Meet the Motorhomers: Michael & Pam 11 Comments


This weeks inspiration comes Michael & Pam, a couple of Aussie’s living in the wonderful suburbs of Sydney. Right now they are touring Wales with the salt mines and Mawddach walking trail, and by looks of things they are having a great time. A good blog to follow if you’re wondering what to in the UK this summer!

1. Tell us a little about yourself, like what is your name and where do you come from.

Our names are Michael and Pam, when we are not travelling we live in Sydney Australia. After a career in firefighting and banking we are now both retired.

2. What sort of motorhome traveller are you? Full time / part time / short breaks / long stay

We would describe ourselves as touring motorhomers, by that I mean we only stay for a day or two in most places, then move on. Since purchasing our motorhome we have travelled to London each summer dust off the Hymer and embark on a 3 or 4 month adventure heading home when it gets cold.

3. When did you first start motorhoming and what inspired you to start?

We started by hiring a motorhome in France in 2013 and doing a sample run through Normandy and Brittany. By that time we had discovered several bloggers which just wet our appetites even more. Julie and Jason from ‘Our Tour’ and Jenny and Ewart’s ‘Travel Bunyip’.

4. Tell us about your current motorhome like make, model, name, age and why you chose it?

After lots of research we settled on the make, model and price range. Many emails later and thanks to our cousin Terry we found our Hymer in 2013. Certainly the largest eBay purchase we are every likely to make. We call it ‘The Hymer’, a 2005 B584 on a Fiat Ducato chassis. Frankly we love it, easy to park and drive. Spacious with the drop down bed and everything works as it should.

5. Where is the best place you have ever been and why?

Turkey, paying our respects to the fallen in Gallipoli, parked up below the Blue Mosque in Istanbul, swimming in the Black Sea, hot air ballooning in Cappadocia and bathing in the limestone travertines of Pamakkale. So glad we visited Turkey in 2015 as it may not be a safe place to visit again for some time.

6. Where is the worst place you have ever been and why?

It’s a photo finish between Tarragona, Spain and Rimini, Italy.

We had the misfortune of having our Hymer broken into, whilst visiting the Roman viaduct a couple kilometers from Tarragona. Bad enough having the window catches broken, but wasting an afternoon in a Spanish Police Station made a bad day even worse.

As Sydney-siders we are used to the heat in summer, but we were not prepared for Rimini in August. Hot, humid with no breeze to speak of for relief. The whole town is one big traffic jam full of hundreds of cranky Italians looking for somewhere to park. The beach packed so tight with people you cannot see the sand. Never have I seen so many sunburnt bodies in swim suites two sizes too small.

7. What 3 places are on your bucket / wish list?

Scandinavia, which hopefully we will knock over this year. Portugal and Morocco

8. What things (apart from the obvious) do you always travel with?

Coffee, we bring 3 kgs of coffee beans with us from Australia every year, the coffee machine to make it and the inverter to power it whilst wild camping.

9. If you could share one handy motorhome hint or tip, what would it be?

Take a small shovel with you to Greece, toilet dumps are rare. There’s always a tap at the village cemetery.

10. Any finally, whats your funniest motorhome moment?

After hunting around on-line for a ferry from Turkey to Greece, we paid some exorbitant amount for a ferry from Cesme to Chios. We arrive at the port of Cesme and the Hymer is search thoroughly, I mean thoroughly every pocket-every cupboard and we are then allowed to enter the port. Report to Customs get search again just as thoroughly and asked 20 questioned as well. Told to go back to the Hymer and wait.

Next we are ordered to drive to another section of the port, I am ordered to drive the Hymer up on a set of ramps. A huge machine then X-rays the Hymer back and forth. During the process an alarm goes off, lights start flashing. Pam and I look at each other and think, what’s the number for consular assistance?

An officer walks out of a booth and gives the thing a kick and waves us away. With a sigh of relief we see a large ferry coming into dock. Next another port security guard runs over jumps in the Hymer and points going ‘drive… drive’. We drive across to another dock, at that dock is our ferry. It looks like a WW2 landing craft. The ramp is down we are ordered to drive on.

