Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival was my first festival in 2019 and continues to be a yearly trip for my husband and I. It is a four-day festival with over 80,000 attendees per year. It is held every Father’s Day weekend on a 700 acre farm called Great Stage Park in Manchester, Tennessee. It has become my home away from home and continues to bring me joy year-round.


1. The lineup is inclusive and always has top tier acts.

In 2022, I was able to see Rezz, Roddy Rich, and Stevie Nicks all in a single hour. This festival provides for every single music taste. I personally spend most of my time at the EDM stage, but you also have the option to see artists such as Kendrick Lamar, Paramore, and Korn (all 3 on the 2023 lineup). From jam bands to rap to rock, you have an abundance of choices for everyone.

2. Immaculate Vibes

Being surrounded by 80k people with pure vibes and giving every is enough to bring me back each year. Everyone is constantly giving our trinkets (my personal favorite to hand out is sprouts) and people even have tables outside their camp for trading items.

Even walking back to camp from a sunrise set at 6am you are greeted with smiles and a “Happy Roo”. Everyone is just happy to be there.

The Bonnaroovian Code’s most important code is ‘Stay True Roo” which states, “The Bonnaroovian code isn’t just for 4 days a year in Tennessee – it’s for all Bonnaroovians, everywhere and all the time. Bring the spirit of Bonnaroo with you out into the world and let’s make life on this floating space-marble we call Earth just a little bit better for everyone.”

3. Camping

There are many camping options to choose from such as GA, Groop, RV, and even glamping. There is even a SobeRoo camping are for those who wish to partake in this festival sober and be around likeminded people.
I learned in 2023 to do Groop Camping if you have friends all over the country arriving different days. You are able to camp with 30+ friends and you are given a certain amount of space and guaranteed a good spot. This is a game changer and you are close to the entrance of Centeroo.

4. Security and Workers

Over 80k people attend, but it is handled well every time. They searched our car as we entered and even have metal detectors as you go inside CenteRoo. There are horse cops and security everywhere you go, but not too much to where you feel like you don’t have any privacy. Security is helpful, efficient, and welcoming. They love getting sprouts and fun trinkets! My # 1 tip for waiting in line is to gift them these trinkets as it makes their job go by a bit quicker. Also, if they see something not allowed (such as gum) in your bag, they just might let it through if you are nice.

5. Food and Vendors at the Village Market

The Village Market is an array of small business from all around the country. They are all just as happy to be there as you are if not happier. The food is always delicious and not as expensive as you would expect for a festival. There are tons of options from pizza to noodles to fried Oreos to satisfy any of your early morning or late night cravings. The other vendors at the market place have items ranging from jewelry to artwork to experiences. There are non-profits with booths up around here too such as overdose prevention with naloxone available. I usually devote an entire afternoon to walking around the Village Market because you never know what you will stumble upon.

6. Jamtrak

In 2022, Roo implemented the free transportation called JamTrak to help with long commutes to and from camp. In 2023, they listened to our suggestions and added an express route. This has been a huge savior for those walks back to camp after you can barely move your legs. It runs until 4am which is sometimes still not late enough when you are walking back from Where in the Woods at 6am… but it has overall been an amazing addition and they are slowly working out all of the issues with this.
PSA: Please do not jump off of the cars as they are moving!

7. Ticket Prices

Bonnaroo is the best bang for your buck when it comes to music festivals in the US with this type of top-notch lineup. Every year I purchase my General Admission ticket on Black Friday and it is around $280 pre-taxes. Plus, if you use Paypal to purchase the ticket and are one of the first 500 people to purchase it that way, you receive $25 back. The week of the festival, if you connect your Paypal account to your wristband, you receive $10 back. GA camping is only $50 pre-taxes and you can be almost just as close as VIP to Centeroo if you arrive early.
I have gone to festivals for way more money and received way less – Roo is the way to go cost wise.

8. Easy to Navigate

Navigating Roo is easy even when the stages are named to confuse you. The map is always accurate along with the signs and personnel to assist. Using the JamTrak or bike rides is also convenient because they will take you exactly where you need to go in camp. The stages are named Who, What and Which. The tents are This, That and The Other. The stage in the woods is Where in the Woods. Once you get it, you get it.

9. Sustainability is Valued

One of the most important values that Bonnaroo holds is sustainability. They have created a program called Bonnaroo Works Fund which ensures they leave the Earth (specifically the field) in a better condition than they found it. Their efforts are not just during the festival as they are providing for local families and constantly improving their sustainability efforts year-round.
Read my entire article about this here – Sustainability at Bonnaroo

10. There are activities to do besides music

Yoga Roo, Roo Run 5k, Planet Roo, Pride Parade, and Splash-a-Roo are only a few things you can do.
Yoga is much needed after being on your feet for over 12 hours a day in the brutal sun and humidity. Personally, I have never woken up in time for yoga, but I do hear it is very relaxing and helps with the aches. On Saturday morning, the Roo Run 5k takes place and If you arrive a day early on Wednesday you can attend the Pride Parade since it is June aka Pride Month.
Happy Roo and I will see you next year on the farm!