Pillow Fight at Just So Fesival courtesy of Chris Payne

Just So Festival 2020

Creative Tourist

Just So is the UK’s best family festival and it’s right on our doorsteps (although you could always travel to its sister festival in Brazil and we wouldn’t be jealous – honest).  Now in its 11th year, Just So offers astonishing outdoor arts and unique experiences solely for children and their families.

Underpinned by a love of stories, childhood escapades and the totally bonkers Tribal Tournament (pillow fighting anyone?), it’s an intimate (just 5000 capacity) and visually stunning affair. Expect the best literature, theatre, comedy, dance, live music and creative pursuits to enjoy together over an entire weekend in a breathtakingly beautiful landscape of rolling parkland, lakeside spots and incredible forest at the Rode Hall Estate.

Far from resting on its laurels, it continues to push the boundaries of what a family festival can be, with each year offering many new areas ready for adventuring. At Just So 2020, learn the tricks of the Wild West, try paddle-boarding, watch a unique woodland opera created especially for Just So, take part in the Great Just So Colour Fight, and meet some larger than life animal puppets. Just a few of the incredible first pieces of programming coming to Just So this year!

Child dressed as a fairy

Just So has a fiercely loyal audience and it’s not hard to understand why – with the best arts and facilities for the tiniest festivalgoers (the Peekaboo Garden solely for 0-4s) alongside enchanting creative workshops, and mindbending mayhem for tweens and teens.

Be quick! The last few weekend tickets remain. Oh, and did we mention there’s a beach?


Because of the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, we are unable to bring you our usual recommendations for things to do in Manchester and the North. Our thoughts at this time are with our readers and with the organisations and businesses who make the North of England a great place to live and visit. We hope you stay well and look forward to sharing more unmissable events and places with you later in the year.

Here’s our guide to supporting organisations in Manchester and the North.

Please note – many of the venues on our site will be closed and events either postponed or cancelled. Please check the venue website for details.