As André and me always dreamed of having an own camper van we decided to try it first before directly buying it, so we planned our first road trip with a camper. Originally we planned to spent 2 nights in Croatia, 5 nights in Montenegro and one week in Albania but we forgot the way back in our plan :D As soon as we started the trip we realised that if we don't want to sit in the car the whole time we need to adjust the plan so we spent most of the time in Croatia - a country we both definitely underestimated! 
Following I'll give you an overview of our whole trip and at the end you'll find a summary of our overall costs and want we would do differently next time. 
Day 1 - Picking up our van
Due to the long distance between Hamburg in Northern Germany and the countries we planned to visit, we decided to rent the van in Graz, Austria, instead of in Hamburg, so that we could use our car to get faster to Southern Europe. After doing some research we chose the Roadsurfer "Family Finca" for 2 weeks. Pick up was very easy going and next to the pick up location you can also park your car.
As we only wanted to spent two nights in Croatia, one near to Plitvicer Lakes and one near to Krka Nationalpark, our first destination was a free parking lot near Plitvicer Lakes, so that we can start our hike early in the morning before it gets crowded. To find this kind of parking lots we always use the app "park4night". For only 9,99€/year you can subscribe to park4night+ which includes also filtering e.g. for campsites electricity, free parking lots, paid parking lots for the day, for the night, etc. - definitely worth it!
The spot we found for staying the 1st night was very calm, but also kind of remote and "lonely", so we didn't felt very comfortable and wouldn't really recommend it but if you're hunting for remote and free parking spots, then it's perfect (but not suitable for bigger campers, caravans or after rainy days!).
Day 2 - Plitvice Lakes Nationalpark 
For so many years I wanted to visit Plitvicer Lakes Nationalpark and now finallyyyy we went there and I loved the view from the top, the clear water of the waterfalls and how clean everything was! 
Tickets can be purchased online and the price depends on the time of travel. As we did our road trip from 27.04.-11.05. we were in the mid season and paid 23€/person. Usually you also have to pay a lot for parking but we found a perfect parking lot directly at the entry of the park free of charge! Just make sure that you arrive there really early in the morning (at around 7am). 
With Komoot I planned our hike and with the starting point mentioned in the hike you will also find the parking lot: Komoot Plitvicer Lakes Hike. Only thing we changed in the plan was taking the ferry back from P2 to P3 instead of walking the same way back. Ferry ticket is already included in the entry ticket, so no extra charges. 
Park gets crowded really very quickly so really start early and follow the route mentioned as otherwise you'll be in the middle of hundreds of people.
After visiting the park we made our way more south in the direction of Krka Nationalpark.
Day 3 - Krka Nationalpark
As the Krka Nationalpark is super huge and cannot be hiked like Plitvice Lakes we decided to rent E-Bikes to see as much as possible within one day. 
Lucky us the bike rental shop had exactly the bikes we are also planning to bike to we could directly test them for the day. We paid 50€/bike for the Cube Kathmandu for a whole day. The service was excellent, the bikes were awesome and you get all information, routes, advices, etc. from the owner, who was really extremely friendly and helpful!
We parked our van next to it and paid 20€ for the whole day. Prices are cheaper for a car but for a van parking fees are sometimes more expensive. 
Also it's written in Google Maps etc. that the park opens at 8am you can actually go there whenever you want as there are no real gates. We started at around 8:30am directly after picking up the bikes. 
The route recommend by the owner was this one: Bike route. We only skipped 4 and 6 as we weren't so interested in spot 4 and spot 6 we visited on another day on the way back by car. 
After the tour we went out for dinner at Restaurant & pizzeria Škafet in the city center as Skradin is really a super cute town and worth a visit! And the food was excellent! We shared the BBQ Meat Platter for 2 (25€) and can highly recommend it! 
And then it was time to find our next camping spot which was one of the best! Directly at a beautiful lake and free of charge :)

Day 4 - To the beach
The next day we drove to the beach to go kiting and we had an awesome camping spot! It was next to the ocean where you could see lot of kiters and windsurfers. Due to the mid season most of the bars and restaurants were still closed but therefore also the camping spot still had one free spot available for us. There were lemon trees everywhere and the lemons were soo delicious! Unfortunately it started raining, that's why I didn't took any photos but the whole way from Krka Nationalpark to the camping spot was stunning!
Day 5 - Stop in between in Bosnia & Herzegovina 
We planned to stay 2 night at the surf camp but due to the rain we changed our plans and made our way to Montenegro. On the way we did a little detour to visit a waterfall in Bosnia & Herzegovina. To be honest we wouldn't recommend the detour as the waterfall was super crowded and very touristic. People were allowed to swim in the lake, boats were driving around bringing the tourist closer to the waterfall, etc. - only on the drone it looked really nice :D So after the quick stop at the waterfall we continued to Montenegro and after a very long drive we took one of the first parking lots we could find behind the border. Nothing special but ok for a night after border crossing.
Camping spot for the fifth night (Autocamp Todorovic, 15€)
Day 6 - Nationalpark Biogradska Gora
Originally we planned to do the Durmitor Panorama route but unfortunately our vehicle was too huge and we weren't allowed to drive the route. Vehicle limitations for the trip are length < 7m, height < 2,90 and width < 2,30 and ours had a width of 2,42m and a height of 3,10m. So instead of doing the panorama route we have visited the nationalpark Biogradska Gora and walked around the lake. Nothing special but okay to just enjoy some time in nature :) Afterwards we enjoyed some delicious dinner at our camping spot which was free but with the expectation that you'll have dinner there. But as the food was really good it's a good deal from my point of view. The owner was very friendly and was even able to speak German.
Camping spot for the sixth night (free but you should order dinner)
Day 7 - Getting closer to Game of Thrones
Due to bad weather and forbidden routes we went back to Croatia to visit Dubrovnik and some other places. We found a perfect camping spot very close to Dubrovnik with super modern washrooms, close to the ocean and restaurants, etc.
Camping spot of the seventh night (Camping Kate, 26,50€)
Day 8 - Exploring Dubrovnik
Definitely a must do when in Croatia! The old town of Dubrovnik is really beautiful and worth a visit, even if there are many tourists. From Camping Kate you can take a water taxi for 15€ which takes around 30-45 minutes but we wouldn't recommend it! I got very sea sick and with the bus it takes only around 10 minutes and costs less than 2€. Even an Uber would have been cheaper and faster. If you would love to see the city from the boat then it's ok but it you want to save time, money and if you've got a sensible stomach I would recommend to take the bus or an Uber. Then you also don't have to walk all the stairs up and down from the camp to the ferry port. After exploring the old town we continued our way back closer to Krka to visit the viewpoint number 6 we missed on our bike tour. 
Camping spot of the eighth night (Camp Slapovi Krke, 18€)
Day 9 - Back to Krka and off to Istria
As we didn't made it to Roski waterfall on our bike your and missed to visit it afterwards by car, we planned to just put it on our list for the return way, so early in the morning we made our way to Roski waterfall and from the drone's perspective it looks absolutely stunning but from the normal perspective it wasn't that special. So despite of flying the drone I wouldn't call it a must do, but if you're already around you should also visit it :) On our way to our final destination Istria we stopped at another rationapark on the way where we spent another night to go hiking early the next morning.
Camping spot of the ninth night (Camp Katinka, 23,50€)
Day 10 - Hiking in Paklenica Nationalpark
Our camping spot was directly opposite of the entry gate to Paklenica Nationalpark. You should go there by car, drive up to the ticket office, but tickets and then continue to the final parking lot. There are some parking lots in between but we recommend driving to the end so that you save time and energy as there is nothing special to see on the way. Once you arrived you then walk through a beautiful canyon and can watch several people climbing the cliffs. The first few kilometres are really nice and interesting but then it stars getting a bit boring, nothing special anymore to see and also the restaurants on the way were closed due to the mid season. We would highly recommend to go there if you would like to go climbing or to just walk 1-2km and then return but no need to walk all the way up, expect you just do it to loose calories :D We hiked for almost 20km and then had some well deserved breakfast before continuing to our next and almost last stop - Istria. 
Day 11 - Rainy day
Due to bad weather we spent almost the whole day just in the car. Used the time to edit some photos and making some notes for the blog. And starting to watch Game of Thrones :D 
Camping spot of the eleventh night (Aminess Sirena Campsite, 34€)
Day 12 - Time for some well deserved wellness
After the long hike and several hours in the car we were so much looking forward to some wellness! So we booked kind of luxury campground next to a hotel which belongs to it and where you get a discount when using the wellness area. It was super relaxing! Only thing we didn't liked was that you have to pay for really everything you want to do on the campground even though the spot isn't that cheap. But if you're going there just to relax a bit it's fine and the wellness area is really nice. The last days we wanted to spend to discover Pula and to enjoy some beach time, so we drove further south to a beach where André was also able to go kiting. 
Camping spot of the twelfth and thirteenth night (Arena Stupice Campsite, 52€)
Day 13 & 14 - Some relaxing beach time
We highly recommend to select the lot S030 or S055. Depending on the location you choose the price differs but make sure you're close to Sanitar 2 as it's the most modern and clean ones on the campground offering all amenities you need. You can see the map of the ground via this link. In front of the entry to the campground is a super delicious restaurant and you can also walk a bit further into the town to get some ice cream or more restaurant options. Before we made our way back to Graz we also visited Pula, the capital of Istria, which was really nice, but make sure to park outside of the city if you're coming by van. They charge you 100€ even if you have a valid parking ticket if you're parking somewhere in the city. If you want to eat some yummy and healthy food I can highly recommend Street Food Two. After exploring Pula we made our way to our last camping spot which is next to another very good restaurants - if you want to have some dinner there you should make a reservation in advance, for the camping spot there is no need to make a reservation, there is enough space. 
Camping spot for the fourteenth night (Oliver kocht Restaurant & Stellplatz, 17€)
Overall costs
Probably you are now also curious how much we paid for the whole trip, so here's a short overview of our costs for two persons:
- Roadsurfer Van for 14 nights: 1.790€
- Toll Roads: 135€
- Gasoline: 380€
- Campgrounds: 259€
- Entry fees: 102€
- E-Bikes + Parking: 120€
- Water Taxi Dubrovnik: 30€
Total costs: 2816€ -> 1408€ / Person + Restaurants, Food and Drinks

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