Now I start to get the giggles. There is already a small car on board and lots of pointing and yelling I roll on board the ferry, gives a sigh itself under the weight. They throw the lines and the ferry pulls away. They cannot lift the ramp as the Hymer back wheels are still on it. More yelling and screaming the little car in front is moved up, then the Hymer can be moved, then the ramp is finally raised.

By this time we are half-way to Chios which is only a few kilometers away. Our greeting from the Greeks on arrival in Chios follows a similar theme.

If you would like to check out Michael & Pam’s website then click here or bob on over to michaelandpamstravels. Have a read and say hi, they would love to meet you all one day!

Thanks to Michael and Pam for their interview and here’s hoping they enjoy a summer in Wales. Enjoy guys xxx

If you would like to join in the fun and share your story then drop is an email at ourbumble@icloud.com

Hymer B584


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11 thoughts on “Meet the Motorhomers: Michael & Pam

    • Michael and Pam

      Thanks for ready our story. We are planning 4 months in Europe this year. As Aussies we can only stay in the EU (excluding the UK) for 90 days or 13 weeks. So we normally spend a couple of weeks in the UK visiting, say Wales this year and then cross into the EU. We found 4 months suits us and our family commitments etc. I know it sounds extravagant or expensive, but we keep a tight budget. For us its about the experience not having lunch or dinner out 5 times a week.

    • Michael and Pam

      Thanks for your question. We keep the Hymer in storage at Church Farm, near Bosham. We elect to keep it under cover when in storage. It’s a complete facility, by that I mean they can arrange servicing and MOT etc. So for us back in Australia its easier to manage from a distance. Keeping an 11 almost 12 year old motorhome undercover is expensive, but we see it as an investment in our future travels.

  • Dick Talor

    Well that is a lot of coffee good job you have the payload. I am curious as to what coffee you drink and why it is so special…I am a coffee addict and need to try some of you special stuff.

    • Michael and Pam

      Thanks for your question Dick. Look if we crossed paths I’d happily make you a coffee.
      Pam and I love our first coffee of the day, the next best thing is another one about 11am.
      On our first trip to England, several years ago I could not believe how bad the coffee was. Either Costa or Nero served in huge buckets size cups…Next year we travelled France and it was even worse.
      So on purchasing the Hymer, we needed something to take with us and make ourselves. It’s a complex issue, we know we wanted to wildcamp wherever possible, so its finding a coffee machine with enough grunt to run a fine grind yet capable of running off an inverter using your leasure batteries. A fine balancing act.

      As for the coffee we use ‘Amore’, the blend ‘Milano’. They used to be based in Sydney near our home, but they have relocated their roasting facility to Queensland.

      (Have not been able to source a 12 volt grinder, so we bring ground with us)

    • Michael and Pam

      Claire, thanks for your question about Turkey.

      If you go to our blog and have a quick run through our travels, where we stayed and our comments generally you will pick up some hints. However I’ll give your some general thoughts.

      1. There are travel warnings on most consular websites about Turkey and the risks, however we found Turkey to be a safe and friendly place during our travels. Everybody in Turkey has a relative in Australia and they all like to talk about them.

      2. I wouldn’t travel to Ankara and there’s nothing there for motorhomer anyway. Eastern Turkey is a no go. You must do Pamukkale and Cappadocia !

      3. There is a database called PeeJay’s Greek Stopovers, Google around and you will find an extension called PeeJay’s Turkey. We found that very handy. If you cannot send me an email and I’ll forward you the CSV on return to Sydney.

      4. Along the Aegean Coast, Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea there are small campsites or private parkings areas. We would just go in and ask how much, normally it was very cheap.

      In summary Istanbul is amazing, but use the same secure parking area. It’s not an aire or a stellplatz but there is a guard 24/7 and you will feel more comfortable when you sleeping or leaving the motorhome for 8 hours at a time.

      Hope this helps