Festival Camping Essentials
It's easy to get super excited when planning your festival experience that you forget just how much you should probably take in order to enjoy it to the full. Get this right at the beginning and you'll be able to enjoy your festival experience without having to splash out on-site for things you've forgotten or didn't realise you'd need. Here is a list of everything I have taken to the festivals I've been to, including Isle of Wight, Secret Garden Party and Lounge on the Farm.
Click the links for easy festival shopping!Tent inc. Lines, Poles, Groundsheet and Pegs - Make sure you choose a tent that is big enough for both you and your bags..at Lounge on the Farm, myself and my friend made the terrible mistake of taking the world's smallest tent and not having any room for our things...luckily we had a group of friends with a much more spacious tent we could stow our bags in but not ideal! Sleeping Mat/Airbed, Sleeping Bag, Duvet, Pillow - You may not wish to take all of these but if you're like me and love your comforts then a pillow is a absolute must. Torch/Lantern/Batteries/Spare Bulbs - Depending on which style you go for, take spare batteries or bulbs...though wind up torches are great and from experience a torch that has a handle or strap you can hang it from are fantastic for dark trips to the dreaded port-a-loos to make sure you choose a clean one! Toilet Roll, Wet Wipes, Hand Gel, Disinfectant Cleaning Wipes - Talking of port-a-loos, you honestly will be glad you made a 'toilet bag' before you went with all of these essentials because let's face it, the port-a-loos at festivals are DISGUSTING. Festivals are probably the only event you'd ever put up with these levels of uncleanliness...so you've got to try and make it as pleasant as possible for yourself. I recommend taking this bag with you every time you visit one - Go in, wipe the seat with a disinfectant wipe, dry it with some toilet paper, go about your business, then use a combination of the hand washing facilities provided and the hand gel to clean your hands afterwards. You won't be sorry. Also handy tip - if the smell is too much entering a port-a-loo, use a nice scented wet wipe under your nose to help you cope. Ear Plugs/Cotton Wool/Eye-Mask - Festivals are loud all night long activities...when you do decide to sleep, some earplugs will help muffle the sounds of people walking past your tent and music in the distance in the early hours. Also if you're safety conscious and care about your hearing, it's recommended you do this during performances to protect your ears and prevent deafness in time. Eye-masks are good for sleeping until late morning if you want to hide from the sunlight. Towel/Soap/Shampoo/Conditioner/Dry Shampoo/Wet wipes - You may choose to not take some of these, but if you're planning on using on-site showering facilities take some mini shampoo/conditioner/soaps to freshen up with and a towel - you can get fantastic towels that don't take up loads of room in your bag here. If you prefer to make do use wet-wipes to freshen up all over your body and dry shampoo to freshen your hair. I'd recommend not using lots of hair spray and gel before you arrive at a festival or during as these cake your hair and the build-up makes it feel very dirty quickly, it's probably better to be a bit more natural. Toothbrush, Toothpaste, Plastic Cup, Bottle of Water, Tampons, Shaving items, Face-wipes, Pocket Mirror - Delete as applicable. I'd recommend keeping these items together as you'll likely use them every day. With teeth brushing I've learnt it's handy to take a designated cup and some water to make brushing your teeth easy. Make-up, Moisturiser, Hair Brush, Pins, Clips, Hair Bands - One for the girls. Suncream - Tempt the sun gods by being prepared. Spectacles/Sunglasses/Contacts and Solution - You may not need all of these. Contraceptives - Self Explanatory. Clothes - Socks, Tights, Underwear, Shorts, Jeans, Skirts, Dresses, T-shirt, Vests, Jumpers, Bikini - Varies with own personal preference and style, but delete as applicable to make sure you're prepared for all weather and that you have enough spares for muddy accidents and downpours. These may also include tutus, dinosaur costumes and wigs because festivals are a place to escape from every day formalities. Keep an outfit set aside to come home in, especially if you're travelling far you want to be clean and comfortable. Sleeping Clothes - Leopard print onesie? You'll most likely fall asleep in whatever you happen to wearing but a onesie is super warm but can be impractical for toilet visits. Maybe some sleep socks for warm feet. Footwear (Wellies, Trainers, Boots, Sandals etc) - Last year, as girls do, I took a variety of footwear to the Isle of Wight Festival which was completely useless. I practically slept in my wellies because it was so muddy and waterlogged that it was way too precarious to take them off. Chances are, with British weather and thousands of people trampling the ground it's not going to be the place for your best shoes. Don't take anything you don't want to get ruined. If there is good chance of sunshine take a light pair of shoes and a pair of wellies, this is probably all you'll use. Hat, Gloves, Coat - For cold moments and rainy ones. Water Bottles/Bags - Water for drinking, washing, cleaning stuff - you'll be surprised how quickly you'll get through it, you may be able to refill onsite, but queues can be long and venturing out for a drink is inconvenient, so take as much as you can. Bags for rubbish, dirty clothes, plugging holes in the tent, make-shift cape, poncho...the possibilities are endless! Mobile Phone, Charging unit, Camera, Radio, iPod, Speakers - Don't take it if you don't want to lose/break it. But if you have a old iPod or radio hanging about it could enhance your experience when you're relaxing at your tent. I like taking disposable cameras as taking a expensive camera is too risky and the likely hood that you'll look through thousands of photos afterwards is small. Disposables are a bit pricey to develop but at least if you lose them it's nothing to get upset about plus the vintagey film look is all the rage and oh so festival. You're limited to a small number of snaps too so you'll only take considered photographs you want to remember. Medications, Medical Info, Next of Kin info, First Aid Kit - Essential medication such as inhalers, diabetes prescriptions or things like paracetamol and hay fever relief always good to be prepared. If you have any allergies and medical problems that people would need to know, keep these on you in case of emergency as well as details of who to contact. Personal I.D, Travel Tickets, Travel Card, Car Keys, Money, Bank Cards - ID is handy for helping your lost bag finding its way back to you. I found a wallet once and used the driver's license to find the owner on facebook and get their wallet back to them, also an up-to-date address helps so make sure your driving license is current! FESTIVAL TICKET! - Your pass to a fun filled weekend. Other tips: Mark all valuables with your details so they can find their way back to you. Condense your bags as much as possible - Use sites such as Pinterest for some handy ideas. I really like the idea of using a pill organiser to dispense make-up, creams and toothpaste and shampoo into - taking just enough for a couple of days without loads of bottles. This will save you so much space! Roll your clothes instead of folding. Use a really decent waterproof bag for all of your things. Isn't it glorious!?