The first stop on our 2019 summer road trip across Europe was the very lovely Kaul Camping Park in Luxembourg. When researching our trip, we hadn’t considered camping in Luxembourg but it turned out to be the obvious place to break our journey after an overnight ferry trip from Harwich to the Hook of Holland. Kaul Camping Park is a relatively easy four hour drive south of the Dutch ferry terminal and it is perfect for a few days of relaxation before heading further south.
We’ve driven to Italy a few times and have always taken a Channel crossing into France, stopping somewhere for the night a few hours south of Calais. However, when I started planning our 2019 summer adventure I had visions of Brexit-induced lorry queues near Dover so I decided we’d try the overnight Stenaline ferry from Harwich. This decision made such a difference to the start of our holiday: it’s far more relaxing for us (based in Hertfordshire) to drive to Harwich rather than take a series of ever-busier motorways to the south coast. We’ll definitely be doing this route again and Camping Kaul will certainly feature on future trips through Europe too.
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Hidden in a valley in the Ardennes region of northern Luxembourg (about 50 minutes’ drive from the capital), Kaul Camping is a small friendly campsite. There’s a mix of traditional pitches (100) for tents, motorhomes and caravans, plus various static accommodation options, including chalets, pods and safari tents. Some of these glamping options can sleep up to six people.
We stayed in a chalet “Ardenne” which has two bedrooms, a shower room with separate toilet, along with a spacious living room and kitchenette. Outside we had a good sized veranda with table and chairs along with a couple of sun loungers. The accommodation felt very new and was considerably larger than the average static caravan or lodge that you’d typically find on a campsite.
The only downside to our chalet, we discovered, was that during the unprecedented heat wave which Luxembourg was experiencing during our visit, the chalet could have done with some air conditioning. However, on our second night the temperature plummeted a massive 20 degrees, I never thought this could actually be a good thing on holiday but we all welcomed it. I think ordinarily air conditioning would not be necessary as Luxembourg isn’t usually that hot, but perhaps global warming has other ideas… If a cool breeze is essential to you for a good night’s kip, Camping Kaul does have one chalet type called “Emotion” which does feature air conditioning.
Anyway, air-con aside, when I ask my boys now what the highlight of our holiday was, our little one (aged five) says it was Camping Kaul. I certainly agree that it was one of the best places we stayed at during our month-long trip. The facilities on the site are excellent: we had our own bathroom but the wash blocks were clean and new looking. There is a play area, a beach volleyball court, a petanque field and table tennis.
Guests of Camping Kaul also have free access to the adjoining swimming complex complete with slides and a splash zone for little ones (this was open to the public). Next to the swimming pool, along with another play area, is a bike and skate park which was my younger son’s reason for rating the campsite so highly. Bikes can be rented, we emailed to book ours in advance. There is also a restaurant next to the swimming pool.
I’ve discovered that the key ingredients for successful family accommodation needn’t be overly sophisticated or expensive. Holidays are a chance for the whole family to relax and it’s important that the parents aren’t neglected on this front. What I loved about Camping Kaul was the freedom we could give our children: our chalet was on a little road which did a loop around part of the campsite. We could just about see the kids as they biked around this road with their friends, stopping sometimes for a game of football or tennis. There were sufficient numbers of children playing in the road that the few cars which arrived had to crawl along very slowly (there’s a separate place to park cars away from the accommodation once you’ve unloaded). We were able to sit back and relax on our veranda whilst the kids had plenty of independence.
Although the campsite feels secluded: its surrounded by woodland and hills, it’s actually just a 10 minute walk to a decent sized supermarket which stocked everything we needed from fresh local fruit to badminton rackets. It’s also possible to walk into the nearby town of Wiltz which is set on a steep slope rising up from the valley floor. The town has plenty of shops, restaurants and cafes. Small children might find it a bit of a slog walking up the hill but it certainly works up an appetite.
It was tempting to not stray far from the campsite and if the weather hadn’t turned quite so dramatically we might well have stayed put. However, on our free day, which was cool and rainy, we ventured over to nearby Clervaux Castle to see the excellent Family of Man photography exhibition which was recommended to me by Jonathan at Daisy the Bus travel blog. Charting the human life from birth to death with all of its highs and lows, this is a very moving and timeless exhibition which can be enjoyed by viewers of all ages. I highly recommend it.
Clervaux Castle dates back to the 12th century although the current structure was built at the end of the Second World War after much of the castle was destroyed during the Battle of the Bulge. As well as the photography exhibition, the castle also houses an excellent collection of scale model Luxembourg chateaux: a real child-magnet attraction. My eight year old son could happily have spent all day exploring this section of the castle.
I’d like to explore more of this region of northern Europe. The winding roads surrounding Clervaux were quiet and scenic: forested rolling hills and pretty villages.
Camping in Luxembourg at Kaul Camping is perfect for a short break as there is no minimum stay requirement, even during the summer. However, it does work out better value to stay for a few nights as there’s a booking fee and reservation charge so the longer you stay, the more economical the price becomes.
I’ll be writing more about our summer adventures over the next few months, stay tuned for more!
This is not a sponsored post, we paid for our accommodation. For more holiday ideas for families, check out the family friendly stays section of the blog.
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Have you been camping in Luxembourg? Or do you know of a great glamping site in Luxembourg? Let me know in the comments below.
This post is linked to October’s edition of #FamilyFriendlyStays which goes live on the first Wednesday of the month.