Friday, November 18, 2011

August Trip in a Camper Van -- for rent?

Hi Jamie,

We are a family of 5 – (3 boys aged 14, 12 and 7). We live in Ireland and are hoping to travel to the States next August . We would like to fly into California, hire a camper van and drive north as far as Vancouver. We have 3 weeks for the trip.

Our kids are interested in any outdoor activities – also any good museums - army, scientific etc. My husband is big into wine. Could you advise what would be the best stops to make on this journey as there will be so many to choose from. Also, do you have any advice on hiring a camper van – what should we look for ? The trip would also have to take in one major city as my kids are really looking forward to some American retail therapy !

Many thanks,

Ann Marie


Hi Ann Marie --

Thanks for writing in to Road Trip USA, and your plan sounds like great fun. There are fabulous wineries all over coastal California (some of the best are in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties, midway up the state, and there are very famous and expensive wineries in Napa and Sonoma, north of San Francisco), so hubby will be happy. Oregon's Willamette Valley does fine wine, too, as does the Yakima Valley southeast of Seattle.

And California is fabulous for outdoor activities -- surfing, mountain biking, hiking, fishing. And if the kids like amusement parks, you'll want to head to Los Angeles -- home of Disneyland and the more thrilling Magic Mountain. LA's many "shopping centers" or malls have fab shopping too -- just think of all that Hollywood glamour!


There are some major firms renting BIG camper-vans or "RVs" -- Cruise America is the biggest:

And some smaller firms that rent "normal" camper vans, like this one:

And if you wanted to start & finish up in Canada, this company looks great:

Starting and finishing in the same place is a good idea -- it's usually cheaper, and you get to revisit places that you like the look of.

Hope this helps you have a great trip.

With best wishes,

Jamie Jensen
Road Trip USA



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