Wilderness Festival 2023 unveils family activities and outdoor pursuits for all ages

Wilderness Festival is top of the list for many and considered a highlight in the UK festival season. An ephemeral paradise set in idyllic parkland, offering something for everyone in the family. There are plenty of outdoor pursuits and activities for nature lovers of all ages. The multi-arts extravaganza is a chance to escape the real world and find blissful moments, with an atmosphere that is both bucolic and bacchanalian.

If you haven’t got your tickets yet, get them at https://www.wildernessfestival.com/tickets. If you have, then it’s time to book some activities to make the event even more memorable.

kids at wilderness fesitval
Wilderness is considered one of the best festivals for kids in the UK

For Families

Welcome to absolute perfection for little people, a world of crazy and colourful dreams made real. A place where they can roam and riot amidst the cultural hijinks and ancient oaks.

This cosmic dreamland is perfect for children of all ages, teaming as it is with fantastical family activities, games, dancefloors and stories to spark wild imaginings. Peopled with a heroic cast of colourful characters, the family programme exists to thrill, inspire and excite, casting off the bowlines and blowing young minds.

The perfect alternative family holiday destination, Cornbury’s rolling parkland is the heavenly backdrop to a colourful programme of family theatre, sensory raves, games and dance sessions, circus and clowning, performance and play.

Exploring Nature will be offering inspiring, fun and educational interactive workshops connecting children and adults to the environment and the magic of nature. Their aim is to bring appreciation, wonder, and interest in our natural world to the next generation. Their workshops will include creating clay creatures, ladybird hotels, environmental art and much more.

The Flying Seagull Project returns to spread light, love and inspiration. Expect three fun packed days of clowning, circus, comedy, music and performances. Meanwhile, 321 Let’s Have Fun is the space for little ones to explore, create and play. Theatre company Tootles + Nibs bring their secret recipe of silliness, hubbub, hullabaloo and brouhaha, creating memorable adventures, games, parties, stories and dreams.

Brand new for this year, The Cabinet of Living Cinema explores the heritage of film via live cinema adventures. Join their project, The Enchanted Cinema which includes hand-crafted animation and live musical scores. Using your hands, voice and instruments, you will be part of the “FX Crew”, creating soundtracks to scenes from stunning animated films. These include “Where the Wild Things Are (1973)” and Yuri Norstein’s heart-warming “Hedgehog in the Fog (1975)”; inspiration for Studio Ghibli’s director, Hayao Miyazaki and rated one of the best animations of all time. You’ll become the sound of an owl, a snail, tree frogs, cicadas or even a tree ghost, using 6ft bamboo canes and working with multi-instrumentalist Gareth Wilkins to create an atmospheric xylophone score for scenes.

Cosmic Crafting is on an intergalactic mission to fill the universe with endless creative opportunities for all the family to enjoy. Their workshops are designed to get you Wilderness-ready, designing and creating your own eco-friendly wears and accessories: headdresses, capes and keepsake trinkets to take home and treasure forever. Get ready to explore new dimensions.

For the older children, head to The Hub hosted by Transmission Roundhouse, a socially engaged podcast platform powered by the Roundhouse in Camden. The Hub is a home for niche, innovative and groundbreaking audio-led content that champions the voices of underrepresented young creatives. The platform is renowned for hosting top quality workshops teaching young people the fundamental skills to become the ultimate DJ, radio host, music producer or podcaster.

This year, The Hustle are kicking off their family programme with two child-friendly sensory daytime raves. Award-winning children’s theatre company FacePlant Theatre will be delivering an interactive and immersive theatrical experience where anything goes. Will you help the bumbling Pirates in Training (the P.I.T.S) on the treasure hunt to find the rave? Or will you help the clueless aliens from planet drab learn all about being fabulous and show them how to dance to the beats and breaks provided by Brighton-Based DJ legend The Glitterbosher?

Finally, the ever-popular keepers of calm Mortimer Nannies return to entertain the little ones, allowing parents to unleash their wild sides for a few hours. Returning to Wilderness for their tenth year, they can be found in their usual place in the family field, hosting bookable sessions between midday and midnight. Welcoming children of all ages, their separate Baby Hub will be open throughout the weekend providing complimentary nappies and a quiet place to feed. Debuting in 2023 are Teens and Tweens Evening Sessions, catering specifically for ages 10 and over as well as creche sessions in Boutique Camping. In-tent private nannies will be available to pre-book over the weekend.

kids entertainment at the wilderness festival in

The Great Outdoors

Wilderness showcases its blissful selection of outdoor activities, celebrating the great British outdoors in all its summer glory. Wild swimming, daily wild runs with the Midnight Runners, boating on the serene, expansive Lake Superior, bathing in forests, dining on foraged treats and camping under the stars: this is nature appreciation at its very best.

Wilderness welcomes back perennial favourite, plant whisperer, re-wilding coach and author, Rachel Corby to present her free Forest Bathing sessions, encouraging you to mindfully connect to nature and allowing your senses to guide you through the beautiful woodland. Rachel will also be hosting guided Wild Medicine Walks: discover an abundance of medicinal plants growing underfoot and in the hedgerows. Expand your knowledge and learn a useful life skill; using plants that can help with everything from hangovers to sunburn, broken hearts to grazed knees. Rachel has been working with medicinal plants for over 20 years since she was catapulted into the realms of plant consciousness whilst working with a shaman in the Ecuadorian rainforest.

The hugely popular Hunter Gather Cook returns, with sessions on Friday, Saturday and Sunday providing the finest foraging, butchery and fire cookery workshops in the UK. Over 18s gather in the woods for crayfish trapping, deer butchery and foraging, followed by delicious wild cocktails and canapes.

Following the success of last year’s sessions, Sam Lane is back with the extended, family-friendly Phone Photography workshops. Sam will guide you around the Wilderness site, teaching composition and how to take stunning landscapes, portraits and action shots. Another ubiquitous and unmissable Wilderness experience are the Axe Throwing sessions hosted by Axe & Paddle who return this year on Saturday and Sunday to teach bush craft and primitive skills, plus how to finesse the perfect axe throwing technique.

A divine and replenishing escape into the beauty of nature, Wilderness is inspired by its idyllic landscape and is a true celebration of the wild, of adventure and of the wilderness itself. Dive into the lakes, roll in the grass, camp under the stars, dance like there’s no tomorrow and truly let yourself go. After all, that is what Wilderness is all about.

Pre-bookable activities are available to book online from 
Experiences – Wilderness Festival