How I geared up for my vantastic adventure
Since starting this blog I’ve received lots of questions on how I shower, how I go to the bathroom, how I store and cook food, etc. This post aims to answer some of those questions for anyone who is thinking about starting their own adventure in a van or RV!
For daily bathing, I use a solar shower bag that can be refilled anywhere you can find water. The bag slowly heats up when left in the sun and, although it doesn’t get as hot as a home shower would, it does the trick. I typically place the shower over the passenger side door on my van to shower. The bag holds so much water that I don’t usually need to replace it for a week and a half.
Tip: If you ever find yourself near a hot spring, you can always fill it up with that water for a nice warm shower!
Meals and food storage
The Eurovan comes equipped with a refrigerator that can be powered by propane, battery (only when the engine is running), or shore power hookup. I also bring along a cooler so I can have more space to store more perishable items. As for cooking, I use a small cast iron skillet and a small pot that can be placed on either the van’s interior propane stove or a portable outdoor stove.
Before I set out on my first journey I purchased a cheap set of 2 bowls, 2 cups and 2 plates, as well as a fork, knife and spoon. Using paper plates and bowls is also an option, however I opted to get reusable items to cut down on waste. Cutting down on waste isn’t only important for helping the environment, but also helps reduce the amount of trash you have to store inside your vehicle.
Tip: If you get reusable plates and cups, make sure they aren’t ceramic or glass, things will shift around as you're driving and if it can break, it probably will at some point in your adventure.
Just like many others, I enjoy a warm cup of coffee in the morning. A 12v coffee maker could be an option, however it would take up even more of the van’s limited storage space. I opted for a small french press cup from REI, it’s compact, works well and you can drink it directly from the cup.
Going to the bathroom can be somewhat tricky in the van as I don’t own a portable toilet. I usually try and find public bathrooms that I can use or utilize a foldable spade to go outdoors. If using your surroundings as a bathroom be careful to pack everything out or use biodegradable toilet paper so that you aren’t polluting your camp site.
Tip: While most public bathrooms are still closed due to COVID-19, you can usually find at least one open one near where you are staying. Just ask around!
The Eurovan holds around 10 gallons of water in its tank, which is primarily used for washing dishes, cleaning off dirty equipment and washing my hands. I usually carry an additional five gallons of drinking water, which lasts me around a week.
Tip: Try to use as little water as possible when washing dishes. 10 gallons sounds like a lot but it goes quickly when you have to use it for cleaning three times a day!
Other useful items
In addition to everything listed above, having a toolkit and a good roll of duct tape is a must. If you have an older vehicle like mine, things are bound to break at some point. Being able to make small repairs on the road is extremely helpful and can save you from a headache if somethings breaks early on in your trip.