BALATON SOUND - THE FESTIVAL BEACH

Me and my brother were about to rave one of the best major festivals. Tickets were booked after the event was published and the first wave of artists announced. I couldn’t resist from spending my summer holidays at a major festival like Balaton Sound. A few weeks though before the festival, my brother undergo a surgery that may couldn’t let him travel. We have been waiting until the last few weeks and fortunately after convincing him to come, we finally made it to Hungary. We were lucky enough though to upgrade our General Tickets to VIP Tickets at the price of €1 only, in order to be more comfortable during our stay at the festival, especially for my brother.

Day 1, July 3: We arrived at Budapest, and we were waiting for the Shuttle bus to arrive! Hundreds of other festival goers were also there,talking and laughing with each other, waiting impatiently like us! Finally, the shuttle bus came, and we got on board. The destination was Lake Zamárdi, where Balaton Sound was about to take place. After 2,30 hours of drive time, and after seeing some amazing sightseeing’s, we arrived at the place.  Thousands of people were arriving also there, some by train, others by car, and some others with their caravans. It was a pure happiness seeing all those people coming at the same place to experience and share the same feelings with their fellow ravers, a unity.

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As we headed to our accommodation at the Beach Camp, we find out that it was located exactly next to the huge Lake Balaton. Imagine staying at a festival exactly next to the beach, what else a person would need on earth? We went to the Help Desk and got our wristbands, and after we scanned them, we entered the Beach Camp Area, an area full of camping tents and thousands of ravers, a paradise! We started to set up our tent at the few remaining spots, and as we were setting it up, a few lads near us came to help us set it up. We started chatting and introducing ourselves to each other, and then took a photo together and thanked them for their help. You know this is all about festivals, the love, respect, unity with each other, without even knowing them.

When we finally set up the tent and arranged our luggage, we head to the festival area to explore the other areas and stages. It was literally huge, imagine a huge field near a beach full of stages, food courts, relax areas, accommodations! By the way, the next act on the Mainstage was Don Diablo, and I didn’t want to miss him! We grabbed something to eat in hurry, and then arrived at the VIP Area of the Mainstage which was more comfortable, as my brother had not yet recovered fully from the surgery. Don Diablo then came up, dropped my favourite tracks of him, and the crowd went crazy! After a while I decided to go to the crowd area for a while to rave with my fellow ravers. The next mainstage act was Tiesto, and then my bro decided to join me at the crowd area even though he was in pain. But at that time, we forgot any pain and raved under the bangers and the mind-blowing visuals of the legend Tiesto!

After that, we went to Elrow Stage, where Monika Kruse made the place even more magical. it was my first time attending a rave of Elrow and I have no words for it! Confetti, Dragons, Giant Stilts, Colourful Visuals, one of the most immersive and unique experience out there! I really enjoyed raving at this place, it was unreal!

When her set finished, we went back to the campsite as we were tired from all this exhausting day, but after a while, I decided to go back, and this time I went to Dreher Arena, were Tchami x Malaa were on stage. I didn’t want to miss their NO REDEMPTION tour at Balaton Sound! I raved alone until the last drop, with all the other ravers. And then the first day was over!

Day 2, July 4: 

We woke up too early as the sun was getting inside the tent and it was too hot, so we went by the lake to rest on the sunbeds, and as we thought that we would be alone, hundreds of other festival goers did the same thing! We were resting there, swimming at the lake, enjoying every moment of it! At noon we went to the VIP SHORE, an area for the VIP ticket holders with a private swimming pool, canopy sunbeds, sofas, a cocktail bar, DJ sets and beach parties, a paradise. We chilled there for a while drinking cocktails under the hot sun of Zamárdi. We then left and went back to the camp in order to get ready for the Mainstage headliner of Day 2, Marshmello. It was my first time seeing Marshmello live and I was surprised by the unreal visuals of his set. Near the end, we went up to the carousel next to the Mainstage, to see how Balaton Sound looked from above, and the views were speechless, a paradise crowded by thousand of people, each area overcrowded, each area full of parties.

After the Mainstage we went to Dreher Arena where my favourite duo girls, NERVO, were performing there. The vibes of the arena were unreal, partying under the bangers that NERVO were dropping.

After their set ended, it was time for Will Sparks to bring more energy to the venue, but we had to leave Dreher Arena for Jagermeister Arena, as Deborah De Luca was performing there. The venue was fully crowded, we managed though to find a spot at the sides of the arena and raved under her minimal sounds of techno. We raved there till the end of her set. We then went for walk near the lake, watching thousands of people chilling by the lake, laughing with their friends, enjoying the moment. First time I was seeing such a happiness from all the people in one place, it couldn’t be described!

