Festivals will be a little different than they were before kids – when all you needed was a pop-up tent, some sparkly leggings and a case of cider – but, with a little more prep work, they can still be amazing. Here are a few tips to keep it stress-free from someone who has done it all.
1. Lost kids will be found
I should know, I lost one of mine at the main stage one year! He turned up happily 10 minutes later with a piece of pizza and a kind helpful Dad who noticed he was lost!. At Camp Bestival there are many amazing welfare staff dotted around the site should anyone get lost and lots of staff on hand to help should you need it. You’ll also receive kids’ wristbands with your tickets that you write your phone number on and the crowd at Camp Bestival is full of helpful parents. I also give them glow jewellery as it gets dark - bangles headbands etc. It makes them easy to find when dancing in the dark.
2. Go out out
We usually camp in a group where half the parents ‘go big’ on the Friday night while the others take the Saturday. It’s a good chance to let loose and make the most of the amazing music that’s on late. Sometimes all you need is an hour of drum ’n’ bass in the silent disco to feel like yourself again.
3. Get some sleep?
Kids have no respect for people trying to enjoy a lie-in who've stayed up listening to drum ’n' bass all night, even more so other people’s kids in neighbouring tents, so make sure you bring some earplugs. If you’re camping in Dorset, this will also defend your ears from our lovely peacock friend who likes to greet the whole campsite each morning with a loud “Yaaaaaaaaaaawwll!”
4. Take it slow
It’s not all high energy. There’s yoga, meditation and arts and crafts at the festival. It’s well thought out with relaxing entertainment to the start the day. The Slow Motion area hosts meditation workshops (some held by Rob da Bank himself), plus this year there will be ice baths and wild spa’s on site site too – perfect for a bit of relaxing time during the day for all ages too. There are also great areas for the kids to escape to, Lizzie’s Way offers a mud pie heaven where kids can be creative and lose themselves for hours in the woods. If you’ve got a toddler, the early morning acts at the Big Top and The Greatest Tent On Earth! are a way to grab a bit more horizontal time with a coffee while the littles are entertained.
5. Don’t bring too much stuff
In the past I have brought way too much stuff with me to Camp Bestival and I’ve regretted it. My kids end up wearing the same thing for four days anyway. There are shops on-site where you can buy extra camping things and clothes if you need them, including a second-hand costume shop. If in doubt, wear the same outfit and add more glitter!
Article written by Emma Scott-Child.