ellaslist Reviews: A Weekend Away with Camplify

As our kids move out of the baby stage, it's safe to say we're starting to get a little more adventurous when it comes to weekends away. With no naps and less "stuff" to contend with, we're as footloose and fancy-free as a family of four can be with a 2.75 and almost 5-year-old in tow. 

In 2024, we've firmly established ourselves as a camping family, with all the gear and just a little bit of an idea. Now that we've mastered the tent though, and with an overseas trip coming up later in the year that involves a fair chunk of campervanning, we thought it the perfect time to bite the bullet and try a weekend away with Camplify. 

ellaslist Reviews: A Weekend Away with Camplify

Camplify is leading the way as Australia’s biggest and most rapidly expanding community for sharing campervans, motorhomes, and caravans. Their ethos is all about connecting adventurers with a range of vehicles in their own neighbourhoods, ready to be rented for their next outdoor escapade. With Camplify, you can dive into a selection of standout campervans, motorhomes, and caravans available for hire—ready for your next memory-making journey. 

Bingo: A Family Van

Although there were plenty of options, our choice was obvious from the outset: Bingo, a custom-built LWB Sprinter. Designed for a young family and located only a few streets away, Bingo was the perfect van for us to dip our toes into the Camplify water, and it's safe to say, we weren't disappointed. 

Bingo is kitted out with bunks for the kids, a dinette that converts into a double bed for the grown-ups (or assorted small people to hop into in the night, if your family is anything like ours), a diesel heater, gas hob, fridge, external shower, hot/cold water and solar power, and can run off grid for approximately three days. We met with the owner beforehand to be given a thorough handover of the van, and everything was explained clearly and all questions answered. We were as ready as we would ever be! 

Bingo was everything we needed in a van!

The booking process was straightforward, clear and easy to navigate. Every Camplify booking includes damage cover, national roadside assistance, 24/7 customer support and all van owners have been verified—meaning complete peace of mind for the hirers. 

A Soggy Start

With the formalities out of the way, all that was left to do was watch the weather forecast turn bleaker and bleaker ahead of our weekend away. Never ones to shy away from a challenge, though, we pressed forward, retrieved Bingo and made our merry way down towards the Southern Highlands regardless of the 100% chance of rain that lay before us. 

Hitting the road with Camplify

Ms 5 and Mr 2.75 were IN AWE of many things; one being that their car seats were situated just in front of their beds, two being that the fridge was almost within arms reach of their car seats AND beds, and three, that their car seats could fit right up next to each other—perfect for poking and prodding and goading each other into arguments. 

Upon arrival at our campsite, we spent some time getting to grips with the layout of the van. While it's small, we found it had everything we needed and, had the weather been a little better, we could have really opened up the doors for more of an indoor-outdoor vibe. As it stood, though, the rain was lashing down so we kept the doors firmly closed and hunkered down for some colouring and dinner. 

Mr. 2.75 used the time inside to get his creative juices flowing.

Once dinner had been made and every member of the family aged 5 and under was asleep, we braved the rain and sat in our camping chairs outside with a glass of red in hand, before admitting defeat and retiring, hoping for blue skies in the morning. 

The Rainy Adventure Continues

Despite our hopes and positive vibes, we were met with rain, rain and more rain when we woke up. We used the time to read books, eat several courses of breakfast and caper about on the bunk beds, before deciding to take the bull by the horns and go and find some fun. The beauty of a campervan like Bingo is that it's compact enough to use as a car as well as a home on wheels—and so it didn't take us long to pack up and hit the road to Bowral, with coffee and baked goods on the brain.

Who knew bunk beds could be so entertaining? 

After we'd stomped about the soggy streets of Bowral, we started the journey back to the campsite and stopped by the Robertson Public House & Kitchen on our way. Nothing screams "rainy Saturday" quite like a pub lunch, especially in a pub as quaint and atmospheric as this one—complete with roaring fires aplenty and huge portions of delicious grub. 

A home away from home, a cosy pub was the perfect pitstop on our camping adventure

After arriving back at the campsite, we rugged up for a rainy walk (trying to keep the adage "there is no bad weather, just bad clothing" top of mind.) After exploring the gorgeous country setting of our campsite, splashing in the puddles and completely drenching every item of clothing in the vicinity, we wandered home.

One, two, three...

The afternoon called for a movie in the van while we leaned into our pub-induced carb comas, and there was something so memorable and cosy about the four of us rugged up in the van, listening to the rain pelting the roof and not busying ourselves with "doing" anything, except relishing in the family time and enjoying the peace.

As we become more experienced campers, each time I am struck by how rare it is to "be" with no distractions. If we'd been at home, I'd have been sorting, tidying, doing laundry, cooking dinner, meal planning and all those other tasks that come with family life—but here, I had nothing better to be doing than reading my book, chatting with my partner and ensuring the kids' adorable-looking snuggles didn't turn violent. The peaceful bliss of mum life, eh? 

Downtime: a movie in the van was the perfect afternoon activity

Packing up the next day was a breeze; if you don't count the swamp-like conditions that were forming after a night of relentless downpour. We hit the road back to Sydney and after a clean and refill of the petrol tank, Bingo was ready to return to her family. 

The Moral of the Story 

While it wasn't necessarily the weekend we had pictured and planned, there was something really quite memorable about the rainy days in the campervan that forced us to slow down and lean into what Mother Nature was offering. 

As we move out of the baby stage and into these precious years of having young children, I'm eternally pondering how much the saying "the days are long but the years are short" rings true. The slow days together are ones I'll miss as our kids get older and busier, and I can't wait to see what further adventures we can cook up, with Camplify up our sleeve as the ultimate camping-adventure solution! 

To book your next trip, head to CAMPLIFY and use the code TAKE100 at payment for $100 off your booking. You're welcome! 

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