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Confessions of a Festival First-Timer + I’m going to Festival No.6!!

Confessions of a Festival First-Timer + I’m going to Festival No.6!!

Hi, I’m Elle, I’m 31 and I’ve never been to a festival.

*waits for horrified gasps to die down*

Yeah, I know. The thing is though, in Australia, where I grew up, festivals aren’t the rite of passage that they are here in the UK.

But probably more importantly, I’m scared of camping. We broke up, actually (you can read my break-up letter here).

Festival No. 6

But I guess we’re getting back together (we’ll just call it a summer fling, because I doubt it’ll last till winter) because this September I’m off to Festival No. 6 in Portmeirion, North Wales.

What is Festival No. 6?

After I read about Monica’s experience there last year I thought, for the first time, that maybe I could get into this whole festival thing. The food seemed out-of-this-world, there was a whole woodsy vibe that I’d go crazy for (seriously; show me a hedgehog and I melt) and the entertainment looked world-class. There was even paddle boarding, which is one of my favourite things in the world.

Festival No. 6

Festival No. 6

So when Monica asked if I’d like to be a 2016 Festival Number 6 ambassador I was so excited I said yes before remembering my camping break-up. Awkward.

But honestly, it looks like an incredible event, and perfect for a festival novice like myself. The musical line up alone is impressive, with Bastille, Noel Gallagher and Hot Chip headlining, as well as a bunch of other acts that I will spend the next few months listening to obsessively to learn the lyrics (check out the full list here). Then there are parades and processions, more paddle boarding (yasss) and a stage in the forest where I’m pretty sure I’ll be spending at least 85% of my time.

Plus, there will be Michelin starred chefs cooking at banquets as well as tasty street food and plenty of options in between. I honestly don’t know how I’ll decide what to do each day – there’s just so much choice!

Festival No. 6

I have a few months to work out how to festival like a pro, but in the meantime I’ll take any tips I can get, so please share yours in the comments!

I can’t wait to experience my very first festival, and I’ll be sharing every step of the journey with you, including how to pack, and maybe (if you’re really lucky) a video of me trying to pitch a tent.

*Googles “how to pitch a tent”*

Festival No. 6

But for now, I want to hear from you. Are you a fellow festival virgin? Would you lose your festival virginity for Festival No. 6? And if you’re a festival pro, please please tell me all of your secrets! What do I need to pack? What do I definitely not need to pack? How do I stay clean?

And how, seriously, how, do I pitch a tent?

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Festival No. 6

Festival Packing: Don't Forget These 10 Essentials - The Travel Hack

Tuesday 30th of May 2017

[…] just a few weeks I’ll be driving to Portmeirion to attend my very first festival: Festival No. […]

Dulcie Horn

Thursday 16th of June 2016

I am by no means a festival virgin, in fact I'm a bonafide festival floozy - but I can attest to the fact that Festival No. 6 is super *nice* and will probably be perfect for you!

Here's some photos of my weekend there last year:


Tuesday 7th of June 2016

I went to No 6 last year and it was amazing! I am a well seasoned festivaller having worked at festivals for 10 years. No6 was pretty easy, it's quite well organised aside from the transport from the train station which they will have hopefully sorted this year. It's like three festivals in one! The bits set in Portmerion are great especially if you have ever seen The Prisoner. Then there are activities and stages on the woods. And then there is the main arena with the big stage which is very chilled out and has lovely views. It's worth going down to the beach through the forest route. The camp site there was on a hill so if you don't want to sleep on a slope for 4 days like we did GET THERE EARLY! Have a good spacious tent not some tiny thing that is all hot and sweaty and damp. If it rains you want a place where you can stay for a bit and be dry but not afraid the whole thing is going to collapse on you. And if it's hot then you also want somewhere you can sleep and not boil to death. Wake up early for the shower otherwise you will be in the queue for hours. It gets super cold at night though so make sure you pack some cold weather shoes for trips to the loo. If you drink alcohol beware it can be really expensive! £8 for a little G&T :( The people who attend the festival are really nice. The atmosphere was quite relaxed and chilled out, no aggro at all. And the best bit is you get to hear people actually speak Welsh. Have a lovely time.

Leasha Waddingham

Thursday 2nd of June 2016

I love festivals! I was just talking about it to my friends yesterday, there's something (without sounding too corny) about being surrounded by strangers all there for the same thing, it gives me goosebumps when a crowd sings so loud it echoes through a venue. I imagine Bastille singing hey ho will have exactly this effect. Take baby wipes, dry shampoo and a good hat... I don't know how civilised this festival is, it seems pretty up market but people like to throw beer... hopefully that doesn't put you off. It only usually happens if your really far upfront! Anyway, enjoy I hope you love it and I can't wait to read your thoughts!


Friday 27th of May 2016

I went to my first festival ever two summers ago, and had so much fun! I am NOT a camper, and didn't particularly enjoy the 'tent' part of the experience, but had such an amazing time listening to the great bands, spending time lounging around with my friends, eating and drinking and just chilling! The atmosphere was indescribable, and it is definitely something I am happy to have experienced! :)

I've written about how I experienced my first festival here ( and here ( if you're interested. But forgive me; it was early in my blogging days, and literally just a play-by-play of all the fun! :)