Camping near the City: Tips and Campsite Recommendations
Whether sightseeing, shopping, visiting a museum or going to the theatre again, as a short holiday or a stopover: Campsites near the city provide a great opportunity to combine city trips with a holiday in nature. On top of all that, it's cheaper and more flexible than a hotel.
By now, you'll not only find popular camping regions when searching on camping.info, but also numerous cities with popular campsites nearby. We show you why camping in the city is so much fun and give tips for popular, well-connected campsites in Europe's most beautiful cities.
City Camping and its Beautiful Facets
City camping means a mix of adventure and comfort. You can profit from all benefits that camping brings - for example the comparably lower costs as well as the mobility and large degree of flexibility. At the same time, you can enjoy an exciting city trip. From sightseeing and cultural experiences to long nights spent partying - camping in the city is a truly special experience.
In addition, you can combine your detour to the city with a round trip in your camper van, of course. For example, you could quickly explore the big cities on the way to your beach vacation or visit a national park after your city trip.
The Most Beautiful Destinations for Your City Trip
The German capital is a classic example for a metropolis whose very identity practically screams for campsites. Berliners see themselves as cosmopolitan, modern and "trendy". Thus, there should also be appropriate options for the popular camping in the capital. At the moment the capital welcomes you with several campsites to choose from, some of which are well-connected to public transport - for example the campsite "CAMPING BEI BERLIN Am Mahlower See". After a short train ride you're directly at the Brandenburg Gate.
In the list of major German cities, which are especially attractive for campers,you definitely can't go without Hamburg. Everyone should have seen the metropolis in the North at least once in their lifetime and whoever wants to can park their vehicle directly in the city centre. For example, there are campsites directly on the Elbe or only a short distance from the HafenCity. From there you can explore the Reeperbahn, the Speicherstadt and other highlights of this beautiful Hanseatic City without stress. You could even take a detour on the Alster.
Our tip: Camping Stover Strand. Campers can reach Hamburg with the free bicycle shuttle bus or get to the trains to Hamburg with the in-house shuttle service on weekends and public holidays. You can also rent electric cars.
Kölsch beer and "Kölle Alaaf!" - The metropolis on the Rhine is not only known for the extravagant carnival celebration (also sometimes referred to as Germany's fifth season), but also for its world-famous cultural landmarks, like the Cologne Cathedral. Whether on a relaxing walk along the banks of the Rhine or on a stroll through the old town with its medieval monuments and colourful shopping promenades, the corners of Cologne are as diverse as the fun-loving people who live here. Anyone who visits Cologne for camping will quickly feel and learn to love the special attitude to life.
Our camping tip near Cologne (even though it's a bit further from the city centre): You can camp very well at the idyllic camping park in the Bergisches Land, about 40 kilometres east of Cologne. The campsite is ideal for extended hikes and cycling tours. At the Campingpark im Bergischen Land you can enjoy the advantages of a campsite close to nature and still be in the centre of Cologne in no time.
Bremen might be small, but it has a lot to offer. Whether you're a history buff, a nature lover or a science enthusiast, Bremen is the right place for you. From the vibrant inner city and the beautiful Viertel to the maritime atmosphere in Bremerhaven - the adventure is waiting for you.
So whether you want to actually go sightseeing or enjoy the city's calmness with its "Town Musicians": Bremen is worth a camping trip.
The Bavarian capital also gives you a number of options for camping in the city. A popular destination is the campsite "Camping München-Thalkirchen", which is located only a few meters away from the Hellabrunn Zoo, one of the most popular attractions in the city. It is also within the protected landscape area Südliche Isarauen and thus in the middle of nature - but at the same time in the centre of Munich. There's almost no way to be more central, so you can easily reach all the sights, stores and restaurants from the campsite - whether for shopping, partying or just wandering about. On hot days you can even jump into the Isar to cool down a bit and the public pool Maria Einsiedel is also closeby.
Salzburg might not be a large metropolis, still the city enjoys world-wide fame, mainly due to its beauty and history. Here you're sure to find a large number of sights or you can just enjoy the city's most beautiful aspects on a stroll, in a café or on a carriage ride. The fact that Salzburg is not the largest city also brings the advantage of being able to camp here in a relaxed way.
There are beautiful plots, for example at "Camping Schloss Aigen", some campsites are also on the outskirts of the city or close to the fishing pond. Camping Nord-Sam is also a tip for camping in Salzburg, with a bus station in front of the campsite. In addition, a flat cycle path, idyllically situated along the Salzach, leads directly to the centre of the metropolis in just 5 kilometres.
London is also an ideal destination for your next city trip with your camper van! To be honest: The city isn't really known for it's camping-compatible weather. But still, campers can have a great time in London, particularly during the summer months.
"Abbey Wood Caravan Club Site", east of Greenwich and thus directly next to the ferry, is a popular campsite for a city trip to London. You just have to cross the water and you're already in the centre of London near the Tower Bridge. But the campsite itself is also perfect for a relaxing time off from everyday life. Other campsites in London, some of which are even closer to the centre, are for example at Crystal Palace, like the campsite "Crystal Palace Caravan Club Site".
If you're searching for the French "Savoir-vivre", you'll find it when camping in Lyon. The city is internationally known, the old town provides an interesting mixture of traditional buildings and modern architecture.
