In case you don’t get any tickets for the trackside campsites or you want to camp away from the noise and are willing to commute a little bit, there are some alternative sites not too far from the circuit. For a complete overview a look at www.lescampingsdefrance.com could be useful. The following campsites have been used by some CA members in the past:
Etang des Cheres, F-72220 Teloche, Phone: +33 (0)2392 460 948 (John), E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.bountylemans.com
Just off the N138, app. 4 km south of Mulsanne. Facilities: Clubhouse Restaurant & Bar, 1664 on draft (English Ale London Pride on hand pump over race events), covered lakeside terraces, large lakeside marque, lakeside camping, 6 caravan pitches with power hook ups, parking for camper vans, large secure hard standing car park, new toilets & showers with 24 hour constants hot water. Refurbished this year with “ladies only” facilities like shower, loo and new for 2010 washroom/changing room with UK 13amp power socket. Large wide screen Satellite TV showing the 24 hour race (and other sporting events) & Live Radio Le Mans outside on the terrace. A CA member who stayed there commented:
“Well, we stayed at the Auberge le Bounty this year. Very nice place … Food was great, and there was a nice little bar. Made a nice change from the campsite melee …Recommended to anyone who wants a little more peace with shuttle bus service to and from the circuit.”
For 2011 they offer various packages: a 3 night/4 day package is £ 205 per person, a 4 night/5 day package is £ 235 per person. This comes with a full English breakfast help yourself to toast, juice, tea, evening meal and sweet, one evening a b-b-q without a burger in sight! Guest can use a the free ample shuttle transport (runs Thursday to Sunday), extra days camping can be booked for free (ask them for details). Tent hire per person complete with air bed, camping fees are charged per person whether using single or multi person tents, caravans or campers (small extra charge for electric hook up). The place is under English ownership - owned by Steve and John - and managed by Karen & Dene, the latter is a former Michelin * chef. Full details of those packages can be found on their website. They also cater for fishermen. The place has been recommended be several CA members with good, down to earth British cooking. They cover the MotoGP, The 24 Hour and the Classic under Fat Fish Motor Sport.
Forum comments about Le Bounty”
2011:“Second year at Le Bounty for us, even better than last year with a second shower block added, never queued for a shower (instant hot water) or toilet (constantly clean) once. I've never stayed at the track due to tales of theft/vandalism on PH, but I don't feel I've missed out. Thanks to the free transfers to anywhere at anytime, we watched at Tetre Rouge, Porsche Curves, Mulsanne, Arnage, and the pit straight. Those who attended the PH meet on the Friday will have seen the picturesque setting and secure car park (guarded by Max the Doberman) and maybe sampled the food and ice cold draught beer (not bad at 5 euros a pint), along with 24 hour live race tv coverage in the bar. To finish the weekend they put on an enormous BBQ on Sunday night with the Canadian GP on the tv, fantastic atmosphere in the bar!”
F-72700 Spay, Phone: +33-(0)2 43 21 16 58 or 33, Fax: +33-(0)2 43 21 69 95, Website: www.ville-spay.fr (in French, follow the link to „camping“), 92 places open from 1st April – 31st October
Getting there: It’s about 15 km away from the circuit. To get to the Spay campsite from the circuit pass by the entrance to Maison Blanche heading towards Arnage. At the roundabout turn right, follow the road across the railway line and into the centre of Arnage coming out at the “fountain roundabout”. Turn left at the “fountain roundabout” and follow this road out of the village crossing over two more roundabouts. Continue out of the village for a couple of kilometres to a big crossroads with a signpost indicating a right turn to Spay. Turn right; follow this road under the motorway bridge then a sharp right turn then a narrow single lane bridge over the river. After the bridge you will see a sports centre on the right, the entrance to the campsite is immediately after the sports centre on the right.
As you pull into the campsite, stop at the building on the right which is reception. The manageress speaks no English or other languages, only French, but she is very friendly and tries very hard to help. You will need your passport, a means of paying and a deposit in cash (app. 20 €) for the electronic passkey which operates the vehicle gate at the entrance to the campsite. The price per night is app. 7 – 8 € per person and 2 – 3 € for electricity. The site varies as to whether they allocate you a pitch or let you go off and choose. It is understood that an overflow field is used for the 24 hour car race. The main campsite is a horseshoe shape around the lake in the middle. Pitches are of a good size, and the site is very peaceful although there is some road noise from the adjacent main road.
Facilities: Main Campsite – there is an electricity supply to each pitch which takes a standard camping “blue” Euro plug (not a two pin plug as used on Houx). Power is usually within four or five metres of each pitch. It is not known whether there is an electricity supply to the overflow field. There is a fairly new central block that provides toilets, showers, washing up sinks and laundry sinks. There is no toilet roll provided so take your own. The facilities were all cleaned regularly to a very good standard. There is plenty of hot water in the showers, the washing up sinks and the laundry sinks. There is very little shade, there are a couple of trees but they do not provide much effective shade.
