An American’s Guide to Visiting the Best UK Festivals

In the US, we’re no strangers to music festivals. There are countless fantastic festivals up and down the country, including events like Coachella, Lollapalooza, SXSW, and even Burning Man, to name a few. But across the Atlantic, our friends in the UK also get to experience some world-class festivals and visiting some of these festivals should be at the top of every music fanatic’s bucket list. To give you a bit of guidance in navigating the world of UK festivals, we’ve put together a handy guide to help you find the right one for you and enjoy the journey.

Choose A Destination
It’s worth noting that, due to the size of the UK, in comparison to the US, wherever you go, it won’t be that hard to reach anywhere in the country. That being said, if you decide to stay in Scotland somewhere such as Edinburgh, reaching the Glastonbury festival down south will still take you over 7 to 8 hours in the car. You can, of course, take an internal flight, but this is going to be costly. Ideally, you’ll want to stay somewhere nearby the festival that you’ve chosen to reduce your travel time, and it’s worth remembering that traffic can get very slow during these events, potentially adding hours to your travel time. Be prepared for this and book your accommodations early so that you don’t struggle to find somewhere to stay during the festival.

Plan Ahead
While it’s possible to get access to certain festivals while you’re in the country, the chances are you’re going to want to buy your tickets well before your journey starts. As with many of the festivals over here, they can be all sold out within minutes as soon as tickets are released. Once you’ve managed to get your tickets to a particular festival, whether it’s your first or second choice, then you can begin to plan the rest of your visit to the UK. To make the most of your visit, you’ll want to arrange some other visits around the area you choose to stay in, whether that is cultural visits around London or other major cities, or even some pleasant trips around the UK countryside, taking in the beautiful scenery.

Enduring The Travel
As you may or may not know, the flight from the US to the UK is going to be a long one. A non-stop flight from New York to London is going to take you nearly 7 hours, and then you’re going to have to account for wait times in the airport and drive time on both sides to and from the airports. All in all, you might be spending an entire day of travel to get to your destination, so it’s smart to be prepared for this. Bring some form of entertainment with you, whether it’s a handheld games console or a book. Don’t forget to download plenty of podcasts and music onto your phone, too, for the inevitable moments you have no internet access. You could also play online games on your phone, including online casino games, for some added excitement. Make sure you choose well-respected sites by doing a bit of added research. You can find real money roulette reviews on the Online Casinos website, for example, and get yourself some bonuses for these casino sites too. Remember that gambling on these sites comes with a risk, so be cautious and stop playing once you’re no longer having fun.

Glastonbury
Being one of the most iconic festivals in the world, it makes sense to discuss this one first. If possible, this one should probably top your list, but be extra proactive when trying to get a ticket. Not only will you see some of the world’s top artists and bands gracing the stages of this prestigious event, but you’ll also find many niches and new acts playing around some of the many smaller stages around the festival. It’s worth noting that many people stay at the festival itself for the entire weekend, setting up a tent and taking in the days-long party atmosphere. If this isn’t your speed, however, you could try to arrange accommodation outside of the festival grounds. However, you should again try to arrange this early to ensure that you’ll have somewhere to stay. You’ll find a number of apartments and private rooms in the nearby town of Glastonbury itself or other nearby towns such as Wells or Bridgwater. 

Isle Of Wight Festival
Usually taking place the weekend before Glastonbury, the Isle of Wight Festival boasts some of the UK’s hottest acts, showcasing the best the country has to offer as well as hosting global superstars. In fact, this is the first festival to exist in the UK and was started in 1968. It has been at the forefront during many of the country’s cultural and musical shifts and has hosted everyone from legendary artists such as Jimi Hendrix and John Lennon to iconic bands such as Kasabian and Queen. The Isle of Wight itself is an especially delightful place to visit. Being situated off the south coast of England, this small island boasts some quaint UK coastlines and some idyllic seafront townhouses, many of which operate as bed and breakfasts for the summertime. Reading And Leeds Festivals
These two events are by no means geographically related; however, they take place at the same time and are hosted by the same company. Leeds itself is situated in Yorkshire in the north of England, whereas Reading is a historic town to the west of London. Due to being hosted at the same time in late August, a big part of your decision here is going to be your preferred location. You can find some of the world’s best at these two events, but luckily, most artists will play at both festivals just on different days! When choosing which one to go to, however, it’s important to consider a number of factors. There are many reasons as to which festival is better than the other. These reasons include everything from transport links and facilities to curfew times and the overall vibe of the event and the partygoers themselves. It’s worth noting that Leeds festival is held quite far from the city of Leeds itself, making access to your lodgings a bit more difficult, whereas you can practically walk to Reading from the festival. However, this is the reason why Reading has a curfew to placate residents.

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