Are you considering going to Camp Bestival, the UK’s best family friendly festival? If you’ve never been before, then we can confirm, after spending our first year here, that is is an amazing place for families that have kids of all ages.
If you are not sure what there is to do at Camp Bestival, or why its so good, then below we’ve listed 50 Things To Do At Camp Bestival for kids and grown ups too!
50 Things To Do At Camp Bestival
This list is in no particular order and it doesn’t cover everything that is available at the festival Head to the Camp Bestival website for a full programme of events.
Camping out at Camp Bestival completely makes the festival! If camping isn’t for you, try looking at the ‘Boutique Camping’ options or pre-pitched.
2. Dress Up
Fancy dress is taken so seriously at Camp Bestival. Families go all out and theme their dress up in sync with the Camp Bestival theme of the year. There are even fancy dress competitions for those hardcore families that have made a huge effort. If you’ve forgotten your fancy dress, fret not. There are tents you can play dress up and plenty of ‘photo opps’ where you can pose with fancy dress.
3. Dance To Music
There are DJs, music acts, kids discos…you name it there are plenty of opportunities to get up and dance. There are even kids dancing shows where kids are taught dance moves and throughout the festival you’ll stumble across musical parades that will get your toes tapping!
4. Get Glittery
You cannot come to a festival and not get covered in glitter. All through the festival site are places you can get a face full, a hair full or a beard full of glitter!
5. Post A Postcard
There was a tent this year where you could choose postcards, either paper or wooden and you could write them and post them off in the big red postbox to family and friends at home. We thought this was a really sweet idea, especially as for us as my fiance couldn’t join us this year. He was at home having a round of chemotherapy. So Evie chose a postcard and decorated it with all the stamps and crayons that were on the tables. Much to our delight it arrived at home before we did.
6. Watch A Show
There are so many shows and performances to watch, I can’t even begin to list them. Your programme will be your best friend at the festival. Make sure you highlight where and when your favourite shows will be so you don’t miss out.
7. Do Some Exercise
Missing your favourite exercise regime while you’re at the festival? Or maybe you fancy trying something new? Exercise classes can be found across the whole festival and there are things for every age, even babies! Expect to see things like zumba, yoga, pilates and running.
8. Meet A Character
You might just stumble across your kids favourite character at Camp Bestival. This year there were guest appearances from Peter Rabbit, Peppa Pig and Paddington Bear. We’ll pre-warn you, queues get pretty long to meet these characters so show up early!
9. Play With Circus Toys
There is a whole section full of circus toys that kids can try out by the ‘BigTopMania’. Kids and grown ups could try out a whole variety of things from hula hooping to bikes and tricycles.
10. Do A Craft Workshop
Spinney Hollow was a whole area dedicated to different workshops. You could make so many creative things such as swords, wands, wagons, weaves, baskets ,headdresses, staffs and so much more! Most of these you had to book in advance but it looked very much worth it!
11. Climb trees
If you find your kids are one of the ones always climbing poles around the festival (we never saw an empty pole), then why not enrol them in the ‘tree climbing’ sessions? Nestled in the woods you’ll find a giant tree, all set up and ready for kids to climb. Get there to book your session early though!
12. Go To The Fair
It wouldn’t be a festival without some fairground rides. You do need to pay extra for these, about £2 per person per go. There were swing boats, a swing carousel, a big wheel and a few other fairground rides dotted around the festival site.
13. Kids Talent Show
Do your kids have a special talent? Head to the Bollywood tent to let them show off their skills in one of the daily talent shows. They might even win a prize!
14. Pose With The I Love Camp Bestival Sign
This is a Camp Bestival right of passage, getting a picture with the ‘I Love Camp Bestival’ sign and letting your kids climb all over it. There was a bit of uproar this year because the sign normally smells out ‘Camp Bestival’ and lots of families seemed quite upset by this. But, it was still a great place to pose for a picture!
15. Blow bubbles
If you pack one thing in your camping bags its bubbles. Honestly, this is the best form of entertainment for kids, especially while you’re putting up tents or cooking dinner at camp. It’s also a great way for your kids to make other friends. The amount of times other kids joined in chasing the bubbles our kids were blowing, or the amount of times they ran off to go and chase bubbles they could see flying around was unreal.