Local village – it is a nice walk (around a kilometre) to Spay village where you will find a bakery (nice chocolate croissants), butchers, pharmacy, bar, café and a small supermarket that has most things you might need.
Booking: In previous years the advertised telephone numbers and fax numbers have been for the Mayor’s office and messages left do not appear to get through. It is also difficult to phone unless your French is pretty good!
From experience it has not been necessary to book in advance, however for the 24 Hours it‘s probably sensible to try.
Rue Abreuvoir, F-72170 Beaumont sur Sarthe, Phone +33(0)2 43 97 01 93, E-Mail: email@example.com
A pleasant municipal site in the centre of the small town of Beaumont sur Sarthe, located about 20 kilometres from the northern edge of Le Mans along the N138 (D338). The pitches are a good size and marked out with hedges. Some of the pitches are well shaded, others in the open. The sanitary facilities are reportedly the best encountered anywhere. The site is adjacent to the River Sarthe, and is very tranquil.
There is a municipal swimming pool located at the entrance to the site, and the centre of the village with cafés, bars and small supermarket is only a few minutes walk. Access for large campers is a bit tricky but manageable (one CA member got in with a car and 7m caravan). A reservation is recommended.
Rue du Port Liberge, F-72500 Vaas, Phone: +33-(0)2 43 46 70 29, Fax +33-(0)2 43 46 17 75, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
A small campsite located in a village at the banks of a river, 33 pitches, electricity, children’s playground It’s approximately 20 km away from the circuit.
F-72220 Écommoy, Phone: +33(0)2 43 42 14 14, E-mail: email@example.com
Écommoy is situated 10 kilometres south of Mulsanne on the D338 (the Tours road). The campsite is a municipal one, well signposted to the left as you enter Écommoy (going south). It has 60 pitches, and is on slightly rising ground, but the pitches are level. The ground is mainly grassed but with slightly sandy areas. Part of the site has marked pitches bound by hedges, whilst other areas are free-format. Most of the pitches are well-shaded. There is a barrier across the entrance operated by a card-key, which you are supplied with after paying. The sanitary block has everything you would wish for, and although it is not new, is kept very clean and tidy. There is also a swimming pool (open air in summer) opposite the site entrance. The site is only a short walk to the centre of the village which has all the usual offerings of a French village – shops, bars etc. Some Le Mans regulars use this site for the duration rather than the ACO sites – it is only a short hop from there to the circuit, and the fees are very cheap. One CA member reported that they do not take reservations.
F-72190 Neuville-sur-Sarthe, Phone: +33 (0)2 43 25 31 82, Fax: +33 (0)2 43 25 38 11, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Website: www.lemanscamping.net
This is a large campsite just 8 miles north of Le Mans. Reports on the web say that this campsite is managed by some Brits and comments found were very positive. Reportedly they are running their own shuttle bus to and from the circuit. There are approximately 100 pitches, some chalets to rent and the usual facilities like water, electricity, sanitary blocks and laundry. They’ve also got an outdoor swimming pool, mini golf and a children’s playground. If you plan to stay there, it’s worth having a closer look at their website (in English and French language); there’s a detailed access map, prices, a lot of other information and an online booking form.
How to get there: It is 8 miles north of Le Mans on the D338 at “Saint Saturnin”. By motorway via A11/A81and A28 take exit N°7, direction Sillé le Guillaume. At the Saint Saturnin traffic lights, just follow the road signs.
F-72460 Sille-Le-Philippe, Phone: +33 (0)2 43 27 51 07, Fax: +33 (0)2 43 89 05 05, E-mail: email@example.com, Website: www.chateau-de-chanteloup.com
They offer lodging in an old French castle and a campsite at reasonable rates, have a look at their website for detailed information and online booking.
How to get there: It’s about 25 km away from the circuit, by the A11 motorway take the gate N°6 “Le Mans Centre Tours”, then direction “Le Mans Centre” and “Savigné l'Evêque” (D 301); from “Le Mans”, direction “Bonnetable” (D 301).
Municipal Camping Site “Le Port”
La Suze sur Sarthe, Phone: +33 (0)2 43 77 30 49, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
A really nice picturesque site with 108 pitches at the side of La Sarthe River, only 200m from town centre and 10 miles from circuit. The site offers calm and rest, with municipal swimming pool, tennis, table tennis and snack bar. If you want a good clean site with a bit of comfort and a toilet with paper, this is a site with a strong recommendation.
One CA member has stayed there the last 10 years, the agency Just Tickets also used it, but it is still quieter and cleaner than some track options - 3 shower blocks. The town has a nice village square, an excellent Super U and a couple of bars, not to mention rail station. Camp site does not have its own web site but does have a warden on site. It has a security fence and barrier system, but closes to car access after 10pm, so after qualification your have to park on the car park outside. All pitches have electric hook ups if required, essential for electric coolers and beers. Rates and a full list of facilities can be found at http://www.francecamping.com/camping-fiche.php?id=4360®ion=Pays%20de%20Loire.