not sleep with one's feet on the overhang?

    Your head will then be "inside" the van. I realize there are other considerations to sleep in this position.
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  15. #9
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    ha ha - So you can see I've never camped before...

  16. #10
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    Default Re: 1 year road trip - information needed please

    Quote Originally Posted by Phazzer1234 View Post
    ha ha - So you can see I've never camped before...
    ..... and neither have I (not kidding).

    This forum has a wealth of good information, I absorb everything like a spunge.

    Serval due soon - then theory will be applied in practice!
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