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rottiontour
19-01-2016, 22:03
Hi to all,

during my last travels to Greece I made some personal experiences concerning wintering at all and wintering in Greece, may be it is interesting for the one or the other of you.

This year we have done it, the first Christmas and New Year not at home with the children. 5 years we have “trained” for it, but always we became homesick after 2 month…..”we” that means mainly me and the dog, my wife did not have those “problems” …..and so our trips lasted at least 3 month max twice per year. And always in December, January and February we sat at home in the darkness, cold, wet and windy. Christmas was ok, cosy, but the weeks around New Years night were pure terror, the dog got totally crazy. From Christmas eve onwards the “new years party bombing” continued till first week of Jan…..obviously the party terrorist are running out of ammo then.
Last year we took the m/h to escape from the bomb attacks and to protect the dog and we drove to very remote regions in Frisia but we learned that there is NO region remote enough not to be bombed by party terrorists. The most convenient and silent overnight place was in the middle of an artillery shooting range, heehee.
And we decided finally…..this WAS it!

So we prepared to stay away from home during the dark and cold time and the New Years night…..far away, in Greece….and to enjoy warm and mostly dry climate and friendly people instead of horizontal rain or snow and “dark” northlanders.

But to tell the truth….we wanted to avoid this……
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The plan was….and still is….October till May in Greece and this is what we prepared and from what we gained some individual experiences, just for us and those who like to read about it.

Let me start with the basic equipment which we think is important for us.

The car……
There are many good and lovely cars and I decided to buy an Italian car, 3,5 to, light with much vehicle load capacity. It is not really winter proofed under northern conditions, but warm enough to keep it comfortable inside with outside temperatures below zero. We do not expect temperatures below freezing level and if it happens, it would be only for some nights. So we do not need a typical winter equipment like a double bottom, a water central heating system and all the technical stuff with which you can survive in Jan and Feb north of the Alps.
You can do wintering in Greece with all types of cars, which are good for you.

But the most important fact which influenced my decision to take an Italian/southern car was…..for car and habitation all spare parts are easily available in Greece. And the m/h is built in a simple manner so I can reach all parts inside without problems, and all Greek mechanics are able to repair the Ducato 244 and the Italian habitation….that keeps it simple for me.

The bikes……
Two bicycles, one E-bike and one mountain bike….to have at least one bike, my mountain bike, which is always reliable and can be repaired all over Greece.
With the E-bike we can do long range Lidl tours (in range of 15 km) and get loads of beer and dog food.

The gas bottles…..
And I have one LPG tank gas bottle, 11 kg, which can be refilled all over Europa. My second bottle, a national system, remained at home. I use the place of the second bottle to put in a Greek gas bottle which I rented for 15 Euros in a mini market and which can be exchanged everywhere in Greece in nearly all mini markets for about 10 to 12 Euros . For this I can use the bike or a little trolley to walk to any shop in vicinity and I do not have to move the car to the next LPG station. Gas bottles are available everywhere in Greece.
I can get back the money for the rent in case I will leave Greece and give back the bottle. It is a 10 kg bottle, which perfectly fits into the gas bottle box, and with an adapter which I got in a camping store I connected the Greek bottle to the national gas system of the car.

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The tent…..
Generally we will use the awning on our travels, but staying in wintertime for a longer period in the same location with perhaps bad weather conditions the awning may be a large sail in the wind and especially in heavy rain I always have to care that the water flows down the awning or I have to bring the awning in….even at night.
So we bought a tent, 35 kg, 2 by 2 meters, it is very stable even in gusts, it can stand alone and I can drive away with the car without problems. I do not need to care about weather conditions at all, it protects the habitation door perfectly against wind and rain and has space enough to sit in with two people….and a dog.

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Compared with the awning it is a pain to build it up, but for staying in one place for some weeks it is robust and brilliant.
But especially in Greece there is no need for a tent in heavy winter quality, a summer quality tent should be enough…..or an awning, whatever you like.

Clothes and washing…..
We have clothes with us for about 3 weeks period, after that time we need a washing for the clothes.
Three weeks are enough to travel via landline to Greece and in Greece we look for laundries….plintirio rouxa….
For us local laundries are the most comfortable method at all to get rid of our dirty clothes. We are not depending on washing machines or even dryers on camping sites, and there is no need to dry the wet clothes in maybe rainy conditions.
And there are many laundries in Greece, where you can drop your clothes and get it back next day perfectly for some euros. The only problem is to find a local laundry and a great help for us is this web address

http://www.xo.gr/?la=2

You can find everything you need on this webpage….car repair, doctors, laundries, museums, whatever.

