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Planning an adventure. Scandinavia? Is it too expensive?

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Yorkie, Dec 10, 2016.

  1. Yorkie
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    Yorkie VIP Member

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    We are so excited to have bought our new Cali that we are planning to go to places we would never have considered before. Scandinavia is one of them. Today we looked at some You Tube reviews which repeatedly talk about the costs.

    As we will be self contained in the VW does anyone know how expensive the necessary expenses are; fuel, parking and camp sites when needed?
     
  2. hotel california
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    hotel california 18 'till i die.... Moderator Top Poster

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    We spent three weeks on the road in Norway and it was more expencive than say three weeks France but in general you get plenty in return....
    https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/three-weeks-south-and-mid-norway.10354/

    Spent two weeks in Wales this year and found it not to be that much cheaper than Norway.
    You need a ferry , need fuel , need a campsite every few days.
    Food you make as expencive/cheap as you want .

    If you don't like spending money , put the roof up on your drive .....;)

    Friends of us spent two weeks in Greece with two adults and two kids .
    The money they spent for the trip we can go on 6months trip in our Cali.

    Think scandinavia is a average of 10-15% more expencive on basic needs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2016
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  3. WelshGas
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    WelshGas Retired after 42 yrs and enjoying Life. Top Poster VIP Member

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    Agree with @hotel california . I'm going back in mid-May, driving upto Tromso via Sweden then back down through Norway. Have already been to Nordkapp in 2014. I like driving so drove all the way from South Wales using the Euroshuttle and crossing to Sweden via "The Bridge" from Copenhagen to Malmo.
    If you like your Wine and Beer, be prepared it is expensive. Campsites were reasonable and everything else was comparable with London and the South East in price. .

    Here's a blog of my trip in 2014. https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/countdown-begins.10091/
     
  4. briwy
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    briwy VIP Member

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    We spent five weeks there this year and will definitely be back again.
    Wild camping is encouraged and we never failed to find a spot. Campsite prices are probably a bit higher than UK, generally around £25-£30. We only used them when we needed a shower or to do some laundry. Never had a problem getting on a site in July/August.
    As mentioned, alhohol is very expensive, we only had a couple of drinks until back in Germany.
    Food is dearer than here, especially sweets and chocolate. Pork chops for some reason are cheap and really good. Stock up in supermarkets.
    Diesel was our main expense and it's roughly the same price as here. 15-20% cheaper on Sunday afternoons and Monday mornings so tank up then
    Ferries cost and it's easy to spend a lot on them if your'e not careful. However the alternative is driving sometimes a hundred miles round so it's worth it and gives a break from driving.
    Not really added it up but probably spent about £3k altogether so pretty reasonable for five weeks.
    Go for it, you'll love it.
     
  5. cpjb@btinternet.com
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    cpjb@btinternet.com VIP Member

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    Just need to find out how to convert the water tank to carry wine...
     
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  6. Skylark2.0
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    Skylark2.0 The adventure with Starlight Expess begins VIP Member

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    Don't tell Granny Jen ;)
     
  7. Yorkie
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    Yorkie VIP Member

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    Excellent ideas. We have been told to go to the North Cape but on Google it looks a bit baron. Have any of you been up that far and would it be worth it?
     
  8. Amarillo
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    Amarillo Tom VIP Member

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    We are planning 3 months (June, July and August 2017) in Scandinavia and the Baltic states (The Baltic Loop). North through Denmark, Norway and Sweden to Nordkapp, then south through Finland, after that, south-west through Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland, finally west through Germany and the low countries.

    Our budget for two adults, two pre-school children and two dogs is £1,000 per week for everything.

    The cost of food in Norway is terrifying. Basic groceries, such as fresh milk, appear to be 40% more expensive in Norway than the UK.

    My wife suggested wild camping in Norway, which is easy, then going to a swimming pool for a shower - then I showed her the cost of indoor swimming!

    One thing to note is that in northern Norway you are never much more than 50Km from Sweden where prices are much closer to those in the UK. The bad news is that there are often very high mountains between the two countries, making a short hop over the border for a pint of milk an unrealistic option.

    This Scandinavian trip is part of a much longer farewell tour of the EU, which will take in 25 of the 28 EU member states (not Ireland, Cyprus or Malta), plus Norway and Switzerland.
     
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  9. Yorkie
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    Yorkie VIP Member

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    Wow, that is an amazing trip. I didn't even know there was a loop we could follow. Good luck and thank you for all the detail.
     
  10. Amarillo
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    Amarillo Tom VIP Member

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    Not a set route - just a made up loop around the Baltic Sea.
     
  11. WelshGas
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    WelshGas Retired after 42 yrs and enjoying Life. Top Poster VIP Member

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    I have been to Knordkapp. Yes it is barren, it is the Arctic Tundra after all. A lot of history attached to the place. Not overly commercialised but a lot of tourists at the height of the season. The midnight sun is something to behold.
    Getting there is spectacular with one of the longest and deepest sea tunnels in Northern Europe.
    See here - my Forum blog https://vwcaliforniaclub.com/threads/countdown-begins.10091/

    My Avatar is the Midnight sun at Knordkapp.
     
