A glampers' guide to the Glastonbury Music Festival

By Fred Jéquier

Somerset, England, is famous for its rolling hills, sleepy towns and villages, and some great cider. But every June, thousands of people make their way to the quiet county for a wholly different reason. Since 1970, Glastonbury Music Festival has been a mecca for music and contemporary art fans across the world. With rock acts, such as T-Rex and Rage Against the Machine, Britpop favorites like Blur and Oasis, hip hop represented by the likes of Jay-Z, Divas in the form of Beyoncé, and country legends like Johnny Cash all gracing the world-renowned Pyramid Stage, the race is on to reserve a place at this iconic annual event the moment tickets are released.

Photo from Festicket.

The 2019 festival is no exception to previous years, with a plethora of new and established artists getting ready to play in front of thousands of fans, hoping to make their way into the annals of Glastonbury folklore like so many before them. Bands, such as The Killers, The Cure, Liam Gallagher, Janet Jackson, and Wu-Tang Clan are just some of the many artists that fans can look forward to seeing this year.

To make your festival going experience as fun and hassle-free as possible, we've created the ultimate glampers' guide for the Glastonbury Music Festival.

Location, location, location

Despite being named after the historic town of Glastonbury, the festival itself is not actually in the town. The festival is held on Michael Eavis' family-owned Worthy Farm, which lies on the edge of the idyllic village of Pilton. You might be thinking that the last thing a small village in the West Country would want is over 100,000 people descending upon them for the biggest party of the summer. However, the villagers are allotted a certain amount of free tickets each year, which I'm sure we all can agree is both right and proper!

Photo from Geograph.

How to get there

With at least 135,000 people expected to make their way to Worthy Farm this summer, it is hardly surprising that getting there will prove to be an event in and of itself. The A303, the road connecting the West Country to the rest of Southern England, gets busy around Glastonbury and Pilton in the days leading up to the festival, so your best bet is to take the train to Castle Cary, the nearest station to both Pilton and the festival site. In fact, Castle Cary has become so synonymous with the festival that the station received an official dedication as "Castle Cary, Station of the Glastonbury Festival" in April of this year.

Photo from Somerset Live.

National Rail Enquiries has regular updates on departures and arrivals at all of the U.K.'s train stations, and for ease, there is a free app for your phone. Once you arrive at the station, there are shuttle buses to take festivalgoers to the site, which is about six miles from Castle Cary.

Food and drink

We're sure if you've ever been to a festival, you've had your fair share of overpriced, yet underwhelming, food. The last thing you want when you're in need of energy is bland and boring food, and thankfully, the stalls at Glastonbury this year promise to be anything but. Here are a few examples of food stalls that are sure to get your taste buds zinging before you head to the main stage and your ears start ringing.

1. Paellaria

Founded by four friends over 10 years ago, Paellaria cooks up various types of paella with some delicious, bold flavors, bright colors, and pretty generous portions. This is sure to fill you up before you head out on your next festival adventure.

2. Anna Mae's

Based in London, the Anna Mae's stall serves up mac 'n' cheese, the perfect comfort food after a day on your feet. Expect a load of cheese and a range of tasty sauces.

3. Biff's Jack Shack

Biff's Jack Shack is the perfect place to indulge in some junk food with a twist. With an entirely vegan menu, everyone can enjoy their stunning burgers and range of vegan fried chicken dishes. Biff's Jack Shack is gaining popularity as they hone their craft, so don't be surprised to see them at several other festivals this year, too.

4. "Food For A Fiver"

There's no getting away from the fact that at festivals, we often pay a premium for food and drink. The organizers at Glastonbury have teamed up with various vendors to provide affordable food for festivalgoers on a budget. Participating stalls all carry the "Food For A Fiver" sticker, and you can look forward to drink deals, meal deals, and even smoothies, milkshakes, coffees, and cakes.

Photo from NME.

What to bring

There are certain items that we always need to pack when getting ready for a festival. Beyond the obvious items, such as a tent and a roll mat, thanks to British summers being somewhat unpredictable, there are obviously a few essentials that you'll need to remember so you're ready for all eventualities.

Photo from GlastoFestFeed.

1. Wellies

All it takes is a couple of hours of rain, and the whole site can end up covered in wet mud. Wellies are a real must to keep your feet dry and your mood bright through any rainy weather. There's nothing worse than going for a three-day camping trip and having to endure soggy socks and damp trainers.

