PROFILE

Number and names of passengers: 2 adults (Linda Meixner and Carola Völk)

Vehicle type: Carado CV540 EDITION15

Starting point: Leutkirch im Allgäu (Germany)

Endpoint: Cap Ferret (France)

Travel period: 2 weeks in July 2022

Kilometers traveled: approx. 2.444

Linda Meixner is an influencer and athlete. On her Instagram channel @lindameixner, she takes her followers with her into her world between mountains, movement, nature and joie de vivre. On her second account @offline.institute, she points out the risks of being constantly online - and inspires people to do more things again that keep you from wasting too much time on your smartphone. Together with her friend Carola Völk, Linda did just that: The two of them traveled to Cap Ferret in France to enjoy time, be out in nature, and "just do it".

Hello Linda! Welcome back from your trip. How was the first trip with the Carado?

I had never driven a vehicle of this size before and was a little bit nervious. But then it went without problems. I first left Leutkirch on my own to pick up Caro. I sat really proud and of course full of anticipation and with real vacation feelings behind the wheel. In a motorhome or camper van, the journey is probably part of the vacation - I learned that on this trip, and that was a unique feeling for me.

Which place on your trip will you remember most positively?

We were at Cap Ferret on the Atlantic coast in France. We have not made a round trip and have not stood at different spots. We won't tell you where exactly we were. In times of digital networking, the unique places on this earth are completely overrun - with a wide variety of consequences. We want to counteract this and at the same time also encourage that it can be wonderful to have a secret, especially in a time of information overload. And our "secret place" was simply wonderful: a campsite in the middle of a pine forest, the smell of the sea and fresh croissants every morning and the beautiful sandy beach with its endless dunes. A place to forget everything around you. France from one of its most beautiful sides. We will surely come back.

What three activities would you recommend to your friends for a trip like this?

We didn't have a completely varied program, but were especially happy about quieter routines during this time. Every day started with a croissant. And since we both had our bikes with us, we always went for a ride to the next place in the evening. In principle, it is at the Atlantic that an active life is led: Jogging, road biking and surfing are the main activities. Unfortunately, I haven't managed to try surfing yet. One more reason to come back!

Was there a sightseeing highlight on your trip that you can recommend to other travelers?

Sometimes it's just not about sightseeing, highlights and more and more. So we skipped the sightseeing and enjoyed nature: the sun. The beach. The sea. The pine forest. But our personal highlight was simply the good French food.

Speaking of food: During your time at Cap Ferret, did you tend to cook for yourselves or did you go out to eat? And did you have a "favorite vacation dish"?

Fresh croissants were available every morning, and we stocked up on the finest things at the local supermarket - from French cheese to wine to fresh fish. Which is why we often cooked uncomplicated and healthy meals ourselves, which also worked out great in the Carado. But there was also a pizza at sunset by the sea.

What moment or event during your trip will you not soon forget?

We were completely crazy and drove the whole way non-stop. It was 22 hours on the outward trip and almost 24 hours on the return trip. We only took small breaks. But the trip was still wonderful. We rarely laughed so much together and honestly bawled out loud to opera classics for quite a while. That's my biggest learning from the trip: The journey is part of the vacation!

What feature did you like most about your Carado?

We found the CV540 quite "sexy". We really liked the look of the black, sporty Camper van. After all, looks are also an important part of feeling really comfortable. But there were also super practical things inside, like the table in combination with the swiveling seats - so Caro could create a mobile office in no time at all.

What are for you absolute "must haves" on the packing list for a camping vacation?

Good friends, good mood and a lot of inner peace. In a small space, you really have to get along and like each other. Then there's not much standing in the way of a special camping vacation. With an espresso maker for really good black coffee on the gas stove, every day starts perfectly. And a pair of summer shoes, which may also get wet, should not be missing.

What excited you most about this type of travel?

We love camping. We've met great new people at the campground. You have your own little paradise and learn to let go. For me it is very clear that I want to travel this way more often in the future.

Have you ever been on the road in a motorhome before?

Not me personally. But Caro is a camper from childhood and I could learn a lot from her - but even for her traveling in such a camper van was new. For all of you who are still not sure if you want to try this kind of vacation: Do it if you love being outdoors and freedom like we do.

Did you plan your tour in advance? Or was the route planning spontaneous?

We pretty much knew where we wanted to go, but we didn't know if we were going to get a seat. That was a little risky.

Based on recent experiences, do you have any tips for other campers?

In principle, it is helpful to integrate the arrival and departure more into the vacation, i.e. to plan more time, to select special places on the way in advance and to make intermediate stops. On the one hand, this means less stress during the trip - and on the other, you get to see even more of what our beautiful world has to offer.

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