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These tips will make taking kids to festivals a breeze

10 terrific tips for the whole family

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These tips will make taking kids to festivals a breeze

Festivals aren't just for adults these days – ever since Camp Bestival (sister of the Isle of Wight's Bestival) arrived in Dorset in 2008, there has been a noticeable surge in more family-friendly events. 

With ice cream vans a-plenty, fancy dress shops, workshops and dedicated kids play areas, festivals can be brilliant fun for the whole family - just make sure to read up on our advice before booking any tickets...

1. TRAVEL TIME

Consider arriving at the festival early so that you can get the best spot for your tent. Likewise, it might be worth leaving early if it means beating the crowds! 

2. Remember the essentials 

Things you won't regret having too much of: baby wipes, suncream, hats, sunglasses, tissues and insect spray. And remember that concerts are loud – protect little ones' ears with ear plugs or noise-blocking headphones. Consider bringing rugs, a camping table and chairs so you can all get comfy. 

3. PACK SNACKS

Pack some snacks to keep those blood sugar levels up. Cartons of juice, fruit, crackers, snack bars and popcorn (or vegetable crisps) are easily portable and will stave of hunger pangs. While most festivals now boast a mind-boggling number of food trucks, queues tend to be long - so it's good to be prepared for whining kids!

4. bring entertainment

Forget about lugging around cumbersome toys – but consider bringing a few props in case your kids get bored. Crayons and paper, bubbles and a few costumes will help keep them occupied during any down-time. And let's not forget those glowsticks! Consider bringing your own to avoid the queues (and cost). 

5. BRING LAYERS

Rather than packing bulky coats or sweaters, take lots of light layers, as well as a few handy waterproofs. Take a few plastic bags so you can pack away clothes when they get too filthy to reuse – all that running around in the grass and fields translates to children going through a lot of clothing. 

6. INVEST IN A CART

Little legs get tired easily, so it's a good idea to bring a cart with you or see if the festival has one for hire. They're the perfect mode of transportation for little ones, plus great for carrying anything else you might need for the day. Add a pillow and a blanket for easy napping. 

7. PIMP YOUR PUSHCHAIR

Make your pushchair visible at night by adding lots of lights and glow-in-the-dark stickers – no one wants to wake up to a knocked-over pram. And if things turn rainy (which they inevitably will), consider using a sling or back carrier instead – pushing a pram through the mud is hard work! 

8. Schedule in relaxing time

Maybe in your pre-parenting days, you could spend an entire day stage-hopping. But now that you're travelling as a family, it will be beneficial to everyone to take things a little slower. Find a quiet (ok, relatively quiet) area to hunker down in for a bit of quality time. 

9. Break the rules

At home, little ones may have a set nap time and only eat proper meals for dinner but at a festival you should prepare to be a little more flexible about their schedule and routines. Don't panic. The world won't end if they only eat doughnuts for dinner one evening (just as long as they know it's a one-off treat!).

10. Safety precautions

Write your mobile phone number on children's arms or label their clothing with your contact info in case they get lost. Depending on their age, try and flag up any festival staff, so your kids will know who to approach if they get separated.

Pick up everything you need for your festival or holiday online, or pop into your local store.