Next time some more infos….if you like

Regards
Bernd

rottiontour
21-01-2016, 14:00
We like to use “our” shower and toilette equipment, on the one hand the car is our home and on the other hand it is very convenient to use it during winter time instead of walking to a remote and cold shower or toilette, however, I have to supply the system :(.
But being on campsites, the dump station often is far away and how to transport the grey water to the dump without moving the car?
In the camping shops you find many types of plastic containers with wheels…..excellent stuff, but large and disturbing, needs too much space and it is always an obstacle.

To get rid of the grey water I "invented" :) a foldable, transportable system, fixed a hose to the outlet of the waterpipe below the car and connected it to the plastic bag and that’s it. During the drive the bag is folded and packed into the box next by the water tank and during a longer stay it is fixed to the car…..no weight, no space, nearly no costs, 15 Euros. It is working perfectly and it does not stink. I can carry it by hand or roll it with the trolley.

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To transport the full 15 litres plastic bag to the dump station, I bought a 10 Euro foldable shopping trolley.
The trolley is a real multi purpose thing…..to carry grey water, to carry toilette cassette, to carry a gas bottle and….to go shopping. Again low cost, low space, low weight, foldable and excellent in using it.

For the fresh water supply I take a plastic 5 litres jerry can….like that name :o.
Many people asked me why I use such a little can. The reason is simple, i am a little bit older :scared: and during wilding in Greece often the water tap or spring is far away and it might be difficult to walk to it. So a little can is much more comfortable for a difficult transport than a large one, and often the springs, water taps or water sources are not usable for large cans, but for this small one.
Per day I need an average of 4-7 cans, not too much work.
And…..filling the water into the car I need only one hand 5 litres are not heavy. The other hand may carry a beer :o.

I know....most of you know already but may be the one or the other got an idea.

Regards
Bernd

silverweed
21-01-2016, 14:45
I am glad to hear you enjoyed it so much. What route did you use to get there. I am hoping to the self same thing this coming winter so a little information on how you got there and where you stayed would be great please.

iampatman
21-01-2016, 17:40
Hi Bernd & Annie,
We're still,in Spain but we've booked our ferry to Patras and arrive 22nd April. Hope you'll still be around then. I have another water container for you - you can carry two and I'll carry two beers :)
Pat

rottiontour
21-01-2016, 17:57
Hi Bernd & Annie,
We're still,in Spain but we've booked our ferry to Patras and arrive 22nd April. Hope you'll still be around then. I have another water container for you - you can carry two and I'll carry two beers :)
Pat

Hi Pat and Phil,

that's fine with me.....i'll drink the beers so the cans are not too heavy for you :D
We plan to stay till May or June, don't know yet. Hope they do not chase me cause after 6 months stay i'm an "illegal" here. Guess the Greeks don't care, would be the first time :banana:.

See you....don't forget the beers :cheers:
Bernd

iampatman
21-01-2016, 18:10
Hi Pat and Phil,

that's fine with me.....i'll drink the beers so the cans are not too heavy for you :D
We plan to stay till May or June, don't know yet. Hope they do not chase me cause after 6 months stay i'm an "illegal" here. Guess the Greeks don't care, would be the first time :banana:.

See you....don't forget the beers :cheers:
Bernd

Reading some reports today regarding the Greek farmers & pensioners (and the 25% unemployment) I suspect the authorities have better things to worry about than chasing you round the country so they can deport you. But if you worry about it you can go to Albania for a couple of days and then return.
Your previous posts were informative and I like the idea of the collapsible grey water container, useful if you're in one place for a while. I bet a few folk are wondering what you do with your BLACK waste though :eek:
See you soon,
Pat

rottiontour
21-01-2016, 18:35
..... I bet a few folk are wondering what you do with your BLACK waste though....

residue-free food and .....discipline, pure discipline

rottiontour
21-01-2016, 19:09
I am glad to hear you enjoyed it so much. What route did you use to get there. I am hoping to the self same thing this coming winter so a little information on how you got there and where you stayed would be great please.

Hi Silverweed,

thank you very much for your interest.

I used the Jadranska Magistrale, the coastal route through Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, it was the same route as in Feb 2015, for details pls see
http://www.wildcamping.co.uk/forums/greece/43205-ride-along-balkan-coast-greece-3.html

and….see this link
Campingreece Camping Guide - All the Greek campsites - Vacation in Greece - Camping in Greece (http://www.campingreece.gr/)

This is a nice little brochure, you can download it for free.
Unfortunately the campsite Gythion Bay is closed during winter, that’s new, we learned it 2 weeks ago….nearly no guests although Gythion Bay is the best campsite in the Mani area….out of my point of view.

This time our intention is to stay a little bit more stationary, not much travelling, may be later, simply to spend the winter period in a better climate than at home.
Till mid November we stayed near Larissa in Agiokampos, Aegeas Camping. It is closed during the winter but we got the key and had a whole camp site for us. With a little bit of improvisation it worked for us…what do we need... water, electricity and a dump.

