Disclosure: I may earn a small commission from the companies or products mentioned in this post.
I was kindly invited to Camp Wildfire on a press review, however, all opinions are entirely mine.
When I attended Camp Wildfire for the first time earlier this summer, I absolutely had to share the madness over on my Instagram stories. These videos sparked a lot of questions from friends and followers about this unusual little 3-day festival in a beautiful forest in Kent, just one hour away from London. So to make things easy, I’ve decided to answer them all right here.
What Makes Camp Wildfire Different From Other Festivals?
Camp Wildfire is so much more than your traditional festival.
Branding itself as a ‘Summer Camp for Adults’, Camp Wildfire is half adventure camp and half music festival. ‘A forest retreat packed full of wild adventures, wilder parties and the most amazing like-minded people!‘
As well as live music every night, the three-day festival offers a whole range of unique and unusual camp-style activities to enjoy throughout the day. It aims to recreate the atmosphere of the summer camps of your childhood, with patrols, challenges and games. Except now everyone is over 18 and there’s alcohol involved!
While I haven’t been to many other festivals myself (yet), from talking to other people there it was easy to see that Camp Wildfire does a great job at setting itself apart from the crowd and attracting an extremely loyal following.
What Activities Can You Do at Camp Wildfire?
There are so many different activities at Camp Wildfire that I’m certain it would be impossible to fit them all into one weekend – no matter how tightly you packed your schedule. From flying across the sky at the trapeze to early morning hot air balloon rides to making beautiful flower headdresses to wear around camp, there’s truly something for everyone.
Below are the activities that we took part in this year, as well as some of the other activities available.
Activities we took part in (2021)
- Quad Biking
- Escape & Evade
- Dirty Dancing
- Flower Headdress Making
Other activities at Camp Wildfire
- Hot Air Balooning
- Stand Up Paddleboarding
- Raft Building
- Shelter Building
- Obsticle Course
- Flying Trapeze
- Tree Climbing
- Climbing Wall
- Archery & Shooting
- Axe Throwing
- Nurf Battles
- Nipple Tassle Making
- African Drumming
- See the full list here
INSIDER TIP: Be sure to try some of the more unusual activities or things you wouldn't normally do. I went to Camp Wildfire looking forward to quad biking and zorbing the most. Coming away from the weekend, I would definitely say that unicycling and parkour were the highlights. Neither of these are activities I've ever tried, or even thought about trying, before. But that's exactly what made them so much fun! Pick something totally random and give it a go.
What If I Want To Do Something More Relaxing?
If some of the activities above seem a little bit too adventurous for you, there are plenty of more chilled-out activities on offer too. You can start your morning with some light yoga, take part in a poetry or creative writing session in the forest, then spend your afternoon at the camp spa where you can treat yourself to a dip in the hot tub and maybe even a relaxing wellness treatment.
INSIDER TIP: Try to sprinkle in some chilled-out activities amongst the more active ones. It's easy to get over-excited and put together a packed schedule of rock climbing, aeral dancing, obstacle courses and SUP. But trust me, when you're functioning on 4 hours of sleep and rocking a mild (or not so mild) hangover, you'll be extremely greatful for an hour relaxing in the hot tub or a mid-afternoon sit down to do some arts and crafts.
How Do I Book Activities At Camp Wildfire?
The final list of activities is released a couple of weeks before camp. Some activities you can just walk up to, but many require you to book your time slots online in advance. This is because they have limited numbers per session. Pre-booking the activities also helps you plan out your weekend itinerary so you know what to bring with you.
Some important things to keep in mind when booking your activities are:
- Make sure you start to book in activities as soon as they’re released. Popular activities such as hot air balloning, quad biking and SUP fill up fast. You can add yourself to the wait list but this doesn’t garuntee your spot.
- If you’re attending as a group that would prefer to stick together, discuss the activities you want to do in advance and let one person do the booking. This will make sure you get onto the same activities at the same time. The booking system can be a little tricky otherwise.
- There’s usually a 10 minute gap to let you get between each activity. But you should still check where on camp each activity takes place. There are a few different areas where the activities are based. Try to organize your day according to area. Otherwise you may find yourself running back and forth across camp every hour.
- Leave enough time for some of the walk up activities too. It’s also to forget about these when putting together your schedule.
- If there’s an activity you’re desperate to do but didn’t get a slot, try turning up and seeing if there’s any space. Sometimes people drop out last minute or just don’t turn up. You never know, you might get lucky.
What Are The Evening Parties Like?
While you won’t get the big-name artists of Glasto and Reading, Camp Wildfire still has a fantastic live music lineup. Taking place in the discotheque and clubhouse each evening, you’ll find a variety of bands and DJs ranging across Indie, Folk, Funk & Soul, Disco, House, Drum & Bass, Garage, Hip Hop and more. The music is fun, energetic and features a solid amount of cheesy throwback hits.
The live music starts in the afternoon and the party continues until around 3am each night. But you’ll find people still hanging around the campfire drinking and chatting until much later.
If you don’t want to head to the music tents – or you just go too hard on the first night and need an evening off as we did – there are plenty of other evening activities too:
- Watch hilarious live comedy in the comedy tent
- Listen to live adventure talks
- Play board games in the games tent
- Take part in the evening astronomy sessions
- Meet ‘the one’ in Cupids Hut
What About the ‘Summer Camp’ Aspect?
