So the decision was made and permission given for me to take my 10 year old son, Austin, to see his favourite band headline their own festival. The only issue? It’s in Falun, several hours north of Stockholm, so that’s going to make it expensive, right?
Well, not actually. I decided to make a little holiday of it and booked flights a couple of days ahead of, and one day after the festival so we could stay in Stockholm and explore. With the festival in late August, I booked flights from Glasgow in early May and for the two of us (carry on luggage only) with KLM, it came to only £450 return.
Train tickets in Sweden can be purchased online and the advice I had is that it’s similar to the UK in that booking ahead of time gets you cheaper tickets than on the day. Heading to sj.se, I picked up tickets from Stockholm to Falun, and Falun direct back to the airport. These were less than £15 each way for the pair of us. Sweden is very child-friendly it seems. My ticket is around £12 – my son’s is a standard fare of less than 50p!
Bus travel we’ll wing when we’re there (aside from airline transfer), and apparently the cheapest method is to get the tickets or a pass from a local shop. So the journey to SOA will be a train to Falun and a short bus journey to the venue.
Plans are to couchsurf with a benevolent host in Stockholm – better for us to get a feel for the city than a hotel – and perhaps for a night in Falun also after the festival to freshen up for the trip home the next day.
To say the little guy is excited is an understatement. He loves Sabaton, he loves camping and the idea of “the boys” in the family going away together is a big thing for him. A shame we can’t take the dog as well!
He’s currently on a diet of other bands who will be playing and has already taken a liking to Powerwolf and The Darkness. We’ll work through the rest of the lineup in due course!
The festival has a safe kids area for chilling out and I think we’ll be making use of the pool as well if the weather’s good. Frankly, their “family friendly” facilities put every other festival I’ve heard of to shame, but the proof is in the pudding and we will, of course, have a full report once we get back.
Sabaton Open Air: official