Cheltenham Racecourse
Cheltenham Racecourse © Kate

Five Of The UK’s Best Festivals

The weather across the United Kingdom is beginning to improve and as we head into spring and then summer – festival season is almost here! Whatever your interest, there’s an outing to be had for everyone. Whether it is sport, music, theatre, comedy or another form of the arts there’s ample opportunity to get out and about – hopefully in the sunshine! Let’s take a look at some of the most interesting venues that stand out, starting with a trip to the races.

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Cheltenham Racecourse
Cheltenham Racecourse © Kate

Cheltenham Festival

Don your glad rags, hats and Sunday best for the week of races at the famous course. It’s arguably the biggest week of racing in the calendar, featuring the best horses and jockeys from across the world, culminating in the Cheltenham Gold Cup on the final day.

Whether you are a racing aficionado or even a complete novice, the festival has enough entertainment for a hugely enjoyable experience for all even if it is just an excuse to enjoy a pint or glass (or two) of wine during the day! Cheltenham also presents a chance for bettors to acclimatise themselves for a bet on Grand National 2017, using the event to gain more insight into horses and trainers for a larger punt down the line at Aintree.


Summer is well and truly at its height on the opening day of Glastonbury. Thousands make the yearly pilgrimage to the south west of England to take in music from a diverse spectrum of performers. There is no atmosphere like the final day of the festival on Pyramid Stage, which saw Coldplay headline the last act in 2016 to a raucous crowd.

Reports suggest that Radiohead and Ed Sheeran are amongst the acts that are in contention to headline the festival this time around, and it is something to be experienced at least once due to the talent of the artists and the unique setting – even if you’re not that big on camping!

Leeds Festival

If Glastonbury holds the title for the top music festival of the British summer, then Leeds is a very close second. For those up north it’s an event pinned in the calendar from the day the acts are confirmed and it does a fine job of matching its counterpart down south for quality. In recent years, Metallica, Mumford & Sons, Biffy Clyro, Imagine Dragons and the Red Hot Chili Peppers have headlined the main stage on Saturday and Sunday.

Meanwhile, a host of the country’s most talented comedians, including Russell Howard and Bill Bailey have also been part of the Leeds Festival, catering to those wishing for a laugh. The festival is certainly varied in its appeal and ends the summer on a high note. Acts already confirmed for 2017 include Eminem, Major Lazer and Andy C.

Edinburgh Fringe Festival

If you’re not entirely committed to sport or music then heading to a festival that combines all the arts and culture you could possibly imagine may be your best bet. The legendary Edinburgh Fringe Festival is the largest arts festival in the world, boasting just about every kind of entertainment is available from theatrical shows to live music, musicals, comedy, art, and dance. It’s reasonably priced and hosted by one of the most prestigious and beautiful cities in the United Kingdom. Even just looking around the famous old city is enough for some people.

Machynlleth Comedy Festival

Perhaps one that might be under the radar heading into the summer, this festival is not for those who are unwilling to go out in the reaches of the west coast of Wales. If out-and-out comedy is up your street then this is one for you. The majority of the acts involved are not household names, with many using the venue to cut their cloth on the festival scene. However, Sara Pascoe and Stewart Lee provide familiarity and a recognisable routine, although hearing new acts and material is always a great experience, whether they turn out to be brilliant or just flop.

There is always a great deal of excitement in the United Kingdom after making it through the turgid winter months and getting to experience the joys of summer, with just some of the highlights at these five venues. Enjoy!

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