In the month of June a magical festival of music, art and culture unfolds quietly on the north side of the Island of Anglesey. The festival has been ongoing now for years and its popularity has soared, so much so that thousands of of visitors flock to the shores of Anglesey to dance the night away in the secluded forests at the Carreglwyd estate. Tickets are sold out within hours of being on sale and this little know festival in most main stream circles, begins to unfold..
This year is a rather special year for Gotwood festival on Anglesey, as it’s their tenth year in production. Ten years in the festival world is no mean feat, and not just to survive and keep the festival open profitable and running, but to thrive and become one of the most popular underground festivals in the UK is a very difficult task. The teams working have made Gotwood into a resounding success on so many levels. The festival for me represents a crossroad of nature and art in the form of sounds, structures and paint.
The art that the teams put together is simply amazing (see below), the art is on huge boards dotted throughout the site, along with some stunning lighting which brings to forest to life at night. Birch trees back lit with stunning soft forest lighting invoke a feeling of magic when you there staring up into the canopy.
Gotwood festival is nestled in the private Careglwyd Estate in set into an idyllic location, with a mix of woodlands, lakeside and private Georgian manor house along with walled gardens. Described as an “ intimate and mystical party hidden in the middle of the woods” it does not disappoint.
The transformation the Carreglwyd estate metamorphoses in the run up to Gotwood festival is nothing short of magical. The blue bell filled woods are lined with beautiful festoon lighting and wonderful creative works of art adorn and decorate the entire estate from field to forest.
The first thing that will hit you when you enter Gotwood, is the attention to detail and the creative work that goes into this festival. It is just astonishing, canopies all up light over the whole estate , beautiful wood structures lovingly hand built intertwined with nature, and wonderful art and sculptures created and carved on site and finished with huge amounts of love. The Festival is split into areas and each area is connected by a series of beautify woven pathways tastefully light which lead you back through the canopies of the forests to and from each location. It’s worth a walk around in both the day and in the night to see the contrast of day and night.
Wooden ornate structures are always a large part of the theme at Gotwood, and local designers and joiners create stages, and all manner of creative projects to show case for the event. One of the main features is the now famous Gotwood owl, which doubles up as a DJ booth, which looks amazing at night. These pictures don’t do justice to how amazing this looks, the talens are very cool!
The Gotwood management also employ a series of local carpenters, joiners and other wood workers who take some of their yearly commissioned wooden structures to the next level.
Last year a floating restaurant was commissioned and built to serve 40 covers for the event in the private lake, the restaurant was beautifully placed attached to a boat house to serve guests. Built entirely on site and floated out onto the lake for a bespoke dinning service with a nautical twist. The nest as the restaurant is no called are there again this year and are taking bookings again see here
Accommodation on site comes in many forms and there is deluxe bell tents, lotus bell tents, tepees, yurts, airstreams and other glamping style dwellings on hire for the event for festival goers wishing to glamp it up style. Guest and festival goers can also stay in the large campsite grounds, which extend all over the estate.
The music scene draws many to the event. An electronic dance festival by trade with 7 uniquely built ” Gotwood themed stages” set up playing a variety of music types with laser shows and fantastic lighting displays all over the estate. The attention that goes into the stages and lighting systems is nothing but brilliant and each stage has different themed music on each day.
Art and culture is created afresh each year with artists and from all over the world to show case their wonderful creative gifts on huge canvasses, most given just a theme to play with and allowed to flow with their creativity, which result in the most ornate, enormous murals, 3D artworks and psycadelic show pieces.
Food on site at got wood festival there is a huge variety of vendors, stands and small hornet food wagons waiting to serve you from Vietnamese, to steakhouse style grills, to vegan and veggie stalls and stands, vendors work late into the early hours so you wont go hungry.
Stages include the wonderfully built Trigon stage, The treehouse, Walled gardens, Laser dome stage, Curve stage and the Front lawn each of which was built into the surrounding nature intertwined with canopies of sycamore, pine and oak overhanging, check out the stage images below! the site is laced with waterfalls, lakes and panoramic views of the island give this festival a nature filled aura with a free spirited vibe.
Musical line up this years Gotwood this year is rumoured to be the best yet and can be found here. Style of music at Gotwood festival varies greatly, but some of their mix series can be found on their site here .
The festival runs this weekend from June 6th – 9th. Some Day and Eve tickets are still available although in very limited numbers, they can be found on the Gotwood website here. Big congrats to the teams at GW for reaching their ten year milestone!