Sunday, 8 May 2016

My Top 5 Family Festival Wishlist

In my mind, one of my absolute favourite things to do is to take my family to a family friendly festival.

Lakefest festival with friends 2015
The extra freedom that it gives my children, the outdoor space, the weird and wonderful activities on offer, and the chance to catch some of my favourite bands makes it a blissful experience. The family festivals also tend to be a lot more affordable than some of the more large mainstream ones so it can be a really cheap way to take your children on holiday especially if you buy the tickets early. 

My children can't wait until their next festival experience and I really do think it broadens their horizons. 

We have been very lucky in recent years and have made it to a number of festivals which are family friendly. Some are better than others so I thought I would list some of favourites as well as some that I want to go to in the future. 

1, Wychwood festival

Wychwood festival 2015

We discovered this little gem in 2014, and it was so good that we went back last year.  The things I love about this festival is that there is a whole field dedicated to family friendly activities so it literally means the little ones are entertained all day. 

The fact that it is on Cheltenham racecourse means the grounds are super family friendly as there are concrete paths and everything is flat. They also let you take your car to the camp site to unload which is essential if you have little ones. I have learnt this the hard way. 

It is also nice and quiet when it gets late as all the music stops by midnight but they do have a silent disco, comedy tent and poetry tent if you want to stay up late. I would highly recommend the poetry tent- its always quiet but you see some brilliantly funny people. 

The line up is always good and Mr Tumble is a regular performer, which goes down well with the kids.  We really hope we can go back this year to make more happy memories.

2, Standon Calling

We decided to go to this festival last year as it had one of my favourite bands- The Dandy Warhol's- playing. I was a little bit hesitant as it was in Hertfordshire so a long distance from sunny Wales, and a long journey for the kids- about 4 hours with traffic delays. 

Standon Calling kids club 2015

It was definitely worth it though. The main area was really quirky and had a wild west theme. There was also a fantastic children's area with loads for the kids to do. We particularly liked the science shows and making a home made rocket was good fun. One highlight was the fact that there was a kids club every morning in the family camping field, which was brilliant.

Another highlight is that there is an outdoor swimming pool that is free to use but we didn't get to use it as there was a long wait when we tried. The fancy dress that people were wearing was also the best I had ever seen- a lot of effort went into it. 

The only downsides were that you can't take your car onto the camp site and it was a fair old trek carrying lots of stuff to the family field. The camping fields are also on very hilly ground so its difficult to push pushchairs and walk with the kids after a long day as its very steep. There is also a lot of noise at night as there seems to be dance music playing all night so take some earplugs!

Having said all that, we really enjoyed our weekend so I would definitely go back. 

3, Lakefest

We have been to Lake fest 3 times and have loved it every time. It is a small festival but is due to relocate this year as it needs a bigger site due to its success. 

The site also has a small family field with lots going on, and has a really friendly feel. The camp site is right next to the car park so setting up is not a problem. The size of  the festival has been a real bonus as it's easy to get around and it also has free hot showers.

One of the big highlights is the beautiful boating lake which means you can go out on a pedalo or watch the sunset.

The main stage is under cover so that's a bonus if it is raining but we have been really lucky with the weather every time we have been.

The only downside for me is the amount of expensive fair ground rides there. Inevitably this means the kids moaning to go on rides all weekend and my wallet being significantly lighter!

I am hoping the new bigger site won't detract from what we love about Lakefest, and it will continue to offer family friendly fun. 

4, Kaya festival

This is a festival that we have never actually been too but we would love to go. Last year it clashed with our family holiday but this year we really hope we can make it. That was the first year it was held but it is back this year so that's a good sign!

It is very local for us, as its based in the beautiful Margam Country park which is 30 minutes away. It is a world music festival which is right up my street as I love listening to diverse music and experiencing different cultural sounds. 

The festival is very affordable with super early bird weekend camping tickets priced at £55 which is an absolute steal. These have now sold out but you can still pick up an early bird ticket for £79 for the weekend. Children up to 15 go free which is fantastic as there is usually a charge for children aged 5 and over at other family festivals. 

They seem to have lots on offer for families including a circus, story telling workshops, mad science workshops and lots more. 

Kaya is definitely top of our festival wishlist this year!

5, The Green Man festival

We went to the Greenman back in 2013 and have always wanted to go back with the children. It was just me and my ex when we went and we had a great time but I remember thinking that the family field looked wonderful.

The best thing about this festival is its setting. It is set in the Brecon Beacons in breathtaking scenery, which I still remember to this day. Its also not far away which is also a bonus when taking the kids. 

 The line up is also always great with a good mix of left field artists and different stages. 

The little folk area has lots on offer for families and there is also a dedicated family camping field.

The downsides are that its very expensive compared to some of the other family festivals but children under 5 are free and those aged 5-12 are only charged £20. There is also a fair walk to the main camp sites but I think this is not the case when you go to the family camping field. 

I definitely hope that my kids get to experience it one day. 

I really would encourage anyone with children to take them to one of these festivals. I promise you will have a pleasant surprise!


  1. Brilliant post. I've always wanted to take my kids to festival. This has definitely given me food for thought x

  2. This was such an interesting read, I must say that out of all the festivals I have been to, the most family friendly one I have seen was probably Latitude, which has quite a large area of the site dedicated to children, you should definitely check it out :)

  3. I have always wanted to go to Greenman. I think the 2000 Trees Festival is child friendly too and there always seems heaps to do in Glastonbury.

    Tea in the Tub

    1. I have been to Glastonbury without children and the scale of it does scare me slightly. I have visions of losing the kids! 2000 Tree's does sound good

  4. I'm desperate to go to a festival as a family this year so this post has been a great help for me. I hadn't heard of any of them except the green man festival x

    1. Green man is awesome and beautiful, but it is a tad pricey. For a more affordable option which is also really local to South Wales, check out Kaya festival


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