Following a few insider tips can make navigating Estéreo Picnic a breeze for the uninitiated.
This will be many people’s first Estéreo Picnic – including my own. Getting all the way to Briceño promises to be easier than ever before – with buses leaving from Parque Nacional, Unicentro and Gran Estación, alongside a plethora of van/taxi options – so that’s my first of many worries solved. Luckily, more experienced attendees have been on hand to give me some tips – including several of the local bands.
“Compared with international festivals, this one is different,” state The Kitsch, “It’s not just a space for concerts, but for lots of activities…And for all the great food that we always have here.” There’s as good a lineup of food as music, including all the local favourites, plus you can even get BBC beers.
In terms of the music, they tell me to prepare myself not only for global artists but also “the best of the local scene.” Las Yumbeñas also advise taking advantage of the Colombian music being showcased – including, of course, their own. “Get your ears open and go early so you can see the local bands – the bands that are actually growing this scene here in Colombia.”
Overall, there was enough weather-related advice to satisfy even the most British fixation with the elements. Pedrina warned me that whilst “you always have to take rain clothes to a festival,” the forecast is far worse here “here in the Colombian Andes [where] it rains all the time!” But never fear, “a good poncho, and a good attitude” should be enough protection from all but the worst deluge.
On a similar note, Nicolás y los Fumadores recommended that I add “an umbrella and rain boots” to my packing list. That’ll help with the muddy paths that our longtime writers have warned about. They also cheerfully confirmed that, at Estéreo Picnic, “cigarettes are very cheap.” After all, they know about that better than anyone else!