Leaving Camping Flaminio is no easy thing in a large motorhome – it’s a great campsite, but finding your way in and out without taking a wrong turn or getting caught in the wrong lane (if there are any lanes in the endless crowd of hooting revving little cars surrounding you) is tricky (or maybe we’re inept), and leaving Rome turned out to be almost as stressful as getting in. But we finally broke free of the endless chain of meaningless junctions and tunnels, found the right Autostrada, and pointed Margot’s nose towards the coast.
It took just a couple of hours to reach Camping Village Eurcamping on the Adriatic coast. I’d had a suspiciously scratchy throat the last night in Rome, and by the time we were on the autostrade the next day I had a deep suspicion that I might be succumbing to the cold I’d been nursing various children through since we came away.
We arrived at Abruzzo just a couple of hours after leaving the endless mess of Rome, and it felt exactly like what it was – an out of season seaside resort; the empty streets, boarded windows and faded swinging signs the last vestiges of tourists, echoes of a busy happy summer spent by the sea.
The Eurcamping site was quietly situated at the end of the main promenade, seeming to be very peaceful with just a handful of German motorhomes and we had our pick of spaces. We had just two nights here, so we spent the afternoon catching up on some housekeeping, making use of the laundry building… and obviously spending time in the big pool we had to ourselves (hats essential).
After dinner we took a stroll down to the beach – just a short stretch of sand between two rocky promontories acting as breakwaters. The boys couldn’t resist a paddle, and ended up leaping into the sea in their boxers, shrieking in glee in the warm waters while we watched the sun go down.
The following morning the husband and I borrowed a couple of the site’s bicycles, and headed into town to the supermarket. Restricted by what we could reasonably carry in the bikes’ baskets we couldn’t stock up as we wanted with the local wines, limoncello and vast array of cheeses. But we got what we could, and headed back to Margot laden with produce, whistling as we cycled along the empty promenade.
That afternoon it became clear that I had properly succumbed to the hideous cold, and immediately declared an early night for everyone – the only problem in Margot is that I can’t go to bed until everyone else has!
Eurcamping was possibly Bear’s favourite, simply thanks to the awesome playground lurking at the back of the site… Thankfully I knew the next day was just one long journey; we had a 6hr drive to make it to our most southerly stop at Ugento, way down on the Ionian sea. I was feeling really rotten by the time we woke the following morning, but I dragged myself through the packing up process like a hero, and as head navigator I got us on to the autostrada headed south. Then promptly fell asleep – waking 3hrs later to find us sliding through endless miles of flat dull countryside as we headed further and further south. I quickly found myself crossing my fingers that things would be looking better by the time we reached Ugento…