The Isle of Wight Festival is the first big festival of the season, with some of the biggest names in music headlining a fairly eclectic mix of established and up-and coming acts, interspersed with a few legends of decades past. In recent years the festival has seen a 'fringe' festival start to grow with small venues hosting local bands and the occasional surprise act.
The festival itself is quite a corporate affair with most of the venues being sponsored in some way, and the main stages showing adverts on the main screens between acts. Food is typical festival fair, mainly burger vans and noodle bars, although if your prepared to search round the site there are the occasional gems to be found.
The festival is spread out along a long corridor between the River Medina and the main road into the town of Newport, with car parking up one end and the main arena the other. In between the camping can get quite cramped as people tend to crowd near the arena to shorten the walk. It's quieter up near the car parks however. The bus drop-off is also up near the car park, so expect a long walk to and from the arena if coming in for the day.
Because of the semi-urban location on the edge of a large housing estate, the festival is subject to noise curfews, with the main stage stopping at 12am Friday/Saturday and 11pm on Sunday, and the other stages following suit between 12am and 2am. On the plus side the location means the site is well-served by a good mobile service - good news if you like to tweet and Facebook your way through the weekend.
For more general information and advice, see the main information section.
latest on this festival
18 new names to join Depeche Mode, The Killers, Kasabian, & Liam Gallagher, & more
line-ups & rumours
23 new acts announced
festival home page