After practicing about 6 smaller trips the past 10 months, this august we'll be going on our first long road trip with 3 children (7/5/3 years old).
The plan: 3 weeks: Belgium->Slovenia in 1 long day, then Slovenia, Croatia all the way to Dubrovnik, back via Venice to the french atlantic south coast (our family has a house there). Then the children stay in France another week with their grandparents while we go home in one go.
We plan to stay only one night in every campsite, but of course we might stay 2 nights in the perfect spot.
We've booked 2 nights in a Tree house glamping (Garden village Bled, slovenia) and 2 nights in a Kids hotel in the middle of Croatia, all the rest will be camping with the Cali on campsites.
Still thinking about taking all the bikes (4 on the bike rack, the smallest one inside) or just the children's bikes, or none at all. Not being able to open the tailgate when the roof is up is not so nice.. I have to practice mounting and unmounting the bikes and see how long it takes. Any advice?
Your trip sounds fab! Having dented our roof by lowering the roof after loading the bikes I think my husband now puts the biggest child's bike on first, then 2 adult ones and middle child's bike on last. Balance bike gets attached somehow to the others using straps and bike trailer strapped on the under side of the bike rack. Really not sure how we will manage it once my youngest has a pedal bike!
We have decided to always take our bikes as the children love riding them around campsites and then we don't have to pack up the van everytime we need shopping as we try to pick campsites where we can cycle as much as possible and we have had some great rides that we would have missed had we not taken the bikes.