Camping under the stars

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There is nothing quite like camping under the stars and enjoying the night sky. It is something that everyone can enjoy since no special equipment is needed. If you are new to camping under the stars, we cover all you need to know.

Stars and camper

Where can I go to see the stars?

Our recommendations are all in dark sky reserves. A dark sky reserve is a place where the Milky Way is visible to the naked eye and, there are no significant light distractions in the area, making it ideal for stargazing.

Westhavelland Nature Park, Germany

Westhavelland Nature Park is a 2- hour ride away from the German capital, Berlin. During the day, you can enjoy the wildlife with a canoe ride down the Havel river. At night, the area transforms into one of the best places to view the stars. You can join a night tour of the sky that promotes the importance of protecting the sky from light pollution.

Haunte-Pyrénées, France

The Haute-Pyrénées is a region in the south of France that is home to the Pyrénées National Park. Pyrénées National Park is the largest dark sky reserve in Europe and lies between France and Spain. Getting here is trickier, but you will be treated to beautiful night skies. The nights are so clear that NASA used this area to map out the moon in preparation for the Apollo missions.

Hortobágy National Park

Hortobágy National Park was the first Hungarian National Park and is now a world heritage site. The park is a 2 and a half-hour drive from Budapest, making it easily reachable by a camper. During the day, you can observe the wildlife and the over 200 bird species. When night falls, you can go on stargazing guided walks. An absolute must for anyone interested in astronomy.

Stars and camper

What dates should I go stargazing?

Although you can go stargazing any day of the year, we have listed a few dates that you should go stargazing.

22-23 April - Lyrids meteor shower

The Lyrids meteor shower can be seen the whole of April but should peak on the 22-23. On these two days, you can expect to see up to 18 meteors per hour.

5-6 May – Eta Aquariids meteor shower

This meteorite shower is associated with Halley’s Comet. On the 5th and 6th, you can expect to see up to 50 meteorites per hour.

16 May - Total Lunar Eclipse

The lunar eclipse is where the earth comes between the sun and the moon. The sun projects the shadow of the world on the moon!

12-13 August - Perseids meteor shower

The Perseids meteor shower is the most active meteor shower making this list. While it is visible from mid-July till mid-August, it should peak on the 12-13 August. You can expect to see up to 150 meteors per hour.

14 August – Saturn is the most visible
26 September – Jupiter is the most visible
21-22 October - Orionids meteor shower

The earth passes through the debris left behind by Halley’s Comet. All meteors appear to come from one radial point.

8. December – Mars is the most visible
13-14 December - Geminid meteor shower

The second most active meteor shower on this list is the Geminid meteor shower. You can expect to see up to 120 meteors per hour.

22-23 December - Ursids meteor shower

The last meteor shower to squeeze in 2022 give us up to 10 meteors per hour. Book your perfect Christmas gift!

Stars and camper

What are some tips for stargazing?

Check the moon

For the best stargazing experience, go just before or after the new moon. This is when the moon gives off the least light, allowing you to see more stars.

Bring a red-light torch

When looking at the night sky, our eyes need time to adjust to the darkness. It is recommended that you use a red light as this affects your eyes less, allowing you to enjoy the night sky more.

Apps

Download a stargazing app if you are not going on a guided tour. By having a stargazing app, you can know what constellations, planets, and stars you are looking at. It is time to nerd out!

Dress according to the weather

Remember, when stargazing, you are outside and will likely not move much. Dress warm to keep your experience enjoyable. (A hot chocolate, coffee or tea is also great for staying warm)

Be prepared to wait

When stargazing, be prepared to wait. Your eyes need time to adjust to the night sky and, shooting stars don’t happen every second. Make an evening out of it!

Comfort, comfort, comfort

While you are looking at the stars, hours can pass by. To ensure that you stay comfortable, we recommend bringing a blanket or a chair.

Our pro-tip: rent a camper with a rooftop tent. This way, you can watch the stars out of the comfort of your bed!

Roof tent

What is the best camper to go stargazing?

A camper is an ideal base for enjoying star-filled skies. When selecting a camper, we recommend one with a pop-top roof. This allows you to sleep under the stars, getting the most out of camping under the stars. Our VW Bulli, Mercedes Marco Polo and Ford Camper come with pop-top roofs.



We hope this gave you a better understanding of when to go camping, how to choose a location, and what you can do to make it more enjoyable. Book your adventure under the stars today!

Your FreewayCamper Team

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