Check out our top picks of the best family-friendly festivals in the UK in 2023...
Last updated: 17th Jan 2023
From small boutique festivals tucked away in some of Britain's most enchanting locations, to the celebrated behemoths of the festival world, such as the legendary Isle of Wight Festival - there are hundreds and hundreds of amazing carnivals, parties, and musical gatherings built specifically to cater to the needs and wants of the entire family out there.
We've created a list of some of the best family-friendly festivals to assist you in finding the perfect event for both the grown-ups and the little ones within your family unit.
Cast your eyes over the numerous wholesome, exciting, and interactive festivals on offer to families in the UK this year...
Atop of the highest point in Lancaster, on the scenic, panoramic and historical grounds of Williamson Park is one of Northern England's best family-friendly festivals - Highest Point.
Celebrating its fifth anniversary in 2023, the festival has already secured Hacienda Classical, Bastille, and Anne-Marie as headline acts. As always, we can be certain the rest of the lineup for 2023 will be unreal.
If you get a bit peckish, a wide selection of delicacies and tipples will be available to purchase from a variety of diverse vendors, as a multitude of activities and performances take place throughout the weekend.
The three-day event concludes with The Big Family Day Out, where kids and adults alike are encouraged to take full advantage of the entertainment on offer. Last year saw a butterfly enclosure, mini zoo, face painting, immersive theatre productions and more.
As one of the biggest, best kid-friendly festivals, this is one to keep an eye on.
Elderflower Fields was born in 2012. The organisers had a vision to create a festival specifically designed for families and children. And that’s exactly what they created.
Intentionally keeping the festival small, the festival is incredibly safe and encourages kids to embrace their wild side, immerse themselves in nature, enjoy great food, explore art and music, and get sporty.
The kids can enjoy campfire cooking, beach rugby, tree climbing, kayaking, yoga for kids, parkour, and so much more. There's fun stuff for the adults too like cocktails and crowns where you can make an everlasting crown and, you guessed it, sip on some cocktails, yoga, and more.
The organisers are passionate and constantly seeking new activities to bring to their lucky guests.
Situated deep within the Southern Uplands of Scotland, on a beautiful mountain riverside meadow, Knockengorroch is a festival run by a family for families, full of magic and mayhem.
Featuring an abundance of live music, singing, dancing, drinking, workshops and storytelling, the festival is one of the most unique events available to attend in the UK. A real Ceilidh in the hills, as the locals might say.
A world music and roots event, Knockengorroch is renowned for delivering a broad and all-encompassing range of fantastic artists, representing a multitude of genres - including folk, fusion, dub, reggae, electronica, hip-hop and drum'n'bass. As well as music, punters can enjoy cabaret, spoken word, dance, and comedy performances.
It was recently awarded Dark Skies status, which means the festival is located in one of the best areas in the world to see the stars. Aside from stunning night skies, you can also look forward to a sauna, plenty of children's activities, real ales, arts and crafts, workshops, and delicious food stalls.
Head out on an adventure to this stunning and remote festival, and unwind in the natural surroundings with your nearest and dearest this year.
Launched back in 2016, Cheshire Fest has become a firm favourite amongst families in the North West of England. And it’ll be back again in 2023 to celebrate local music, street food, and drink.
The fest is the largest regional offering of children’s entertainment and activities and boasts an impressive program of performers every year. You can catch performances by local and upcoming musical talents, the most sought after international tribute acts and a handful of legendary names. It’s no wonder the fest pulls huge audiences every year.
Now, what about food? Picture a buffet of food and drinks served by the best traders in Lancashire. You’ll be in safe hands. And if the little ones need a break from the music, they can enjoy a variety of entertainment including fairground rides, face painting stalls, and appearances from some well-known superheroes and Disney characters.
Cheshire Fest has the perfect recipe for a proper weekend of festival fun.
LeeStock is the annual non-profit festival, tribute and memorial to local Suffolk musician, Lee Dunford who battled against Hodgkin’s Lymphoma until 2006.
Having outgrown several other sites in the past, the festival now takes place on the magnificent grounds of Melford Hall, a 16th century stately home.
Renowned for repeatedly booking a consistently remarkable bill, previous LeeStock lineups have featured many UK musical greats - such as 90s favourites Dodgy, Mark Morriss, John Power, Chris Helme, Tom Hingley, Luke Concannon, Wheatus, D:Ream, Space, Toploader, Lightning Seeds, Terrorvision, Scouting For Girls, and many more.
In addition to hosting some of the best acts in Britain, festival-goers, especially the kids, can find many other forms of entertainment. From Storytelling and book reading to face painting, colouring in and playing in the sandpit - there's plenty to keep the little ones amused whilst you hit up the bar and food stalls to taste the flavours of some of the finest, locally produced goodies.
All proceeds from the festival and associated fundraising events are donated to the Willow Foundation charity. To date, the festival has raised over £100,000 for the charity.
'For the people, not the profit' - Equinox Festival is another non-profit event that made our best family-friendly festival list.
Built by a diverse community of music and art lovers, this annual festival prides itself on bringing together people of different cultures and tribes to celebrate, experience, and interact with a medley of magical musical performances and installations.
