Awesome Festival Bucket List
There’s a whole heap of festivals out there, all vibrant, exciting and diverse in there own way. They display local cultures that are often magically intertwined with myth, they bring people together of different backgrounds and are generally an amazing excuse for a outrageous party.
We’ve put together this post as a personal bucket list challenge to tick off in the next 12 months and to also ignite any spark of imagination you might have. A lot of these festivals are cheap and during ‘office worker friendly hours’, so on the weekend or bank holidays. We hope to see you at some of them!
Cheese Rolling Festival
Where: Cooper’s Hill, Gloucestershire
When: May 29th (Bank Holiday Monday!)
How Much: Free & maybe a broken leg.
You want outside the box? Then look no further. Every year hundreds of mad bastards hurl themselves down Cooper’s Hill in pursuit of a wheel a Double Gloucester cheese. The rules are simple – whoever gets to the bottom first wins the cheese and eternal glory.
After browsing the cheese forums ThreeGuys came across an epic tale of 2 cheese rolling titans. Stephen Gyde (a.k.a Greatest of All Time) holds the world record by winning 20 cheeses over 14 years. While plucky new comer Chris Anderson (The Rocky Balboa of our story) is snapping at Stephens heels with his record of 17 cheeses over 12 years. This year will be pivotal for his shot at the creamy title and ThreeGuys will be there to cheer him and on and maybe even participate.
This event is totally free, all you have to do is make your way to the top of the hill and make yourself known to the organisers. We’ll be in Bristol that weekend for Love Saves The Day Music Festival, so we intend to take the convenient 45 minute drive North on the bank holiday Monday.
Click HERE for the authoritative and official cheese rolling website.
Where: Anglesey, North Wales
When: 8th – 12th June
How Much: £100+ depending on ticket release.
“Absolutely stunning!” This pretty much sums up how ThreeGuys feel about this spectacular boutique EDM festival on the Isle of Anglesey, a normally tranquil spot in North Wales. The festival itself takes places around an archaic estate which is complete with a lake surrounded by idyllic woodland. It’s also only a stone’s throw from Porth Trwyn beach if you fancy a brisk dip in the black waters of the Irish sea.
The festival doesn’t get too overcrowded and there’s a nice flow between the beautifully crafted stages. Last year I partied under a huge wooden owl, a sci-fi laser tent and inside crazy small rum shacks in the woods; these guys undoubtedly pull out all the stops! Don’t get me wrong, the festival is heavy on techno, house and soul but if that’s your thing then prepare for musical masterclasses from the best.
If you’re travelling from London it’s a fair old journey, but one you won’t forget as you snake along the picturesque North Welsh coastline. At the time of writing there are still resale tickets available from the official Gottwood page, click HERE for website!
The Calcio Storico Fiorentino
Where: Florence, Italy
When: Two semifinals are played between four teams on 11th and 12th June. The Final is played on June 24th at 5pm
How Much: 22 to 53 Euros. From 11am on Friday 3rd June you can purchase tickets locally at Box Office Toscana points, click HERE for locations.Here’s the full list of locations.
Now as you can expect, the Italians take their equivalent of the Royal Shrovetide Football Match to another level with their usual pomp and style. Whereas the English equivalent takes 8 hours and has a very blurred set of rules, the Italians put pen to paper and officiated their rules in 1580 thanks to the rich Florentine Count Giovanni de’ Bardi. Like the rest of Florence, little has changed since the 16th century, apart from the addition of the odd pair of Nike trainers. Even the Piazza Santa Croce is annually covered in dirt to recreate the historic atmosphere.
Each team consists of 27 members dressed in classical attire who then attempt to throw the ball over a designated spot at the opposing end of the field. (Expect to see ruthless violence, more suited to a boxing ring than a stadium). There is a main referee, six linesmen and a field master. Each game is played out for 50 minutes, the winner being the team with the most points or “cacce” scored. Unfortunately tourists are not invited to play, however if your a lover of culture and/or sport this looks like a peach of an outing! ThreeGuys are in Italy in late June and if you make it to the glorious city of Florence we may just see you there.
Where: Edinburgh, Scotland
When: 04 – 28 August 2017
How Much: Up to you
Having not been artsy theatrical kids at school there was never a burning desire to visit the fringe. Throughout our teens we were more interested in planning trips to beer festivals. But now in our twenties the idea of performing arts, stand up comedy, spoken word, cinema and street performers sounds incredible; time’s a funny thing.
