When not parking in front of friends’ houses or in designated camping areas, we tend to find our free overnight spots next to a playground in a quiet part of town. As well as being safe and well-lit at nighttime, playgrounds often offer amenities such as a water-tap, picnic table and sometimes electric barbecues.

Parking alongside a playground in a motorhome or campervan, June 2014
With the bus parked alongside a playground, the girls can choose to play inside or outside as the weather and their mood suits!

While free-camping in an undesignated area, we keep our belongings contained in the bus. I don’t set up the awning or pull out a chair.

The girls use the playground as their backyard and we tend to only spend one night at the one spot. We’re friendly with the locals and before driving away, I make sure we haven’t left any traces of rubbish behind.

Parking at a playground is great for locals because our presence through the night can deter vandals. It’s also a great way to start conversations about the possibilities of home educating with those who have never met a home-schooling family before!