Mid November the weather got too wet and cooler and so we travelled to Ancient Corinthos, Camper Stop. It’s more a type of a Stellplatz but the ground is perfect in wet conditions and we were allowed to built up the tent.
The climate in Nov, Dec was fantastic, Jan is cooler and more wet but still very sunny. Up to now it's ok.
The Greeks call this area the “Greek California” and as far as we learned, it’s true.
But we will wait and see what Jan and Feb are doing with us.

Hope the answer is sufficient for you

Regards
Bernd

rottiontour
22-01-2016, 16:46
Feeling for safety is a “wide area”. It is determined by facts, individual experiences and subjective feelings….oh, i feel so safe :D…....oh, I don’t :scared:.
Sometimes I have no clue, whether my situation is really safe or not, then I simply rely on the dog’s behaviour, if she is calm I am too, if she is nervous I’ll be alerted and leave….she never was wrong. But there is no absolute safety.

But for this travel I tried to keep away all possible “risks” concerning driving, routing, spectacular sightseeings, overnight places, roads and special circumstances because we drove down to Greece in a convoy with my m/h and a car with caravan trailer of a friend of us. It is his first tour at all in his life with a camper; he never slept in a camper before and never drove with a car and a trailer. He simply wanted to get rid of the winter darkness in Northland, bought an old caravan in July, did a little bit of driver’s training by himself and followed us to Greece in October, not bad.
So we must have a very safe and easy tour.

Because of the dog we did not want to take the ferry, ferry is the most comfortable and easiest method to travel to Greece at all; we took “the landline”.
There are several main options for the landline…..

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1. Via “Autoput”, the Serbian highway…..the easiest landline (magenta line)
-Austria-Hungary-Serbia-Macedonia-Greece (Vienna-Budapest-Szegedin-Belgrad…..)
-Austria-Slovenia-Croatia-Serbia-Macedonia-Greece (Zagreb- Belgrad-Skopje-Thessaloniki)
It is easy to drive cause mostly good highway, credit cards and Euros taken at all toll posts and everywhere, restaurants, filling stations and parking enough. But you have to leave The EU and enter it again; however, this is no problem at all. With the necessary documents we never had a problem. We were always treated fair and correct.

2. Via the Jadranska Magistrale, the coastline….the most beautiful way (blue line)
-Italy-Slovenia-Croatia-Montenegro-Albania-Greece (Triest-Rijeka-Split-Dubrovnik-Podgorica or Ulcinj-Shkodra-Durres-Fier-Gjirokastra-Greece)
Some more kilometres than Autoput, fascinating sceneries, many camp sites, good road conditions, sometimes many tourists, but overall with “open eyes” no risk at all. And Albania is a “strange” country but really interesting and you can make it. And you leave the EU too and re-enter it again. As well we were always treated fair and correct.

3. All via EU countries only…… the “British way” (green line), as far as I know the only possibility to reach Greece on landline without car insurance problems.
-Austria-Hungary-Romania-Bulgaria-Greece (Vienna-Budapest-Szegedin-Temeswar-Turm Severin-Vidin (Danube bridge)-Sofia-Blagoewgrad-Serres)
Interesting roads, road conditions in Romania are quite alright, Bulgaria partially needs a lot of driver’s attention. Not a risk but a “challenge” with appropiate care and adjusted speed you can make it without problems. Border controls never were a problem.

Why we took the coastal road……
I do not want to “go political”, but since 25 years (break down of the iron wall) it is the first time that I felt being forced to plan my route iaw political circumstances….. because of the mass migration crossing the Balkans, October 15 was a real highlight.
It is not that I fear to ride along the migrant routes, but doing a convoy with an “inexperienced trailer” into an unclear political situation where a risk cannot be assessed and the situation sometimes seemed explosive is not my favourite desire. So I thought that it was easier for us to avoid the migration routes….and possible problems.
I examined the “overall tactical situation” or what information I could get out of the media in October (red circles, problem areas) and planned the route iaw with the principle that always high mountains :) should be in between me and the mass migration main routing.
We thought the westerly coastal routing (blue line) along the coast line was suitable and the result was absolutely ok, easy going at all and no problems with unpredictable events. Croatian coastal road is in a good condition and even in Albania the road situation was quite all right and we even could cross Albania from Montenegro to Greece within 7 hours.
We drove step by step, max 250 kilometres per day and only between 1100 and 1500 each day in daylight, and we needed 14 days easy “marching” to come down to Greece.

Other aspects of safety concerning travelling through the Balkans are not really worth to be mentioned. We avoided staying overnight at touristic hotspots….many tourists, much crime...few tourists, few crime… no tourists, no crime….it’s as simple as that.
And the more we drove into Balkans area the more we felt safer and the little rest of the security was performed by our black girl…..again the black girl had nothing (!!) to do although responsible for a “whole convoy” this time.

