Since we bought Dolly, our first caravan, we’ve been on a mission to find the absolute must have caravan accessory.
Now I’m not talking basics — and I’m not disputing that wheel chocks and beautiful melamine plates are ‘must have’ items — but I’ve been on the look-out for something a little different, that really makes our tiny box on wheels feel like a proper home-from-home.
And we’ve finally found it!!!
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you…
The most simple and genius idea that ever there was; it’s made sleeping in our caravan as comfortable as sleeping in our own bed at home. And — as I’ve spoken about how much I love our bed — that’s a pretty impressive accolade.
We have so many friends who’ve got campervans, caravans and motorhomes but out of a fairly sizeable group of camping enthusiasts — and festival goers — only one couple actually had one and the rest hadn’t even heard of a Duvalay.
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What is a Duvalay and Why is it the Must Have Caravan Accessory?
Basically it’s a sleeping bag with a twist
1. The Duvalay Comes in its Own Bag.
Similar to the bed-in-a-bag, that we use for sleepovers, but the Duvalay is lighter and more compact when it’s not in use.
2. The Duvalay is a Mattress Topper
Perfect, as the majority of caravan beds — particularly in old vans like Dolly — are not generally the comfiest of things.
I guess a fixed bed may be a little more so. But when you have to make up a bed out of a selections of sagging seat cushions — with seams or buttons digging into your back in the middle of the night — it’s invariably going to err on the side of uncomfortable.
You can see from the pictures above, our bed in Dolly in made up of four seat cushions.
Before we had our Duvalays, we’d just pop a fitted sheet over the cushions then sleep with our own duvet — or a flat sheet in summer — over the top. Needless to say, it wasn’t the comfiest of beds.
Good job spending time in the great outdoors and taking in lots of fresh air is a sleep enhancer!!
This is where the Duvalay comes into it’s own.
Its comfy, memory foam, mattress topper — encased in it’s own (removable) fitted sheet — can be rolled out on the top of your caravan bed, to give the best night’s sleep.
3. The Duvalay Comes Complete with an Integral Duvet.
No faffing with separate bedding — having to remember to bring your duvet from home — when you go camping. The only thing you need to remember is your pillow.
It’s nothing short of genius.
Why every caravan — or motorhome — owner doesn’t have one of these is beyond me.
Particularly as it’s so easy to roll away when it’s not in use.
We used to end up with our gigantic super-kingsized duvet taking up half the seating area, before we had the Duvalays. These days we can roll up our bedding in a compact bag and stow away when we don’t need it. It’s win-win all round.
They’ve completely transformed the quality of our sleep, when we’re in Dolly.
We used them for the first time when we went to Camp Bestival and have been excitedly telling every caravan owner we know about them ever since.
To say we’re a little bit obsessed would be an understatement.
What is Duvalay made from?
A Duvalay consists of a mattress topper base; made from high quality memory foam (or cooling FreshTec foam) and an integral duvet.
How Do you Wash a Duvalay?
The Duvalay covers are made from polycotton and are completely removable — and washable. You can pop them on a 40° wash — no bleaching — and they come out as good as new!
The Duvalay site recommends ironing at a low temperature but — to be honest — I’ve either put ours in the tumble drier (or on the washing line) and theres been no need to iron them.
The Touring Caravan Must Have
If you own — or regularly hire — a caravan, motorhome or boat and to be honest they’d probably even work well in a tent (although don’t quote me on that — tents and I have never been friends!) you NEED one of these in your life.
On a par with chocolate. It really is that good!
The Duvalay is the caravan accessory that dreams are made of.
Caro Davies is a former art-director turned writer and content-creator, and editor behind UK lifestyle blog The Listed Home. She writes about home-related topics, from interiors and DIY to food and craft. The Listed Home has been featured in various publications, including Ideal Home, Grazia, and Homes & Antiques magazines.