Why Following Gigs is a Great way to Travel
Updated: Jan 27
Personally, I’m not a huge traveller, which probably isn’t something you want to hear from somebody writing for a travel blog. I have travelled far and wide around the UK but for a more specific reason than just being a tourist, I travel for gigs. I suppose it could be thought that travelling for concerts is quite a personal reason to travel, it’s not just to sight-see and explore new places.
I definitely know I’m not the only one who travels to see artists they love but I absolutely love following these bands around to different locations. My first ever concert was to see the Jonas Brothers in 2009 at Newcastle, and since then I’ve been fascinated with the idea of seeing my favourite artists live and the majority of the time (especially recently) I’ve had to travel further than Newcastle to make this happen. My love for concerts has taken me to many UK destinations such as Leeds, Manchester, London, Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Sunderland, on the beach at South Shields, Sheffield, Harrogate and York. If it wasn’t due to the pandemic and show cancellations, I’d have even been going to a few new places such as Doncaster and even Dublin.
Obviously due to Covid-19, I’ve not been able to make it to a proper live gig in almost a full year but the only ones I went to in 2020, I had to travel to. I travelled to Leeds for only the second time to see Louis Tomlinson, and although going to new places scares me it also excites me. There is a very fine line between excitement and being anxious. But since Leeds is kind of close to home for me, I wasn’t as anxious as when I had to travel to Manchester for the Jonas Brothers earlier that year. Travelling to Manchester scared me as I had only been once and only knew where the arena was, nothing else. But none-the-less, I hopped on the train and was in the city in around two hours and found my way round much better than I expected to. That’s the fun, yet most nerve-wracking, thing about visiting a new place is that you have no idea where to go but that’s what it's all about.
For me, since I went to my first ever concert, the thought of seeing one in Paris is like a dream. I just think that seeing one of my favourite artists in such a beautiful city with one of my best friends would be insane. I would be able to do some of my favourite things; see whoever live then use the rest of the trip to make even more memories with who I’m there with.
My favourite place to travel to for a gig (that I’ve been to) is definitely London, just because it is one of my favourite city’s anyway. There’s just something so special about our Capital. I’ve been to several different boroughs in the city for concerts like Harrow, Camden and Hammersmith and I’ve been to iconic venues in these boroughs too like The Troubadour, Wembley Stadium and KOKO. Concerts in London are, personally, so much more energetic and exciting. I don’t know if it’s the vibe that the city gives off or if the artist is just extra excited to perform there, but there really is always a special atmosphere.
Another thing many travel for is festivals and although I haven’t yet been to one, it is definitely on my bucket list. I’d love to go to one abroad so that you can also go to a new place with your closest friends and I just have this idea of it being so much fun, it’s something most people would love to do. One that always stands out to me is the Isle of MTV festival which moves around locations each year, and the acts are always ones that I’d love to see live. That one would be perfect for me and I’d love to be able to go one day when I can.
If you’ve only ever gone to a gig in your nearest city, I’d definitely recommend exploring further as you get to meet new people and see more amazing places. The number of friends I now have from around the nation, due to going to gigs in other places, is incredible. Hopefully when we see out this virus, I’ll be able to go on a lot more travels for gigs and maybe even take them internationally rather than just around the UK. If you want to see any of my own concert videos, you can view them on my YouTube.