AS WE GET settled into a new year, it's the ideal time to look back at the preceding 12 months. So, what did you like on practicalmotorhome.com in 2013, what were your top hits? We've crunched the data to find out – read on.
The most viewed blog on Practical Motorhome in 2013 was our piece about Brit Stops, an initiative to create free stopover points across the UK, to make touring in your motorhome that bit easier. This scheme brings together sites all over the British Isles, from pubs to vineyards, farm shops to craft centres and many more, anywhere you're able to stop for the night – for free! And it really does cover the whole country, with places in the southern tip of Cornwall to the East Anglian coast, from the Isle of Wight to Wales, Northern Ireland and the Scottish islands. So it's pretty easy to see why this top tip was one of your top hits of 2013! See the Brit Stops website for full details and use it to get the most from your 2014 travels.
Beautiful Cornwall – and touring it can be cheaper with Brit Stops (photo by Dave LF Smith)
Hollywood celebrities starred in the second most read blog on the Practical Motorhome website in 2013. Film star Will Smith's $2.5million motorhome is, as you might anticipate, a feat of engineering, a massive, super swanky RV with slide-outs and an incredible 14 TVs! We don't need half that many screens in our houses, let alone our motorhomes, but Will Smith's tour bus is filled with technology and high end details, such as granite work surfaces and leather upholstery. It sounds like a palace on wheels. And if you liked that, be sure to check out our celebrity motorhome gadgets blog published last month.
To watch the video of Will Smith's motorhome click here
Moving onto the advice section of our website and our Mazda Bongo Camper Buyer's Guide was by far and away the page that received more views than any other. Packed with information about Bongo Friendee and Ford Freda models to help you identify problems, it was definitely a hit with you in 2013.
Our Mazda Bongo guide was one of our most viewed pages in 2013
Also big last year in our advice pages was the Fiat Ducato and Peugeot Boxer Buying Guide. Produced from 2003 until 2008, Fiat's Ducato has served as the starting point for many a motorhome and conversion – and it certainly struck a chord with you.
Want a wedge? It seems you did in 2013, as this was another advice page that you clicked on in your thousands, our Volkswagen T25 'Wedge' camper van buying guide the third most view page in this part of practicalmotorhome.com last year. With lots of model information and full of top tips, it's a comprehensive guide to the model.
Our top news story of 2013? It was about a new VW Doubleback from Danbury Motorcaravans, our Britain's best motorhome manufacturers for 2013 article the second most read news item. Not too far behind was our piece from July about a brand new compact motorhome from Elddis, the arrival of this two-model Accordo range clearly welcome news for you. And it seems downsizing was popular in 2013, as a news story from last February on an adorably named Cutie micro-camper also attracted a few thousand pageviews.
Our Elddis Accordo news story got a lot of clicks
Last but not least: reviews. The motorhome review that more people read than any other on this website in 2013 was on the Volkswagen California. We described it as being "brilliant to drive, and with a bit of flexibility great to live in, if not as homely as some rivals". The second most viewed motorhome test in 2013 was about a model we said was "a van that will appeal to experienced motorcaravanners who want to tour in comfort", the 2006 Auto-Sleeper Executive GLS. Finally, in bronze position, we see another nod for the marvellously monikered Bongo Friendee, as our review of the "quirky Japanese import" that is the 2006 Wellhouse Leisure Mazda Bongo Friendee proved a hit with you last year, giving buyers "a lot more than a similarly priced Volkswagen".
So those were Practical Motorhome's best bits of 2013, the stories you clicked on more than any others. It was a busy year and we know 2014 is set to be even bigger and better – and we can't wait to share it with you. And be sure to keep in touch with us on our forum, as well as on our Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages.
Lizzie Pope, Practical Motorhome, 10 January 2014