hi, i'm Ali
Photographer, dog mom, daily walker, reader, and wife to a busy maker. I'm the voice you hear and read at Life Outside the Shop.
From new project how-to's and DIY home updates to the ins-and-outs of building a family & multiple businesses, Life Outside the Shop shares what is really looks like to figure it out as you go.
Thinking of a camper van honeymoon? Well… so are we! Technically, we’re not just “thinking” anymore since the van is booked and the flight confirmation is sittin’ in my email inbox!
But figuring out where to visit and what company to use was #stressful. So, if you’re thinking of renting a campervan exploring out west and have NO clue where to start maybe this will help ya out!
Pre-COVID and before our wedding plans took a major 180, we were scheming about heading to the Amalfi Coast to celebrate being newlyweds.
Although we were SUPER excited, it never felt quite right. I generally get anxious about planning trips (not my forte) and travel (too much outside of my type-A control).
So, I thought that pit in my stomach when we talked about it was just my general pre-trip/planning anxiety.
There were a LOT of things that sucked about 2020. But, I am forever grateful that the year gave us the chance to turn our focus inward and identify what we find important.
This is definitely something we learned through our COVID wedding-planning experience and something that continued to prove itself true when planning our honeymoon.
Luckily, the COVID timing was “just right” when it came to booking. We never put plans (read: credit cards) in stone and knew that even if we postponed Italy, it wasn’t going to be a good idea anytime soon. We needed a new plan.
This was so obvious, I don’t know why we didn’t think of it before.
But like I said, being forced to change our plans definitely allowed us to take a step back and explore what felt “right” for us. Italy would have been fun and we would have loved it – don’t get me wrong – but it isn’t quite “us”.
And, TBH (since honesty and being real is what this blog is all about) it wouldn’t have been the smartest financial decision right now!
Know what is us (and, more financially responsible)? Renting a camper van for 10 days, exploring out West, and giving Sam the chance to show me all of the places he fell in love with when he spent a year in Montana back in 2016!
We’re definitely more hiking, moving, and exploring people than sit on a beach people and this plan feels SO RIGHT. Sure, I got a bit of planning stress when exploring different camper van options and booking flights but I was EXCITED through the whole process.
Here is where we’re at so far…
We decided to rent a van from Escape Campervans. We also looked at Native Camper Vans and Campervan North America. Both were a bit (or more than a bit) pricier but didn’t seem to give more for the money.
Depending on how big your party is and what you want/need, they have four different (much more affordable) van options with more pick-up and drop-off options.
We’re going with the Maverick for our camper van honeymoon! Even though it technically sleeps four, it has everything we need with a bit of extra space. Because we’re saving money in other places, we got to pick and choose what was “worth” spending a bit more on and this was one of those things!
The Maverick a queen-sized bed, a foldaway table/benches, a propane stove with TWO burners, a sink, refrigerator and we obviously had to add the rooftop sleeper for hot nights in the parks!
It also has LOTS of extra space for snacks (#priorities), camera equipment (tons of VLOGs to come!), and all the clothes I’ll bring and never wear!
We decided to pick up and drop off in Denver! It kept flights cheaper and simpler (shout out to round trip!). It also gave us some wiggle room on both sides to visit friends and hopefully, celebrate Sam’s cousin’s wedding on the tale-end of the trip.
We’re planning on spending a bit of time exploring Boulder as we head out of Colorado then hitting our other CO destinations on our way back down. We’re thinking some kinda combo of…
After leaving CO, we’ll drive through Wyoming to hit Grand Teton and Yellowstone. Once we get to Montana, we know we want to quickly see Big Sky then spend more time in Bozeman and Glacier.
We’re still nailing down exactly how long we spend in each place and which in-between spots we want to prioritize. I know Sam is excited to see some friends still living in/around Bozeman and we’ll spend a good chunk of time exploring his old stomping grounds.
We can’t wait to share all about our camper van honeymoon when we get home!
Have you spent any time traveling out west? Where would you love to visit again? Still, itching for a road trip? What places are on your bucket list? We would love to hear. Shoot us a message or drop a comment below!