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Derby is filled to the brim with everything you want & need

Out and about

Derby is always a lovely place to shop and explore – it may not be the largest city but it’s packed with everything you could want. Wander through the streets of the beautiful Cathedral Quarter and enjoy activities and places to eat and shop at Derby’s Intu shopping centre.

Derby Festé is a great way to entertain the family or come with friends and enjoy a weekend full of surprises. As you walk, shop or grab a bite to eat in the city centre during Derby Festé you never know what you will discover.

Here are a few handy tips to help you plan your visit to Derby Festé.

Grab a picnic blanket and bring the whole family along to help us kick off Festé 2017 on Bass’s Rec as you enter our “World of Circus” on Friday 29th at 5pm. There you will meet our Ringmasters who will guide you, you can wander through a beautiful fire trail, take part in our circus workshops or simply grab a spot on the grass and choose one of our fantastic food and drink stalls to visit. With food from around the globe to choose from including Italian pizzas, Spanish Churros, Caribbean and Thai street food. Then await the amazing Headline act of “Altitude” by Gorilla Circus!

On Saturday for kids under 12, they’ll be amazed at the strange sounds they can create with Matt Marks “Wheeze” as the giant organ huffs and puffs, from 12pm on Cathedral Green. Don’t miss the giant puppet that is “Arbor”, half man half tree, who will be stalking his way around Festé handing out tree saplings to plant, 12.30pm-3.30pm around Waterfall. Take a ride along with Wet Picnic in “The Lift”, where you’ll find some hilarious goings on on each floor!

If you’re visiting with a group of friends and want to truly emerse yourself in the Festé spirit, become part of Cie Artonik’s “Colour of Time” procession on Saturday at 5pm, joining in the steps as you dance through a cloud of brightly coloured gulal.  And if you’re a couple, why not treat yourselves to a delicious lunch at one of the many fantastic restaurants in the City or at Intu Derby before you take in the sights and sounds of Festé. Don’t miss the breathtaking contemporary dances of acrobats Joli Vyann on Saturday at 1.15pm on Cathedral Green and the fast paced, playful performance of “Ex Aequó” by Circus Katoen from Belgium in Cathedral Square at 3pm.

If you want to see as many “big” shows as possible at Festé, the place to begin is Bass’s Rec on Friday 29th with the awe inspiring “Altitude” by Gorilla Circus, where height, fear, freedom and adrenaline create a truly breathtaking show. Tickets for our World of Circus are only £7 per person. Saturday’s big, unmissable shows are all FREE so don’t miss the stunning “Colour of Time” procession by Cie Artonik. After this, stick around the Market Place and you’ll see over 150 people performing the “Garba”, an impressive and colourful dance originating from the Navratri Festival in Gujarat, India. If you have the energy left, you can even join in!

Do you love street theatre? Here’s a performance like no other…unfinished. Visit the River Gardens on Saturday at 1.15pm for a performance by Maison Foo of early ideas for their latest show Parkour Parents, you can even help them finish it. At St Peters Cross at 2.30pm you can see the New Art Club as they swing, climb and fall about their VW Campervan telling the story of Cupid’s unfortunate accident in “Campervan of Love”.

If dance is your thing make sure you’re at Cathedral Green River on Saturday at 3pm to see Candoco perform their passionate dance to a collection of pop songs, a piece choreographed by Arlene Phillips. Don’t miss Glasshouse with their retelling of the classic “boy meets girl” story, they’ll be performing on St Peters Street on Saturday at 2.15pm.

If you’re on a budget and want to experience all the FREE performances at Festé, that’s easy…all the performances on Saturday are FREE. Only the “World of Circus” on Friday evening on Bass’s Rec is a ticketed event at just £7 per person, with a discount to just £5 per person for groups of 8 or more.

If you have time then take the chance to climb the 189 steps of Derby Cathedral’s 200ft Tudor Tower for a peregrine’s view of Derby Festé. Each tour takes around 45 minutes and costs just £5 for adults, £4 for 8-16 year olds. Not suitable for people with a fear of heights! Tickets available from the Cathedral Bookshop.

Don’t forget to check into the tourist information centre to find out what else you can do or visit the Visit Derby website.

There are also lots of fabulous websites available to help you work out what’s on and when throughout the whole year including:

Derby Days Out – list exciting events, amazing attractions and cool clubs all suitable for children aged 6-16 years old. They also list what’s on in Derby at the weekend, half term and school holidays.

IN Magazine covers the intersection of life and culture in Derby; bringing you a side of the city you might never have seen before.

Love Derby – Love Derby brings you the best guide for things to do in Derby with restaurants, pubs, bars, events, activities and more.

Made in Derbyshire – Explore and discover more about the rich cultural life and diversity of Derbyshire.