Why We Decided to Embark on the Van Life Journey

Van Life Rv South africa next to lake with mountains

Life is a journey; the most important part is not the destination but the Journey itself, and it is a journey that one must cherish. Looking back, you will realize that the most significant moments of any trip were all the experiences that happened along the way. We wanted to hit the open road and meander in our own time, going wherever the road took us. I tend to get overeager to do exciting things, and sometimes, the flashes of inspiration and enthusiasm disappear just as quickly as they came. But the dream to hit the open road and travel like a gipsy with a four-legged furry friend never left. Living the Van Life Journey by journeying in a small house on wheels is a delightful experience and a dream come true.

Hubby started sharing my dream after watching a documentary, Expedition Happiness. In the documentary, a young couple, Felix Starck and Selima Taibi, decide to quit their 9-to-5 jobs and buy an old bus, which they transform into a home. With the bus and their dog, they travel to many countries and live the lives they want. It was so incredibly exciting that I couldn’t get it out of my mind. A few days after watching the documentary, I noticed that Johan was browsing through advertisements for cargo vans and buses. I then knew that he also longs for a Van life Journey.

Shortly after, I drove past a yard where a beautiful old blue Ford school bus was parked between other ancient old cars. I turned around to take a closer look, taking pictures while visualizing our motorhome. Although I was head over heels in love with it, Johan had concerns about things like replacing rusted floors, the availability of engine parts, and the accessibility of parking and entering camping grounds.

After searching for a few months, we found an advertisement for an extra-long wheelbase and extra-high Ford Transit Cargo Van. The vehicle was more than 1,000 km away, but after seeing videos, photos, and proof of a full-service record, we were convinced that the condition was acceptable. Because of its height, the Cargo Van couldn’t be transported by truck, so someone had to drive him to Pretoria. 

Experience the great outdoors Spectacular scenery on a Van Life Journey through the Free State Province South Africa
Spectacular scenery on a Van Life Journey in South Africa

And so began the challenge of our van life journey. Read about the conversion process and how the Cargo Van became a beautiful home. A few years later, we don’t regret buying an old Cargo Van, which Hubby transformed into a dream Campervan. Although we still have our house with a large garden and a few furry friends, we can hit the road in our self-contained home with a furry friend. 

The Benefits of Traveling in a Van

A Van Life Journey provides numerous benefits:

  • Freedom to travel and explore on your schedule
  • The best way to experience the great outdoors
  • More time spent together
  • Living off the grid in a van
  • More affordable way of travelling
  • The ability to stop when, where, and for as long as we want
  • Working from anywhere while visiting different places
  • Preparing fresh food anytime, anywhere
  • Having an off-the-grid bathroom and kitchen
  • Sleeping in our king-size bed wherever we want
  • Using our comfortable bedding and pillows
  • Bringing along our beloved 4-legged friend, Dashuri
Doggie looking out of the window during a Van Life Journey

Living or travelling in a van isn’t for everyone, but we won’t have it any other way. We are delighted with our Campervan and love every aspect of our wandering nomad lifestyle. Moreover, we don’t regret the time, effort, and money spent converting the van. Vanlife is a minimalistic way of life and a matter of personal preference. There are many factors to consider, which must be decided over time. Living in a van is significantly different from residing in a traditional home.

Fortunately, We have a large garden and enjoy spending time at home with our animals: two dogs, Rosy and Dashuri, and our cat, Renaldo. But we also love the outdoors and the freedom of van life. Unfortunately, Rosy, an Africana, a distinct breed (endemic to Southern Africa), isn’t allowed at all campsites due to her size, but Dashuri, our Jack Russel, travel along.

There is no right or wrong answer if you want the lifestyle. It’s more about the Journey than the destination, although we like to spend a few days at certain spots. To find out if van life is for you, check out our campervan conversion post with all the details and the most important factors to consider. Let me introduce you to our Van Journey Gipsy Home.

There are many reasons why people choose to travel in a motorized home besides going on a road trip. Living a Van life journey often involves a desire for adventure and freedom.

  • One reason is that it reduces one’s responsibilities, as there are fewer things to worry about.
  • Van life offers an escape from the constraints of daily life and allows you to live a simpler, more minimalist lifestyle.
  • Taking time out for yourself will enable you to re-discover yourself.
  • The freedom to explore the open road and see more places without being tied down to a specific location.
  • To be on the road gives you time to think.
  • Spiritual nourishment for your mind
  • Discover more places and experience more things.
  • Our Van Conversion to see what I mean.

On a Van Life Journey out on the road means seeing small wonders like a bee on a flower or a tiny bug- things you wouldn’t usually see. Also, the fresh air will make you feel more energetic.

Ultimately, the appeal of life or travelling in a motorized home varies from person to person.

When Johan finished his project of transforming a cargo van into a campervan, we decided to go to the nearby Kyleu Bushcamp for a weekend to test everything, which was an excellent idea. The Kyleu Bushcamp does not provide electricity or water.

We wanted to try everything, so the first problem occurred when we tried to make Coffee with our Delonghi coffee machine. Check out our unforgettable Van Life Journey along the Eastern Cape.

Old Cargo Van transformed into a beautiful Camper for a Vanlife Journey
Van Life Journey Campervan

Unfortunately, in South Africa, one cannot drive wherever you want as it’s unsafe and especially in some parts, one must be very cautious. One can only spend the night in a Caravan Park. Even in the country’s caravan parks, there are incidents of campers being mugged and robbed. Therefore, finding a safe campsite or caravan park for the night is essential.

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  1. Yes, but only part of it a few years back. I wish I have more time to travel.

  2. Only part of it, but it’s on one of our many lists :-). Any places you highly recommend, I would love to hear about it.

  3. Have you done West Coast?

  4. Bonn Kadence support says:

    Thank you so much. Same blessings to you. Let’s keep in touch.

  5. GREAT! great ! GREAT! go live your life .now , not tomorrow. God Bless your journeys .