Hey we are Claire & Nacho

We are an international couple from the USA and Argentina. In 2018, we bought a 1956 Split Bus, “La Tortuga”, and did a full mechanical restoration for two years because we wanted to drive it to the USA.

Our dream had to be postponed too many times and then international travel was canceled until further notice. So instead of waiting, we bought a 1969 tin-top Westfalia in Florida, “The Blue Doobie”, and we are currently living and traveling in it without crossing any borders. Whenever possible, we will go back to Argentina and finish building our Splitty!

Our life mission is...

To live a happy and healthy life, as sustainably as possible, while balancing time with our families on opposite sides of the hemisphere.

Our best Buslife advice

For Nacho: My machete! I bought it in a huge store while traveling in the USA, and I couldn't believe how it could be so cheap. Also, it has a lifetime warranty. So, I use it all the time to collect wood for our campfires.

For Claire: It has to be the cordless blender for smoothies in the morning, that I got her for Christmas. It's super easy to charge and has been the go-to breakfast tool almost every day.

For both of us: An extra can of gas!

Cabo Polonio, Uruguay is a magical place, but it cannot be reached by VW Bus or any other "normal" vehicle. It is a protected area, so people can get to it on a 6x6 truck that drives on specific trails. Once you get to the beaches at the end of the drive, you will want to stay there forever.

I always look under the Bus before even looking inside or around it. The frame has to look rock-solid. It's a good idea to bring a small screwdriver and try to poke holes where it looks rusty to see if it's only surface rust or not.

Everything else can be repaired and probably will be best to slowly repair things even before they fail. If the frame is solid, check for body filler and make sure all the panels are straight all around. Finally, sit on the driver's seat and imagine your favorite road ahead!

Trust me, we almost bought a Bus and when I sat there I realized the owner had modified the seats and I could not fit my head in! Absolute deal-breaker we had never encountered before.

In South America, it's almost impossible to find parts for German buses. However, a lot of parts are interchangeable with parts from buses made in Brazil or Argentina, so you have to talk to people and if possible bring a sample to compare each thing. Usually, the community will also help you figure out how to adapt parts from other vehicles or even connect you with someone who can bring them from abroad. However, in the USA, a quick internet search will get you any part you need!

Being able to wake up in different unique places is an unforgettable experience. For example, in the past 10 days, we woke up in front of the natural springs in Northern Florida, the Caribbean Ocean in the Keys, an alligator swamp/river in the middle of nowhere, and who knows where we will end up next! We are constantly in contact with nature, wildlife, and unbelievable locations. So, we get to choose to stay or leave if we don't feel comfortable in a location. This season, we drove South so we can still swim in the ocean even in the middle of "winter"!

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