  12. briwy
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    briwy VIP Member

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    Dont forget that Nordkapp isn't actually the most northerly point. Simply the most northerly with road access.
    You can hike to the north point which us further west.
    We intended to do this but ran out of time as we spent lots of time in thecLofoten and Vesteralan Islands. We'd been to Nordkapp before so decided it wasn't worth the 1200 mile round trip for a fifteen mile hike.
     
  13. Amarillo
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    Amarillo Tom VIP Member

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    Nordkapp seems a bit of a fraud to me. I'd love to hike to Kinnarodden, but I think that's an overnight trip, so I might make do with the shorter day hike to Knivskjellodden.
     
  14. kave
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    kave VIP Member

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    Sweden is close to germany when it comes to prices, beer is somewhat more expensive but wine is more or less the same. Denmark is really expensive for us with about 20-30% higher prices. Norway is probably 50-500% more expensive with alkohol and tobacco topping the list. Eating out in Norway is very often a terrible experience, very expensive and bad tasting food. Remote areas in Norway is even more expensive.
     
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  15. Jonathan Duke
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    Jonathan Duke VIP Member

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    Hello!

    Sounds like a trip I need to start planning also..... We've our first Cali on-order, and Scandinavia is very much at the top of our list.

    I've motorcycle toured in Norway, I took the EuroTunnel to Calais, a short ferry from Puttgarden to Denmark, then the Bridge from Copenhagen to Malmo and onwards up via Oslo to the Lofoten Islands (which are definitely worth a visit.) Even on a motorcycle, I was able to carry plenty of provisions, I also wild-camped and cooked my own food most nights. I brought a bottle of whiskey, which was great for sharing with fellow travellers on-route - It was worth its weight in gold! Because I was for-warned, and thus better prepared.... My day-to-day costs were next to nothing. I can only imagine, this would also be the case with the storage, camping and cooking facilities provided by the California.

    On a second trip to Norway, on a push-cycles this time.... We did use campsites (for the showers and laundry etc.) We found the prices reasonable and plenty of availability in July. The Atlantic Road, Geiranger Fjord, Trollstigen and the area around Stryn are all spectacular. We found breakfast at campsites a bit overpriced, so stopping at a supermarket beforehand was a better idea.

    I'm sure you'll have a great trip. Don't worry about the fuel costs, you'll get the best MPG ever, as the speed limits are low and there's no stop-start traffic. Plan to not visit any of the poor quality and over-priced Pizza Restaurants that you'll see, in most towns. Most campsites, will heat you up a pizza, or even better cook for yourselves.... And bring plenty of booze with you! On balance, I found it no more expensive to anywhere else, if you plan and prepare a bit better.

    All the best, and looking forward to seeing some photos!!

    Jonathan
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2016
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  16. larrylamb
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    larrylamb VIP Member

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    Always found Danish supermarkets very reasonable/comparable for food and booze, I can often pickup wine and spirits cheaper than Uk. Eating and drinking out is more expensive than UK. Probably due to higher wages and taxes.
     
  17. ArcticMatt
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    ArcticMatt VIP Member

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    If you worry about the expense of things in Scandinavia then you risk taking your eye off the ball. It's all a distant memory when you get there and you realise its totally worth it! I live over in Norway now and the whole country is just jaw dropping! The most priceless thing there is time. You need plenty of it to take it all in.

    Get you beers in Flensburg or somewhere on the German border before you come in (if you come that way). Beer in the supermarket is about what you'd pay in an expensive pub back in the UK to give you a rough idea. Food isnt cheap but who cares. You have to eat! Just be prepared for a big shock if you go out for a meal (which you wont do that much). On the plus side baby nappies are cheap as chips if you need any :)

    You can wild camp where ever you want. I found a good site with some GPX stop offs I programmed into my viewranger app. You can stop pretty much wherever you want as long as its not right next to someones house. A lot of people make the most of it. The campsites are good and reasonably priced. The NAF ones are the best and it might be worthwhile ordering the NAF guide which might me handy if you like paper copy to hand.
    Check out the Norwegian national tourist routes too. They have invested serious cash in these routes and come of the view points are just astounding! I live at the end of the longest route which is called Kystriksveien which is just amazing. The highlights for me are always Lofoten, Vesteralen and Senja. You can do them all in a row if you take the ferry from Bodo. You can carry on north from there onto Nordkapp if you have the time. Be prepared to take some time though and always double you estimate to get somewhere time wise. Personally I've got no desire to go to nordkapp because there is just too much more to see. If you have the time though you may as well go just to tick that box.

    Ferry wise, I was always hoping to bring back my UK van over on the Immingham ferry but they have changed their procedures now and you can only self drive on that route if you are VAT registered. No private jollys any more :(
     
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  18. Yorkie
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    Yorkie VIP Member

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    You have probably hit the nail on the head Matt. The benefit of this forum is the good advice everyone has. I work in finance and everything is about money so need someone to point out the obvious. Well done.

    Need to decide when now :)
     
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  19. sapto
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    sapto VIP Member

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    What about the South? @hotel california mentioned Greece and I really like Slovenia, Austria and Croatia. Maybe in many ways different than Sweden and Norway however also a good spot for adventures.
    Cheers
    sapto

    BTW: Money-wise it is cheaper (gas, food) IMO
     
  20. Yorkie
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    Yorkie VIP Member

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    I was a bit worried about travelling to Slovenia and Croatia but not Austria. We did a 4500 mile tour this year with tent and missed out those countries on Safety reasons. Can you dispel my concerns?
     
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