The Summer festival season is almost upon us, and those much sought after Electric Picnic, Longtitude, and Sea Sessions tickets have hopefully been purchased! Festivals just spell Summer. There is nothing quite like the Summer festival vibe, the bands, the sun (hopefully), drinks, camping, and of course the festival wear. Electric Picnic is probably Ireland’s premier Summer festival, with Sea Sessions and LIFE etc tallying closely behind it. No matter what your festival of choice is for Summer 2016, you will need to be very prepared heading along to a camping festival.
Having attended many of these camping festivals over the years, I have learned the do’s and don’ts the hard way! So i thought I would compile my own checklist. This should help you out in deciding exactly what to bring, what to leave at home, and a few tricks to make that all important weekend the highlight of your Summer!
Wipes.. I cannot stress this enough. Fair enough, the thought of having a shower is a beautiful one but the reality is that the queue is so bloody long that you will just have to give up on that dream. Baby wipes are a must, and tonnes of them, and they are so versatile, that you will find more than one use for them before the weekend is out.. Trust me !
Flag… Why a flag you ask? Because amidst a sea of Argos bought tents, and with a few drinks onboard, believe it or not your tent is not that easy to locate (not speaking from personal experience or anything!). Bring a flag, one that’s easy to distinguish, plonk it outside your tent, and hope to bejaysus that nobody takes a liking to it in the middle of the night!Always great to have a landmark to direct your friends towards to.
Rain gear.. We live in Ireland folks, and although the little dresses, and crop tops you packed may look beautiful the reality is that they might not see the light of day! Most festivals give out free ponchos which will turn out to be your lifesaver, however it is no harm to hit Penneys or Dunnes Stores before you leave to pick up a good rain coat etc. Just be prepared for the battle of the elements!
Toilet Roll... JUST BRING IT! You will need it, they always run out in the cubicles. In my experience, it also acts as a handy tool to cover your mouth and nose by about the Saturday of the festival. If you are a seasoned campaigner like myself, you will know what I am talking about. If you are a festival virgin, I won’t go into detail. Head for the cubicles armed with lots of toilet paper.. You’re welcome!
A fold up camping chair… A must have! Surprisingly, an item that people tend to forget when packing. A chair is a god-send as the ground gets wet, and it adds a little bit of welcome comfort to your camping experience! Get one with a drink holder if possible! They are really compact, and easy to carry and can be bought at Argos, Woodies, etc.
Dry Shampoo… One for the ladies. Dry Shampoo is a little piece of heaven amidst a campsite that resembles something of a third world slum by Saturday morning. It freshens your hair up nicely, and will keep your hair looking it’s best for the long weekend.
Antibacterial Gel… So important! It freshens your hands up nicely after using the yucky loo’s. A simple addition to your bag for the whole weekend too. Cheap as chips in most pharmacies. Get on it!
Painkillers… You don’t want a nasty headache or stomach upset to ruin your weekend of round the clock partying, so pack essential medication just in case!
Water… We all tend to get very carried away with our alcohol list heading off to a festival, but water is an essential. You will more than likely be partaking in the consumption of alcohol for three days straight so you will need to stay hydrated. Just pack it, and lots of it. The trek to the campsite on the first morning can be nasty, but I find the mini packs of water bottles to be fantastic, and easy to carry!
Pillow… I know of many who forego bringing along the all important pillow in favour of stuffing as much booze as possible into their bags, but do not underestimate the power of a comfy pillow for your tent. I find travel pillows to be great, and easy to carry, or alternatively bring a pillow case and fill it with some soft clothes and hoodies to help you get a better night’s rest.
Snacks… It is so handy to have little snacks packed for the weekend, such as cereal bars, or perhaps some fruit. They keep you going throughout the afternoon, and late at night in between meals.
A charging pack… Very handy item for when your phone runs out of juice. Happens the best of them every year, and people miss out on photo opportunities, or even the luxury of being able to tell the time! They can be picked up online or at most phone stores, check them out and bring one along! A great investment.
Rolling Mat… Perfect for camping. The ground can be really hard, and a rolling mat adds some ease to your sleeping. Nice coloured foam versions can be found in most outdoor shops, or discount stores and are super easy to carry into the camping sight as they are light!
A warm jumper… When the sun goes in (if you have been that fortunate) the evenings can get very chilly. Standing around the mainstage for hours on end, or heading onto the woods at night can be a cold feat, so wrap up. Bring a wooly jumper, or hoody to add layers in the evening. A must. Forget about looking on point at night, as you will in no uncertain terms be absolutely feckin freezing 🙂
Wellies… They may not look a million dollars, but in order to make your weekend as stress-free as possible, just pack them! I purchased a fab pair of ankle wellies in a patent red for last years EP, and they did the trick.. or as a good friend named them ‘Schwellies’..A cross between a shoe and a wellie!! Love it!
Plastic bags…So versatile. Underwear, rubbish, wet clothes etc, plastic bags are the buisness! If it gets really wet, they also act as an extra cover over your wellies!
Socks… Bring tonnes of socks and fresh underwear! That monsoon like shower that may occur over the weekend will see to it that all of the above are used!
Mirror… Girls, the mirror is a must! Chances are you will be applying make-up in a tent with poor lighting, so pack a small mirror to ensure you can actually see what you are doing! It may sound obvious but it is an item that is regularly forgotten every year.
Torch… Handy little tool when night hits. If you are in a forested area visibility can be poor, so invest in a good torch or a head-torch. Also great for locating items in your tent which appears to keep swallowing things over the weekend!!
Sun-cream… Because we live in a country that is prone to getting four seasons in one day and you don’t want to get burned. Game over.
Tickets… It may sound really obvious, but we all have that one friend… 🙂
So whether you are headed to Glastonbury or Stradbally or somewhere in between this Summer, I do hope this list helps you out! Also bear in mind that most campsites will not allow any form of glass bottles onsite, so make sure and pack lots of plastic bottles, and cans. Would love to hear where you are heading off to this Summer, and if you have any other festival essentials to add to this list!
Happy and safe partying! x
*Featured Image courtesy of Electric Picnic facebook page*