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Exit Festival

Listed under Festivals in Serbia.

  • Photo of Exit Festival
  • Photo of Exit Festival
  • Photo of Exit Festival
Photo of Exit Festival
Photo by Lucinda Day
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It’s no wonder that we’re all ditching the UK and heading off to Europe for our festival fix, when British weekenders have the likes of Exit Festival to compete with. Held in a mesmerizing Serbian fortress, and next to the Danube River, there is no better location on earth for dance lovers to rave all night at, before huddling together and watching a loved – up sunrise.

I, like many of the Exit mob hung out in Belgrade a few days before the festival, in order to soak up the delights (beer) of the capital before training it to Novi – Sad in order to set up camp promptly. Promptly is not such a bad idea either as temperatures can reach 40degrees in summer; it really is best to bag that shade before someone else does. If you do get too hot, you can always head into the town which is just minutes from the campsite. Filled with bars, malls and a swimming pool, (for those who hate festival standards of cleanliness) the facilities surrounding the festival put any British festival to shame.

There really is no need to trek into town though, the campsite stretches alongside the river whereby you can spend your day sunbathing, eating, drinking and dancing till sunset. After dark, of course, nothing quite beats the excitable walk across the river and up towards the castle, which will be lit up like a giant birthday cake that happens to be pounding a mammoth bass - line. The entrance to the festival is quite spectacular, although the thrashing mob of lairy Serbians did make the experience of walking across a drawbridge towards the Prodigy a little scarier than was actually envisaged.

Once inside the fortress, there are enough nooks and crannies ready for exploration; all of which seem to lead to a mini party with some kind of DJ or another. The main stage itself has repeatedly drawn in stars (and subsequently the crowds) with the likes Snoop Dogg, The Streets, Prodigy, N*E*R*D, Groove Armada and Lauryn Hill to name but a few in previous years. The highlight of the festival, is by far however, the amazing dance arena. The term ‘breathtaking was surely invented for the moment that you climb the never ending steps to the dance arena, only to be greeted with an ancient amphitheatre full of thousands of bouncing bodies.

The sad part about leaving Exit, as with any good festival, is the going home part. Be sure to get out as early as you can after it’s all over though; the Serbian gypsies don’t waste anytime in collecting your stuff up once security have cleared off. I waited, relentlessly guarding my bag and my life, until eleven pm the following night for a bus to Sarajevo. It’s a bit of a toss up getting out alive in general, as most of my friends discovered after hurling themselves through the window of a dangerously packed train to Budapest for afters. Take your pick.

Written by  Lucinda Day.

Other expert and press reviews

“Serbia shines for the EXIT festival”

By Gareth Scurlock for The Times First Published July 28, 2008 ...There's a much more relaxed pace of life, despite the huge festival taking place. Like Belgrade, due to war most of the surviving architecture dates back only to the 19th century, but th… Read more...

Written by press. Read Full Article from The Times, 26 July 2008

“Exit Festival”

The EXIT festival, a Balkan homage to rock music, came into being in the year 2000 as an act of rebellion against the regime of Slobodan Milošević, that had for years been keeping Serbia out of touch with the outside world. That summer thousands of youn… Read more...

Written by  Jared.

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