I know I am completely out of season for this, unless you are a hardcore motor-home enthusiast, but I am putting it out there for future travellers while I still remember.
Now I’m not personally a big fan of staying in a motor-home, let alone camping in a tent, but I had some visitors recently who love doing this. I can see the advantage of saving money, but I guess it has to also be an experience you enjoy. Not for me – too many childhood memories of bugs and rainy days in a tent for it to be even vaguely attractive.
So I had the challenge of finding somewhere for them to park their motor-home while they visited and it turns out that this is not so straight forward. The only official place to park a motor-home inside the city limits and with access to public transport is City Camp Frankfurt. The campsite has all the amenities that are needed such as waste disposal, shower blocks, electricity and space for tents and motor-homes. It also has the added convenience of being open all year round which some others aren’t. Unfortunately City Camp has a terrible reputation…
The problem for City Camp is that apart from being very unattractive, and getting slightly flooded whenever it rains, is that the owners are extremely unfriendly and rude, especially to non-German speakers, and regularly enforce unnecessary extra rules and charges. I thought it was just a bad day until I checked out the other google reviews, take a look at these!
So how is it that they manage to survive? Lack of obvious competition I’m afraid.
But here are the other options if you are willing to compromise on certain logistics in return for a pleasant stay. Cost is pretty much the same at all of them:
Oberursel Tourist Information
This is a hard place to find on google because it is not a campsite. However the facilities are based at the end of the U3 train line so easy access to Frankfurt centre in just 35 minutes. The location is basically a large carpark outside the Tourism Office where motor-homes are allowed to park. This is the starting point of many trails into the forests of the Taunus so a beautiful location. Downside is that although there are a couple of restaurants, toilets, an info desk, e-bike rental, cash machine etc., there is no real motor home services like electricity and waste disposal.
This is the best real option as a camping and motor-home site. It is off to the East of Frankfurt and is very easy to reach by road given that it is directly next to the main road out of Offenbach. It has everything including friendly helpful owners and freshly baked bread deliveries. It also looks full (I wonder why) so booking ahead is essential. The drawbacks are that the Strassenbahn line 11 which would take you directly into the city stops about 700 metres before the campsite. Walking along the main road to get there is not a great experience. And the site is only open half the year from April to September.
If you don’t need to be based on public transport and are looking to still stay within about 30-40 minutes drive of the city there are some really nice options to choose from. All of them have good reviews and good services for both motor-homes and tents. The locations are very good for nature but you will be reliant either on cycling to public transport or on someone with a car picking you up:
Seecamping Mainflingen, Mainhausen
Campingplatz Hof Gimbach, Kelkheim
And here is a little map to show where they all are around Frankfurt: