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Balaton Sound Fetsival, Hungary 2011

So i am back from Hungary, what an amazing time I had. Hungary has some fantastic history as well as amazing architecture and some beautiful places to relax including the Turkish baths, which sadly for the second time I didn’t get to try out. The city is made up of Buda and Pest and again, we stayed at the fantastic Casa De La Musica in District 1V of the city. The hostel is run by Alex, who we met two years ago when we stayed at the old ballet school when we went to Balaton Sound in 2009. The hostel offers a range of outdoor activities including bike rides, canoeing and also now runs a bar and serves breakfast and dinner by a rather interesting French chap. The whole experience doesn’t feel like a hostel at all, it serves well and the staff are amazing.

Around the corner you can find many hidden gems including the Szimpla bar which now runs in Balaton and Berlin. The bar is a kitsch place that offers tagged walls, bathtubs and hanging bikes from the walls as well as random computer screens with jargon and keyboards that light up. It is a bit of a shambles and looks like an antique shop but at night the outdoor patio is lit up with lights, a cinema screen and beautiful lights. The hidden bar doesn’t look much from the outside but the derelict building is huge and offers many little cubby holes where you can sip on beer or cocktails. On our first night we stumbles across an amazing club, which i cannot remember the name of. Playing a wide range if dubstep, it was packed by 12 and for a Wednesday, I was impressed. The beer was around 400 Forint which is about £2 and after a couple of hours dancing we went back to the hostel, legs aching from all the -mud stepping

After a 2 hour sweaty but interesting trip from Budapest Déli station we arrived in Zámardi to a beautiful lake with the sounds of music from the festival. Sponsored by Henieken there was a great stage in the lake that played a range of European techno with playful antidotes including hammocks and volleyball. The main stages were filled with beer and bands as well as headliners such as Snoop Dog, Tiesto and Portishead. The only thing about the festival is that because of the heat you only really have the lake a a bit of shade, which we slept under every night. If you are looking for all the cosmetics you would get at Glastonbury or Bestival, this is not for you. The Festival is about the music and the lake, not the healing fields, comedy tents or cinema. The sunset and sunrise each day was incredible. Snuggling into my sleeping bag and donning my sleep mask, It was a beautiful experience every day to wake up to the sun beating on your face and the sound of Techno and House blaring from the T Mobile stage.

There was a little too much Techno, Villalobos didn’t do it for me despite me being a fan. He seems to faff around playing weird experimental stuff until he really lets into the bangers around 5 hours later. Luciano was a great mix of progressive house as well as Techno and minimal. The highlights of my weekend included Hercules and Love Affair on the main stage, Snoop Dog, Thievery Corporation and Keryáni, who was banging out some amazing summer anthems while the sun beat down on Sunday at the T Mobile stage. Next time – MORE HIP HOP and bands.

I have taken loads of photo's, so watch this space.

You can check out all of the photo's from this years festival on the official website.

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