Have fun travelling in your Golden Years
Old age does not mean senile nor do you have to sit back in your rocking chair every day. Instead make your Golden Years another chance to start living again with a new challenge. You can have more fun at seventy or even eighty than you did at thirty. Because now, you no longer have to worry about what others think.
You had fun when your parents took you camping; right? Why not do it again? The difference is you can make it a permanent camping holiday, going wherever and when you choose. If on a budget, then there are two ways you can make this happen.
Do you really need the big patio and swimming pool? Sell and downsize
Choose to sell or downsize your home
1. Sell your home
By selling your home you can invest the bulk of your money. Then buy a nice caravan or mobile home and become a true nomad, then enjoy a life of travelling the countryside. These days a mobile home has all the comforts you need except it is on wheels. What more could you want. We have enjoyed many beautiful million dollar views right from our caravan door step. If a neighbour upsets you, then take off and find another place. You will no longer have to put up with bad neighbors.
2. Sell your home and downsize
Sell your home and buy a cheaper one in the country or one with a smaller block, leaving you with money to spend. We chose this option because we wanted a base to come back to after several months on the road. And it gave us that extra bit of security, for when we got tired of travelling or if we became ill and could no longer travel.
This way you still have a place to call home, with enough cash left over to buy a mobile home and money left in the bank, if you are lucky. Yes you may have to budget, and do some free camping to save money. Although we prefer free camping because we can do as we like without being cramped in Caravan parks.
Now the fun begins
Million dollar view from your Caravan windows - you will not see this from your home window. Plus the scene changes when you move again.
If you have followed my suggestions above and still reading this, by now the hard work is over. You have bought your new home or caravan and it is time to hit the road. Pack and say cheerio to all your envious friends.
You have either made plans for your first trip or like us, drive off down the highway and play it by ear. It will depend on the weather, as to which way you go, near the ocean or inland. Believe me, if the weatherman forecasts bad weather stay away from the ocean. That is not what I call fun, I expect to go fishing or shell collecting in the sun.
Many caravan parks charge exorbitant prices for powered sites, therefore to save money stop at the many free camp sites available. We find these great as you can pick where you want to park and make friends easier. Plus you can have better and bigger happy hours in the evenings. Although, remember to keep the noise level down and consider neighbors that need their sleep.
It is essential to cut the costs of travel where possible especially when travelling long distances. Therefore we need to look for ideas of new ways to save money on drinks, food and accommodation.
Happy hours after a hard day of driving
It is important to stop early in some of the Australian free camps or you could miss out as they fill quick, especially when travelling up North.
We always stop early in the day, often by one o’clock so we have the rest of the afternoon to relax. Lay back and read or watch the TV. Later in the afternoon (when there are no fire bans) we light the camp fire to cook meals in the camp oven for a great meal.
My favorite is a chicken roast and I love roasted potatoes that I wrap in wet newspaper or if no paper, then use aluminium foil and throw them into the hot coals. When cooked cut open and spread with butter, pepper and salt. Yummy!
About this time depending on the neighbors we invite people over for a happy hour and share some great nibbles. Chat about the things we have done or seen. Suggest great places to see and learn new experiences to check out. That is the beauty of travelling; people share their best and cheapest places to camp, or where to buy the cheapest fuel. They will also tell you where to stay to avoid paying too much at Caravan parks, and which ones to give a wide berth.
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And on the other arm is a small cooler. This is big enough to put an ice brick in to keep your next drink cool.
What more could you want
Stay in Caravan Parks versus Free Camping
Caravan parks are a more secure way of traveling and stopping overnight. Although I believe they are turning people away because they charge too much for a simple shower and power. Although the choice is yours and if you are travelling alone this may suit you better.
While stopping in towns you get the chance to go to the local R.S.L, Rotary or any clubs where you can enjoy a friendly cheap meal and a drink or two. You could stop by the bowling clubs and pit your finesse against the locals. If you are not interested in sport you might like a game of cards, darts or visit the local pub for a chance on those one arm bandits. If these thing do not interest you then there is always the museums and places of interest to go and visit. Whatever you prefer the main thing is to enjoy yourself and make new friends.
As I said earlier, we prefer to free camp when we are travelling. We find it friendlier than being stuck in a caravan park and parking with limited space. Free camping could involve parking along a river bank, or bird watching in the bush. If you have camped overnight free, you can afford to pop into town and have a meal or drink at the local pub.
Many towns encourage free camping as they know that people enjoy the friendly atmosphere. Often people stay longer in the town, and while there talk to the locals and learn of other great places to see and explore.
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With the two burners you can boil the kettle on one and cook a stew or similar on the other.
Fishing and Crabbing spots
This is a hot topic with the grey nomads on the road. We all love a free tasty meal of fresh fish, crabs and yes the wonderful calamari or squid. We have had great success with catching squid over the years. In fact we are having calamari for tea tonight and yes they are yummy too.
We often stop at a lovely spot at Haslam in South Australia, where you pay a minimum overnight fee. They have flushing toilets and water although no showers or power. If you love fishing, you can catch plenty of Squid from the local jetty and the odd fish or two.
Tip- Wear old clothes as the ink the squid spurts out will stain your clothes. Arrive early as not large area. Suitable for caravans, mobile homes and campers.
Recipe for Cooking Calamari
Place flour in plastic bag add curry (amount depends on your taste) mix it up then add some calamari pieces and shake to coat evenly. Drop them into hot oil until golden brown. The shorter time the better or it will be tough. Serve with salad of your choice.
We have seen people cooking a midnight feast of crabs. To me they are too much like hard work unless you can con someone to shell them for you. Yeah, I wish.
The best and most rewarding memory of any travelling is the photos. Capture beautiful shared moments when you interact with the birds in their natural environment and the wonderful sunrises and sunsets. I have seen thousands of photos of sunsets and each one is different.
Most important - have fun and enjoy your Golden Years
When you have reached the golden years of your life, make sure when you wake up each morning, you stop to count your blessings. Because, you are still alive and can enjoy many more days having fun.
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It is hard to keep everything in its own spot if it tips over.