When it comes to festivals, Bonnaroo is one of the elite. Known for its iconic lineup representative of all genres, this Tennessee favorite event under the 95° sun is one where thousands of music fans congregate. Whether you’re into the festival scene, down to meet new people, love the pregame/social life, or new to the festival experience, Bonnaroo offers it all for each type of participant to get out of the weekend what they personally need.
Like any music festival, “Roo” comes with some hurdles and lots of logistics. Basically, there is a way to Bonnaroo right. Pick a campervan to rent from your favorite campervan rental location to make sure you Roo right. Whether you’re in a getaway van or simply end up camping, we wanted to provide you the top tips for the ultimate Roo (and general fest) experience.
1. Getting groceries
At your legendary Walmart stop, make sure to pick up anything that will help keep you cool in the heat. Helpful tools are a sports Cooling Towel, stainless steel water canteen, a hat, and a handheld fan. The rest of the supplies are up to you – just remember no glass so beers need to come in a can.
Escape Campervan Tip: If you have a van for the weekend, buy food that you can heat up and cook on the stove to save you money on expensive vendor prices! The best experience is the shared breakfast with your neighbors.
2. Arriving at the campground
Since Bonnaroo is the ultimate car camping festival, many festivalgoers start lining up to get into the campground late Wednesday night, technically allowed Thursday morning. It is imperative to know that whoever you drive in with is the people you’re camping next to, so if you have a friend group with two or more vehicles, you must meet up and drive into the line together. PS: There will always be a line.
Escape Campervan Tip: With a van that fits 4+ friends, it’s easy to stay together for the ride-in and set-up! Plus you can rent an extra 2-person tent directly from Escape for even more space while at camp.
3. Setting up camp
Note that where you and your friends end up being directed to park your car, will be your home for the entire weekend, with it being VERY difficult to leave and impossible to move spaces. This is a standard. Therefore, create your ultimate camping experience and get to know your neighbors! Share camping gear from chairs and tables to cooking supplies, but most importantly, share shade structures. Caring is sharing during fest survival mode and the more shade you have the better.
Escape Campervan Tip: If you are in an Escape Campervan, the necessities are covered, so be that cool neighbor who shares the love. You can rent special campervan sunshades that can be zipped up fully for more protection from the elements AND more privacy!
4. Planning your schedule
Now that you’re at the fest, experience everything with an open mind and no expectations. Circle the artists you want to see on the lineup, but also remember to go with the flow of what you and your friends are doing in the moment rather than stressing about seeing every artist you circled.
5. Enjoying the festival
Remember Bonnaroo is more than the music experience! There are performances, comedy shows, vendors, activities in the campgrounds, and interactive elements at CenterRoo. Walk around the campground to meet other festivalgoers and discover pop-up renegade parties or let the fun come to you with your exciting (and inviting) campervan design. Festival goers will love to talk to you about what fun art covers your home-away-from-home. As a general rule of thumb, Bonnaroo is great about listing all the offerings on the site and app… but it’s still impossible to see it all. So take some time to purposely wander the grounds.
6. Saying yes!
If someone invites you to do something… always say YES. You may just find and discover your favorite new artist or meet a fantastic group of new friends. And hey you can always invite people back to the van to get ready for the night in the comfort of AC (with the van turned on, only) or to cook a quick meal before your next big show.
We could go on and on about the fun elements of Bonnaroo, tips on festival-ing right, and the benefits of van life over tent life (even though we appreciate both).
But for now, we leave you with these top tips and a nod to you to kick off your festival season right! Remember to book your campervan in plenty of time for the festival – and be safe and have fun out there!