Ever since I started DJing nine years ago I’ve had a picture of Tomorrowland’s main stage as my screen saver and have said to myself – ‘One day I’ll be on that stage,’ well this still hasn’t quite happened yet, but for the first time I got to experience this iconic music festival as a punter and it was everything I imagined it to be and more.
This year, Tomorrowland celebrated its 16th edition with ‘The Reflection of Love’ over three epic weekends in July. Being home to hundreds of thousands of ‘People of Tomorrow’, from all walks of life, one of the most unique things about Tomorrowland remains the whole world coming together in one magical place with everyone being equal and united as one – symbolising the values of freedom, respect, diversity, and solidarity.
People of Tomorrowland (Photo by Benjamin)
Myself and the VIVA crew didn’t want to miss one single thing, so on the second weekend we road tripped it to Belgium for the gathering on Thursday at DreamVille. This is the pre-party located in a vibrant city with a unique camping experience that welcomes 38.000 festival visitors (per weekend) and offers a home during their stay at Tomorrowland.
I strongly suggest attending the gathering to get you hyped-up for the main event starting Friday. It gives you a taste of what’s to come over the weekend, plus they have some surprise guest DJs, and you get to make friends with your fellow ravers!
Wolf Pack (Photo by Dave Sips)
Thursday highlights – Wolfpack, and buying our Tomorrowland jumpers (it gets cold in the evening.)
Tip –Take it easy on Thursday as you’ve still got three more days of raving ahead of you. We loved that the MC told everyone to go to bed at midnight.
It’s Friday, we’re alive and kicking to get to the town of Boom, where the main festival gates open at midday to a beautiful natural place, recreation area De Schorre. Wow, and we thought DreamVille was epic enough, it’s like a ravers Disneyland paradise with the most beautiful lake in the middle surround by fairy tale designed stages and areas for music, dancing, eating, drinking and chilling!
Timmy Trumpet (photo by Dave Sips)
Top tip – Download the Tomorrowland festival app, it has the whole weekend lineup where you can put together your schedule, map, artist info, and news. Plus this festival is cash-free, so you can only pay on your bracelet with purls which you can top up on the app too (of course you can also pay on cards).
Friday highlights – Timmy Trumpet, this festival wouldn’t be the same without ‘king of the trumpet’ and what a show he put on at The Library followed by a surprise appearance with Steve Aoki on The Mainstage. We also loved seeing the famous blonde twins, Nervo, who invited two lads from the crowd up on stage holding signs saying ‘Best Mums’.
But it’s not all about the main stages, if you venture deep into Tomorrowland you come across some quirky underground locations like The Cage and the Core, which was another highlight, in the middle of the woods with DJs playing deep and tech house vibes.
Tomorrowland Mainstage (photo by Dave Slip)
After all the excitement of Friday we took it easy on Saturday and chilled mostly on the hill of the Mainstage in the Belgium sunshine eating good food and drinking cold beer. The Mainstage and The Library are very well laid out, if you don’t feel like being amount the ravers and misbehavers down the front you still have an awesome view of everything when sat on the hill surrounding both stages.
We did venture off at one point to Kara Savi to watch, Defected and Ibiza duo, the Mambo Brothers, who stole the show for me that day, bringing the Ibiza sunshine house vibes to Tomorrowland which was a nice change for my ears after two days of hardcore EDM.
Tiesto (photo by Dave Sips)
Saturday highlight –Tiesto, ok so I’m not dissing the other headliners, but this guy is the absolute god of the DJ’s. He’s not only an amazing producer, but he’s a very talented DJ too. I was blown away by his set from start to finish, mixing up some old school classics into creative current remixes. What an end to the Saturday this was!
Tip – It’s a fun and a good idea to go in fancy dress especially so your friends can spot you in the crowd, i.e. I was watching Dom Dolla and suddenly spotted my mad friend Darryl from Dubai up on someone’s shoulders dressed as an old lady with a blow up zimmer frame!
Purple Disco Machine (photo by Dave Sips)
It’s the last day, and we were ready to go out with a bang with a full day schedule of our favourite DJs, kicking off with James Hype with his cheeky remixes, and Purple Disco Machine, who brought his funky, disco, house beats to the Mainstage. Fedde Le Grand put on a wicked set at The Rose Garden, Fisher brought the Ozzy losing it vibes, and Martin Garrix ended our Tomorrowland journey on an emotional and spectacular show; Live today, love tomorrow, united forever!
Most played tunes by the DJs; ‘Love Tonight by Shouse’ remixes of ‘Sweet Dreams by Eurythmics’ and ‘The Age of Love by Charlotte de Witte’.
The toilets are the cleanest and most efficient toilets we’ve ever experienced at a festival.
Tastes of the World offers the People of Tomorrow a surprising taste discovery of high-quality food & drinks together, with a lot of attention for the origin of products and the use of pure ingredients.
This year, Tomorrowland welcomed 600k Global Journey travellers with more than 200 different nationalities from around the world, making it the largest ever travel undertaking by a festival worldwide.
To keep yourself buff there’s a gym at Tomorrowland plus festival goers can book in for an exclusive detox day on Monday and enjoy the relaxing vibes of a green environment plus recover from the madness at a unique location with some relaxing and healthy activities.
In September, Tomorrowland is set to open Terra Solis, a brand-new unique desert destination in Dubai, and we can’t wait to check this out!