Held on a relaxing farm setting in the Lincolnshire Wolds, the festival site is comprised of seven stages, each with crazy decor and stage shows, showcasing hundreds of bands and DJs, fire shows, crafts and workshops throughout the extended weekend.
The festival also has its own dedicated children’s play area with with storytelling, games, music, workshops, and so much more to keep the kids entertained. You’ll also find a great selection of food and drink vendors, each supplying a smorgasbord of delectable treats and refreshments, with something to suit the needs of the meat-eaters, veggies, and vegans. Oh, and under 14's go free!
The Gathering is a yearly celebration of Highland culture, presenting the very best traditional and folk-based musical talents from all over Scotland and beyond. If that's not your vibe, don't worry. There's also rock, pop, and other genres on the lineup.
Taking residence at the Northern Meeting Park in Inverness, the one-day city centre festival event is packed with things to do and see. Those of age can sample some of the finest alcoholic drinks, brought to you by a host of dedicated craft makers from across the region in addition to a wide choice of highland delicacies whilst the youngsters make the most of a packed programme of children's entertainment.
Experience a proper Scottish knees up like no other with your family this year. Bagpipes and kilts at the ready!
Coming back for its third year, Fife Fest has already left a lasting impression on festival fans by booking the best tribute acts.
Lucky attendees who snag tickets can enjoy the finest tribute acts, including Definitely Oasis, a band considered by Oasis fans and promoters to be the best Oasis tribute band. Other acts you can catch include tributes to David Bowie, Blondie, James, The Stone Roses, and Queen. It’s safe to say the organisers have done it again with a killer lineup that’s not only packed full of the best tribute but is also incredibly diverse.
Take the family on a trip to the eastern coast of Scotland this September for an unforgettable festival experience.
Wychwood Festival is back again with a jam-packed schedule of over 100 music artists across multiple genres, over 100 workshops, comedy, silent discos and more. The festival also has its own literature festival for kids that runs alongside the main event and a real ale festival for the parents. It’s perfect for all the family, no matter where your interests lie.
Performing live over the first weekend in June this year, punters can expect to witness the Travis, a Southern England festival exclusive, the legendary Heather Small, and Scottish band The Proclaimers.
The Sunday Mirror dubbed the festival “Britain’s most popular family festival”, and The Independent called it “the best festival for families”, so you know you’re up for a cracking time.
Isle Of Wight Festival is the first major festival of the UK’s summer and one of the longest-running, most significant and legendary British live music events.
Routinely showcasing some of the industry's biggest names, the heritage event has become somewhat of a spiritual home for live music.
The fest has a rich and illustrious past, spanning over fifty years. In that time, it’s welcomed many of the greats onto its stages, including Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Miles Davis, The Doors, The Who, Joni Mitchell and many more.
A real favourite amongst families, the long-weekend event has its own purpose-built Kidzone area, created specifically to entertain the younger festival-goers. Kids and adults can participate in circus workshops, enjoy theatre and magic shows, get creative in the natural workshop classes, dress up in the costume tent, and so much more. Previous events have even welcomed the likes of Peppa Pig to tell her many festival stories and sing songs.
Going down in Feanedock, Timber Fest will bring together lucky music and art fans for three days of celebration, debate, art, and reflection.
The festival will see many music performances, as well as book readings, poetry, talks, short films, wellbeing sessions, lessons in circus skills, campfire stories, woodland skill sessions, and so much more.
Timber Fest invites you and your family to unplug and reconnect by enjoying the arts and recentering by enjoying nature and engaging in mindfulness activities.
With such a diverse program, every member of the family is sure to find something that resonates with them.
One of the UK’s most beloved festivals is back again to treat around 40,000 lucky guests to a weekend full of music performed by some of the biggest names in the industry, comedy, workshops, theatre productions, art installations, wellbeing activities and more.
The festival has won Best Family Festival and Best Family Day Out in the past, so you know you and the kids are in for a cracking weekend.
So far on the lineup, we've got a mixed, family-friendly bag of artists including Pulp, George Ezra, Paolo Nutini, and The Kooks. Alongside the tunes, there's comedy, an award-winning children's, teenagers, and family programme, wild swimming, mindfulness activities, and more.
2023 lineup: Ed Sheeran (tribute), Katy Perry (tribute), Dua Lipa (tribute)
Over in Wales, GlastonBARRY Juniors welcomes littluns and their family to enjoy the festival experience with extra fun from free workshops, games, rides, the tiny tots disco, magic shows, and more.
And for the adults, there’s a licensed bar, delicious food vendors, stalls to explore and more.
So far on the lineup for GlastonBARRY Juniors, we’ve got tributes to some of the biggest names in pop - Ed Sheeran, Dua Lipa, and Katy Perry. But keep your eyes peeled as more names will be announced soon. Oh, and under 3’s go free!
Tickets for GlastonBARRY Juniors
Check out our What's On Guide to discover even more rowdy raves and sweaty gigs taking place over the coming weeks and months. For festivals, lifestyle events and more, head on over to our Things To Do page or be inspired by the event selections on our Inspire Me page.