And the most vital thing for “harmonized driving” have been two walkie talkies, technically not really legal ones :scared: but “Chinese and cheap” and with a strong output power, so we gained range, heehee.
So we could report all intentions, all possible dangers, and all events, which we could foresee in the front car and we could “control” the “trailer” by voice through foreign towns and traffic, different toll posts and systems, borders and everything else. It worked, we are safe down in Greece without a single bad event and our friend now is an experienced “Balkan Crosser”, and will soon drive home alone.

:cheers:

Bernd

silverweed
22-01-2016, 21:16
Thank you so much for taking the time to post all that information. This is our first winter full timing and so far the weather has been easy to cope with but the early nights drawing in have bee more difficult as I always have an eye on the electrical usage as we have had the red light of death appear a couple of times. I have said that I am casting off all my child and dog minding duties this year and will make a brake for freedom before next winter ( I can say I know just how those guys with the wooden horse felt when they dug their way out of the prison camp) and will head for the wide blue yonder

paintman
22-01-2016, 21:48
Interesting reading, thanks for posting, we have twice been to Greece to attend a motorbike rally in Serres that my younger brother competes in. One time we traveled your blue coastal route, the other time we used the Ancona ferry, both routes have there attraction but we prefer the long drive. Sadly we are still both working, however we intend to return at a slower pace and spend longer in Greece when we have a bit more time, so we are enjoying your posts.

rottiontour
23-01-2016, 05:27
Thank you so much for taking the time to post all that information. This is our first winter full timing and so far the weather has been easy to cope with but the early nights drawing in have bee more difficult as I always have an eye on the electrical usage as we have had the red light of death appear a couple of times. I have said that I am casting off all my child and dog minding duties this year and will make a brake for freedom before next winter ( I can say I know just how those guys with the wooden horse felt when they dug their way out of the prison camp) and will head for the wide blue yonder

"Red light of death"....i think i know what you mean. I'm always in fight with the balance between red light of death and tv consumption ....and hair dryer :rolleyes2:
In summer it's alright, 150 w solar are ok, but Nov-Feb it is a mess, so i learned to love electrical plugs :king:.
And what freedom is concerned....after retirement there was a big boring hole which i tryed to fill with gardening or speaking with thuja hedges and then we took the m/h....the wide blue yonder as you said.
And it was the beginning of a new, challenging and free !!! life i never had before and a life being absolutely responsible for my own, this is as well freedom for me. And today I really would not like return to my old life....ok, for 3 month in the summer, seeing the children, neighbours, house etc. But after 2 weeks at home we want to start again, missing this "special freedom":king: of the m/h.

Good luck with your plan
Bernd

phillybarbour
23-01-2016, 07:28
Sounds like you've been having a lot if fun both planning and doing.

rottiontour
23-01-2016, 15:14
Sounds like you've been having a lot if fun both planning and doing.

Yes, not really a boring tour, little bit of challenge but we like that
Be

silverweed
24-01-2016, 17:53
Rottiontour your right, that feeling of fending for your self and taking responsibility for your own life is a great scense of adventure and freedom. Knowing that water will not flow out of the tap unless you sort it out, that resources are finite and you have to eke them out is a great leveller and that we are all in the same boat so to speak in our MH. I envisaged long lazy days in the van when ful timing but the reality is that in the 6 months I have been living in the van the days have shot past, I has quite shocked me that my time is disappearing even faster than before, possibly because I'm enjoying myself. I am extricating myself from responsibilities I have had thrust upon me by the children and later this coming year I am going to see what is out there that has passed me by

rottiontour
30-01-2016, 12:27
I know this is a very “dangerous” post cause there might be many experts with very sound and profound knowledge on this … I am not an expert for dogs, I am only a simple owner of a 6 year old Rottweiler girl. But I made some observations with her, with other people and other dogs on my travels through Greece and the Balkans and tried to draw some experiences out of this. I developed some “guidelines for me” which helped me a lot (so far) and which might be matter of “thinking about” for those being interested in….wrong or right, I don’t know, but often it was ok in my case.

Vaccination and Travel…..
The vaccination requirements for travelling inside EU are stated in respective official documents, so no comment on this only some remarks.
My dog has a blue EU passport, a valid anti-rabies inoculation and a valid blood test. This is sufficient to travel inside EU and Balkans. With the blood test you are allowed to re-enter all European countries from Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia and Albania. We never (!!!) had problems with the dog at the different borders.

