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View Full Version : Which way would you go to Portugal?



bentleysontour
10-04-2017, 10:21
For three weeks in August, my son and his girfreind would like to go to the Algarve in Portugal as they like surfing. So they have a great idea to rope Mum along so we all go in the motorhome. Obviously i would like to take in a few sights enroute and stop off at a few places. I have a dog , so she will be with us.I live in West Sussex our closest ports are Portsmouth and Newhaven. Where would you stop guys if it was you, ( I'm ok with paying for sites )will also wild camp too as my son will be with me....and which route would be the best for the dog also? Do I need a pet passport and if so how do i go about getting one?
Thanks for all the valuable information so far, I'm almost there now with all the bits and pieces I will need, even down to a socket set and a screwdriver, now to find out how to use them lol!

grath
10-04-2017, 10:39
For three weeks in August, my son and his girfreind would like to go to the Algarve in Portugal as they like surfing. So they have a great idea to rope Mum along so we all go in the motorhome. Obviously i would like to take in a few sights enroute and stop off at a few places. I have a dog , so she will be with us.I live in West Sussex our closest ports are Portsmouth and Newhaven. Where would you stop guys if it was you, ( I'm ok with paying for sites )will also wild camp too as my son will be with me....and which route would be the best for the dog also? Do I need a pet passport and if so how do i go about getting one?
Thanks for all the valuable information so far, I'm almost there now with all the bits and pieces I will need, even down to a socket set and a screwdriver, now to find out how to use them lol!

Regarding Ferry's, we have used Newhaven / Dieppe a few times and found the price good and if you are over 60, you get a 20% discount, you must book by telephone to get this. This saves about 2 hour each way compared to Calais if you are going via Rouen.
We have driven down through France a few times, and myself a few hundred times with a truck. Later this year we are also going via the Ferry to Santander, just for a change, but this luxury will cost us an extra £500 after fuel is deducted!
Yes you need a pet passport, I would arrange with your VET. You will need to visit a Vet within I think 60 hours prior to boarding the return ferry.
I am sure others can and will tell you more
Enjoy your plans

edit
The few hundred times with a truck is an exaggeration, but seriously, many many times!

wakk44
10-04-2017, 10:39
It really comes down to how long you want to stay at your destination in the Algarve and how long you want to be on the road.There are a couple of basic choices,either get one of the channel ferries and drive through France,Spain and Portugal or take the ferry to N.Spain and drive through Spain and Portugal.The longer Calais route will take at least 5 days averaging 4 hours per day on the road,the N.Spain route will take around 2 days,again travelling for 4 hours per day.You could obviously do it quicker if travelling for longer each day,my personal preference is to drive for no longer than 4 hours per day.

I would prefer taking the N.Spain route if stopping for 3 weeks at destination as the longer French route will take 10 days out of the holiday which is a significant chunk out of a 3 week break,I have done both and prefer paying extra for the 24 hour ferry to N.Spain.

Yes you do need a pet passport,I would get it done asap.

edit;-make sure the pet passport is filled in correctly with no mistakes,they are really keen at Santander-we nearly missed the return ferry because of a mistake on the pet passport.

mark61
10-04-2017, 10:41
Lots of options, mainly revolving around how long you would like to spend on ferry or long drive. Portsmouth Bilbao/Santander, Portsmouth to Brittany, then a fair drive, or short channel crossing and longer drive.

witzend
10-04-2017, 10:43
Plan your route using one of the mapping programmes and see whats nr by thats of interest to you, It's 3 days to the Algarve without stopping to look around. I think that there's better surfing along the west coast than the Algarve which will be packed in August

Portugal Surf Guide - Spots (http://www.portugalsurfguide.pt/en/spots)


Nazaré, Portugal - Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazar%C3%A9,_Portugal#Surfing)

Beemer
10-04-2017, 11:19
As three weeks is your time scale I would opt for the Portsmouth/Bilbao or Santander ferry/cruise, so much better (although dearer) than driving through France if you only have three weeks.
We decided to treat the ferry as part of the holiday and went for the Club Voyage Club Voyage Travel Club - Up to 30% discount - Brittany Ferries (http://www.brittany-ferries.co.uk/club-voyage-travel-club) and we make an immediate saving (still not cheap though).
This year will be the third year we have used the Portsmouth - Spain route and the second year of Club Voyage Spain. we are heading for Portugal with no final destination, but will following the northern coastal route using a mix of aires and campsites as before.

sorry can't advise on pets, as we don't partake. :)

Jo001
10-04-2017, 12:32
I can do the pet bit.

You need to have your dog chipped (he should be anyway) and vaccinated against rabies. The details of the vaccine and date are entered on a pet passport which also has a barcode that matches your dog's microchip to prove he and the passport match. You need to wait three weeks (although I have NEVER seen a check on the way out). Before returning to the UK you need to visit a vet who will give a worming tablet and will sign and date the passport accordingly, including the time of the consultation. Check they have done this accurately! Vets further from the ports are generally cheaper, you might pay anything between €10 and €40!

You cannot be on British soil before 24 hours have passed, but you must be on British soil before 120 hours have passed. So you have a four day window for your trip back.

At the ferry or tunnel terminal, there is a pet area where you take the dog to let them see the evidence of the rabies vaccination, and the worming treatment recorded in the passport. You will be asked to scan your dog to read the chip and make sure the passport corresponds to that dog - if your dog was chipped a while ago, pop into your vet at home first to make sure it still works and hasn't moved - and that's it. Very slick and straightforward.