16. Go On The Worlds Biggest Bouncy Castle
Our kids loved going on the ‘Worlds Biggest Bouncy Castle’ and it is worth a go at least one time during your visit. We will pre-warn you though, you might not be able to go on when you want to. The bouncy castle will only let on kids of the same height/age range. This means you do have to wait around for kids of a similar age or height as yours to come along. Unfortunately grown ups weren’t allowed on either, at least not till ‘Bestival’.
17. Watch A Parade
Throughout the event several parades took place. You could either ‘stumble across them’ or plan to seek them out. We missed a couple but sought out one of the evening parades and the costumes were spectacular! It’s well worth trying to find one of these!
18. Survive The Portaloos
Honestly, the toilets at Camp Bestival were by far the cleanest I’ve ever seen at a festival, but as always there really are some horror stories and this year there didn’t feel like there were enough toilets so queuing happened a lot! Our big survival tip is to keep toilet paper and sanitiser in your bag! You never know when the portaloos are going to run out!
19. Climb The Observatory
There were lots of really cool pop up areas around Camp Bestival. One of the most creative sections other than Caravansei was ‘The Observatory’. You could see really far around the festival from up here and it was a great ‘meeting spot’ if you got separated.
20. Cock Pit Karaoke
This year Camp Bestival had ‘Cock Pit Karaoke’ take place in the British Airways tent. You could dress up, climb into the cockpit and sing your heart out!
21. Watch A Puppet Show
22. Dig For Treasure
For some reason my daughter spent AGES digging for treasure at Lizzie’s Way. Lots of treasure had been buried in the mud and it’s the kids mission to dig it all up and fill up the treasure chest!
23. Watch A Pantomime
Who doesn’t love a good pantomime? In 2018 The Pirates of Panto, a brand new pantomime created especially for the HMS Camp Bestival ship stage, took place. Loosely based on The Pirates of Penzance, there were all the laughs and thrills of a traditional panto, with lots of joining in, custard pies, ghosts and corny jokes for days!
24. Visit The Insect Museum
The Insect Circus and Museum is well worth a visit for kids at Camp Bestival. Here you’ll find wasps wiggling their bottoms, butterflies stretching their wings, and spiders are flexing their legs. The circus performs twice daily, but the Insect Circus Museum is open all day long.
25. Watch A Science Show
This year the Science Tent as Camp Bestival proved very popular. Shows took place outside the tent and inside you could take part in workshops and make a whole range of things from silly slime, to vortex cannons, paper rockets and lego robotics.
26. Watch The Fireworks
The fireworks are a must see at Camp Bestival and apparently they are amazing! Unfortunately they were cancelled in 2018 due to stormy weather as the festival had to close early. But, usually they’re more than worth sticking around for.
27. Have A Massage
Head to ‘Slow Motion’ for a little relaxation. Have a dip in a ‘gong bath’ or get yourself fully pampered with a massage.
28. Go For An Astrology Reading
Find out what is in the stars for your birthday. Head along with a friend, a partner or solo and be told what your birth date says about you.
29. Head To The Actual Reality Arcade
Camp Bestival played host to its very own arcade, but an arcade with a difference. The ‘Actual Reality Arcade’ is an interactive experience where you can play in a ‘life size’ arcade. Here you can pilot spaceships, dodge barrels, avoid lasers, build Tetris walls, fire rockets, shoot alien invaders and become Pac-Man.
30. Dance In The Inflatable Church
Camp Bestival has its very own church with a wild and wacky congress. Rock up at any time of day or night for a boogie and to witness a lot of fun.
31. Pimp Your Trolley
We saw some amazing trolleys going around the Camp Bestival site. If you don’t have time to decorate your trolley before you arrive though, fear not! The ‘Pimp Your Trolley’ tent will help you out and you can get as creative and wild as you like with your design.
32. Brave The Zipline
Somewhere in the woods is a zipline. Would you be brave enough to give this ago? Again, this is something you need to come and book early!
33. Messy Play
Who doesn’t love messy play? Even better, this is messy play you don’t have to clean up. The Make Space was the place to go for kids crafts and creative play. Here you could build boats, make chalk rivers, make pirate spotting periscopes and hep to design and make clay.