The problem of big black dogs…..
And we never had problems with the dog and the different people southeast and outside of my homeland ;). We only had once a “special circumstance” in Albania.
I did a dog walk through a little village and my dog is a big black dog. Suddenly I heard a shout in a pub; about 10 or 15 people came out, rushed into my direction and surrounded me. They seemed to be astonished and very excited, discussed, laughed and took photos of the dog. And they telephoned to their friends to get them to come as well and see the dog.
It was a strange situation for me and for the dog too, which was unsafe, aggressive and always ready to defend me. Well, finally we could walk away without problems.
Later on a friend of mine, who knows a little bit more about Albania than me, told me that not long ago the Albanians were not allowed to have dogs and that Albania is a Muslim country and in Islam the black dog is a dschinnah, a sheitan or a devil with a breath full of poison :scared:. And walking with a big black dog through the little village would be the same as walking with a lion. I don’t know if this is right, but…..
Ok, what I learned is to be very careful in Muslim countries walking with a big black dog through little villages (South Serbia, South Bulgaria, Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia).

Vets in Greece…….
From time to time we needed a vet for the dog. And to say it clearly….we never were disappointed by the help of the Greek vets, they all knew what to do and all were very friendly and helpful.
The vet shops or clinics often are modern and in good condition and many of them have a pet shop next by which is well equipped and you can buy food and everything else for a fair price.

The most pleasant vet clinic at all I saw up to now is the Animals Clinic of

Artemis Samandourou
20100 Korinthos, Patron 146,
Tel.: 0030 6937 964626 or 0030 27410 73273,
GPS N37,933949 … E 22,911095

For us it is worth to drive some kilometres. Artemis is a very friendly and competent lady who speaks perfectly English ….and did a brilliant treatment of my dog.

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It was self understanding that some former stray dogs had got a treatment too and found a home at the clinic.
Most dogs of customers or Artemis were kept without leash and muzzle, all were relaxed, people and dogs. My dog had no stress with the clinic and was calm….well, the treatment made a little bit pain ….and the sleeping cat on the desk, but this was the only stress.
All medicaments we needed after the treatment we got in the local pharmacy for a very low price. And in case the medicament is not available right now you will get it next morning.

30th Jan, 15:15l, sunny and blue sky, t-shirt is "a must"

Bernd

dippingatoe
30-01-2016, 13:13
Hi and many thanks for the post. My dog is an even bigger and even blacker dog.

From what you wrote it was more that the locals were interested and excited, rather than were frightened of and hated your dog. I am travelling in Morocco soon with my young (by then 10 month old black Great Dane bitch puppy) I don't mind folk being interested and excited, but don't want to my dog to be hated.

rottiontour
31-01-2016, 14:43
Often I was asked about the weather conditions in Greece during winter time.
I could not give a correct answer because Greece is a large country with high mountains and snow, with beaches and wind and areas with a specific micro climate.
And too often I forgot how the weather was during a specific time in a specific area.
But this winter I wrote it down for the areas in which we stayed. These mainly were Agiokampos west of Larissa, Ancient Corinthos and some days in Gythion.

Agiokampos…..a bight surrounded by mountains, very comfortable during May till October because the temperature is not that hot as in the rest of Thessaly….but still very hot in July and August. But we left mid November because the nights became colder and the grass was a little bit wet. This area is slightly colder in winter than others more south.
Ancient Corinthos……the Greeks call it “Greek California” and it is true. The bay of Corinthos has a special micro climate which we felt to be much more convenient than in other areas.
Gythion……a bay with a large beach, one of the most southern campings in Greece.
We only stayed 3 days in Gythion, the weather was fine but our favourite camp site Gythion Bay was closed the first time in winter and we did not like the other campings.
The climate in Gythion is comparable with Northern Crete.

In my little weather description I wrote down the area, the temperatures around sunrise and midday and additional weather conditions. The coloured fields are my individual wx feeling, how convenient the day was for me…..well, to have a convenient day is easy for me, I am from Northern Germany .
Red…..a bad day, brrrrh :(.
Yellow….. could be better or worse but it was ok for me :dance:.
Green…..this was it, exactly what I wanted in this time of the year, a “Best Day Award” :).

Up to now I learned that for a Northern type like me Greece has four main seasons which are…..Spring, Summer, Autumn and …X-Mas.
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So we will continue to “wait and see” how the spring will develop in Feb and March.

Have fun
Bernd

rottiontour
01-02-2016, 17:16
Greece, the country of strikes, we were hit by a ferry strike :mad1:. Our friend had to drive home and booked the ferry from Patras to Venice for Thursday morning 06:00.
We “shadowed” him to the port of Patras, which was a little empty, no people, hmmh.
At the desk of Anek Lines the young lady told us that there is a 48 hrs strike by Greek seamen and dock workers against the next pension cutting …..obviously ordered by EU :rulez: and performed by Tsipras.
She gave us a contact telephone number and a booking reference number. We should call Anek Lines each day and ask when the next ferry to Venice will leave.
The 48 hrs strike was enlarged by another 48 hrs and Sunday morning we got the information that the first ferry to Venice would start at Sunday night 24:00 and that my friend has been booked automatically into that ferry.
Ok….he is retired, not a big deal to stay another 4 days in the sun of Ancient Corinthos.
But what I learned is…..there was no chaos at all, we always got an answer to our questions by Anek Lines and all information was correct and up to date and they booked my friend automatically in for the first available ferry.

