Voted Best Family Festival at the 2013 UK Festival Awards, Camp Bestival is one of the biggest British festivals with a child-friendly attitude. Big name main-stage line ups entertain the parents while a whole host of activities and shows await the children in the Kids’ Gardens, which are sub-divided by age-group. This year’s fancy dress theme is ‘Circus’.
Where: Lullworth Castle, Dorset
When: 31 July-3 August
Tickets: £195 for adults, £20 for 5-10 year olds, free for under 5s.
Winner of the Festival Kidz 2013 Festival of the Year award, Shambala is all about fun, fancy dress and music. A favourite of adult and child, the festival is strewn with interactive games and artworks kids are encouraged to climb on and explore. There’s even a separate family camping area with its own entertainment, workshops, activities and campfire. Campfire sing-alongs and marshmallow toasting optional.
Where: A secret countryside location in Northamptonshire
When: 21-24 August
Tickets: £135.00 for adults, £79 for teens, £35 for kids and free for under 5s.
A festival and four-day camping holiday in one, Lakefest offers watersports ranging from windsurfing to swan rides as well as circus shows, craft workshops and fancy-dress. The music is great for children and adults, with Fun Lovin’ Criminals and Lee Scratch Perry already confirmed for 2014.
Where:Croft Farm Waterpark, Gloucestershire
Tickets:£100 for adults, £10 for teens and free for under 11s. Dogs welcome.
Sunrise Celebration (sunrisecelebration.com)
Twice voted Best Festival by Green Parent Magazine, Sunrise celebration is famous for its safe and family-friendly atmosphere. A fun fair of a festival, it’s complete with a giant helter skelter, fairground ride, a safe toddlers’ area and a teen zone with a skate ramp. There will also be a host of workshops for kids, from basket weaving to learning about home-grown food.
Where: Gilcombe Farm, Bruton
When: 29 May-1 June
Tickets: adult £99, age 16-17 £70, age 5-15 £35, family £255
Cornbury Festival (cornburyfestival.com)
Cornbury Festival is a welcoming wonderland for children and packs in storytelling, yoga, parachute games, a ventriloquist show, Punch & Judy, face painting, mask making, arts and crafts, clay modelling, the Orange Hat Puppet Show and circus skills African dance workshops.
Where: Great Tew Park, Great Tew
When: 4-6 July
Tickets: adult £170-£310, age 13-16 £89-£185, age 3-12 £30-£83
No matter which festival you choose to attend, make sure you go prepared. Get your hands on a tent big enough for the whole family, or purchase a few smaller ones. Decide your festival meal plan and prepare accordingly by taking a camping stove, plastic cutlery and utensils if you’re going to be making your own meals. Last, but not least, take appropriate lightweight clothing which will dry quickly and invest in sensible outdoor wear for the whole family for those intrusive summer showers. Because you can never predict the great British weather, also remember to stock up on plenty of sun cream.
Carrie Morris is a mother of three boisterous boys and an avid music lover. She enjoys blogging about family holidays and entertainment for kids.