Photo from The Independent.

2. Portable phone charger

It happens to all of us. It's the final night of the festival, and half of the group want to see The Killers, but the rest of the group want to head to the other side of the site to watch The Chemical Brothers. Once the sets are done, you need to find the rest of the group so you can enjoy the rest of the festival together, but after a whole day, your phone will inevitably be running low. Thankfully, there are numerous portable phone chargers of varying sizes and prices to choose from, so you can rest assured that you'll be able to find the rest of your group when the time comes.

3. Reusable water bottle

After the festival has come to an end, and everyone has made their way home to hot showers and comfy beds, the work for the organizers is not yet over. The end of the festival means the start of the clean-up, and over the years, there has been an enormous amount of rubbish to be disposed of. After 1.3 million bottles of water were bought at the festival in 2017, the organizers decided to ban plastic water bottles, so you will need to bring your own. There are free water stations throughout the site, so you can fill them up while going from stage to stage.


If you enjoy festivals but want to avoid muddy campsites, check out some of our great festival glamping sites!

A look into Holi festival

By Amber Woolley

Holi festival is almost upon us, and we're here to clue you in on everything you need to know about this beautiful and colorful Hindu springtime celebration. Also known as the "Festival of Color," Holi is usually celebrated in India and Nepal, with millions of Hindus coming together on the last full moon day of the lunar month, which this year falls on March 20-21.

The Festival of Color.
Photo sourced from Visittrivalley.

The history of Holi

Holi first originated in the Indian subcontinent, but it has since spread to other parts of Asia and is becoming more popular around the rest of the world. It's roots lie, however, in the story of Hiranyakashipu, the ancient Indian king "who was like a demon" and wanted to get revenge on Lord Vishnu for killing his brother. When Hiranyakashipu's son, Prahalad, who worshipped Lord Vishnu, would not obey his father, and the king decided he must be killed.

Hiranyakashipu had a sister, Holika, who was said to be immune to fire, and he asked her to sit with Prahalad on her lap so he would burn to death. Much to the king's surprise, however, Holika burned to death, while Prahalad, who all the while had been repeating Lord Vishnu's name, survived without nary a scratch. Thus, to this day, Holika's demise represents the burning of all that is bad. (For the complete story, check out Maps of India!)

The story behind Holi.
Photo sourced from scoopwhoop.

Holi rituals and traditions

A few days before the festival, people usually start collecting wood for a big fire at the major crossroad in the city. On the eve of Holi, Holika Dahan takes place, which is the lighting of a bonfire to represent the burning of Holika and the victory of good over evil.

Celebration of Holika Dahan.

The next day is when the main celebration takes place, which is a party with lots of colors called Dhuleti. This jubilant festival sees thousands of people cover each other in a rainbow of colored powders to celebrate the beginning of spring.

The colors used are very symbolic in Hinduism. Red indicates both sensuality and purity, while saffron—the most sacred color in Hinduism—represents fire and purity, relating back to how impurities are burned by, or eliminated with, fire. Additionally, green represents life and happiness.

Everyone then takes to the streets to dance and sing and in the evenings, and friends and families will gather together for food and further celebration.

Reasons behind Holi

The main reason people celebrate Holi festival is to bring in the new season: spring. Hindus, however, have additional reasons for celebration. They believe it is the only day where the Gods look away—the only day they can get rid of any evil and/or sins before starting anew. The colored powders signify the sins, and when the powders are washed off at the end of the day, this signifies a clean and pure start to the new season.

Where to spend Holi

Holi is celebrated pretty much all over India, albeit with slight variations, so wherever you go, it will be a bright and vibrant ceremony. Here are some suggestions if you would like to travel to a popular and well-known destination for your Holi experience.

Vrindavan and Mathura

The throwing of colors in Vrindavan.
Photo sourced from indiaraju.

Mathura and Vrindavan are immensely popular throughout the country and attract thousands of people from all over the world. Vrindavan is a holy town in northern India and is where Lord Krishna spent his childhood, while Mathura is the birthplace of Krishna.

The tradition of throwing colors is also said to come from the love story of Lord Krishna and his wife Radha. A Holi show, therefore, takes place in Mathura every year—a week before the festival commences. This takes place from the Dwarkadhish temple to the Holi Gate, where the festival is marked.

