Beginner’s guide to the Festival

5 simple steps to an amazing weekend:

  1. Clear the Festival dates in your diary - 21st to 24th November 2024
  2. Browse events via the “Get Tickets” button on the website and plan your visit
  3. Buy any tickets that need to be purchased
  4. Book your travel and accommodation
  5. Come and enjoy the Festival.

Scroll down this page for your full Beginner's Guide...


The Festival is the biggest gathering of outdoor enthusiasts in the UK and takes place in Kendal in November every year. It has been running since 1980.

The four days of the Festival are a brilliant mix of both ticketed and free events, meaning anyone on any budget can come and enjoy the Festival and have a great time.

Due to the nature of our event spaces, which are spread out around Kendal, you can’t just buy one single ticket that gives you access to everything that’s going on at the Festival. Instead, ticketed events such as our films and event nights need to be purchased separately online via our website. However, our amazing Basecamp in Abbot Hall Park is free to enter and hosts a huge variety of free talks as well as all our brand partner stalls.

The Festival runs Thursday afternoon through to all day Sunday - so why not stay overnight and take Monday off!

Events at the Festival

There is something for everyone at the Festival and our massive programme of events covers:

  • Speaker events
  • World Premieres, Feature Films and Short Film Collections
  • Our huge Basecamp Festival Village
  • Book Festival
  • Arts events
  • Live music and Parties
  • Secret Sessions
  • 10K Trail Run
  • Family friendly events
  • Environmental Films and Talks
  • Yoga
  • Free Events

How to choose what to do

Every ticketed event at the Festival is listed on our website and can be found by following the “Get Tickets’ button. Not all events are added at the same time so it’s worth regularly checking the website or our social media to see what’s been added. Free talks on our Basecamp stages will be advertised in the programme and on our website in the week of the Festival.

Just before the Festival the official programme will be available on the website and in printed format. It contains information on almost everything at the Festival.

When you click on the “Get Tickets” button you can use search filters to search for the type of event you are interested in (e.g. Short film collections), the venue, and the date.

Stay in the loop

Whether you’re a seasoned Festival veteran or interested in coming for the first time, you can see all the latest Festival updates by signing up to receive our email updates or through our social media channels:





All of our ticketed Festival events are sold separately via our website and you will receive your tickets as an E-ticket.

Once you have made your booking, you will receive confirmation of your order via email and your tickets will be attached as a PDF document. All of the tickets made in each booking will be sent in one confirmation email and will be on one PDF.

You can show the ticket on your device or print it off at home.

You will need to show your tickets to the Kendal Mountain Festival staff on the door.

If you can’t find your tickets, do not have a smartphone, or require a physical ticket for accessibility reasons, our box office will be happy to provide you with one.

The majority of our events are assigned seating so please make sure to sit in your allocated seat to avoid disruption.

Some general e-ticketing tips

It might be a good idea to screenshot your tickets if you’re concerned about wifi access.

If you’ve booked tickets for a group, please try your best to show up together.

Above all, be kind – e-ticketing is still fairly new at the Festival, for venue staff as well as audience members, so try to bear this in mind if there are any hold-ups.


There are lots of options for places to stay in Kendal and the surrounding area - hotels, self-catering, B&Bs, hostels and camping and caravan sites - but please be aware that these need to be booked separately.

We would advise booking early to avoid missing out. There are useful links and more information on our Where to Stay page.

Food and Drink

You can refuel at our Food & Drink Village located in our Basecamp in Abbot Hall Park. There are also plenty of great restaurants, cafes and takeaways in Kendal for you to enjoy.

The Food and Drink page on our website has useful links and the latest information.

We hope this gives you a good sense of how the Festival works and how you can get the most out of your visit.

If you have any questions that aren’t answered here or on our FAQs page, please feel free to contact us.

Have a great Festival.

© Kendal Mountain Festival 2023