Eden Festival is a boutique festival held in the Dumfries & Galloway region of Scotland, and was conceptually developed by a youth group under the ages of 17 from the local community. It was created following the ideals of being: environmentally sustainable and friendly, support local artists, engaging the youth with participation, and to increase visitors to the area. The festival is comprised of 11 stages, which include an area entirely dedicated to children’s activities along with a drive-in cinema for family friendly entertainment. Adult fun is also available, with a tavern and cocktail bar on site and a wide array of music. Music lovers can find their niche from underground bands ranging from folk to ska, and also dance music such as: drum ‘n’ bass, soul, psy-trance, and all the goodness in between. Water taps are also present, and a variety of food options such as haggis (if you’re feeling ever so Scottish), or fancier options such as raclette cheese, and of course your festival favourites of burgers and curries.
Scotland is by far one of the most beautiful countries I’ve had the pleasure of going to, with the most lush greenery and exquisite scenery. On the Eden festival site, just off of the Glamping area (if you were lucky enough like us be in it), was the most stunning Manor House. Also made for a killer spot for us to take some family photos amongst the gardens and swans in the pond surrounding it.
If you weren’t fortunate to have a friend playing records at the festival that scored you a bell tent in the Glamping, then you could also bring your caravan or camper. As we all know, camping at a festival in a small tent can get pretty grim. We also had the pleasure of experiencing a tiny tent once we got the boot from the bell tent and banished to our 2-man Halfords tent surrounded by slugs and nettles.
The kid in always comes out at U.K festivals because they always seem to have rides on site, which is clearly the best decision when you’re intoxicated at a festival. Rides usually go for a couple of quid, and at Eden festival in particular there was a Ferris wheel. Perfect break from all the festival madness and best spot to snap some photos of the whole festival site, or of your friend that’s terrified of heights.
Several music festivals claim to be family friendly, but rarely have enough activities to keep the wee ones entertained, and then neither the kids nor the parents get to enjoy it. Eden festival had an entire area dedicated to kids, with multiples tents holding different activities, and various games in the common area. There were loads of kids freely and safely running around and thoroughly enjoying themselves, and relaxed parents catching a break. Highly recommend our friends bring their children here next year, you get a sweet vacation to Scotland and get to hit up an amazing music festival!
This was probably one of my major highlights of the festival, the wine bar. In Canada, you’re lucky if you’re even allowed to bring your own alcohol, let alone buy it on site! We were rather pleased to have a glass of merlot to go with our selection of cheeses and olives supplied by the Italian sandwich vendor. I also felt pretty classy, despite not yet having taken advantage of the showers located in the Glamping (yes, there were showers and flush toilets in the fancy camp).
Also located on the Eden festival site was a drive-in movie theatre that was equipped with comfy vintage cars (so no worries of drunk driving), with a wide array of movies every day. Perfect spot to park the kids for a bit or escape that notorious Scottish rain, as the weather did seem to be TAPS ON for the weekend.
The Boardwalk Arena stage had sound powered by Reaction Sound System and primarily powered through stationary bikes that are hooked up to generate power. There’s a power-bar on stage that shows just how much juice the ravers have pedaled up, and monitored closely to make sure the power stays consistent. Obviously we had to give it a go, and I apparently chose the hardest bike and watched a small child pedal ten times my speed as I grudgingly trekked on and eventually quit.
All junglists love a good session by the one and only Rebel MC also known as Congo Natty, and his set at Eden proves just that. The crowd rinsed out right properly at the Devorgilla mainstage, and the lighting was impeccable for photos. This was my last shot of the night as camera died just after, so I got to pack away my camera gear in our locker (that only cost us 10 quid for the weekend), and go party!
If you are going to a music festival for the first time, then I highly suggest getting some zany sunglasses that everyone is dying to have. My bestie’s Dad bought us both these to wear at Eden, but I sadly forgot mine in London and had to cope with sunglass envy and sunglass attention envy.
Having a photo pass gives you the privilege to go back stage almost anytime you want and hopefully seek shelter in a greenroom when the Scottish rains come. We were lucky enough to stumble upon a greenroom with some nice guys, sandwiches, and shelter for our camera gear. Even more lucky that we suddenly heard fireworks going off and rushed outside to capture a few photos. Eden festival really outdid themselves with all the festival extras like these fireworks that were on point!
This was probably one of my highlights of Eden festival, the grandma dance off! The grandmas (not your real grandma, but they sure did a bangin’ job on their costumes) had their own tent full of granny knickers, tea sets, and comfy chesterfields. On the Sunday, they threw down a wicked dance off at the Thunderdome and danced away balancing on their walkers and canes while their babushkas flowed in the wind. It was brilliant!
I really wasn’t kidding about the Scottish rain, and when it starts to come down it can really pour! We took refuge under a massive oak tree, but U.K residents paid no attention to the torrential downpour and kept on dancing. Make sure to bring your wellies if you are going to festival in the U.K, and be like my girl Susana and bring a bladder of wine to roll around with.