As the gates open at the world’s largest and arguably most significant festival, The Gen has five tips for survival and enjoyment at Glastonbury:
1. Don’t complain about the sun– The forecast is looking good- Believe us, having seen both sides of the coin, the site makes a far better dustbowl than a swamp, though it will rain at some point. There are load of nooks and crannies to seek shade and shelter in and you can also stumble on some of the most interesting performances in the smaller tents off the beaten track.
2. Don’t bother with a Pyramid scheme- Sure, loads of people enjoy the iconic main stage and are there, precisely because of that traditional big field festival experience but whatever you do, don’t plan your weekend around it. Also be aware that headliner sets can go either way- those who have succeeded over the years (Radiohead, Jay Z, Pulp) have approached it with everything to prove and understood that it is not a regular headline show- they are simply providing one culmination point of many over the weekend. The likes of U2, Springsteen and Gorillaz in comparison have failed to connect when headlining the Pyramid stage.
3. Explore, explore, explore– It’s a complete cliché to say that Glastonbury isn’t “All about the music, man” but really, it’s an unprecedented opportunity to get lost down the rabbit hole (literally in some cases)- In fact, don’t plan at all and allow for plenty of diversions and don’t miss out on the sheer spectacles of Arcadia, Block 9 and Shangri-la.
4. Leave your FOMO at the gate– Think of it less like a festival, more like a large scale immersive theatre production or real life choose your own adventure book or open world video game- follow your instinct, stay safe and accept that you won’t see and experience everything and that is ok. Also, if diversions aren’t proving to be interesting then move on- The Gen once got roped into contributing to some kind of truly awful spiritual mural in one of the arts and crafts type fields and simply dropped it and ran a mile when we realised Brian Wilson was about to take to the stage.
5. Remember there are other festivals: Glastonbury is unlike anywhere else on earth but if you didn’t get tickets, don’t despair- the BBC send a small army to cover it for TV and iPlayer and there are an estimated 1,000 other festivals in the UK alone of all shapes and sizes to choose from.
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