Are you lost? Find yourself - or just find a jolly good time - at one of these intimate, boutique Welsh gatherings.

The Laugharne Weekend

25 - 27 March 2022. This music and literary gathering in the small West Wales town of Laugharne has become infamous for its musical performances and alternative list of authors. Laugharne is best known for its connection with Welsh writer Dylan Thomas, and the three-day Laugharne Weekend continues to celebrate the creative spirit with dynamic line-ups, Names scheduled to appear at the 2022 festival are Irvine Welsh, Salena Godden, Mark Thomas and Patrick McCabe and Lisa O’Neill, amongst many more.

A man reading to a crowd of people.

David Quantick outside the Congregational Hall, Laugharne

The Big Retreat Festival

03 - 06 June 2022. Head to Lawrenny in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park for a long weekend of relaxing and re-energising. The Big Retreat Festival is a feel-good festival, in every sense of the word. With an impressive line-up of more than 200 events including wellbeing classes, workshops, cookery demonstrations, spoken word, bushcraft, music and even rum and gin, everybody has a chance to discover a new hobby, rediscover an old one or simply discover the beauty of Lawrenny itself

band at festival with the words The Big Retreat on the stage.

The Big Retreat Festival, Lawrenny, Pembrokeshire

HowTheLightGetsIn

02 - 05 June 2022. Nestling in the Welsh Hills of Hay-on-Way, HowTheLightGetsIn is the world's largest philosophy and music festival. Alongside dynamic debates, speakers delve into their specialist topics in Solo Talks and Philosophy comes to life in Hat Sessions. In the Inner Circle, a select group of festival goers dine with some of the greatest minds on the planet.

For tickets and more information on plans for the next festival visit the HowTheLightGetsIn website.

Unearthed Festival

17 - 19 June 2022. Unearthed Festival aims to create a space where people of all backgrounds can come together peacefully and share knowledge, skills, conversations, laughter and dance. The philosophy of the event is about the expansion of consciousness. Expect a mind-altering experience.

The Good Life Experience

01 - 25 July and 16 - 18 September 2022. Set on the Hawarden Estate of 19th century Prime Minister William Gladstone, the Good Life Experience festival is the brainchild of broadcaster and performer Cerys Matthews and husband Steve Abbott, along with farmers and authors Charlie and Caroline Gladstone. Its broad remit is to help people go in search of the good life, but this loosely translates to them delivering music, food and drink, authors, workshops and plenty of chances for outdoor exploration. It’s a great family friendly (and dog friendly!) way to see out the summer.

 

Image of performers at The Good Life Experience Festival 2017
Image of two girls learning archery at The Good Life Experience
Blick auf eines Hashtag-Schildes an einem Zaun für das Good Life Experience Festival.

The Good Life Experience, Hawarden

Between the Trees

26 - 28 August 2022. If your ideal festival is an intimate event held in the beautiful sand dunes of Wales, head to Between the Trees in Candleston Park, Merthyr Mawr National Nature Reserve, near Bridgend. Between the Trees brings you an encounter with nature, music, art & natural science - and it all happens in the middle of ancient Welsh woodland by the sea!

nighttime photo of festival.
nighttime photo of festival.

Between the Trees, Merthyr Mawr National Nature Reserve

Gladfest

09 - 11 September 2022. Gladfest brings together award-winning, internationally-renowned and breakthrough writers for a wonderfully eclectic weekend. In case you haven’t heard of the location, Gladstone’s Library is a residential library dedicated to dialogue, debate and learning for open-minded individuals and groups. It is Britain’s only Prime Ministerial library (founded by PM William Gladstone himself). Following Gladstone’s death in 1898, the Library became the national memorial to his life and work as well as one of the few Grade I-listed buildings in North Wales.

Gladfest, Gladstone's Library, Hawarden, Flintshire 

Iris Prize Festival, Cardiff

11 - 16 October 2022. Cardiff’s international gay and lesbian short film prize welcomes the best new filmmaking talent to the capital.

Find out more about the Iris Prize

Cardiff International Film Festival

2022 dates TBC. Cardiff International Film Festival takes place in the historic Pierhead Building in Cardiff Bay. Festival patrons include Welsh Hollywood actors Matthew Rhys and Michael Sheen. Submissions come in from all over the globe and categories include animation, features films, documentaries, Welsh language films and short films. The festival is open to the public, so head to Cardiff Bay for some glamour and glitz Welsh-style! 

The Big Cwtch

2022 dates TBC. The Big Cwtch is a magical, feel good festival that combines music, food, and fun. Head to Pembrokeshire to enjoy creative kids activities and workshops, a wellbeing sanctuary, paddleboarding, a crafts village, artisan stalls and a lot of big cwtch festival fun across the whole site. 

Related stories