This is a standard question, which we have asked many times, and we are sure you have to, when you arrive in a new area or a beautiful city.
So we are pleased to offer our guide to places to park and eat while you are travelling by camper.
But first, please note:
- In medium-large cities, it is almost impossible to find places to park and eat. Whether in the historic centre or its edge, the answer to our question is obvious, which is why we suggested our Gourmet rest-stops in Parma – soon we will suggest others as well.
- Using the camper rest-area or exchange parks where you can park your camper, you can move into the city centre for dinner using night buses, taxis or bikes.
- In small towns, campers can park in specific areas that are often close to the city centre.
But if you really want to park your camper and then eat? In which case, we are pleased to recommend some local Agriturismi, perfect places to park up and eat.
Where we can park and eat well
The whole of Italy, Emilia included, offers excellent places to enjoy a quality dinner and a relaxed overnight stay in the same place. We have personally visited the following suggestions for Emilia, and we hope that you agree!
We would also remind you that our members can enjoy excellent offers for both dinner and overnight stays – please check the bottom part of our homepage for more information.
So let’s see what the various provinces of our region have to offer.
- Ristorante Parco Sant’Andrea: a few kilometres outside the city, this restaurant is very convenient for anyone visiting the Parma Fair zone. But it is also perfect for any visit to the city, since it is halfway between Parma e Colorno and only ten minutes from the Parma camper rest-area. It is particularly beautiful in summer, where you can enjoy dinner outside. It offers an excellent range of local dishes for both lunch and dinner, and you can also arrange group can multi-camper bookings (and group menus). The camper park is outside the restaurant, but it is lit with video-surveillance. We strongly recommend booking in advance, since it is very popular. Call (0039) 0521-819996
- Ristorante Corte di Giarola: this is found inside a ancient court, deep in the countryside between Collecchio and Ozzano Taro, in the headquarters of the Ducal Parks where you also find two of the Parma Food Museums. This is the departure point for trekking in the Taro Park, or for MTB or bike excursions. The restaurant offers traditional fare, including 12 different types of filled tortelli. In summer, you can enjoy a lovely dinner outside in the ancient court. It is ideal for groups and multi-camper groups, and you can park up in the Ducal Park car-park (free, lit with video-surveillance, and toilet facilities).
- Ristorante Pizzeria da Claudia: here we are in the Parmesan Appennines, high up in the Parma Valley, just outside the town of Corniglio. The strong point of this restaurant is its choice of ingredients, nearly all of local production: it offers traditional dishes, including the black pig salami (produced in fact by one of the producers in our circuit). You can park in the large square that hosts both the restaurant and the local mountain community organisation headquarters. In the summer, you can also enjoy the swimming pool next door to the restaurant, but please note that the road that leads to the restaurant is on a steep slope.
@Ginepreto – panorama dall’agriturismo
- You can find the Ginepro in the town of Castelnuovo de’ Monti, in the Reggiano Appennines, on the road that leads to Carnola from the junction for the Pietra di Bismantova. The restaurant is located in an old farmhouse that offers a superb view of the Pietra di Bismantova and the entire valley. Traditional’s dishes are mountain fare, and the warm and honest atmosphere of the Ginepro Agriturismo fit perfectly with the peace and quiet of the area and its traditional food. Camper parking is free, just beyond the restaurant. The road to the parking is on a slope, and we strongly advise booking in advance, this venue is often completely full.
- We have already mentioned the Valle dei Cavalieri, an important Co-operative in this part of the Reggiana Appennines. Here we are on the Reggiana side of the Enza Valley on the SP15 road that goes from Ramiseto to the Passo del Lagastrello and Succiso, where you will find this restaurant. You can park your camper in the well-lit carpark, and the food are the traditional dishes of the area, including the cheeses that are made in the Co-operative.
- In Montecchio Emilia, in the Enza Valley, we recommend the Osteria al Cavaliere, deep in the green of the countryside. The dishes use the home-made cold cuts of the Salumificio Ziveri, and the home-made produced meats – the bread and pasta on offer is also home-made. For those who love quality traditional Emilia fare, this is an excellent place to park for the night (in the large video-surveilled carpark) and enjoy a quality dinner.
- Osteria del tempo ritrovato in San Genesio in the province of Piacenza, inside the Parco dello Stirone e Piacenziano a few kilometres from Vigoleno, this restaurant is the perfect place to relax, enveloped in the local nature and peace and quiet. The dishes on offer are based on local seasoned and fresh products, all Italian in origin, and the bread and focaccia are made fresh in the kitchen. There is also a range of vegetarian dishes on offer, and we strongly recommend booking in advance.
- La Finestra sul Po, on the bank of the River Po at San Nazzaro in the area of Monticelli d’Ongina, offers a fantastic view of the imposing river, and serves traditional Piacentine fare, particularly its cold cuts and the classic “pisarei e fasò”, and the fresh river fish and eels. From here, you can walk or ride along the river until you reach the the Serafini Island, the only real island on the Po. You can park your camper in the large car-park on the river bank.
Obviously this is only a partial list of all the places where you can park your camper and enjoy an excellent meal in the same place, and so we would be pleased to hear from anyone who has an personal recommendation to add to our little list.