The adventure activities aren’t the only thing that makes Camp Wildfire a ‘summer camp for adults.’
When you register for Camp Wildfire, every festival-goer gets to pick a patrol; Fox, Squirrel, Badger, or Hawk. This is your patrol for the entire weekend. GO FOXES!
The festival officially starts with a parade around the camp with your fellow patrol members and patrol leader, followed by an opening ceremony.
Throughout the weekend, you can earn patrol points by taking part in the activities, as well as at the patrol games each evening. You then put these points (small wood tokens) in your respective jar in the centre camp. The patrol with the most points at the end of the weekend wins the patrol cup for that year.
While I was pretty rubbish at most of the activities, my much more talented friend managed to smash the weekend record for trampolining and unicycling, earning us several patrol points for the Foxes!
INSIDER TIP: How involved you get in the summer camp aspect of the weekend is completely up to you. Many love it and choose to dress in their patrol colours or buy a pair of ears, tail, or necktie from the camp shop. The patrol games can get competitive and people have a lot of fun cheering on their teammates. It's also a great way to make new friends at camp. But if this isn't your thing, you don't have to get involved. The uniforms, points and patrol games are all completely optional. It's pretty easy to avoid too.
What are the Camping Options?
There are several different camping options depending on your budget and preference. If you’re bringing your own tent, general camping for the 3 nights comes included in your festival ticket. You can also pay an additional fee for a pre-pitched tent or for a more luxurious stay in the boutique camping area.
- Pitch your own tent for free
- Pre-pitched dome tents from £125
- Toilet and shower facilities
- Pre-pitched canvas tents
- Private reception
- Toilet and shower facilities
- From £395
- Pre-pitched bell tents
- Pre-pitched emperor tents
- Private toilets and showers
- Pamper room
- Dedicated 24hr concierge
- Private campfire area
- Private cafe & bar
- From £595
Our Camping Experience
We were lucky enough to be invited to stay in a bell tent in the boutique camping area.
I’m not sure what I expected when we first arrived. But what we got blew any ideas I might have had right out the window.
As soon as we arrived in the boutique camping area, we were greeted with chilled glasses of prosecco, while a concierge took our luggage and guided us to our tent.
Inside the bell tent, we found two comfortable camping beds, a clothing rail, small lights, a mirror, a mini-fridge and toiletries. Everything we could have possibly needed for a comfortable stay.
The boutique camping area itself was set apart from the main campsite, requiring a wristband to enter. We not only had our own toilets and showers but also a pamper room with mirrors, vanity sets, hairdryers and straighteners. Perfect for getting ready each evening.
Being able to retreat back to our own private space and super comfy beds was the best feeling after a long day of physical activities followed by dancing the night away. Waking up hungover to a fridge full of chilled iced coffees wasn’t bad either.
If you can afford to treat yourself, boutique camping is 100% worth investing in for an extra luxurious weekend.
What is the Food Like?
I personally thought that the food was delicious! The camp had a number of different street food traders to pick from, which included fried chicken and halloumi (literally my two favourite foods), pizza, burritos, katsu, dumplings and more. Most of the dishes ranged from £6-10 so are reasonably affordable.
You’re also welcome to bring your own food and gas stoves or disposable BBQs to cook at the campsite. However, even with our own mini-fridge, we still ended up eating lunch and dinner out every day. The food was too tasty not to!
There are several full-stocked bars around camp selling coffee, soft drinks, wine, beer, spirits and cocktails. Drinks range from £5-6 for beer and wine and up to £10 for cocktails. You can also bring some of your own drinks into camp too.
Who is Camp WildFire For?
Literally anyone and everyone – as long as you’re over 18. That’s part of the beauty of Camp Wildfire.
We met a whole variety of different people, ranging from their 20s to their 60s and coming from all across the UK and from different walks of life. The camp is extremely inclusive and known for how friendly everyone is.
With around 2,000 people in attendance this year, Camp Wildfire has grown big enough to create a fun and lively atmosphere but has still retained its signature community feel. Every time we arrived at an activity or sat down for a drink we ended up chatting with new people. You’re guaranteed to leave with a few new friends.
It’s also a great festival for solo festival-goers. There’s a dedicated solo camping area, as well as a Facebook group you can use to meet other solo campers in advance. We even chatted to one guy who said that a group of them had met up for drinks before the festival to get to know each other.
Despite only being around since 2015, Camp Wildfire has already gained an extremely loyal following. People return year after year to represent their patrol and meet up with friends from past years.
Where Can I Book Tickets For Next Year?
Camp Wildfire is taking place across two weekends in 2022:
26-29th August 2022.
2-5th September 2022.
In Summery: Camp Wildfire Review
I thoroughly enjoyed my weekend at Camp Wildfire. I got to try a whole load of fun and exciting activities – who knew unicycling was for me!? – and had some great nights out at the evening parties.
It did take me a few days to recover from the aching muscles and 3-day cumulative hangover, but the pain was certainly worth the fun.
I think it’s safe to say that I’ll be returning to Camp Wildfire again one day, with many of my friends in tow.
You’ll love Camp Wildfire if… you like a mix of wild adventures and wild parties, you enjoyed summer camp as a kid, you enjoy meeting new people and feeling like part of a community.
Skip Camp Wildfire if… music is your main priority – while the evening parties are super fun and the music is good for dancing and singing along to after a few drinks, it’s not the type of festival you go to to watch well-known bands and artists.