Keycamp Holidays, a market leader, has its latest brochure out offering European self-drive camping and mobile-home breaks. Countries included this time are France, Switzerland, Spain, Italy, Austria, Germany and, for the first time, Luxembourg. The company claims that its sites offer "hotel-style facilities", including restaurants, bars and "family-oriented entertainment". And it goes on to lure parents with passes to theme parks, deals for up to four children to travel for free and the promise of a kids' club at every site. And being very modern, it also offers single- parent discounts. Best of all, at selected locations, it has "adventure tents". These small tents allow children of a suitable age to sleep away from their parents (well, a few feet away).
Overall the accommodation looks better than you'd find in many cheap hotels, especially if you trade up to a mobile home - even the smallest of these is an impressive 25ft, six inches long. It's hard to imagine, however, anyone who likes their peace and quiet enjoying one of these breaks, and you also get the feeling that singles would probably be shunned. Prices start at pounds 195 per family (two adults and up to four children) for a budget holiday, inclusive of 14 nights' tent accommodation (pounds 294 in a mobile home) and return Dover-Calais ferry crossings.
EuroSites may have an ugly name, but it offers self-drive camping breaks at 111 locations in eight countries, including Denmark, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Austria and Italy. Its brochure is not as pleasingly designed as Keycamps', and it manages to make camping look like a very downmarket experience - even the mobile homes look cramped. The bosses of EuroSites have obviously decided that the only thing people care about is the size of the swimming pool at each camp, and so every page has a shot of yet another blue pool full of shrieking kids.
Keycamp, tel: 0181 395 4000; EuroSites, tel: 01706 830888.Reuse content