Travel / Come with us on our Everland adventure
Action Manufacturing have been designing and building vehicles for over 70 years. In that time, more than 15,000 motorhomes have driven off their lot. The Action Everland is their newest ‘hotel on wheels’ designed with luxury-lovers in mind. We (myself, partner and two children) took her away for a long-weekend to see how she rides. Oh what a fun (and luxurious) adventure we had : )
Not only was this our first motorhome adventure, it was our first experience of living in one room together! The first challenge was explaining to the kids (Harry 11 and Molly 8) that they could only take one bag… hence my first tip:
Pack your clothes in a cloth bag instead of a hard suitcase. The storage in a motorhome comprises lots of smaller spaces - great for unpacking your clothes into - but then you are left with your suitcase to store - a soft, squashable bag can be easily stowed till the end of your adventure.
Once we were all packed and seat-belted in we headed off for the amazeballs Nikau Bay on the Tutukaka Coast in Northland. The Action Everland drives like a good, modern car. She has plenty of power and fantastic visibility. I was planning on doing just a few laps of the Albany parking lot before handing over to my partner to drive, but I was enjoying it so much I drove us all the way to the campground - motorways, dirt-roads and all. The only difference is being mindful of your size and width - because she handles so well, it’s easy to forget you are driving a 7m motorhome!
Don’t be in a hurry. Part of the enjoyment of travelling in a motorhome is the novelty. You can pull over and use the toilet without having to go into a gas station. reach back to the fridge for snacks at any time. But it will take you a smidgen longer to get there. Not because the camper is slow, but because other drivers will expect you to be slow. You’ll probably be overtaken, so it’s best to just settle back and enjoy the ride.
Arriving at your destination in a motorhome is the reason other holiday-makers give you envious looks… there’s no tent to erect, no checking in at reception, no lugging your bags or finding a room. Just park up, make sure she’s level, and crack open your beer. That’s right, the fridge has stayed cold and the beer is at perfect drinking temperature!
Motorhoming is all about indoor-outdoor flow. To avoid bringing sand and grass in to your hotel room, pack a doormat. Thankfully I had some cardboard packaging I was able to re-purpose as a makeshift one : )
Dinner is easy to make in the Action Everland – there’s an oven, microwave, stovetop, sink, hot water – it’s just like being at home, except the view out the kitchen window is better! The windows are a dream. Pull the blinds one way and you cut out the light, pull them in the opposite direction and you have an instant mosquito screen. You can push open all the windows, let the fresh air waft in and keep the bugs out. Crank up the sounds and the living truly is easy. No need to bring your portable speaker, the built-in bluetooth system plays it all (as long as you’re not relying on cellphone coverage to access your spotify playlist), hence my next tip:
TIP # 4
Download your music and maps before you leave phone-coverage territory. motorhome adventures are best when you go off-grid, but we forget how much we rely on data these days. the family were stuck listening to the one album on my phone… next trip i’ll have my favourite spotify playlists available off-line!
The sun’s gone down, we’ve played a few rounds of rummy, it’s time for bed. The toilet is right there for a one last pit stop - pull the blinds closed. Down comes the kids bed with the press of a button. Devices charging in the handy usb hubs. Across goes our courtesy curtain, on with the reading light and just like that the kids are asleep and the parents have their very own bedroom. Everything you need for a good nights sleep.
Waking up was my favourite part of the whole adventure. The Action Everland master bed is designed to sit-up when you’re not sleeping – A, it takes up less space and B, you can sit in bed with your coffee and soak up the view, in both directions! My idea of bliss : ) Then out came the folding table and chairs, grass matt, umbrella, blow-up paddle-board and kids scooters – the Action Everland has a storage hold the size of a station-wagon, PLUS double bike racks – all the space you need for your toys. The model we drove is so new it didn’t have it’s awning installed, once that’s in you just hit a button and voila, instant shade.
Downsize and simplify your linens. If you’re hiring a motorhome it will probably come complete with bed linen. If you are supplying your own, keep it simple. To allow for the open-plan living/sleeping I choose bedding I knew I would be simple to keep tidy.
The family is happy as long as they have food, so I made my fail-safe bacon & egg pie for brunch. One of life’s simple food pleasures - here’s my recipe :
Kates’ easy-peasy B&E pie
Take one pack of flaky-puff pastry, let it sit out of the freezer for ten minutes to soften (I’m not fussed which brand but I do make sure it’s full fat!)
Line your dish with baking paper and lightly spray with oil
Lay a single layer of pastry over the bottom of the dish. My dish takes one full sheet plus one sheet cut in half to do the ends
Take one pack of bacon - I use Freedom Farms streaky bacon, it’s tasty but not too salty - cut the pack in half so the rashers are easy to handle, layer to cover the pastry base (one pack fills my dish just right)
Crack over 4-6 eggs, and then break the yolk with your fork and smear the egg and yolk so it fills all the gaps between the bacon
Grind over some salt and pepper
Lay pastry over the top and pinch the edges where it joins the pastry from the bottom. You should be left with one sheet of pastry, I cut mine into shapes and place on top
Brush the pastry with milk - this is what makes the top nice and golden : )
Cook at 180 degrees till golden and puffy (about 20 minutes)