Travel | Dimensions Festival: Partying in an Abandoned Fort

Features / Festivals / Words

13 May 16


Culture Or Trash have never been to Rome – and an impending trip is even less likely now we’re off to Dimensions. Why bother with the Italian capital when we’ve got a 2,000-year-old Roman amphitheater to ourselves at Dimensions? Not quite to ourselves – Massive Attack are playing a gig inside it to launch Dimensions this year.

The huge, atmospheric Pula Arena is but one part of Dimensions – the most bizarre and surreal European festival on the calendar. Set on an old abandoned fort, the coastal town of Pula is 260 kilometers south west of the Croatian capital, Zagreb.

But you needn’t fret- there’s plenty of ways to get to the fest. Transfers go from Trieste, Ljubljana, Zagreb, Venice Treviso and Venice Marco-Polo airports, or keep it simple and book all travel directly with Mainstage Travel.

Explore the coastal area by day, where food and drink and Dimensions beach parties – and campsite lazing – will take over from the night before. Unlike some spots in Croatia, the water is swimmable in August, so expect water sports and heroic all-day lazes.

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While the beach is nice, it’s not strictly what you’re here for (it kind of is, because one of the Dimensions arenas is beach-side) but forgetting that,  the other seven stages are either on land  nearby to the old fort, or actually inside its walls. A varied lineup of underground electronic music states a case for dancing all night, as does the maddeningly surreal state of the stages.

One is in the old moat – it’s a 1oom-long strip (we’d say pit, but whatever) with 7 metre high walls for next level bass seekers. Another stage lugs a sound system over from a prolific Scottish club just so the sound is right, and another is in what’s described as a ‘circular pit’ on Dimension’s website. Another, The Stables Arena, is surrounded by 20-feet-high fort walls.

When lit up to the sights and sounds of large scale production, you’ll feel misplaced in time; surrounded by history but dancing to new innovators. On the decks are DJs Benji B, Ben UFO, Pangaea, Daniel Avery, Miss Sunshine and tonnes more; aside bands and live acts including United Vibrations, Highlife: Auntie Flo, Andrew, Esa, Dele Sosimi Afrobeat Orchestra and orchestral mastermind Kamasi Washington. A collection of worldwide sounds to keep you on your toes.

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