Take solace at the solstice: summer solstice events for 2013
It be the summer solstice this Friday! (And the winter solstice down under, but that’s a tad far to go on a weekend camping trip.) And then there’s Midsummer’s Day on Monday, which we think says ‘long weekend’.
We’ve rounded up some celebratory solstice events and festivals for you to dance barefoot at this weekend, all with details of nearby campsites – and more festivals to take you to the end of June:
Well, naturally. The stones at the henge are probably the best known summer solstice spot in the world, and thousands of people are expected to turn up to celebrate from this Thursday. The free event is managed by English Heritage and access to the stones is from 7pm on Thursday to 8am on Friday. For facilities, there’ll be portaloos, catering stalls and rubbish/recycling points handy, and guests are asked not to bring glass, dogs, fireworks, candles or large items like rucksacks or folding chairs: full list here.
Solstice stays: Nearby Salisbury Youth Hostel has non-electric grass pitches available from £23 a night for up to ten people, with unlimited cars included and student groups accepted. Pitches are in the peaceful grounds of YHA Salisbury and campers have access to all the hostel facilities including kitchen, café, TV room and launderette. If you’re bringing your tourer or motorhome, there are serviced pitches at Sandy Balls Holiday Centre just over the border in Hampshire, from £80 for two nights from this Friday.
Rollright Stones Summer Solstice
Druids in the Cotswolds? If this sounds like it’s for you this solstice, make your way to the Oxfordshire/Warwickshire border to the Rollright Stones, an ancient site with a stone circle, the King Stone and the nicely-named Whispering Knights. The solstice celebration kicks off at 3pm on Saturday: here’s info on how to get to the stones. There’s a café, loo, farm shop and garden centre about a mile to the east.
Solstice stays: Pitch up in Warwickshire or Oxfordshire to be within reach of the Rollrights: Twitey’s Tipis and Campsite four miles from Stratford-upon-Avon has non-electric grass tent pitches this weekend from £22 a night and tipis from £190 for two nights for up to four people; there’s also a tipi sleeping six from £255 for two nights. In Oxfordshire, Glamping Thorpe at Banbury has a shepherd’s hut and Betty the bow top gypsy wagon still available for a four-night stay, starting from £320.
A three-day event starting from Friday and based at Torpoint in Cornwall near the Devon border, this family-friendly festival will have dozens of live acts over four stages, bars with local ales and ciders, and workshops on foraging, singing and more. Also family-friendly and at Torpoint this weekend there’s the 3 Wishes Faery Fest at Mount Edgcumbe House and Country Park, with more live music alongside theatre, veggie/vegan food and kids’ workshops.
Solstice stays: Go for peace and quiet after a long day sampling Cornish cider or fluttering around like a faery with a stay in the luxury holiday homes from £332 for three nights at Bovisand Lodge Estate a few miles away in Plymouth; the Torpoint Ferry runs across the Tamar from Torpoint 24 hours a day.
Or stay in Cornwall at Dolbeare Park seven and a half miles away, where there’s 30% off tent pitches this weekend, from £14.49 a night; 40% off hardstanding electric pitches, now from £12.42, and 25% off large electric tent pitches, from £20.70. If you want to make a week of it, there are Eurotents also available at Dolbeare Park from £260 for seven nights, sleeping up to six.
No, not the festival – that’s next week. But we’re not surprised to see that the town of Glastonbury gears up for the festival proper this weekend, with solstice and midsummer events starting the Glastonbury Fringe which had its inaugural year in 2012. Eleven days of art and music across thirty venues all start in the town from Friday, including solstice celebrations in the Assembly Rooms and at the Chalice Well on the first evening.
Solstice stays: We have several sites within ten miles of Glastonbury: Middlewick Farm a mile away at the base of Glastonbury Tor has camping cabins complete with double bed, crisp linen, fluffy towels and their own private shower rooms, on a site with indoor pool, petting farm and steam room. Cabins start from £130 this weekend for two nights. There are also two-bedroom holiday homes available nearby at the adults-only Cheddar Bridge Touring Park from £375 for a week starting from this Saturday, and non-electric grass pitches for tents, tourers and motorhomes at Wells’s Ebborways Farm this weekend from £8 a night.
Looking for more festivals for this weekend or – we encouragingly say – thinking of taking this week and next to zigzag festivally around the country?
Try these other June festivals, all with details of campsites nearby:
Blues on the Farm, West Sussex, 20—30 June
Solas Festival, Perth, 21—23 June
Linton Festival, Herefordshire, 21—23 June
Hinckley Music Festival, Leicestershire, 21—23 June
Rock Oyster Festival, Cornwall, 21—23 June
Golowan, Cornwall, 21—30 June
Live and Kicking Music Festival, Suffolk, 22-23 June
Durham Blues Festival, Co Durham, 23 June
Glastonbudget, Leicestershire, 24—26 June
Napton Music Festival, Warwickshire, 28—29 June
Blues Festival of Wales, Glamorgan, 28—30 June
Funny as Folk, Lincolnshire, 28—30 June
Les-Fest, Lanarkshire, 28—30 June