And I found a nice website with a collection of international and Greek newspapers with many useful information about Greece …and strike actions.

NewsNow: Greece news | Breaking News & Search 24/7 (http://mobile.newsnow.co.uk/h/World+News/Europe/Western/Greece)

NewsNow: Greek Strike Action news | Breaking News 24/7 (http://www.newsnow.co.uk/h/World+News/Europe/Western/Greece/Strike+Action)

To overcome the strike was easy, only some telephone calls and another 4 days in the sun:cheers: .

Have fun
Bernd

iampatman
01-02-2016, 17:31
That's a great weather report Bernd, thanks. We still can't decide whether to spend a winter in Greece. Maybe you could go to the Pelleponese next year and test out the weather there for us :camper: :wave:

Pat

rottiontour
01-02-2016, 18:23
That's a great weather report Bernd, thanks. We still can't decide whether to spend a winter in Greece. Maybe you could go to the Pelleponese next year and test out the weather there for us :camper: :wave:

Pat

Hi Pat,
well, to take a decision for Greece instead of Spain i think it is not only the weather, it is what you want for yourself.
Greece is empty of m/homers in the winter time, Gythion Bay...the best in the south....closed, no customers. In Mani Beach next by 4 or 5 vans, no restaurants, no pool, no fun, no parties, nearly no people....only little social contacts amongst the campers.
But Greece is fantastic for wilding, it's THE FREEDOM as you know very well and it is best for wilding in lonely places or staying on camp sites which are empty and have a simple infrastructure.
If you like that Greece is a dream, if you like easy social contacts with other campers during winter time, i guess Spain is better and Greece is boring.
But as you know i prefer to stay in lonely areas or with good contacts to the locals, we are already integrated into the life in Ancient Corinthos, and so Greece in winter is ideal for us.

Have fun
Bernd

rottiontour
04-02-2016, 18:08
Greece has hundreds of beaches or attractive areas in which it is possible to stay and park as long as you want.

The law says that camping is forbidden but parking is ok everywhere. But nobody cares about in winter time; there are more important problems to solve. During main season in July/August sometimes the police will observe some tourist beaches, cause they should not be blocked by people who are doing camping, but this are single cases.

In winter Greece is empty, nearly no m/homers around. I do not know why….may be the so called “crisis”, or the dark “Balkans” or the ferry passage, or it is simply too far away. Having read the news and watched TV I can imagine that people not knowing Greece may develop a specific fear, but I learned during all the years in Greece that it always was a media hysteria made by non Greek media to gain a sensation….and “German Angst” :scared: must be highly infectious :lol-053:.
As I said….no m/homers around….either you like it or it might be boring.
Nowadays for many Greeks the life situation is deteriorating but this country is used to it. An old lady once told me with a smile….so what, we survived the Romans, the Turks and the Germans and we will survive the European Union and the crisis too ;).
I have seen all Southern countries but Greece is the best to stay free in lonely areas in the vicinity of friendly and helpful locals …..for me.

The Stellplatz in Ancient Corinthos……
This is a little bit of advertisement for the only "real m/h Stellplatz" of Greece, if you don’t like it, simply don’t read it.

We decided to spend the winter time in Greece but not only wilding or travelling, we wanted to stay in one place. The reasons are simple.
On the one hand we already know many areas in Greece very well and what the climate is concerned the bay of Corinthos is excellent. The Greeks call it “the Greek California”.
On the other hand we do not need the infrastructure of a well equipped camping site, a little bit simpler is ok too. And we do not need a beach next by the site, we have bikes and we can ride to the beach whenever we like.

But what is really important for us …..
We have a dog (or a pig?) and after a rain period most of the grass camp grounds are not really suitable to keep the car clean, the dog always is fighting enormously against the cleanliness of the car :dog:. So we looked after a suitable ground for the winter period with an electrical connection, a water tap, a dump facility and a good place for the dog walk.
37796 37797 37798

And we wanted to have next by…..some tavernas, a super market, a laundry, a pharmacy, a post office and within biking range a large town with all facilities with a Lidl, doctors, restaurants, garages etc.
All this we found near by the Camper Stop of Ancient Corinthos.
Grandfather and Grandmother of Camper Stop, the owners, are super friendly and provide us from time to time with a real Greek food and vegetables and wine out of their fields.
What do we need more; we have all we need including good weather.
37799 37800

:king: :king: :king:
Bernd

iampatman
04-02-2016, 18:33
Hi again Bernd,

You forgot to mention Aphrodites (?) cave at the top of the hill by the stellplatz :wave::nicethread:

Pat

rottiontour
04-02-2016, 18:38
Hi again Bernd,

You forgot to mention Aphrodites (?) cave at the top of the hill by the stellplatz :wave::nicethread:

Pat

Tried to take a photo of her but obviously she is on strike :sad:

Be

rottiontour
13-06-2016, 20:55
Dog Export and Back Home

We stayed 8 months in Greece, but July and August will be too hot. So we drove back home 2 weeks ago and presently we have to accept 15 C and rain….brrrh.
And we have a new family member, a young Greek dog, about 6 month old now. End of March he came out of a bush, injured, weak, and totally skinny, obviously chased away by people or other dogs. He simply accompanied the Rottie and Lara adopted him from the very first moment. She even allowed him to enter the car what she never did before with other dogs….love in the first moment.

