Coachella

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Coachella is one of the biggest festivals in the USA, with the biggest names in music travelling to the desert to perform at the festival.

With a focus on environmental issues and sustainability the festival is a great for those who want to save the planet and enjoy the music.

Line Up

The 2014 lineup has Outkast, Muse, and Arcade Fire headlining.

Other artists include: The Knife, Queens of the Stone Age, Skrillex, Pharell Williams, MGMT, Empire of the Sun, Fatboy Slim, Nas, Kid Kudi, Mogwai, Beck, Calvin Harris, Neutral Milk Hotel, Lana Del Ray and many more.

Rumours

According to an article in MyDesert, Goldenvoice have won approval to keep Coachella in that location till 2030, with plans to increase the attedence to 99,000.

It has also been reported that Coachella and Stagecoach may expand from three weekends to five.

Vibe

Many view Coachella as an American version of Glastonbury in regards to the size, calibre of acts and the likelihood of celebrity sightings.

The Telegraph describe the event as one fitting of the US "spring break" where "topless hunks and bikinied girls strolled over rare verdant ground surrounded by palm trees, sipping lattes behind Ray Ban shades in the sauna-like heat."

However while this may be a little off putting for some, countless reviews on the website Yelp, point to Coachella being an enjoyable experience, where the crowd is internationally diverse, the setting is beautiful and the portable toilets are in a league of their own.

While hipsters and college students are a regular site, it's not unknown to see families at the event too.

SS Coachella

Taking the vibe of the festival to seas, the festival organisers are also launching SS Coachella, which you can find out more about here.

Stages and other entertainment

The huge amount of bands that play at the festival play across eight stages that include the Coachella (Main) Stage, Outdoor Theatre, Gobi, Mojave, Sahara, Oasis Dome, The Do Lab and the Heineken Dome.

As well as the music there will be art studios, a farmers market, a WiFi zone, Yoga, Roller skate party and pinball available at the festival.

Praise is also universally awarded to the sound quality of the stages, and the dedication to sticking to the time schedules of the festival programme.

Tickets

General tickets have sold out, however travel packages that include tickets are available via valleymusictravel.com

VIP

VIP passes give you access to the following areas:

MAIN VIP AREA: White peaked tents providing shade and a great view of the largest acts, in this area there are also couches, extra toilets, special food & drink vendors as well as a cash bar.

SECOND VIP AREA: Similar amenities as the main area within the Rose Garden and surrounded by swarms of the beautiful flowers.

Children

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Disability Access

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Weather

Because of it's location in the California desert, daytime temperatures can get very high, with virtually every Coachella guide recommending sunscreen and lots of water. Evening temperatures can get a little chilly but not freezing.

Accommodation

Camping is available on the grass fields adjacent to the concert area.

Most people chose not to camp at Coachella. The festival takes place in the desert and can be very hot. Apart from very young festival attendees who might be trying to save money, most people will book home, condo or trailer rentals at nearby locations. You can find some of these options in AirBNB

There are also plenty of places to stay in the following local places:

  • Indio (approx. 4 miles to venue)
  • Indian Wells (approx. 7 miles to venue))
  • Palm Desert (approx. 12 miles to venue)
  • Thousand Palms (approx. 13 miles to venue)
  • Rancho Mirage (approx. 15 miles to venue)
  • Cathedral City (approx. 20 miles to venue)
  • Cabazon (Cabazon (approx. 22 miles to venue)
  • Palm Springs (approx. 25 miles to venue)
  • Desert Hot Springs (approx. 28 miles to venue)

What to wear

Coachella has always been a festival that has not only inspired Summer indie fashion, but often affects the fashion seen at other festivals who attract the same stylish crowd.

Female fashion usually consists of maxi skirts, high-waist shorts, sunhats and anything showing a vintage or hippy feel.

Male fashion is often a bit more casual, with cutoff shorts, graphic tanks and sleeveless shirts.

Sunglasses by Ray Bans are popular with both male and female attendees.

Camping

Camping and camping next to your car are both options at the festival. Once parked in the campsite you cannot move your car for the duration of the festival. No glass is allowed on the campsite.

Camping takes place on a polo ground, on fields next to the festival area, so that you don't have to trek to far to get to the music. Amenities include free showers, Wifi access, cell phone charging spots, general store for food and beverages, a farmers' market and unspecified "camping activities".

There is also the more exclusive Lake Eldorado where you can camp in beautiful surroundings in a safari style tent at an extra cost. There are 2 tent types, 2 person teepees or 4 person tent camping. The Lake Eldorado camping comes with 24-hour concierge service, lake side chairs and umbrellas, a seperate check-in location, and the ability to take your car in and out of the grounds.

Site Information

It's best to establish meeting points if separated from friends, as the reception for mobile phone use is almost nonexistent.

Food and drink

There will be many food vendors on the festival site, as well as a buffet in the campsite, water will be sold and be available in bottles and at drinking fountains.

One common misconception of Coachella is that you are not allowed to drink at the festival, the truth is that alcohol can be consumed, but only in designated areas, meaning you can't waltz around with drink in hand like you can do at other festivals.

There is plenty of food choices to purchase with the VIP areas serving higher end choices.

Perform at the festival

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Volunteer or work

The festival is not currently employing.

Drugs and security

Security reportedly gets tougher year on year however drug use is still popular, with Ecstasy and MDMA popular choices amongst the EDM crowd.

There also undercover cops in patrol so discretion is advised if you plan to take drugs.

Stream online

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Mobile Apps

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Trivia

Over 25,000 attended the two day inaugural event in October 1999.

Taking place only three months after Woodstock 99 Festival, the opening event included Rage Against The Machine, The Chemical Brothers, Tool, Beck, Morrissey, Jurassic 5, DJ Shadow and Underworld.

Riots and fires that took place at Woodstock 99 convinced Coachella organisers to not offer on site camping, a ban that stayed in place until the 2002 festival.

On May 2011, organisers announced that from 2012 onwards, the festival will be held over two weekends.

In 2012 the festival brought in $254 Million to the Coachella valley, Promoters and organisers of the festival Goldenvoice is one of the sponsors of a free medical clinic in Indio April 4-7, 2013 at the Riverside County Fairgrounds, just before the first weekend of festivals start.

Past lineups

2013: Blur, The Sone Roses, Modest Mouse Lou Reed and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. For the full lineup click here.

2012: The Black Keys, Radiohead and Dr Dre & Snoop Dogg. For the full lineup click here.

The 2011 Coachella programme included The Chemical Brothers, Kings Of Leon, Arcade Fire, Kanye West, The Strokes, Animal Collective, Mumford and Sons, Duran Duran, Bright Eyes, Crystal Castles, Jack's Mannequin, Jimmy Eat World, Boys Noize and City & Colour. For details of past line-ups click here