Activities Festival Music

7 reasons to book Wilderness Festival with kids

Multi Award Winning Event & Music Photographer James Bridle

Wilderness Festival is an untamed beast of a festival (in the best possible way) this year it celebrated its twelfth season in style with an extended weekend of cutting-edge multi-arts experiences set against the enchanting backdrop of Cornbury Park. It was a wildly, magical experience and we think you should all go – here’s our five reasons why.


This year Wilderness Festival delivered on the music front. The enchanting surroundings of Cornbury Park set the stage for an unparalleled lineup of diverse talents, painting a vivid sonic tapestry. The Wilderness Stage came alive with electrifying performances from big ticket names like The Chemical Brothers, Christine and the Queens, and Fatboy Slim (who celebrated his birthday with an incredible set), alongside a stellar cast including Sugababes, Arlo Parks, Confidence Man, Franc Moody, The Zombies, and many many more. There’s bound to be a few bangers that you recognise and you can share with your kids. It was such a joy hearing my son tell his dad about the Chemical Brothers.

Community Spirit

Multi Award Winning Event & Music Photographer James Bridle

Perhaps it was the combination of the crappy weather and the mud. But there’s something quite magical about the community spirit at Wilderness. Everyone seemed like open minded individuals there to enjoy the hedonistic joys of festival life. People were friendly, inclusive and diverse. It was a joy to witness, particularly on the rainiest of the days the whole camp site came alive with clapping sounds as soon as the sun peaked out from behind a cloud.

Family Friendly Fun

Amidst the park’s expanse, an abundance of fun, games, and outdoor activities await, with The Family Field at its heart, offering a hub of performances, storytelling, puppetry, and more. The Flying Seagul Project was our favourite space and the incredible work that they do extends beyond the UK. Sure they have squads of clowns and performers to entertain in multi-layered shows that both adults and kids will enjoy but they also bring joy, laughter and play to those both the UK and global contexts (refugees and many in war torn areas) where circumstances mean play is the last thing on their minds. We also really enjoyed the monster clay making station, the circus skills and of course the Roundhouse Transmission tent where children could take part in DJ skills, Music production and Podcasting. Our six year olds loved it.

Adding to the family-centric excitement is The Magical Musical Bubble Bike, a delightful contraption brimming with surprises, which could be found throughout the site. There are many other tents that the kids will enjoy and ofcourse the fairground rides which are always a favourite.

Immersive Experiences, Arts and Shows

The Wilderness Spectacle, where a remarkable ensemble of 500 drones illuminated the night sky. Crafted in partnership with SKYMAGIC, the pioneering aerial light show studio renowned for King Charles III’s coronation drone display, the breathtaking showcase adorned the heavens with illuminated sketches. From the graceful flight of a phoenix to the intricate dance of luminous patterns, the display transported the captivated audience to a realm of untamed wonder. It was incredible! Beyond that there are a lot of arts, shows and other immersive experiences to enjoy throughout the festival site.

Foodie Experiences

Multi Award Winning Event & Music Photographer James Bridle

Wilderness Festival is renowned for its exceptional dining experiences and stellar chef lineup. Renowned chefs bring their talents to tented banquets, lakeside dining, communal tables under the Wychwood canopy, and casual pop-up eateries with DJ vibes. The range is extensive, now enhanced by three new gastronomic concepts.Admitedly with children you may not be able to make the most of the foodie experiences, but even so, the food trucks on the site offer an incredible array of delicious food to suit any budget and taste. The kids loved the pizza, noodles, BBQs, fried chicken, sushi and more during our 4 day stay.

Health & Wellness

Multi Award Winning Event & Music Photographer James Bridle

The Sanctuary at Wilderness Festival is more than just a space to unwind and engage – it’s a transformative haven and a space that offers a much needed quiet escape from the sometimes frenetic energy of the festival. Workshops led by Breathpod truly tapped into the incredible power of breath for enhanced health and well-being. The diverse lineup of yoga and movement experts, including Ruben DeMonte, Kage Douglas, Zoe Rowe, Eryck Brahmania, James Cassidy, and Tiffany Hamilton-Atkins, offered yoga masterclasses for practitioners of all levels, enriching the experience even further. Plus there is a lake where where you can go wild swimming which if the weather plays ball is an incredible experience (the kids went in anyway even though it was chilly!) There are hot tubs to warm up afterwards but unfortunately under 18s are not allowed in the space.

Festival Nannies

Festivals with kids are a different experience and sometimes it is nice to have a little break and enjoy the adult entertainment without your little human in tow (you do have 4 full days to take in). Cue Mortimer Nannies to the rescue. These qualified childcare professionals offer childcare sessions (either group in a communal tent with loads of activities or 1-2-1 in your tent). We booked the kids for one night and enjoyed the late night adults-only entertainment.

Late night entertainment

Wilderness Festival 2023

Wilderness has SO MUCH late-night entertainment to enjoy. On Saturday night when we were minus the kids we joined the vibrant and enthusiastic crowdthat flocked to the epicenter of leftfield and avant-garde entertainment, the House of Sublime – and it was INCREDIBLE. The costumes, the comedy, the award winning drag and cabaret performances were ON POINT and definately worth queueing for. Beyond that, when the sun goes down The Valley is the place to be as it burst into life, with enthusiastic crowds dancing fervently into the early hours on the forest dance floor. Renowned DJs like Honey Dijon, DJ Paulette, Kerri Chandler, Elliot Schooling & Liam Palmer (Appetite), Storm Mollison, and Todd Terry graced the neon-illuminated forest stage, culminating in a hedonistic voyage through the History of Rave by the iconic DJ legend, Eats Everything. It is a VIBE and if you’re in group you can take turns (or book festival nannies) so you can really enjoy the late night entertainment.

Wilderness Festival is on the 1st of August til the 4th in 2024 and tickets are £214.50 for adults £137.50 for teens £44.80 for ages 6 to 12 and those under 5 can get tickets for £11.20. More info and bookings here.

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