From humble beginnings as a folk festival attended by just a few hundred people, Green Man has grown to be one of the biggest dates on the music scene. Here are just a few of things that make it stand out – and saw it voted Best Festival of the Year 2018 by listeners of BBC6 Music.
Though it started out as a folk festival, today’s Green Man takes in sounds from right across the musical spectrum. Wander the various stages and tents and you’ll hear everything from delicate acoustic tunes and indie rock to psych, soul, funk and ear-battering electronica from an astonishing range of mainstream, underground and up and coming artists. Recent years have seen performances from the likes of James Blake, Laura Marking, John Grant, Thee Oh Sees, Mogwai and Fleet Foxes, among countless others.
Lying on the banks if the Usk River in the shadow of the Black Mountains, you’d be hard pushed to find a more spectacular site. Watching a band play on the main Mountain’s Foot stage as the sun sets is one of the UK festival scene’s most memorable experiences. Green Man’s location also makes it the perfect starting point for exploring more of the Brecon Beacons. If you want to sample more of what the area has to offer, upgrade your festival pass with ticket to the Settlement, the family-focused mini festival that takes place in the week leading up to Green Man proper.
Fabulous food and drink
You won’t find your typical festival fare of generic lager and burger vans here. You’re spoiled for choice with Green Man’s amazing array of food and drink options. Hungry? Take your pick from a menu that spans the globe, featuring Goan fish curry, seafood paella, wood-fired pizzas, vegetarian burritos and French specialities like tartiflette. The drinks are equally tempting. Ale fans should head to the courtyard bar, which serves up dozens of local brews, plus a range of hand-made ciders. Or keep things classy with a creation from the cocktail bar.
In the unlikely event you fancy a break from all the live music, you’ll still find plenty to occupy you. There’s spoken word and comedy at Babbling Tongues, theatre and acrobatics at Back of Beyond and film screenings of cult classics and new creations at the Cinedrome. You’ll also find visual art installations in the woods and roving bands of perfomers adding to the atmosphere across the site.
Here comes the science part
Give your brain cells a work out in Einstein’s Garden, an interactive oasis of science and technology. With fascinating talks and demonstrations from visiting scientists, hands-on activities and experiments and (of course) plenty of music, it’s tailor made for enquiring minds of all ages.
Take it easy
Feel like a break? Head to the Nature Nurture field for massages, meditation and a range of alternative therapies. There are also wood-fired hot tub sessions – complete with a glass of bubbly and use of home comforts like hot showers, hairdryers and phone chargers. Perfect for a mid-Festival recharge for your body, mind and mobile.