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Festivals Feature – Glastonbury

With the first ‘Festival’s Feature’ post out of the way, we’ve moved on to the hugely anticipated Glastonbury Festival!

Number 2 on our list of the 6 best world festivals to visit this summer, read on to find out everything you could possibly need to know about this massive festival in Somerset, England. If you’re backpacking across Europe, this is definitely one we’d recommend you experience. You won’t find anything else like it.

world festivals for backpackers calendar

GLASTONBURY - England

When is it?

22-26 June 2016

What is it?

Glastonbury Festival is the largest greenfield festival in the world and is attended by rising numbers of people every year. +175,000 people converge on Pilton in Somerset to watch contemporary music, dance, comedy, theatre, circus, performing arts and cabaret. The festival gets extensive coverage from TV and newspapers and is eagerly awaited all year long by those with tickets.

When did it start?

Unbelievably this festival started all the way back in 1914! Back then it was a little bit more demure with a series of concerts and classical recitals in the town of Glastonbury, all set up by the classical composer Rutland Boughton. Next came Pilton Festival in 1970 which was heavily influenced by hippie ethics and the free festival movement of the time. Since then the festival has been held intermittently and has grown in size enormously with news areas and tents constructed to support the growing number of attendees. Glastonbury Festival is now held every year (save for the odd year when the land and local people are given a break), with huge emphasis put on the music side with big names such as Beyonce and Coldplay performing. Alongside this the festival still maintains elements of its historical traditions such as the Green Futures and Healing Fields sections. Glastonbury also ensures it donates to various charities, for example in 2015 hundreds of discarded wellington boots were donated to the migrant camp at Calais.

glastonbury festival logo

What other things can I do in Somerset?

Somerset is a rural area but this doesn’t mean there isn’t lots to do. It’s a very old historical area of the UK, so if you’re interested in history this is definitely a great place to be. Of course it’s best known for the various festivals, attractions, days out and carnivals held throughout the year. Visit caves and museums, experience evening carnivals, see stunning English landscape for miles in Exmoor National Park, and visit the many towns and villages in the area. You can go cycling if you like something more active or if you’re a foodie you can sample some of the finest food and drink in the country at local markets. If you’re sticking around before or after Glastonbury Festival, you won’t be short of things to things to do!

Don't forget...

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Have you ever been to Glastonbury? What was your favourite part?

Feel free to share this post and help others decide whether to make it one of the stops on their trip of a lifetime!

Our next post will be all about the Body Painting Festival in Austria in July!

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