34. Make A Den
At Camp Bestival 2018 you could find the ‘Woodland Warriors’ nestled in the woods and you could join them in some serious den-making and interior-design! You could add to it throughout the festival and could have fun keeping it safe from other woodland tribes.
35. Visit Caravansei
Caravansei was a really unique area/venue created by Monsieur Bateman, an artist who has been building magical creations for Camp Bestival for years. Built entirely from vintage caravans and fairground rides, it was the place to go and chill out, grab a cocktail, dance to some floor-filling gypsy-fuelled vintage beats and watch the aerial circus performances going on above you.
36. Listen To A Pirate Bedtime Story
Kids could head to one of the tents and sail away to sleep by listening to pirate bedtime stories. Swashbuckling fables from enchanting story tellers that were filled with fantasy, bravery and lots of treasure.
37. Get Some Adult Alone Time
This year Camp Bestival opened up an ‘adults only area’. To go there, all you had to do was bribe your friends to look after your kids for a bit or take it in turns to take on the childcare while one of you went to relax. We never got to see The Frozen Mole but we heard it was a chilled-out haven with comfy sofas and hammocks. You could come along for a little peace, read the papers, sip a cocktail, have a coffee or a herbal tea and just get comfy.
38. Helter Skelter
There were queues of children and adults alike waiting for a turn on the helter skelter. You could also go down together with littler kids which was good for parents of toddlers.
39. Take Part In The Air Guitar Championships
The Bollywood tent plays host to kids talent shows and fun interactive events like the ‘Air Guitar Championships’. People of all ages can take part in these! Even if you aren’t brave enough to take part yourself, they’re definitely a giggle to watch.
40. Watch A Circus Performance
There are circus performance for every age across the whole arena. Younger kids can watch clowns and even take part in interactive circus shows. Older kids and adults can watch trapeze acts and other circus acts.
41. Watch Your Favourite Characters
Every year Camp Bestival plays host to a whole array of popular characters. Returning characters include ‘Mr Tumble’, Andy from Cbeebies, Mr. Maker plus many more special guests.
42. Make Mudpies and Potions
Over in Lizzie’s Way in the Dingly Dell you can get as messy and boggy as you like making mudpies, playing in the mud kitchen, the mud cafe and making potions!
43. Chill Out In The Literary Tent
The literary tent is a great for grown ups to catch some shows. Expect to find comedy sketches, talks from authors, poetry readings and so much more!
Oh my, there is a huge amount of choice of things to eat at Camp Bestival. You name the cuisine and it is there! From seafood, to Japanese, to English classics. We passed African food, a huge variety of vegan food, Italian joints and so much more.
45. Join In With The Cookery School
Throughout the festival you could head over to the ‘cookery school’ and learn how to make a whole variety of different things to prevent ‘leftover waste’ happening with the food in your fridge.
46. Sign Up For A River Cottage Feast
Something I wish we did was sign up for a River Cottage Feast. These took part in the most beautiful tipis and the food looked amazing!
47. Seek Out The ‘Bubbleologist’
One of our kids favourite shows was by Sam Sam The Bubble Man. He’s a guiness world record breaking ‘bubbleologist’. He did several shows over the course of the weekend and also had his ‘bubble’ and circus toy shop in one of the gardens. Definitely worth a watch!
48. Make Friends
It’s so easy for you and your kids to make friends with other families at Camp Bestival. Everyone is so friendly and so relaxed. Make friends with your camping neighbours or people at shows! Don’t be afraid to say hi!
49. Take Part In A World Record
While we were at Camp Bestival 2018 there were several ‘world record attempts’ you could join in with. Two that we knew about were the ‘silent yoga’ world record and also ‘LOL toys’ broke a world record for the most toys simultaneously unboxed toys in one go. Keep your eyes peeled on the programme for what world records will be attempted in 2019 and don’t forget to turn up early so you can join in!
50. Have Fun!
Camp Bestival is all about chilling out with your family and having fun. Relax, go with the flow and try and join in with as many fun and creative things as possible!
So those were ‘50 Things To Do At Camp Bestival‘ and guess what? That’s only a small selection of what is on offer. We haven’t even scratched the surface.
Don’t forget to book for Camp Bestial 2019! Our full blog and vlog review of Camp Bestival will be up very soon, so keep your eyes peeled for our highlights!