Of course, there's a lot more to see and experience in Lyon - for example the four-star-campsite "Camping de Lyon". Here you don't have to do without luxury and are able to enjoy the beauty of nature in combination with a unique city. On hot days the pool serves as a pleasant way to cool down and the magnificent hillside terrace welcomes you in the morning with a beautiful sunrise.
Tasting fresh croissants and coffee in one of the many small street cafés, marvelling at the famous smile of the Mona Lisa and enjoying the breathtaking view of Paris on the Eiffel Tower in the evening: The city of love is definitely worth a visit. Whether for a romantic weekend or as a stopover on the way to the Atlantic coast - In Paris campers can have an excellent rest with their camper van.
Our tip: The campsite Camping de Paris in the Bois de Boulogne is located directly on the banks of the beautiful Seine and just about 15 minutes away from the picturesque old town. Thanks to the shuttle service and the short distance to the city centre this campsite is great as a starting point for exploring Paris
Barcelona is probably one of the most worthwhile destinations for a city trip - even as a camper. If you don't want to drive the long the way to Spain, you can fly there from Germany (or wherever you're from) for little money.
Our tips for city camping in Barcelona: On the outskirts of the beach resort Mataró lies the peaceful campsite Camping Barcelona. With a distance of about 40 kilometers the campsite is located a good bit outside the popular metropolis, but thanks to the shuttle service campers can easily get to the city centre of Barcelona four times a day in just 45 minutes.
It's loud and fun-loving in Spain's capital - the city of kind-heartedness. Numerous museums and galleries, inviting restaurant, stylish fashion boutiques and enticing night clubs and bars line the streets of Madrid. A stroll through the alleys reveals the variety of the metropolis, because there are only a few meters between the fascinating royal palace, the Plaza Mayor, the well-known shopping street Gran Via and the tallest skyscraper in Spain.
Our camping tip: If you're coming by Madrid on your camping trip, you'll find the campsite Camping Madrid Arco Iris circa 5 km outside the city gates. From the idyllic campsite it takes less than an hour to get to Madrid by bus or train, the bus stop is located directly in front of the campsite.
In Rome nature lovers will find hiking trails and cycling routes through authentic villages. In addition, some of the most beautiful urban campsites in Europe make sure, that you'll have an amazing city trip. Located only about 3.5 kilometers away from the city centre, thus easily accessible on foot or by bicycle, are a number of campsites. From here you can explore the Vatican at your leisure or get to know the very special Dolce Vita.
More Beautiful Campsites
in Other Cities
On camping.info you can not only find countries and regions, but also search specifically for a city that might be ideal for your next city trip.
Simply enter your favourite city into the search bar and let us show you suitable campsites in the vicinity. You can even book selected campsites directly online with us.
Advantages of City Camping
The reasons for choosing camping as a way of travelling are diverse and personal. Maybe you're attracted by the spontaneous freedom, the possibility of choosing where to spend the night without a concrete plan. Or you are budget-conscious and want to save money without having to miss out on any experiences. Exploring the surroundings may make your heart beat faster, according to the principle: "The way is the goal". Nature provides you with a relaxing backdrop to unplug from stressful everyday life. If you're camping with kids and travelling with your family, camping becomes quality time, which you spend by exploring the world together. Whether nature, culture or adventure - camping allows for a a multifaceted trip, which you can shape according to your own imagination.
The possibilities are divers and these are just a few examples of many. So whether or not a city trip in a camper van is right for you depends largely on why you want to go camping in the first place.
If relaxation is your goal, you're certainly better off somewhere on the beach or in a national park. But if you want to see as much of the world as possible - and in doing so also some of the most beautiful and famous cities - a city trip is a great choice for you. As already mentioned, various combinations between the two are also possible.
You could, for example, go on a focused city trip over a long weekend on one campsite in one specific metropolis. Or you travel for several weeks from city to city. Or you only stop by for one or two days while passing through.
Characteristics of Campsites in the City
So if you've chosen a city trip, you should consider a few specifics. Even if you have a camper on the smaller side, for example a van, driving around the city with it is not fun and you'll probably struggle with finding a parking space. It therefore makes most sense to go directly to the campsite and explore the city from there by public transport or with a small rental car. Other differences between campsites in nature and in the city are:
Campsites in the city are often smaller, because there is just less space than in unobstructed nature. This means that they are booked out more quickly, especially during main season. Spontaneity is therefore only possible to a limited extent on a city trip with a camper and it is advisable to book well in advance.
The "city campsites" are also quickly booked out, because they're highly sought-after, of course. The possibility of combining city life with camping sounds very appealing to many people and since camping is very trendy at the moment anyway, campsites in the city are usually well frequented. You won't find the calm and remoteness of nature here, even during off season.
But in return campsites near the city come with several other perks: They are well-connected to public transport, so you can get to all attractions, party locations and numerous restaurants or stores without any problems. Therefore you have a wide range of options for spending your free time. Campers often profit from bonus cards or discounts for sights and events.
Some campsites in (or around) cities are kept simple because the campers are looking for entertainment in the city itself anyways. But oftentimes the opposite is the case: Some campsites are intentionally designed to be special - entirely in accordance with the identity of the city in question. Some have roofed pitches, some have a tennis court and others have their own riding school.
You definitely won't get bored if you take your camper on a city trip. But you have to plan in due time and book in advance, especially if you want to secure your place at one of the extravagant and popular spots.