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Home > Screenings > Autentic Distribution > The History of Camping

Director: Heike Nikolaus

Producer: Peter Moers

Writer: Heike Nikolaus

Cast: Paul Hartmann, Ursula Hartmann, Eric Beau, Hermann Gerhardt, Luise Gerhardt, Jürgen Scherb, Maria Dhonau, Jérôme Arnaud, Romain Baumstark, Dörte Hirschfeld, Dirk Sonemann, Alexander Leopold, Christian Jürgensen, Michael Köppen, Silvia Weidinger-Köppen

Genres: Documentary

52' (GER, FRE, ENG subs)

People have been vacationing in tents or caravans for over 100 years. But what is so fascinating about this "temporary nomadism" and how did camping become so popular? This question is explored in the film "Camping - History of a Passion" by Heike Nikolaus. In Europe, camping first became fashionable in England. At the end of the 19th century, it was mainly a pleasure of the better society.

In Germany, Arist Dethleffs is considered the inventor of the caravan as we know it today. He invented the "caravan" out of love for his fiancée, who wanted to accompany him on his business trips. After the Second World War and with the beginning of the economic miracle, the longing for the sunny south grew. Italy was the Germans' favorite destination, while the French were drawn to their own Mediterranean coast.

Until the 1970s, the tent still dominated. A camping vacation was affordable, no need to spend money on a hotel and you cooked yourself. The hippies wanted nothing to do with such "stuffy" ideas of vacation. For them, traveling was not a short escape from everyday life, but a trip with an uncertain outcome. Their favorite vehicle of the time was the converted VW Bulli.

The idea of the compact vehicle also conquers the caravan market at the end of the 1970s. The motor home promises more mobility than the caravan, with the same level of comfort. The fascination for camping remains unbroken to this day, and the industry continues to grow and grow. It must be the small, big freedom, on the road and yet a bit at home, that excites so many people about this type of vacation.