5 family friendly Australian music festivals

Some of the best memories I have with my kids are at music festivals. Grab your calendar and add at least one of these fabulous events to your year. It’s a wonderful way to show your kids the world, without the jetlag.

Here are my 5 favourite festivals in Australia.

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SA: WOMAD Adelaide

Every March Adelaide springs into festival mode, with WOMAD being just one of this city’s exciting events. I adore WOMAD. What a fantastic family-friendly festival. Children under 12 are admitted free.

The program features performances and workshops on seven stages by the world’s best musicians, dancers and DJs, alongside street theatre artists and visual artists. There are around 100 food, crafts and display stalls.

It is a safe, friendly environment for pre-teens, and our boys were free to roam with friends from the age of 12-years. For younger children there is a fantastic kid-zone, with a jumping castle, face painting, a craft tent, lots of mini concerts and presentations specifically for kids.

One of the great things about a festival like WOMAD is that you expose your kids to dozens of cultures, all at one event. Get those (itchee) feet tapping right around the world!

 

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ACT: The National Folk Festival in Canberra

I had no expectations for this, figuring folk music wasn’t really my thing, but I believe this is the best festival for families with young children. It really is a wonderful environment for kids.

Held during the Easter long weekend, this is a great one to attend with friends. Pitch tents as a group and wear your kids out during the day with the countless array of family friendly activites. Then after dark, roster turns to look after the kids so each couple can enjoy what the festival has to offer at night.

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 QLD: Woodford Folk Festival

Not just for hippies anymore, this is an annual event holds an entire children’s festival within the main festival. It’s as family friendly as they come.

Woodford attracts 2000 performers from all over the world. Within the festival village there are 35 performance venues, and the village streets are lines with restaurants, cafes and bars.

This is one festival that your kids won’t forget, guaranteed.

 

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NSW: Parkes Elvis Festival

Another fun summer event to mark on the calendar is the Parkes Elvis Festival. It’s not as big as some of the other festivals, but it’s just as much fun, especially if you’re an Elvis fan, or potential fan. Thousands of Elvis wannabes dress up for this event, many of them kids. It’s the perfect festival for the junior extrovert. Got girls… not to worry, if they don’t want to don the Elvis rags they can always toss on a Pricilla wig.

With markets and music and street parades, this is a fun festival for families.

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NSW: Blues Fest Byron Bay

I love the Byron Blues Festival but I don’t think it’s a great festival for young kids (sorry folks). It’s not really set up for children in the same way the above festivals are, and the main acts that you pay for are usually on very late at night. Given that most people are paying for certain international acts, it’s not like the other festivals where you can camp with friends and take turns going out at night.

However, this is a really great festival once your kids are older. Last year my 10-year-old was just a bit too young. He’s a massive music fan but really hit a wall before the main acts performed. My teen had an absolute blast though. We’ll skip it for a couple of years and return with over 12s to this event.

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Top Tip

Gumboots are essential. Even if it doesn’t rain you can shower in them.