42684

And she gave him education. All people in vicinity were shocked :scared: cause often it looked like as if she would eat him, but he never had a single scratch. We let her do the job and now we have a well educated Greek family member.
From the very first moment he did not do a single “pee” inside the car, the stray dog was clean.
He took the collar and a leash without problems and after two or three exercises he was able to understand our commands, he simply copied all of Lara’s behaviour, unbelievable, sometimes she had to force him a little bit but it was no problem at all…..40 kilos against 10 kilos,:hammer: .

And we had the problem of making the dog ready for crossing Europe which is not too easy for a dog because he must have valid papers and documents :idea-007:, no way without documents!!!
But this was easier to achieve as we could imagine. We went to a Greek vet, got chip, vaccinations and blue passport with good dates, paid 80 Euros for all and drove home always staying inside EU because up to now we have no blood test for the Greek boy.…Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Austria, Czech Rep and home, no problems at all borders, too easy. And now we are 4 :D .

8 month and some thoughts:

Iaw the EU regulations EU citizens being non Greeks must leave the country after 3 month. Nobody did check it; nobody was interested to fulfil this regulation, even the police :banana:.
But we are from a “law obeying country….jawoll!!” :idea-007: :bow:, and so after 6 month we managed to get a permanent residence clearance by the police. It was easy, passport, proof of income, proof of health insurance and all this officially translated to Greek (which was the real problem)) and we got a document by the police which allows us to stay permanently in Greece now…..and to buy and register a car or scooter in Greece, the main reason for us.

The winter time was great, 4 month Nov to Feb, 8 rainy days, no frost and dry air, very convenient for rheumatic bones.

All you need you can get in Greece, “spare parts” and support for m/h, dog, and people, all is available in larger towns, sometimes you have to ask to find it but you will always get friendly help.
No problems with safety, ATM machines, pharmacies or strikes, and we felt no real impact by the refugee situation, neither in Greece nor at the borders nor on road to our home.

And the best was the tent worth every Euro I paid for it, a solid and stable shelter against sun, storm and rain.

4268542686

Life is easy in Greece and we will start travelling back in August….2 months leave in Northland to see the children are ok for us :cheers:

Bernd

LindsayH
14-06-2016, 11:01
This thread is marvellous, thanks. Can I ask, have you been on any of the Greek ferries to the islands with your dog? I would love to one day tour the islands but don't know how it would work with a dog in the van. Also, from your earlier post, did you say 150w of solar panel is not enough in Greece in the middle on winter? Thank you!

rottiontour
14-06-2016, 12:46
This thread is marvellous, thanks. Can I ask, have you been on any of the Greek ferries to the islands with your dog? I would love to one day tour the islands but don't know how it would work with a dog in the van. Also, from your earlier post, did you say 150w of solar panel is not enough in Greece in the middle on winter? Thank you!

Hi,

We were on Lefkada and Evvia both with a dam, no problem with a car and dog, and on Poros, 10 minutes ferry ride, and on Crete, see link.
http://www.wildcamping.co.uk/forums/greece/35293-off-dogs-crete.html
Generally Greek ferries on inner national lines are not a problem for a dog, he can stay in the car, nobody will care about.
For us a ferry passage with more than 8 hrs is a problem with “p”, for the dog so we don’t take a ferry from Italy to reach Greece and prefer the Balkans landline.
For a larger distance like Athens-Crete (about 9 hrs) I would prefer to take a “dog cabin”. Blue Star Ferries is offering cabins for that route especially reserved for dog owners and dogs, good service.

For solar I said “Nov to Feb is a mess”, well, the main fact is our energy consumption, our sat tv is running minimum 4-6 hrs per day, don’t know why, have to ask my wife, and this costs energy….(to ask my wife costs energy too ;) ).
In winter battery load is depending on the weather, some cloudy or even rainy days will kill my 95 amp battery, and the sun does not have that power and after 2 days the battery needs to be loaded either by driving or hook up. Solar is loading but it is a remarkable difference to Mar or Oct.
March/Apr to Oct/Nov is no problem with 150 w solar for us, sufficient energy is coming in to fill the battery AND operate the tv, there is power enough.

