A excursion abroad for Mandy and myself was always on the cards in the campervan. It was just a case of when. I had been working on increasing the reliability of the vehicle since i purchased it back in 2015 as it had clearly been neglected by the previous owners. This included the replacement lots of worn parts, various upgrades, and some pretty hefty bills to accompany an engine change last year. The engine replacement was the one thing I knew I needed to have before I even thought about tackling the major climbs of the Alps which was a destination we knew we would be heading for. That said, after the engine upgrade early last year, I was hit by gearbox issues which dashed our chance of getting abroad right at the last minute.
So fast forward to May 2018, and we were in a much better place. The gearbox had been reconditioned by a specialist, and the engine was feeling really strong. We were all set to go! Most of the planning in terms of locations had been organised for the 2017 trip. Our original intention back then was to go into Switzerland straight after our second stop in France at Lake Annecey. However, we this year we modified the route due to an event our friends made us aware of in Italy called the Bugaloo International VW show. This happened to fall on the first weekend of our travels, in which case we were ideally situated on the boarder of France half a days drive from the VW event. The last week of the four week excursion was unplanned which gave us some flexibility on our way back to the UK.
So in chronological order these are the places we visited.
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- Leaving the UK
- Lake Annecey
- Tornico (Bugaloo VW Meet)
- Varona / Lake Garda
- Lake Maggiore (Solcio)
- Lauterbrunnen (Via the Simplon Pass)
- Bern (Swiss capital)
- Arras – La Paille Haute