Goa

If you want to be at the heart of one of the biggest festivities, you must visit Goa. The festival is called Shigmotsav, and it is spread over a fortnight. The main Goa beaches will turn colorful, and parades and performances will be held throughout the city for five days, which is a great experience for both locals and tourists.

What to wear

As you are attending a festival where you are going to get covered in water and color, it is important to wear something old and something you don't mind getting ruined. It is recommended you wear white, so the color shows up more, and you begin the day as a blank canvas. Our top tip? Cover your body in oil. You will have a better chance of washing the paint off at the end of the day.


Interested in visiting India? Find out more about where to stay here!

Glamping Hub's Guide to Overcoming the Post-Coachella Blues

By Isabelle Jefferies

Best tipis in the U.S.

Following a debate that has spanned several festival seasons, (unofficial) sources have finally confirmed that the post-Coachella blues do pose an actual threat to festivalgoers. Friends and families have been advised to look out for symptoms that include refusing to leave the house without wearing a flower crown and the inability to sleep in an actual bed.

While specialists rush to come up with advice for sufferers, Glamping Hub is here to help out however we can. Whether you're looking to avoid withdrawal symptoms by continuing to adopt the festival lifestyle or you'd like to retreat and recover for a little while, we've got you covered. With countless tents, tipis, and yurts on offer, our Insta-worthy properties are the perfect choice to continue to channel your inner Vanessa Hudgens (aka Queen of Coachella).

Best tipis in the U.S.

Rest assured that—rather than just for two weekends of the year—denim shorts, statement jewelry, and floral headwear are always welcomed by us. The best part? No waiting for April to enjoy them—these rentals offer glamping all year long and are ready to accommodate you whenever the blues are weighing you down.

Read on for advice on getting yourself out of your Coachella-induced funk, and the best spots to make it happen.

1. Keep busy.

Learning a new skill is the perfect way to keep yourself distracted from the sad reality that yet another festival season has come to an end. Among other things, a glamping getaway offers the chance to enjoy kayaking, zip-lining, and horseback riding.

One of our personal favorites is this gorgeous, bohemian-style bell tent. Not only is it ideally situated right on the coast in New South Wales (proof that festival fans don't have to stick to California for their getaways), the hosts provide guests with a boat to use for exploring. A day spent sailing will definitely keep your mind occupied!

Bell tent in New South Wales.

Glamping in New South Wales

2. Create a playlist.

Considering that the general consensus is that this was Coachella's best year ever, it would be totally understandable to want to relive it. Spotify offers a wide range of playlists to keep you satisfied until next year, and this secluded safari tent makes the perfect setting to blast them out. Completely secluded in Zion National Park, Utah, glampers definitely won't need to worry about noise complaints from the neighbors while playing Kendrick on repeat.

Safari tent in Zion, Utah.

3. Go on a health kick.

Following two full weekends of indulgence, a detox is a great way to keep yourself feeling good post-festival season. While glamping, guests will be able to enjoy a diet of delicious fresh produce that's definitely a little fancier than a standard festival burger van. Think free range eggs, homemade jams, and organic fruit and veg. Obviously, no judgment from us if guests decide to slip back into their Coachella ways to see out the day with a delicious craft beverage or cocktail.

All-inclusive luxury tents in Costa Rica.

4. Reminisce.

Here at Glamping Hub, we are big believers in sharing moments and not things. More than anything, festivals are famous for being a chance to create unforgettable memories, and Glamping Hub is here to provide the perfect spots for when you're feeling nostalgic. Take this romantic yurt rental located to the east of Rome, in one of the greenest regions of Europe. Not only will the gorgeous panoramic views look just as impressive on your Instagram as that Coachella snap, but the rental's rooftop terrace definitely wouldn't make the worst spot to reminisce about the 2017 festival season.

Yurt rental in Italy.

Yurt rental in Italy.

5. Lean on your loved ones.

Support from your friends is absolutely crucial to shake off the post-Coachella blues. At this property in Texas, there are five amazing tipis that can accommodate a group of 30 in total. The term 'fully furnished' is not taken lightly—guests can expect a private kitchen and bathroom. There is even a hot tub where you can all reflect and begin counting down the days to Coachella 2018.

Tipi rentals in New Braunfels.

Tipi rentals in New Braunfels.


P.S. Not just for glampers that are missing Coachella, a Glamping Hub getaway is the perfect option for those that missed out on one of the biggest events of the festival calendar and have always dreamed of going. Check out more Coachella-esque accommodations here!