I use the tunnel because the dog stays in the van with us. Mine would be upset by the noise, smell, movement and isolation on the ferries where he isn't allowed with us. There are a small number of pet friendly cabins on the ferries to the north of Spain from Portsmouth or Plymouth but they get booked up well in advance.

Pauljenny
10-04-2017, 13:12
Being new to the motorhome game, I suggest you try something less ambitious.
3 weeks in August,going south...
A nightmare,even for seasoned motorhomers.
France will be on holiday. Aires and campsites will be expensive and crowded.
Have fun.

Val54
10-04-2017, 14:49
Spot on advice from PJ. Portugal for your first continental trip is a big ask, especially for only 3 weeks which presumably includes getting there and back. We've done it using various routes and ferries but never for less than a month and always outside of August. My suggestion would be to persuade the youngsters to surf in France and head for Bordeaux and travel down to the Spanish border. Loads of campsites in the Landes with beach access, but it will be BUSY BUSY 😂😂
Dave

rugbyken
10-04-2017, 20:23
agree with couple of earlier posters it is an ambitious first trip and the surfing is far better on the west coast i believe record breaking waves around Nazare & lots of free parking right next to the sea but probably going to be rammed , as well as the ferries from u.k. to spain you can also get a ferry from st nazaire in brittany to gijon northern spain cutting out a lot of driving getting ferry to st malo or cherbourg etc but not a cheap trip over 3 weeks whether the money is spent on fuel or ferriesyour going to have to spend one of those 3 weeks travelling!!

korky
10-04-2017, 21:17
Yes to all saying about the Algarve is too far for three weeks.
How good a surfer is your son?
The Atlantic coast is the place to be!
Use the west French coast, get the waves and half the distance.
Away from the baking heat which will fry your dog in the Algarve in august.
But which ever you chose, have a good trip.
John

Got to agree about the SW French coast if you want waves in that time frame.
But I would not contemplate taking a dog even there in August.
This weekend it was 28c in Arcachon,I got a bit of heatstroke out walking.
Was still 25c at 1900hrs well north of Poitiers Sun. night.
Cheers, Kork.

grath
11-04-2017, 07:00
Just a thought. Have you considered driving down a week earlier, letting your family fly out and meet them at an airport. You could drive back after they return.
We have done this for our Daughter!
Obviously, depending on if you have the time!

Justjack
11-04-2017, 07:43
Please reconsider taking your dog with you in August, it'll be far too hot and uncomfortable. We always returned from our trips due to heat at the beginning of July, even May can be scorching. I also agree with other comments, there's some fabulous surfing to be had in France. Whatever you decide, have a wonderful trip ::D

bentleysontour
11-04-2017, 09:40
Just a thought. Have you considered driving down a week earlier, letting your family fly out and meet them at an airport. You could drive back after they return.
We have done this for our Daughter!
Obviously, depending on if you have the time!



Yes this is possible, I work for myself so can do this.....

Loretta
11-04-2017, 11:20
Visit Toledo just south of Madrid. Its FANTASTIC and a very good camping.
INICIO - Camping el Greco - Toledo (http://www.campingelgreco.es/)
Stayed there two years ago and higly recomend as is more or less half way betwenn Bilbao/Santander and the Algarve
On another hand Algarve its not the best surfing in Portugal, the coast north of Lisbon its much better for surf specialy Peniche/Nazare.
Peniche Surf Guide – Peniche, Portugal (http://www.penichesurfguide.com/)

Have fun

grath
11-04-2017, 11:36
Monsaraz, just over the border after Cacares. Supposed to be the largest man made lake in Europe

Google Image Result for http://www.premiumtours.pt/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/monsaraz-2.jpg (https://www.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://www.premiumtours.pt/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/monsaraz-2.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.premiumtours.pt/en/places/reguengos-de-monsaraz/&h=1002&w=1502&tbnid=yB1d-vPd9pCRqM:&tbnh=110&tbnw=165&usg=__IPxHoVUEVchWcjlGag_03jXUDYo=&vet=10ahUKEwiom87hqZzTAhXMKcAKHYBbCPgQ_B0ImQEwDg.. i&docid=scH0GO29jjknXM&itg=1&client=safari&sa=X&sqi=2&ved=0ahUKEwiom87hqZzTAhXMKcAKHYBbCPgQ_B0ImQEwDg)



http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff262/tramperbucket/fullsizeoutput_2aa_zpsov8ulk60.jpeg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/tramperbucket/media/fullsizeoutput_2aa_zpsov8ulk60.jpeg.html)
http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff262/tramperbucket/IMG_8557_zpsfabfa5pf.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/tramperbucket/media/IMG_8557_zpsfabfa5pf.jpg.html)
http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff262/tramperbucket/IMG_1716_zpsdsck06bg.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/tramperbucket/media/IMG_1716_zpsdsck06bg.jpg.html)

grath
11-04-2017, 11:39
Segovia in Spain
http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff262/tramperbucket/IMG_8505_zpsoadfxx8l.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/tramperbucket/media/IMG_8505_zpsoadfxx8l.jpg.html)

grath
11-04-2017, 11:41
Ampudia, good stop over on the way down. Just north of Valladolid
http://i240.photobucket.com/albums/ff262/tramperbucket/IMG_8590_zps77jxe2qm.jpg (http://s240.photobucket.com/user/tramperbucket/media/IMG_8590_zps77jxe2qm.jpg.html)

somejest
12-04-2017, 22:31
Where in west Sussex are you? We've been going down to Portugal for the last 5 winters with 4dogs happy to meet up and offer some advice,though you've had some good stuff said already.


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