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A guide on how to survive the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

A guide on how to survive the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

It’s that time of year again when the cobbled streets of Edinburgh hosts the world’s largest arts festival with over 40,000 acts and more than 2,500 shows packed into a huge range of venues across the city (from private flats and circus tents to pub theatres and public toilets). First held in 1947 as an alternative to the Edinburgh International Festival, this year the festival is taking place from 2nd to the 26th August 2013. The world-famous event is always unjuried literally meaning that anyone can take part and many experimental acts that wouldn’t usually find a slot in other festivals find their way to the fringe. It’s a unique atmosphere and with performances from comedy and theatre to magic and cabaret – it caters for just about every artistic taste under the sun…

Want to know how to survive the world’s largest thesp fest? Here are some tips from our illustrator friend and seasoned fringe festival goer Del Thorpe…

Edinburgh by Del Thorpe

Del Thorpe is a children’s book illustrator living and working in Brighton. His clients include Macmillan Publishing, Walker Books and Aardman Animation. He is currently working on his seventh Weird World of Wonders history book for the recently knighted Tony Robinson. You can see more of his work here: delthorpe.co.uk

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Born in England, with a few family roots from Bavaria, and a heart in Scandinavia I've always been a bit of a restless soul. My first true adventure began as a six month voyage around South East Asia as a fresh faced backpacker and ever since I've lived a semi nomadic existence, clocking up over 40 countries on trips and living in Dublin, South East Asia and Australia. I'm a lover of US Road Trips, deserted beaches bathed in warm glow of a sunset, Cuban mojitos, easy-on-the-eye travel destinations far away from the tourist crowds and all things Scandinavian - from cloudberry liquors to Scandi Noirs. When not wandering the world, you'll find me walking my rescue dog in leafy South West London, strolling around the Brighton Laines on random day trips, hunting for photogenic landscapes or daydreaming about returning to my all time favourite places in the world; Havana, Copenhagen, Italy, Thailand and the frozen landscapes of a wintry Iceland. Follow Becky on Twitter and Google+.

12 Comments

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    Tiana Kai

    18 August, 2013 at 12:56 pm

    Booo, I will miss this festival by a week or two. Anything you recommend in mid to late September? I’m off on a road trip in two weeks.

    Thanks!

    Reply
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      Graham

      18 August, 2013 at 1:32 pm

      Hi Tiana, that’s a shame. There’s always still smaller music festivals going on in the UK but nothing as big or famous as this sadly.

      Reply
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    Thomas

    7 August, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    So many places and things to do. The Fringe Festival sounds like a lot of fun. Really liking the mermaid. is that a kid friendly festival? Get the Fringe Guide. Nice tips!

    Reply
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      Del Thorpe

      8 August, 2013 at 2:50 pm

      A quick glance at my Fringe guide and I guesstimate there’s about 150 different kid’s shows ranging from puppet shows and storytelling to ghost-tours and opera!

      Reply
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    Leah

    6 August, 2013 at 2:39 pm

    I accidentally was in Edinburgh about 10 years ago right before the Fringe Festival and it was crazy. I would have loved to stick around and actually experience it.

    Reply
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    Stephanie

    5 August, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    This sounds like a lot of fun! My husband and I would love to do this. We’ve attended festivals in various places in the world. So tell me what the night life is like during this festival.

    Reply
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      Del Thorpe

      8 August, 2013 at 2:59 pm

      The city has a vibrant, diverse night-life all year-round but during the festival it spills out of the pubs and clubs and onto the streets – especially in places such as George Square and Bristo square. And there are shows on well into the wee hours too – especially the many cabaret shows. The city really doesn’t sleep for the whole month!

      Reply

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