Harbouring fantasies of swapping the nine to five for a life on the open road, but not prepared to take the leap? Dip a toe in the ‘van life’ waters instead.
It’ll make for a refreshing experience. Especially if you use Quirky Campers, which rents out unique campervans across the UK, giving holidaymakers the chance to experience what it’s like to live in a home on wheels on a temporary basis.
Living up to its quirky title, the company has an array of zany campers on its books, including a revamped American school bus and a multi-coloured camper inspired by the artist Frida Kahlo.
Here are 10 enticing models for a road trip with a difference…
WILLOW – CAMBRIDGE
Described as having a ‘high spec, elegant style’, Willow is said to pack ‘a big bang in a small package’.
Quirky Campers says: ‘Willow’s hand-crafted, luxurious interior has loads of storage, gorgeous vintage design features, loads of mod cons, and serious eco credentials.’
The van’s innovative design features a dining table that can be stowed beneath the bed, and a pull-out stove-top counter that allows you to cook meals in the open air. There is also an outside shower and a portable toilet.
Willow sleeps up to two adults and one child and is available from £121 per night, for a minimum of two nights.
SPLINTER – FARMBOROUGH, SOMERSET
‘One adventure in Splinter and he’s guaranteed to remain under your skin,’ says Quirky Campers of this striking van, which is reminiscent of a ‘cosy cabin’ with its wood stove and timber interior.
The pet-friendly vehicle – a converted Mercedes Sprinter van – boasts a full king-size bed that converts into a lounge and dining area; a double burner gas hob; a microwave; a toilet, and an indoor waterfall shower.
The listing recommends that holidaymakers ‘light the wood burner and spend the day reading in bed’ or ‘snuggle on the sofas and play board games’.
Splinter sleeps two adults and prices start at £115 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
HILDA – NORWICH, NORFOLK
Hilda ‘began life in 2009 as an iconic yellow American school bus’, serving a school on the shores of Lake Ontario.
Now the vehicle has been transformed into a ‘spectacular’ and ‘bohemian’ holiday rental. Though it’s a home on wheels, it’s static, available for rental in a glamping site in the Norfolk countryside.
The bus is heated by a charming wood stove and its ‘magnificent kitchen area’ boasts a rustic wooden workstation with an old-school coffee grinder fastened to the counter.
‘Arguably one of the most impressive areas in Hilda is her luxury indoor bathroom, fitted with crisp clean white tiles and a rainfall shower,’ says Quirky Campers. It adds that there’s a bathtub, too.
The bus sleeps four adults and costs from £127 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
FLOYD – MELTON MOWBRAY, LEICESTERSHIRE
Floyd is described by Quirky Campers as ‘freshly converted, super sleek and very high spec’.
A revamped Peugeot Boxer courier van, it’s billed as ‘a totally off-grid camper that feels like a tiny home inside’ with solar-generated electricity, a portable toilet, ‘radiant’ underfloor heating and an outdoor shower.
There is also a projector ‘for kicking back with a good film and a bottle of wine after a long day exploring’.
Suitable for two adults, prices start at £112 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
OLA – LEYTON, LONDON
Originally a minibus for a church, Ola is said to be an ‘absolutely gorgeous Scandi styled campervan conversion’.
It combines ‘a high-spec finish with a simplistic, effortless layout that has been designed for total ease of use’, Quirky Campers says.
Features include a fridge box, a fitted gas hob, a single stove for outdoor cooking, a toilet, and an outdoor shower.
‘Ola has ample storage to keep things tidy and maintain her minimalist look,’ Quirky Campers adds.
The pet-friendly van sleeps up to two adults. Prices start at £127 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
ACCESSIBLE IRIS – BRISTOL
Behold the UK’s first disabled-friendly family campervan for hire, Iris, designed by the parents of two girls, ‘the eldest of which is medically complex, has sensory impairments and is a wheelchair user’, says Quirky Campers.
It has been ‘designed to offer something that is both accessible and comfortable for families who have a disabled child’, the site adds.
Accessible features include wheelchair fixings and ramps, a large battery capacity, a ‘sensory space’ at the rear of the van, bed nets, soundproofing, and an overall uncluttered and calm design.
Beds are height-adjustable and can even be removed, depending on the needs of the prospective renters.
Iris is suitable for up to five people and costs from £118 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
FRIDA – BRISTOL
This van’s design is ‘inspired by her namesake, Frida Kahlo’, so it’s ‘full of colour and bold prints featuring plants and animals’, Quirky Campers reveals.
Owned by Quirky Camper’s co-founders, Lindsay and David, Frida is said to be the ‘ultimate family campervan’ – it features triple bunk beds with curtains and individual reading lights to ‘make bedtime a doddle’.
There is also a set of miniature cupboards for children ‘to store away any treasures they find’. More handy features include a portable toilet and an outdoor shower.
The van can host two adults and four children. Prices start at £129 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
SYLVESTER – BURTON JOYCE, NOTTINGHAMSHIRE
‘Sylvester is the definition of small but perfectly formed,’ declares Quirky Campers.
It says that the rental has been ‘beautifully handcrafted’ by its owner and feels ‘like a real home from home’.
The site continues: ‘From his miniature herb garden to his copper sink, handmade doorknobs to penny curtain tiebacks, everything about Sylvester is handsome, original and executed to perfection.’
The van is fully functional off-grid with a solar panel and Propex heating system, and has an outside shower and toilet tent.
Sylvester can accommodate two adults and two children and is available from £99 per night for a minimum of two nights.
FRANCOIS – HOUGHTON-ON-THE-HILL, LEICESTERSHIRE
This van – named Francois – was originally used as a turf layer’s van. Its new owners decided to integrate this history into its redesign, creating a ‘green wall’ on the rear doors that ‘will trick your mind into believing you’re sleeping in your own private rainforest’.
The van’s kitchen, meanwhile, is said to be the ‘perfect stage to create a show-stopping meal for two’. It comes complete with two gas hobs, a bamboo dinner set and a ‘large’ dining table – and guests can watch sunsets and sunrises while perched atop the van’s ‘roof deck’.
Francois is suitable for festivals and travels in mainland Europe, however there are no shower or toilet facilities.
The van sleeps two adults and prices start at £81 per night for a minimum two-night stay.
EDDIE – MELBOURNE, DERBYSHIRE
This van, named Eddie, comes with a ‘fully-fitted kitchen’ that’s described by Quirky Campers as a ‘breakfast lover’s dream’ thanks to its heart-shaped kettle, cafetiere and grill ‘for you to knock out a big round of toast in the morning’.
Quirky Campers adds: ‘Rain or shine, the awning attached will provide you with shelter or shade and gives you that extra bit of space to entertain family or friends.’
Accommodating up to two adults and two children, Eddie offers a toilet as well as an inside shower. Prices start at £112 per night for a minimum two-night stay.