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Day 3, July 5:

We woke up doing the same thing, chilling by the lake until the noon, then going to the VIP SHORE. After that, we went to the Merchandise stands of Balaton Sound to buy some merchandise. I managed to get a lanyard and a windbreaker as most of the items were sold out! We then went back to the campsite until the first act of the day, which was Timmy Trumpet. We arrived a little late for his set and the Mainstage was already crowded but we managed to find a spot in the middle. The next act were The Chainsmokers live. It was a different set than any other, I haven’t seen them performing live again before, but I enjoyed their set, although their music is not exactly my type!

After the end of their set, we went to Dreher Arena, where my favourite Nicky Romero was about to come up on the stage. The stage was fully crowded by the other ravers waiting him to get on stage. By listening to his sounds, I really felt the happiness, the love and all the other feelings that music let us feel. I truly enjoyed his set more than any other until that moment and I didn’t want that magical vibe to end!

Then, we went to the fully crowded Elrow Stage, as Andrea Oliva was performing. We missed though Camelphat as their set was the same time as Nicky Romero. But this happens during festivals, you can’t see all your favourite artists! And then the night was over, after a short walk at the festival area we went back to our campsite to rest for the next day.

Day 4, July 6:

The big day was here, the legend Armin Van Buuren was headlining the Mainstage for today. By the time we woke up, we have been waiting the time to come to see this legend live again. First thing in the morning was to go the nearest market and buy some sun creams as the sun was too hot (we didn’t expect it to be this hot), and we didn’t want to get sunburned and not enjoy the remaining days. Our first rave of the day was Hernan Cattaneo live at Jagermeister Arena. We went earlier there and took a spot right in front of him, raving under his progressive house beats. It was my first time seeing him live and I really loved his set! Next was Elrow Stage for a while, before the Mainstage act of Synnery James & Ryan Marciano. We took a spot at the left front side of the Mainstage during their hole set. The energy and vibes that they brought to the crowd couldn’t be described! We were doing the sit downs, shouting the ‘Heee – Hooo’, we were preparing for the next HUGE headline act of the day, Armin Van Buuren. And then, the legend came up to the stage with his Intro of ‘Lighter Than Air’. And indeed, from that time onwards the air became more magical, everything became more magical. Goosebumps! The legend took us to a magical trip during his whole set. A LEGEND! After that, my brother went to the campsite to rest, but I stayed alone. I went to Elrow Stage where Claptone was performing, raving with the other fellow ravers under his House beats. Then it was time for Dreher Arena, where Deorro was performing. The arena was fully crowded, so I took a spot in the VIP area exactly opposite the stage, the views were magical, the vibes of the crowd were unreal. I haven’t heard Deorro before nor even a single track of him, but after that night i learnt him (LOL). Up next was Martin Jensen, this young talented DJ that dropped every banger and made the people stay until his last second of his set! Before going back to the campsite, I took a walk at the festival area just to enjoy the moment, seeing so many people just walking, laughing, chilling by the lake, was everything I needed to make me feel the happiest person on earth!

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Day 5, July 7:

And then we woke up, for the last day of Balaton Sound. We ate by the lake and then went to THE VIP SHORE to chill, but the weather was not good at all. The sky was full of clouds and suddenly it started raining so we had to go back to the campsite. On our return to the campsite, tents were flying in the air by the storm, and we ran to ours to see if it was there. Fortunately, it was still there, but everything was wet from the storm as the winds were too powerful. We stayed until the end of the storm and after 1 hour, the sun came back. During that time, we got a notification that DJ Snake couldn’t make it to the closing set of the Mainstage, but Alesso would replace him! There wasn’t a better present for us, Alesso for the closing of Balaton Sound! We head to the Mainstage earlier to take a good spot for Alesso, and at that time Rudimental were performing live. Then Alesso came, and he was so excited as it was his birthday on that day too! His set was so magical and emotional, that made the moment last forever! After the end of his set, hundreds of fireworks lighten up the sky to signal the end of Balaton Sound 2019. I literally cried as it was the last night and I didn’t want to leave the place. But we had to go back to the campsite to gather our luggage as in a few hours we had to take the shuttle bus back to the airport.

I then went back to the festival area and stayed for a while to enjoy for the last time everything that i experienced in the last 5 days. I still remember walking by the lake and dreaming of every day to be a festival day, to feel the love, the freedom, the peace, the unity with other people. This is what are festivals for me. All these magical emotions in one place, meeting new people, laughing with them, raving with them, enjoying every moment with them, even without knowing them!

That was Balaton Sound for me, a festival full of magic and happiness, the most unforgettable festival experience I ever lived so far. The ultimate summer festival experience. The absolute combination of festival and beach. Balaton Sound we will meet each other again! Thank you once again!