Almost 700 lovers of caravans from 16 European countries came to Piešťany for several days. They set up their mobile dwellings at the Lodenica Camp Grounds from 20 to 23 May and enjoyed the hospitable atmosphere of the spa town.
It was a coincidence that two international events were being held during the same weekend. The small spa town turned into a multilingual Babylon thanks to the meeting of campers called Europa Rally 2010 and the 2nd year of Traditional Handicrafts. Besides the surprise of dozens of craftsmen and their original products, there were several more events for campers to enjoy in Piešťany such as: a performance from the Máj folk group, sports activities, ecumenical service, as well as trips to Bratislava and Trenčín.
Remo Cicutto, the mayor of Piešťany, greeted representatives from the national caravan clubs in the town hall before the opening of the event. It was followed by a ceremonial parade with all participants of the meeting. Representatives from Belgium, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, England, Hungary, Italy, Holland, Norway, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia and Switzerland presented themselves by means of folklore, national customs as well as their unique specialities. Flags of the individual countries and caravan clubs were flying everywhere. A friendly atmosphere pervaded, as some of the participants have been meeting at similar events for several years.
The welcome speeches of the representatives of the town and the international caravan club were translated into three world languages in a big-capacity tent. The event was officially opened by the president of the International Caravan Club, Jean-Marc Dudt, with the lighting of the touring torch. Finally, the caravan lovers’ anthem resounded during which the majority of participants held their right hand over their heart.
The Europa Rally is an annual meeting of fans of independent travelling. These are usually pensioners who stuff their caravans, both small and big, with various things from their households and freely travel around Europe during the summer months. Caravans are their second homes, which are complete with all the amenities of home - even pets, satellite receivers and plants. Some of them even have their own little gardens.
Europe has a rich network of camp grounds providing full service to campers. An ideal place for them is one that offers interesting sights within its surroundings, cultural programmes and various possibilities for spending free time. High quality services have to be included as well. According to the good mood and satisfaction of the participants of the Europa Rally 2010 we can assume that Piešťany fulfilled all of these expectations.