Splashy Fen Music Festival is held once a year on a beautiful farm surrounded by mountains just outside the town of Underberg, in the Southern Drakensberg, South Africa.
I have been going to Splashy since 1995, what started out as a small folk music gathering In 1990 is now a world renowned music festival. These past three years it has just got better and better, the event was well organised and everyone that Lisa and I have spoken to have raved about what an incredible experience they had. We can go on and on about all the amazing bands, activities, vibes and the stalls but the list is endless! Instead we going to show you some of the moments that we captured in this post and what made our 2018 Splashy a unforgettable one.
It is all about the people at Splashy Fen
The people blew our minds and probably was our favorite part about the festival. Don’t get me wrong…. the line up of local and international Artists were incredible (after all it is a music festival). But it was definitely all about the people! People from all walks of life and ages coming together in one space, to exchange energies of love, peace, harmony and with no judgments it is quite magical. It was no surprise to me when I heard that Splashy is nick named South Africa’s friendliest festival. Splashy Fen over the years has become a community where everyone can experience the freedom of art and expression in so many forms. This is the place where you can play your musical instrument, dance with fire or poi, put flowers in your hair, belly dance, hula hoop, dress up or simply dance like no one is watching….
We heard stories and met people from far and wide who had come from England, USA, Ukraine, Germany and Uganda to experience how we celebrate life and music in South Africa. So many bands expressed their gratitude and warm welcome to the thousands of people who crowded under the tent singing and dancing to their music. There is no other way to say it…. the people were incredible!
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Some of our favorite Splashy Fenners 2018
Rain, Mudd and Rapids …
Splashy Fen would not be Splashy if it did not rain at least once, in fact it added to the festivities, many were embracing the rain and even dancing in it.
After the rain the rapids down by the river picked up which just made it more fun for those tubing. There were some really interesting flotation devices and outfits, with everyone enjoying the river in good spirits.
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Don’t forget the Decor
The decor throughout the festival was really creative, often we felt as if we were inside an Alice in Wonderland story book. There was something bright and colorful around every corner.
Many campsites got really creative and pitched a camp flag to tag their location. Some added their own memorabilia for passing visitors to sign, others had beer funnels and others went all out with unique and colourful decor around their tents. We made our camp flag from an old guitar.
The Market and Facilities
The market offered everything from dream catchers to eccentric clothing and everything in between. There was even a karaoke bus for those who wanted to test their talents. Security and fire personal were on guard 24/7 making sure everyone was safe. Constant announcements, well marked signs and a Splashy Fen App kept us updated throughout the weekend on the band line up and happenings. Showers and toilets have come a long way over the last 20 years and the Chill zone was ideal to sit on bean bags and charge you phones or cameras. There was early morning yoga and trail runs to prepare for the day and regular drumming experiences to test your rhythm.
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Feeding those Munchies
Everyone loved the food, there were a great variety to suit everyone’s taste. We found all the classics foods from chips and hamburgers to beer and cold drinks. A few interesting food stalls were the Sushi options, Pizza in a cone and a Vegan Potjie. The panini’s were a personal favorite!
The Bands and Stages
There were four stages and a dance Boma that boomed well into the night. The main stage, River stage, Acoustic stage and Tree house stage entertained everyone for hours on end. We were really impressed with the excellent selection of music and talent from local favorites and international artists.
We discovered the Pierce Brothers from Australia for the first time, which had such an amazing vibe and energy on stage. Another incredible talent and new favorite for us was local boy, Josh Wantie.
It’s a wrap
After spending four nights at Splashy Fen we welcomed a shower, warm bed and some clean clothes but we would honestly do it all over again… and again. Splashy Fen is a well organised, safe and memorable festival suitable for people of all ages, races, shapes and sizes. The beautiful scenery, people, food and music made a unique combination for a one of a kind festival. We cant wait to see what Splashy Fen has planned for 2019!
Have you been to Spalshy Fen? What items can’t you travel without? Let us know in the comments below.
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