But the winter problems and shorter days were not that big for us, that I would see a need for more solar panels or a second battery. We stayed mainly on camp sites and when not, a 1-2 hrs drive per day or next day (fridge on gas and not on 12v) was sufficient to load the battery on cloudy days for the evening tv session.
But i must say....150w solar in Jan in Northland or in GR are a biiiig difference.

Bernd

compass
14-06-2016, 15:34
hi did you always use campsites ,could you wildcamp anywhere cheers

rottiontour
14-06-2016, 16:48
hi did you always use campsites ,could you wildcamp anywhere cheers

Hi,
this time we spent the wintertime with permanent electricity and toilet facilities on an m/h site in Corinthos, we did some trips from time to time.
But Greece is THE wildcamping country at all, you can park everywhere you like and often you will be invited to stay.
Only in summer holiday season I would not recommend to stay too long on overcrowded beaches with all equipment.
During July/ August Greeks like to use their beaches as well. But even in summer there are a lot of lonely beaches and away from those holiday hotspots there is absolutely no problem to stay free overnight.
And in wintertime Greece is empty of tourists.

Be

LindsayH
15-06-2016, 16:23
Thank you so much, your reply could not have been more helpful! I will follow with interest and love hearing about your Greek travels.

Rfs
16-06-2016, 16:21
Hi Bernd

Great reports.

Can you give an idea of how much the campsite you used costs?

Thanks

R

rottiontour
16-06-2016, 18:56
Hi Bernd

Great reports.

Can you give an idea of how much the campsite you used costs?

Thanks

R

Hi,
It is not a camping site, it is a stellplatz type for mhomes.
Price 10 euros all incl in 2016 per 24 hrs.
Be

Teutone
16-06-2016, 20:09
Mensch Bernd, I am well impressed. I can only dream of a journey like this. Still too much german Angst in me. Gut gemacht!

rottiontour
16-06-2016, 20:26
Mensch Bernd, I am well impressed. I can only dream of a journey like this. Still too much german Angst in me. Gut gemacht!

:lol-049:

rottiontour
17-06-2016, 10:05
Hello Bernd
How's the new dog ( Lara ?) liking Northland?
What a kind and generous family your have to take a refugee into your lives.
I am very impressed with your breakdown of the weather that you experienced whilst there.
We had our winter in New Zealand which as it was Summer and associated light levels was very nice.
We would like to travel to Greece this year, but as our daughter is a merchant sea person she is home this Christmas so will be flying back to be with the family. our question I hope you will be able to help on is motorhome storage in Greece. Do you have any comments, observations, that could help in our planning?
If everything works out would love to meet you and your now extended family.
Thanks
John

Hi John,
The little Greek is lovely, well, a Greek, what can I say. He is happy with family and big sister. Northland is ok for him, the ground is wet, dirty and soft , not like Greece, he obviously likes it, when I see the wholes in the garden and the mud in the house :cry::cry::cry: .

For the weather….last winter was excellent, so sometimes might be some more rainy days, but this is not a problem for us, good tarmac and gravel ground on stellplatz.

In case you want to leave the mh alone in Greece, Stellplatz in Ancient Corinthos is ok, I think to park in a corner without persons and without electricity is 4 Euros per day. But absolutely safe…not only my Rottie, but my wife too :scared:.

To the airport Athens is a good train connection from Corinthos, easy, the owner will transport you to the train, 10 minutes, no problem at all, some other folks did it as well over christmas last year…..it’s easy, it’s Greece.
You can find the place on google street view to get an impression from outside for the approach pattern.
37.911484 22.878322 Camper Stop (http://camperstop.gr/contact_de.html)

And as far as I know the airport in Athens has parking as well, but I do not know details.

Have fun, and perhaps….see you in winter…..Wassili the owner produces an excellent wine from his own fields, may be we can help him in September in producing wine and then drink our own home made wine.
:cheers:

Bernd

iampatman
17-06-2016, 14:15
Hello Bernd
How's the new dog ( Lara ?) liking Northland?
What a kind and generous family your have to take a refugee into your lives.
I am very impressed with your breakdown of the weather that you experienced whilst there.
We had our winter in New Zealand which as it was Summer and associated light levels was very nice.
We would like to travel to Greece this year, but as our daughter is a merchant sea person she is home this Christmas so will be flying back to be with the family. our question I hope you will be able to help on is motorhome storage in Greece. Do you have any comments, observations, that could help in our planning?
If everything works out would love to meet you and your now extended family.
Thanks
John

Hi John,

Someone else you may consider for Motorhome storage in Greece is Zampetas - [http://www.zampetas.gr]
They are Motorhome and caravan dealers and service centre who also offer overnight stays for motorhomes. We've stayed there a few times and there always seems to be some empty space where they could maybe store a Motorhome. They are right opposite Thessalonika airport.

Pat


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