Groups against 'wild camping' in Portugal

After my post a few days ago about the actions of some local people evicting people in motorhomes from where they were parked I did some research into a couple of online groups that I found that are actively against the ‘wild’ campers in the Villa do Bispo area.

I found that one of these groups openly supports the Chega party, the far-right political party in Portugal. I also found that followers of these groups were not all the environment lovers they claim to be. One of the major sources of complaint has been people parking in the Natural Park overnight, something that is prohibited. The 'anti wild camping' campaigners often say the environment is being ruined because of campervans parking overnight. 

These groups are taking photos and videos of people and their vehicles without their knowledge and posting on social media. They post mostly rather ambiguous pictures of campervans next to litter or just pictures of litter accusing the people in campervans of leaving the litter. They also post pictures of people's vehicles accusing them of being illegal vehicles, accusations that are totally unsubstantiated.

I have recently written to some of the media outlets and motorhome organisations in the Algarve making them aware of the links to the Chega party. I hope that the media stops adding to the far-right populist campaign of hate against foreigners in motorhomes by better research into the actual facts before adding to this narrative that it is ALL and ONLY people in campervans leaving litter, going to the toilet in nature and disrespecting the environment.

I also hope that moving forward there can be better solutions to the problem of parking in the Natural Parks of Portugal. I hope that members of the public will not be drawn into this political circus by the far-right and realise that most people in campervans are decent people who have worked hard to buy themselves some freedom on wheels and are as concerned about the environment as most other people.

Below are screenshots of two of the social media groups I have found who are spreading lies and misleading people with their photos and text.

I would hope that most people are aware this is going on but some do not. Some people who have been photographed or their homes have been photographed will have no idea so please do share this among your van dwelling friends.

Thanks for reading :)


Anonymous said…
Thank you so much for all your efforts to analyze the situation and inform everyone. Very well written and really informative!! May I ask you if you happen to know if there is/ will be new rules soon regarding wildcamping with a motorhome in Portugal? I read that on the internet but to me it is unclear if the new rules will be any different then the old rules and what the effects will be and I am aware of the fact that the effects could even be different from one region to another region. I already spent quite some hours on the internet investigating but could find a decent source yet. Thanks in advance for your feedback, please keep up the good work and hope you're having a marvellous time in Portugal. Warm regards Lou
Sam Van Dweller said…
Thanks for your comment. From what I can make out there has been some clarification going on to do with what is parking and what is camping within the highway code. In Portugal these two things are different and as O have stated in a couple of previous posts on this issue parking and sleeping/eating in a campervan overnight or in the day is legal as long as you are legally parked. The definition of camping needs some clarification as it's obvious things like having chairs & tables out or a washing line but more recently it seems just having a window open can be called camping! At the moment there is nothing new to report but the best website I have found is the Campervan Association of Portugal, the CPA, they have good up to date information. Most pages translate automatically using a browser like Google Chrome but some of the PDFs you need to copy and paste into a translator if your not familiar with Portuguese!
Anonymous said…
Thanks Sam, your reply is greatly appreciated. Again, compliments how your analyze everything and want to inform everyone thoroughly, super!