Aiden and Sarah were first introduced to vanlife when on a trip to New Zealand. They ended up finding a small and simple rig and traveled in it for some time before returning home. That’s when the idea to offer stunning camper vans for vacation rental in Ireland came to them. Life happened, but eventually, they came across a high roof long wheel base Volkswagen Crafter which they turned into “Vanda.”
Vanda is a beautiful rig complete with a bathroom, galley kitchen with two burners, and a convertible bed, so you can enjoy a meal inside and snuggle into the large bed at night with plenty of room to stretch out. Don’t miss our Q&A with the Dream Big Camper team below the picture tour.
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Dream Big Campers Providing Ireland Van Rentals
The van is ready to hit the seaside.
Blue and copper elements brighten up the space.
There’s lots of pantry storage for food.
The U-shaped dinette provides a good spot to hang out.
The little kitchenette is perfect for making camping meals.
And yes, there’s a bathroom!
It comes with some gorgeous pottery cookware.
Make a little coffee in the morning.
A nice little mini-fridge.
The van can take you all over the country.
The dinette becomes a comfy bed.
Where would you park it?
Time to see Ireland!
Make dinner in the most scenic spot.
Soak in the sunset.
Tell us a little about yourselves!
We are Sarah and Aiden of ‘Dream Big Campers’ – a merry merging of the things we love the most, travel, craftsmanship, freedom and nature. We met 9 years ago while working in the film industry. Aiden in the camera department and me in Costume. Dreamers, adventurers, creatives, we have always been keen to build and create beautiful spaces, and only a few months into meeting we had our first experience of renovating a tiny house in Dublin. The skills we learned in this time would become the building blocks of our future business. Since then we are the proud parents to a little boy, Oli Finn, our wonder pup Jessie and a small business offering bespoke campervan rental in Ireland.
What made you want to get into van rentals?
Having spent years adventuring, we first realised that campervans were our thing after a trip to New Zealand in 2017. We bought a bare bones conversion, Big Bertha, a perfectly proportioned Nissan Vanette! It was a super small space with a simple pull out bed and basic cooking facilities. She was a work horse and couldn’t have asked for a better tiny home on wheels! The only time she ever gave up on us was when we ran short of fuel, but that was definitely an ‘us’ issue!? We travelled the length and breadth of both islands before selling her on in Christchurch ahead of our departure.
While travelling the country we were struck by the simplicity of travelling by campervan. We were in awe of the beautiful places we experienced and woke up in, the people and stories we met along the way. The world slowed down and it felt like we had more time for hellos where we might not have done before. We came back home with the resounding feeling that this was the ultimate way to see and connect with a country and were keen to create a campervan rental company that would allow people the same opportunity for these experiences in Ireland!
After New Zealand we spent the next few years wrangling the van idea and working out where we wanted to take it. In this time, work, rent and raising a newborn were the main focus. We kept an eye on the van market but saw little that met our value/quality/potential equation, until we found Vanda, the first of our fleet, a high roof long wheel base Volkswagen Crafter.
We wanted to create something a little different to the current rental options here and to move away from the dated furnishings and moulded plastic interiors that are associated with traditional motorhomes. We spent the guts of 12months lovingly converting the van, to create a bespoke offgrid camper. Combining wood, painted finishes, creative storage, kitchen facilities, a shower and composting toilet, Vanda is more in line with a tiny home than a motorhome. The uber efficient solar and leisure battery rig means that the van can go off grid for days at a time. We didn’t want the potential for travelling Ireland to be limited to the summertime, so the inclusion of a heating and hot water system allow for cosy year round adventures and hot water on demand. Our top packing tips to all visitors irrespective of the time of year- ‘Bring base layers, a raincoat, swimsuit and sunglasses..and sure then you are prepared for everything!’
Its been a slow brew and a long time coming, but we love the van we have built.
Our favourite thing about renting Vanda out – asides from meeting awesome folk we may not have met otherwise – is seeing the photos off the back of their trip.
Seeing Ireland through someone else’s eyes and stories is magical!!
Its like developing a roll of film you just found in a camera you never knew you had.
And Ireland is pretty great, so it’s a wholesome roll of film!
Long term we would adore to have a small fleet of three to four vans. Each with their own unique character and design. Vanda caters well to solo trippers, couples or two friends. Going forward we would love to create a family van and a micro camper.
How long have you been in business?
We have been in business since August of last year, so 9 months. It has been a wild ride so far and an immense learning curve navigating the logistics of running our own business.
This week sees us launch our first getaway giveaway to celebrate ‘the grand stretch in the evenings’! So if travelling by campervan and soaking up all the good stuff Ireland has to offer sounds like your cup of tea, check out our 2 night giveaway @dreambigcampers, or head straight to our website www.dreambigcampers.com for bookings.
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Our big thanks to Dream BIg Campers for sharing! 🙏
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Natalie C. McKee
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What a beautiful van for a lovely vacation. How about you all add a business in Midwest Iowa (U.S.), close to where I live. Thank you!!!