This Aire located in the village of Grenay, Nord Pas de Calais, Northern France is provided by the Mairie (town hall) for campervans and motorhomes. This is a great place to park for free WiFi, for up to two nights. Plus, you get other services thrown in, practically free.
Overview of Aire at Grenay (A great place to park for free WiFi)
This Aire is set between a car park and a small public park next to the village church. There is landscaped parking for three motorhomes or campervans.
It is located behind a wooden gate that is not locked. Entrance is through the car park next to the main road.
We stayed for two nights (the maximum one is supposedly allowed to). On one occasion a fourth campervan found a space to park as the area is spacious.
As one would expect from an Aire, certain services are provided. In this case drinking water for refilling tanks and cleaning toilets. Also, grey waste water disposal, (but not brown that we could see).
Water is provided by means of a token, which you put in a slot. Tokens are provided by local businesses a way to get you to shop there. We bought two croissants from the bakery immediately opposite and when we enquired about tokens, the lady simply asked if we wanted one or two. Of course, we asked for two.
One token seemed to give ten minutes or so of drinking water the first time we used it. The second time however, the push tap worked without putting a token in. It’s possible a previous user had not used all their allowance, although we had at least ten minutes of water, once again.
The signage outside the entrance gate also claims that electricity is provided. This is not the case. It looks as if there is space for electric points in the ground but these have not been built.
However, unusually for a publicly provided service in Northern France, Grenay is a great place to park for free WiFi
WiFi is provided by Orange and it is fast. The catch is you have to sign in every half an hour. all you need is a name and email address. You can keep signing in infinitely. The first couple of times I tried it wouldn’t let me and Lou had a problem connecting but on the whole it worked very well.
It should be noted that the spaces for campervans and motorhomes at this Aire border immediately with a public park. We ate our meals on the park benches. However, there were ‘park drinkers’ and groups of youths congregating in the evening which gave the area a slightly seedy feel. The morning we left, Police were searching the park!
There is a ‘friterie’ in the car park serving ridiculous portions of chips. It is open in the evening until about 9 or 10pm.
There is an Aldi approximately ten minutes walk away and a typical ‘Bar Tabac; that appeared to open in the middle of the day only.
There is a rail station nearby called Bully-Grenay.
Type of parking:
Landscaped, centre of village, next to park
Water refills (tokens from local businesses), grey water disposal, WiFi
Cycling on roads, dog walking, walking, picnicking
How did we find about it:
On the Park4night app.