June 12, 2019
This month marks the return of Glastonbury (26-30 June), but if you didn’t manage to get tickets this year, there are plenty of festivals offering spectacular music and cultural activities elsewhere in the UK and abroad. From Cornwall to Laos, here is a selection of fabulous festivals, combined with holiday ideas from Travel PR:
Enjoy sublime string quartet performances of pieces by Beethoven, Haydn, Rachmaninov, Mendelssohn and more during The Kirker Cornwall Music Festival. Two of the three concerts in the programme are held at Boconnoc, a magnificent house set in twenty acres of wonderful gardens near Lostwithiel, where the Kirker group will be personally welcomed by its owner, Elizabeth Fortescue. Departing 1 October, the price is from £1,567 pp (two sharing), including four nights’ accommodation with breakfast at the four-star The Fowey Hotel, four dinners, one lunch, transfers, three concerts and the services of the Kirker Tour Leader. Call AITO* member Kirker on 020 7593 2283 (www.kirkerholidays.com).
The Nice Jazz Festival (16-20 July) will bring together international talent from the worlds of jazz, blues, rap and soul – including Nile Rodgers & Chic, Black Eyed Peas, Neneh Cherry and more – to the French Riviera for five days of live music, A-list glamour and sunshine. Stay just under an hour away at Le Tigne, a luxurious five-bedroomed country house in two acres of grounds, with panoramic views over wooded hills, a heatable pool, and a 30-minute drive from the golden sand beaches of Cannes. Arriving on 13 July, a week’s stay costs from £508 pp (ten sharing – £5,080 total). Flights extra. Call CV Villas on 0207 261 5404 (www.cvvillas.com).
Set in the spectacular Larmer Tree Gardens on the Wiltshire / Dorset border, the Larmer Tree Festival (18-21 July) genuinely appeals to all ages. There’s eclectic music from over 100 bands and acts performing on six stages, plus a comedy club, and 150 free workshops which include shamanic spirit trance dance, slacklining and sound space meditation. Stay nearby at Melbury Vale Cottage (sleeps five), a single-storey barn conversion on a 28-acre farm. There’s a children’s trampoline and the owner happily arranges farm tours and tractor-driving experiences. A three-night stay costs from £135 pp (£674 total). Call holidaycottages.co.uk on 01237 459888 (www.holidaycottages.co.uk).
Swap sweaty tents and warm beer for accordion concerts and wildlife tours at the 7th annual Festiv’été des Gorzdérés (30 June) in the alpine village of Champagny en Vanoise. An altogether quainter alternative to Glastonbury, it promises a day of traditional French music, artisanal food stalls, painting workshops, pony rides and guided nature walks in a spectacular mountain setting. Entrance to the festival is free, with some activities ticketed. A three-night weekend stay at a beautiful Savoyard chalet apartment in the heart of the old mountain village costs from €164 / £145 pp (two sharing). Self-catered. Return flights (London-Geneva) cost from £85 pp with easyJet. Call La Plagne on 33 (0)4 79 09 79 79 (www.la-plagne.com).
Party between the peaks and the ocean at G! Festival – Faroe Islands from £502 pp
Set against the backdrop of the Faroe Islands’ dramatic landscape of rugged coastlines and jagged mountains, G! Festival stages are built on the beach, making the most of the natural amphitheatre. Taking place in the village of Syðrugøta (population: 400) on the island of Eysturoy, this three-day music festival (11-13 July) features internationally acclaimed artists, such as Lewis Capaldi and Fatboy Slim. Priced from €575 / £502 pp, including flights (Copenhagen), festival ticket and campsite access with toilet/shower facilities (for five days and four nights). Tent and transfers not included. Alternatively, stay with a Faroese family from €750 / £655 pp. Visit www.62n.fo/travel/en/package-tours/themed-tours/g-festival.
Based at Cornbury Park in Oxfordshire, headliners at this year’s Wilderness Festival (1-4 August) include Robyn, Bombay Bicycle Club and Groove Armada. Suiting families, couples and groups, the hedonistic and wholesome activities include paddle-board yoga, wild swimming, outdoor theatre and raves in a ravine. Stay at The Fish, a quirky collection of houses and huts nestled away on the 400-acre Farncombe Estate. The hotel features a 14-seater cinema, cosy bar and Hook, a laidback and luxurious restaurant, celebrating the finest seafood. An overnight stay costs from £150 per room total/ £75 pp (two sharing), including full English breakfast. Call Pride of Britain Hotels on 0800 089 3929 (www.prideofbritainhotels.com).
A bright, colourful spectacle in the dark night skies of northern Laos, visit Luang Prabang for the Fire Boat Festival (14 October) to witness the procession of more than 20,000 illuminated paper boats along the Mekong, lit by candlelight and attended by local families marking the end of Buddhist lent. Visit as part of the 11-night tailormade Northern Laos Explorer to also include the city of Vientiane, Laos’ wild jungle regions and hidden limestone caves. Priced from £2,470 pp (two sharing), including transfers, 11 nights’ B&B, four lunches, two dinners, domestic flights and excursions as per the itinerary. International flights extra. Call AITO* member InsideAsia Tours on 0117 244 3380 (www.insideasiatours.com).
*AITO is The Specialist Travel Association: more than 120 specialist travel companies providing an unrivalled collection of holiday ideas that cover every corner of the world. Consumers booking with AITO can be assured of high-quality holidays and excellent personal service. Visit www.aito.com for further information.