Like the idea of leaving a festival feeling better than when you arrived? Look no further. More and more wellness-focused gatherings are popping up across the UK, proving festivals don’t have to be all about booze and mosh pits. From lakeside yoga retreats to adrenaline-fuelled fitness events, these festivals are all about nurturing mind and body. Get booking!
Yoga and wellbeing festival Soul Circus is relatively new to the UK festival landscape, having launched just two years ago in 2017. Held at the picturesque Cotswold hills of Elmore near Gloucester, festival goers can try an array of different types of yoga, from aerial to restorative, as well as other exercise classes such as barre and boxing. You can also enjoy a wide selection of locally sourced, healthy food, live music and DJs, attend one of the many workshops on offer, or simply chill out in a lakeside hot tub. The gardens and woodlands make a beautiful backdrop for the festival’s many light shows and parties, which run late into the night.
Where? Elmore, Gloucestershire
When? 16-18 August
Tickets from £199 soulcircus.yoga
For three days in May, hundreds of wellness gurus, global fitness experts and health enthusiasts will descend on The Old Truman Brewery for the UK’s largest wellness event, Balance Festival. Guests can choose from over 150 workouts, sample nutritious food, test wearable tech, explore mindful practices, get pampered with natural beauty products and listen to inspiring talks from key figures in the wellness world. Whether you’re looking to build your brand, meet like-minded people or just explore what the UK health landscape has to offer, a trip to Balance Festival will leave you inspired.
Where? The Old Truman Brewery, London
When? 10-12 May
Tickets from £22.50 balance-festival.com
Fancy the best of both worlds? Head to LoveFit, a festival that fuses fitness with classic music festival vibes. By day you can take part in everything from spinning to boxing to paddle boarding, but by night it’s all about music, DJs and late-night partying. Last year they hosted some of London’s hottest fitness studios, from Ministry of Sound to 1Rebel to Good Life Yoga, and no doubt this year the line up will be even bigger. The ultimate detox-retox.
Where? St Clere Estate, Kent
When? 19-21 July
Tickets from £114 lovefitfestival.com
Taking place at the idyllic Cornbury Park in Oxfordshire, Wilderness Festival is hailed as one of the UK’s top weekend wellness retreats. While it holds many of the aspects of a traditional music festival including a stellar line-up, guests can also take part in activities like wild swimming, fireside cooking sessions and mindfulness classes. Previous years have seen yoga and brunch events with Deliciously Ella, supper clubs with Ottolenghi and independent live theatre shows, so there really is something for everyone, wellbeing fanatic or not.
Where? Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire
When? 16-18 August
Tickets from £168.50 wildernessfestival.com
Festival No. 6
Head to the magical Portmerion in Wales for Festival No. 6, a unique festival featuring music, arts and culture with a big side of wellness. Last year saw the likes of Jessie J, Friendly Fires and Jessie Ware take to the Mediterranean-inspired main stage, which is surrounded by scenic estuary and mountains. Enjoy this alongside inspirational talks, massages, woodland runs, yoga, wood-fired hot tub sessions and brunch clubs – and don’t miss the annual torchlit procession, where festival goers carry burning wax torches from the village to the Castell Park, a celebration of the beautiful British countryside.
Where? Portmerion, Wales
When? 2019 dates yet to be announced, watch this space…
Ultra-zen hideout-come-retreat, Green Man Festival is a haven for nature lovers, explorers and health enthusiasts alike. Not only does it offer your usual yoga and pilates, they have a dedicated Nature Nurture garden, a quiet corner tucked away in the Welsh countryside complete with gong baths, restorative hot tubs and Indian summer massages.
Where? Brecon Beacons, Wales
When? 15-18 August
Mind Body Spirit
Founded in 1977, Mind Body Spirit Festival was the first exhibition in the world dedicated to the pursuit of healthier and more fulfilling lifestyles. This year they’re bringing life tips, tools and inspiration to London’s Olympia in May and Birmingham NEC in November. Expect a whole host of motivational speakers, health food brands and holistic retreat exhibitors, plus a range of experiences to try including wellbeing studios, spas and pop-up temples.
Where? Olympia London and Birmingham National Exhibition Centre
When? 24-27 May (London) and 1-3 November (Birmingham)
Tickets from £12.25 mindbodyspirit.co.uk
Live Well London
Channel your inner yogi, watch live cooking shows and trial some of London’s top fitness boutique studios at Live Well London, a hub of health and wellbeing coming to London’s Old Billingsgate Market. Here you’ll find fitness studios like Define London and Groove Om Yoga, as well as key figures in the wellness sphere including Liz Earle, Dale Pinnock and Michael James Wong.
Where? Old Billingsgate Market, London
When? 1-3 March
Tickets from £35 livewelllondon.com
A far cry from the booze-fuelled revelry of many UK music festivals, FloVibe describes itself as place ‘where retreat meet festival.’ Set in the grounds of an 18th century country house, activities include yoga classes, outdoor spas, mindfulness workshops, dancing and paddle boarding. In the evenings, unwind with some acoustic music, kick things up a notch at one of the live DJ sets, or sit back and enjoy some of the wholesome foodie delights on offer.
Where? Stansted Park, Rowlands Castle, Hampshire
When? 16-18 August
Tickets from £125 flovibe.com
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