Sleep is a rare and valuable commodity at festivals. Noisy neighbours, all-night Techno tents rumbling in the distance, and high spirits from the day’s events can all play havoc with your sleeping pattern and licking the inside of your tent at four in the afternoon because you didn’t get enough shut eye is never a good look. So before any of you say sleep is for wimps – here are our top tips for getting a good night’s kip at a festival…
Kicking off with the basics – making sure you’ve got the right festival gear is a good place to start. Eye-masks and ear-plugs are an absolute must for blocking out the morning sun and the babbling campsite chatter and beats from the 24-hour squat-party tent. These items are especially handy if you hit a wall in the afternoon following one of those particularly crispy 36 hour benders, and you need to escape the full swing of the sun and noise to grab yourself a power nap.
Being expelled from your tent by the clammy heat of the stark morning sun can be avoided by setting up camp under the shade of some large trees, scoring you at least an extra hour’s kip as the sun takes that little bit longer to creep onto your tent. This will also stop your tent from turning into a sweat box as the rays bounce and penetrate the thin poly-plastic membrane that somehow seems to have become the most thermally absorbent material known to man.
Image credit: urban75
Obviously you’ll need to determine where East and West are located in order to position yourself on the right side of the trees, and those who were in the Scouts or Guides will remember that if you point the 12 of your wristwatch at the sun the hour hand will point due North. Or was it the other way round, with the hour hand pointing at the sun and North where 12 is – or does it even make a difference? Think I’ll just stick to the compass on my smart-phone.
Many a moon-lit parties hence, when I was a little bit wetter around the festival gills, I learnt the hard way that the first spot you find to pitch isn’t always the best one – even if you have been lugging a damp case of half open Strongbow for 2 hours leaving a trail of hissing cans behind you while a couple of crustifarians follow in your wake like a pair of alcoholic ET’s. The spot we naively chose on this occasion was between a glaring million watt spotlight and a burger van, which came complete with a blaring radio playing tinny beats that drew in late-night revellers heading back to camp like moths to a bedside lamp – only 100 times more fucking annoying.
After the first night I decided I’d had enough of the constant drone of these diesel powered devices and the throng of pilled-up party people congregating at the last bastion of boogie otherwise known as the burger van, and so I decided to chance my luck of a night’s kip in the car, which was a good hour away. Soon after settling down in the car it became apparent that I had managed to park right next to a floodlight. So bleary-eyed and anything but relaxed, I drove up to the end of the field before finally finding the peace and serenity required to drift off into the land of nod. Moral of the story – avoid generators like you might do the next item on this list.
The hum of festival toilets is so bad you can almost hear it, and it always puzzles me why anyone would pitch so close to them. For those of you too dignified to relieve yourselves into an empty beer can or other such suitable vessel, expect your sleep to be interrupted by the constant clatter of porta-loo doors and late night revellers retching at the unspeakable within – resulting in a slightly grumpier and more lethargic you the following day.
Over to you…
Of course if you’re rocking it on the campervan field in your 17 metre Winnebago, you won’t have to worry about much of the above, but for the rest of us tent dwellers we hope you find these festival kip tips useful.
What do you recommend for getting a top nights kip at a festival? Let us know in the comments below…