Motorhomes are amazing for many reasons, but one of the best is that they allow you to go places and – potentially – see things that you never thought possible.


This has recently been brought to mind for me thanks to German brand Hobby, which has just conducted a cold-weather test of some of its latest models: the Vantana Ontour van conversion range, and the Optima Ontour Edition.


In order to give them a proper test, they took them north – very north, to the far reaches of Europe: to Tromsö, Norway, in the Arctic Circle. And they asked a number of journalists to join them.


I’d been to Tromsö before, but that was during the height of the summer; the long days never turning to night thanks to the persistent rays of the midnight sun. But this would be a different prospect altogether: In February, the sun would barely peek its head above the horizon, and the temperature would be well below zero.


Childhood dreams and priceless experiences


However, this visit meant the prospect of potentially being able to view the northern lights. Seeing the aurora had been an ambition of mine since childhood, and I couldn’t pass up an opportunity to witness them – although, of course, they’re so elusive that there’s no guarantee of catching them dancing across the sky.


So off I flew to northern Norway, and enjoyed three fabulous, action-packed days in the Hobby motorhomes; despite -16C temperatures outside, the ‘vans never missed a beat. I once again got to see wonderful Tromsö, I enjoyed tremendous Norwegian food, and I became chilled to the bone when dog sledding. The whole experience was utterly extraordinary.


Did I get to see the Northern Lights? You’ll have to read my full story, in the June 2019 issue of Practical Motorhome, to find out. But the best thing was that I was reminded how motorhomes can help you get to places you’d never think possible, and see sights that you could never imagine – and who can put a price on that?