Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
Psamathe
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Joined: 10 Jan 2014, 8:56pm

Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by Psamathe »

Vorpal wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 10:24am
eileithyia wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 9:46am Am intrigued why you needed to contact the manager? I've turned up at campsites that have been unmanned and just set up camp and got on with it..... on one of them some workmen turned up for the evening, did some work, left the toilets open, disappeared, returned the next day... and never once asked us to pay. Always very difficult to know what you are supposed to do when you don't speak the lingo.....
I don't know about Germany, but it's common in Norway that, especially out of season, you register at the site by ringing someone. Generally, they want people to register as being on the site, even if there is no fee to pay. There are generally signs that say so in English, as well as Norwegian (and sometimes other languages).
I have had similar in France once (a large municipal site). You could wander in, chose a place, etc. no problem but no code for the toilet/shower block. The entrance had one of those automated barrier systems for motor vehicles - took their payment, gave them toilet block codes, etc. - trouble is my bike would not activate the system so I had to use the phone number on the machine and they gave me the code and said I can stay for free (I guess it was not worth them coming out to collect a small amount).

Ian
eileithyia
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Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by eileithyia »

Vorpal wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 10:44am
Jdsk wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 10:28am
Vorpal wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 10:24am
I don't know about Germany, but it's common in Norway that, especially out of season, you register at the site by ringing someone. Generally, they want people to register as being on the site, even if there is no fee to pay. There are generally signs that say so in English, as well as Norwegian (and sometimes other languages).
Similar at some French sites, including municipal sites where we were asked to 'phone the Mayor. And one where the answer was that it was closed and we were welcome. : - )

Jonathan
They don't have municipal sites here, but many places have 'friluftsområder' which translates literally as 'free air area', but is in practice more like a country park. These often allow camping & the use of the toilets for free (or a freewill donation). If they have showers, you normally have to pay for those. They are normally unmanned, but often want anyone staying overnight to register. If so, there will be a sign with a number to call.
Usually it's just the mobile number for the site caretaker. Once, I called the number, and found myself speaking to a confused junior security person at a central depot some distance away. They had no idea what I was on about. I assumed it was a language issue (my poor Norwegian). They called me back a few minutes later to say that the supervisor had explained that they were just supposed to take the car registration & how many days (max 3) I was saying. When I told them I only had a bike, I befuddled them again. :lol:
:lol: :lol:
We did arrive at one French site to be told the owner; il mort! The chap telling us seemed to be some sort of caretaker... showed us to a spot to put our tent and when tried to pay kept repeating Il Mort.... and sent us on our way the next day
I stand and rejoice everytime I see a woman ride by on a wheel the picture of free, untrammeled womanhood. HG Wells
ossie
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Joined: 15 Apr 2011, 7:52pm

Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by ossie »

Campsites are a complete lottery. Most of the time I turn up unannounced thanks to Archies POI's which of course doesn't rely on me being connected to the 'net.

Some are closed but I still camp. Quite often the office is shut but then you take the risk of upsetting the head honcho who insists you camp where they say you should camp. Often there is no head honcho - bliss, so pick your pitch. As cyclists, treated as poor relations is common so picking a pitch yourself before you can speak to anyone in 'command' is fraught with risks and much 'tutting'.

On my last tour I fired up google and my smartphone thingy linked straight to the campsite phone number. On one occasion in the Netherlands they volunteered to come and find me and guide me to the campsite - thanks. On another the campsite owner thought I was the pre requisite for a 'travellers Invasion' as my phone was identified as a UK number and apparently its 'a thing'....one person rings and ten caravans rock up. On another I was told they had a medical emergency and to go elsewhere. In short I've found ringing in advance in Germany and Netherlands can work, in France I just turn up :wink:
Blondie
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Joined: 23 May 2021, 5:11pm

Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by Blondie »

nirakaro wrote: 15 Sep 2021, 9:34pm
Blondie wrote: 15 Sep 2021, 8:18pmOtherwise just turn up in a place and see what’s available.
A huge amount of what's available, though, is invisible in the physical world, and only discoverable online.
Most accommodation or campsites are signed on the road and easily discoverable. Otherwise popping into a pub and asking often yields dividends. Plus plenty of places not to be found on the Internet.
Vorpal
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Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by Vorpal »

Blondie wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 9:43pm
Most accommodation or campsites are signed on the road and easily discoverable. Otherwise popping into a pub and asking often yields dividends. Plus plenty of places not to be found on the Internet.
Asking in a local cafe is how I found out about friluftsområder. Lots of places like that, I had seen 'no camping' signs. Between that and UK / US cultures where people don't just camp where they like, I assumed that it wasn't generally ok. But it turns out that it's fine, as long as there is not a 'no camping' sign. They have turned out to be the best camping spots; free, access to toilets, picnic tables, and often an easy walk or cycle from shops. Some are party spots, but they can usually be discerned by telltales; broken glass, beer bottles and lighters in the bushes, random things in the fire pit, etc. Then, I either go on to another place, or camp well away from an area that likely to be noisy.
“In some ways, it is easier to be a dissident, for then one is without responsibility.”
― Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom
Ron
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Joined: 5 Jan 2007, 9:07pm

Re: Travelling without the Internet, possible?

Post by Ron »

eileithyia wrote: 16 Sep 2021, 9:46amAm intrigued why you needed to contact the manager?
It's never a good move to risk antagonising the manager before you've put a tent peg in the ground :wink: .
As you say it can be difficult when there may be a language barrier.
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