Your UK festival guide for 2018
Glastonbury may be taking a year off in 2018, but there are plenty more summer festivals to enjoy across the UK. There’s something for all music tastes, from the biggest names in pop and rock to world-class hip-hop, folk and metal acts. So pack your wellies and get set for a weekend of music, mud and madness at one of the UK’s best music festivals. Here are the top picks in our UK festival guide for 2018 and how to fly there in style by private jet charter.
Set at stunning Lulworth Castle in Dorset, this award-winning boutique festival offers much more than music, with hundreds of acts. Returning with a circus theme for 2018, Bestival boasts everything from mass fancy dress to poetry, comedy and theatre. See art in the woods, a night circus parade, fire eaters and knife throwing, with headline music acts including London Grammar, M.I.A., Silk City and Grace Jones.
Dates: 2-5 August.
Location: Lulworth Castle, Dorset.
Tickets: £113.50 to £170; buy online here.
Nearest private jet airport: Bournemouth.
Creamfields is one of the world’s top open-air electronic music festivals and has won numerous awards, including the UK Festival Award for Best Dance Event. This year it’s set in Daresbury and features some of the most famous DJs on the planet, with headliners including Eric Prydz, Carl Cox, Armin van Buuren and Tiesto. Tens of thousands of people come to Creamfields every year for its unique clubbing experience.
Formally known as V, RiZE is a popular mainstream music festival, with performers from a range of music genres including pop, indie, urban and dance. There are four stages showcasing established acts as well as upcoming artists. Liam Gallagher and the Stereophonics are headlining this year, with other acts including Rag ’n’ Bone Man, James Bay and Rita Ora.
If you’re nostalgic for the ’90s, newcomer Cool Britannia is the festival for you. Take a trip back in time to see Britpop acts from an iconic era of music, from Feeder to Embrace and Ocean Colour Scene. You can also catch The Lightning Seeds, Dodgy and older acts like Happy Mondays on the main stage. Cool Britannia also offers a Ministry of Sound Big Top as well as street food, themed bars and a funfair.
Reading and Leeds
As one of the most established UK music festivals, dating back to 1989, Reading has a host of live music acts lined up for 2018 along with sister festival Leeds. Catch headliners Kendrick Lamar, Kings of Leon, Fall Out Boy and Panic! At The Disco on the main stages. Reading is famous for its diverse line-up, featuring everything from indie to metal, dance, hip-hop and alternative acts – there’s even a comedy tent.
Dates: 24-26 August.
Location: Richfield Avenue, Reading and Bramham Park, Leeds.
Tickets: £69.50 to £205; buy online here.
Nearest private jet airport: For Reading, fly to Blackbushe Airport or London Heathrow and for Leeds, fly to Leeds East Airport.
Green Man Festival
For a more unique festival experience, head to the beautiful Brecon Beacons in Wales for Green Man, an independent music and arts festival. Here you can watch 1,500 performers ranging from folk and indie acts to dance, psychedelia, world music, Americana and electronica. There are also numerous quirky themed areas to check out, such as The Courtyard for local brews, art installations at Fortune Falls and literary events, comedy and theatre. This year’s headliners are The War on Drugs, John Grant and Grizzly Bear.
Wireless has been gathering a loyal following over the last 10 years, appealing to dance, grime, R&B and hip-hop fans. Owned and managed by Live Nation, the festival is renowned for uncovering new talent and has featured performances from superstars Drake and Rihanna in the past. This year, check out headliners J. Cole, Stormzy and DJ Khaled before chilling out in bars, having fun on fairground rides and visiting the artists’ signing booths.
Cambridge Folk Festival has been running for over 50 years and is one of the world’s best folk events. Experience a broad mix of contemporary and traditional folk artists as well as crafts, music and instrument stalls, camping and a fun-packed kids' area. Top acts on the two main stages this year include Patti Smith, First Aid Kit, Rosanne Cash and John Prine. Over 14,000 people come to the Cambridge Folk, which won the BBC Radio 2 Good Tradition Award.
Bloodstock Open Air
Bloodstock is the UK’s biggest hard rock and metal festival. Now in its 19th year, the independent event is run by metal fans and attracts over 15,000 people, featuring more than 100 bands across four stages. There are also bars, late night parties, a metal market, comedians and a combat medieval tournament. Headliners for 2018 are Judas Priest, Gojira and Nightwish.
Dates: 9-12 August.
Location: Catton Hall, Derbyshire.
Tickets: £152; buy online here.
Nearest private jet airport: Tatenhill.
This popular London festival was created by electronic duo Groove Armada and presents a diverse mix of music genres and styles. You can see both new and established dance, electronic, hip-hop, rock and pop acts, as well as enjoying fairground rides, bars and vintage markets. The headliners for this year’s instalment are Childish Gambino, SZA, N.E.R.D. and Skepta.
If you’re looking for a quirky music and arts festival, the multi-award-winning Wilderness is perfect. This boutique festival is set in the idyllic Oxfordshire countryside and is as much about nature and outdoor fun as music. Go boating on the lake, have a spa treatment, watch dance performances from Sadler’s Wells and check out the London Review of Books event. Music highlights include Chic & Nile Rodgers, Jon Hopkins and Bastille.
Nass is the UK’s only festival that combines music with action sports. Music genres include dubstep, drum and bass, punk and rock across seven stages with acts like Dizzee Rascal, Run DMC, Sigma, Friction, Holy Goof and Flava D. There are also skate and BMX competitions, street art and purpose-built skate and bike parks for 15,000 festival-goers to enjoy.
Dates: 5-8 July.
Location: The Royal Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet.
Tickets: £49 to £145; buy online here.
Nearest private jet airport: Bristol.
Every year for the past 10 years, a specially constructed town pops up near Winchester to host the eccentric Boomtown festival. Inside, you’ll find nine districts specialising in different types of music from electronic to rock, folk, world and hip-hop. There’s also arts and crafts, mini clubs, a beach and a hidden wooded area. Headliners for this year are Gorillaz, Die Antwoord and Limp Bizkit.
Latitude is a great family-friendly festival offering everything from pastel-coloured sheep to opera on the lake, outdoor cinema, dance troupes and kids’ areas. Music ranges from DJs in the woods to mainstream acts and less-established artists, with the line-up for 2018 including The Killers, alt-J and Solange.
Dates: 12-15 July.
Location: Henham Park, Suffolk.
Tickets: £77.50 to £197.50; buy online here.
Nearest private jet airport: Beccles.
Whichever festival you decide to attend this summer, why not travel there in luxury with a private jet charter? Contact ACS today for a personalised group private jet quote for your crew of festival-goers.