Even if you don’t want to fork out for prepaid shows a lot of entertainment is 100% free and completely spontaneous. So if you can get up there and get a pillow under your head there’s no excuse!
Click HERE for the official website.
La Tomatina, Valencia
Where: Valencia, Spain
When: 30th August
How Much: From €99 upwards.
I really can’t explain it, but somewhere deep down I think we all have an primal urge to hurl fistfuls of tomatoes at strangers. It’s been crowned the ‘world’s largest food fight’ and it looks like absolute carnage. There’s even a greased pole with a joint of ham at the top which you can keep should you climb it… Now doesn’t that sound like a fun day out.
This annual festival happens on the last Wednesday of August in the small Spanish town of Bunol, near Valencia. You need a ticket for this event which you can buy from clicking HERE, but it does seem reasonably priced if you’re strapped for cash. The best deal we’ve spotted is €159 which will get you 3 nights accommodation, shuttles and entry to the festival, but they’ll also be lots of great value AirBnB’s in Valencia to take advantage of too.
Where: Black Rock Desert, Nevada
When: August 27th – September 4th
How Much: £350 plus
We first heard about this festival on the white beaches of Cambodia back in 2013 from a young hippy travelling couple from LA. They told tall tales of giant wooden statues in the desert, ferocious sand storms and half naked desert pixies and ever since it’s captured our imaginations thus a worthy feat in our bucket list.
According to what we’ve heard money is prohibited within the festival and partygoers are encouraged to bring enough food, drink, shelter, and whatever else to share around, with the idea that if everyone brings enough they’ll be more than enough to go round. Another factor that separates this festival from the rest is it’s inhospitable and remote setting in the Black Rock Desert. The area is a dust bowl of lava beds and salt flats that you’re more likely to associate with Stanley Yelnats from Holes then carefree times and cosmic sized parties. The baron and stark surroundings probably make the whole experience sweeter and truly reflect what an amazing festival that’s been forged from literally nothing but good ideas.
Tickets are still available but will be running out fairly soon due to expected popular demand. The best deals we spotted is if you purchase 5 tickets at a time from StubHub. This is definitely guaranteed to set you back a few quid, but will be 100% worth it if you can.
World Gurning Championship
Where: Egremont, Cumbria
When: 15th September 2017
How Much: Very Cheap
Every year at the Egremont Crab Fair a spectacularly strange competition takes place, The Gurning World Championship. Contestants have to contort their faces into grotesque positions with a horse collar around their neck (known as a ‘braffin’). Like other archaic traditions the origin is mythical and amazingly wacky. Our favourite of them all recounts a drunken farmer coming home to an unhappy and angry wife, to which he shouted “stop gurning woman” and placed a horse collar around her neck, making her face contort even more; a tradition was born.
This bizarrely wonderful championship is the most famous spectacle in the Egremont Crab Fair which spans over the whole weekend. Besides the gurning there are so many other intriguing events such as Pipe Smoking, Street Racing, Cumberland Wrestling (photo below) and a Greased Pole, which can bag you a side of mutton should you climb it. This year is a particularly special one as it marks the 750th year anniversary since the fair started in 1267, making it one of the oldest in the world.
We’ve looked online and it seems largely free but we’ll give you all the full review when we go in September. If you want to find out find out more HERE’S the link to the official website.
Royal Shrovetide Football Match
Where: Ashbourne, Derbyshire
When: 13th & 14th February 2018
How Much: Completely Free
Admittedly at ThreeGuys we’re bigger fans of oval balls than round ones, however this football match isn’t your ordinary Sunday League stuff and grabbed our full attention. There are hundreds of players , the goal posts are 3 miles apart, the pitch is the suburbs of a rural market town and the game lasts over 8 hours! Players are allowed to kick, carry or throw the ball, but tends to move about in a giant rugby-like maul until it reaches an opponents goal zone. Hands down our favourite rule that we came across simply states “no manslaughter”.
This medieval football match has been played between two rival towns in Derby for around 800 years, although the origins are debated and intertwined with gory stories of served heads. Either way this is an amazing historic festival of randomness which we love.
The two teams named the Up’Ards and the Down’Ards battle it out over 2 consecutive days before the start of Lent. If you’re not a pedigree Uppy or Downy then don’t worry as tourists are invited to play and we’ll see you there for the derby!
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We hope you’ll have as much fun at some of these events as we will. If you’ve got any questions, suggestions for our bucket list or just want to get in touch then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Stay tuned for more adventures and #getlostliving.
Peace and Love,
ThreeGuys Guide xxx