Winter camping in extremely VW T6 California: The new Bulli in the Arctic

As an absolute beginner camping Lofoten in Norway are the hardest possible start for the outdoor experience. Armed with a VW T6 California we dare to experiment on himself above the Arctic Circle.

03/14/2017 Patrick Lang

It is strange already: Since you bejubelst just been the beginning of spring in southern Germany and a few hours later you find yourself above the Arctic Circle again and you shall sleep in a car. For someone who has no experience with camping, the VW T6 California's first namely just that: a car, albeit a big one. That all things, a Volkswagen, otherwise rather automobile that have become law Honey, should leave the Arctic adventurers hang out, is hard to believe at first.

First, a few words on the test car: The VW California ventures into execution "Ocean Red" at the deep Nordland. Fueled by the two-liter TSI, which transmits its 204 hp to a seven-speed DSG, four-wheel drive and Spike tires on ice and snow. Including the special equipment as uprated suspension, differential lock and the Navi "Discover Media Plus" worth a total of 12,095 euros, the Bulli comes to a total price of 85,904 euros. He has at least already times with a small family house together - only the living comfort has to fit.

VW Bulli T6 California Camping Lofoten Norway
The new Bulli in the Arctic 2:10 min.

You lie better up or down?

If you're traveling alone, has the choice between a sleeping place under the airy (here: electromechanical) up roof upstairs, or the wide deck area behind the front seats. The question of whether one is better up or down in California so first has nothing slippery in itself. Both have its pros and cons, but more on that later. The VW T6 facilitates camping newcomers orientation phase thankfully, because the cockpit and the functionalities of the driver's seat are known and proven. The positioning of the controls is also VW-typical as the driving itself. The Bulli sets the driver's commands to hesitation, the smartphone is connected within seconds. What is clear: The DSG should definitely be booked. Manual switching energy will somehow not really fit the cozy California. The inaugural attracts a well with the petrol engine is not just the sausage on bread, but as I said: The California is finally a comfortable car.

VW Bulli T6 California Camping Lofoten Norway Photo: Achim Hartmann
That fits: In other campers here conclusion of California but is slim enough for the car park below deck.

On the Hurtigruten, formerly a post-ship, it comes from the Norwegian mainland across the Atlantic to Lofoten. Plus point for the T6: It can easily be parked in the parking lot below deck, because it fits easily into the side of the ship lift, the vehicles are loaded with depending on the water level in the harbor basin. Will say: Even as a motorhome the dimensions of the VW Bus remain compact. He reached in principle anywhere where a conventional car reach. For example, in the parking space in front of the supermarket. Along with me, however, the California arrives first at a bay in Unstad where the first camp is a few meters from the beach pitched away. For the maximum camping experience is what this night on the upper floor. The roof is boot up, how to build a tent by pressing a button: pretty cool actually.

Not for drunken or unsportsmanlike Camper

Up to then be found on a thin but pleasant mattress again, give fly screen if required views in all directions. But there are groups of people for whom the attic auscheidet as a place to sleep. For example, drunks or totally unsportsmanlike Bulli passengers. Not only because the plastic curtain is a bit stubborn at the opening at the top, but because the bed has to be climbed first on the driver's seat. If possible, without entering the Navi touchscreen. Dimmable LEDs donate in the "upper story" light to be set up. In this case, that means cover two sleeping bags, long pants, sweater and cap it - finished. The heater blows warm air through the interior, meanwhile, but primarily the bottom, so they must be pretty psyched. Alone no problem, but if want to spend the night and someone on the lower berth, which probably Finland in a sauna imagines.

VW Bulli T6 California Camping Lofoten Norway Photo: Patrick Lang
As a place to sleep you do not have all day: cold but spectacular. Admittedly, the heater saved from worse.

I wake up with a cold nose, but compensated the outlook stante pede. Because we had reached the camp after dark, I can fully grasp the surrounding area until the morning. The Atlantic spills slowly to the tree snowy mountains beach. The landscape is almost unreal and reveals another advantage: With the VW California to get as close to nature as you can have it in no matter how beautifully located hotel. also has that California has a connection for an outdoor shower is good. In the Arctic, but little tempting. That far from a beach house the local surf school is with bathroom and breakfast, is even better. Thus, the personal hygiene must not fall frost victim.

Constant switching between movement and housing

Washed and rested you behind the wheel. On the tours between Henningsvaer and Pure are the whole day opportunity to take the California catchy in daylight under the microscope. It turns out that I except the electric pop-up roof, the Navi and (of course) the heater actually need no comfort extras. In contrary, with a reduced equipment and material selection could underline the casual tone for the motorhome better. Leather stalls, high gloss lacquer and wood decor are out of place in such a nature boy. Charming Bulli anyway. What you can fix that? Well, not everywhere in the world you are immediately a welcome guest. Unless you rise from a California, everyone seems to have a smile on their lips.

In the evening, the T6 is this time on a slightly elevated Camping in Moskenes who once again offers from the car to the apartment, a look at the fascinating dance of the northern lights. Since you can be a hippie genuine. I would pull the dropout life into consideration, with a California I certainly would not be ill-advised. A table in the sliding door and chairs in your living room tailgate forms wherever grade popular you. Of course, but you should not forget that the heater in continuous operation also calls her half liters of fuel per hour at full load. So if you really want to be close to nature, which freezes out of conviction.

VW Bulli T6 California Camping Lofoten Norway Photo: Achim Hartmann
The scenery seems an almost surreal. In California, the experience is pretty direct and unadulterated.

The second night in the basement

Who has already demonstrated in the first night, which he is a tough guy can then lie dormant on the second night well deserved in the lower bed. The situation is completely different: the auxiliary heater only runs at level two in ten (and only consumes 0.3 liters per hour), a ceiling enough just like shirt and shorts. Quasi two climate zones in just one car. Because I constricts no mummy sleeping bag as a deceased pharaoh and the lower mattress is a bit thicker, this solution proves to be much more comfortable. The windows can be closed with blinds so you have even a sense of privacy. Ruckzuck the fund will be converted to kitchen to bedroom - after an outdoor pioneer experienced gave me the tip to turn over the velvet carpet before because he is otherwise trapped. Simply the rear row of seats prefer Around turvy fold the mat. Good night!


The next morning greeted me again with the view's open sea. Great! But I am also happy again about a related house with sanitary facilities. So a tough cowboy, the pan goes once a year, I happen somehow. That has now turned into a camping fan myself the trip by VW T6 California, I can not say conclusively. Although I find myself while coming back on the ferry again and again in thoughts of wildly romantic adventure road trips while I bite into my restaurant fresh breakfast omelet.

Maybe my motorhome's an indoor shower? But then it would be with the hippie feeling in the 2017er-Bulli just past like with parking in the garage or in normal gaps in the big city.

The corresponding campers with more comfort that emphasize more on "living" as "mobile", you will find our colleagues at