Since the year 1996 Graspop Metal Meeting has been an annual feast for the Belgian and of course a lot of international metalheads. This metal-Valhalla, that is a four-day long event nowadays, draws a large number of international spectators, with a total of 152,000 visitors in the course of last year’s edition. With the growth of the festival, the number of stages has also increased. The first edition took place on two stages, the ‘Main Stage’ and the ‘Marquee’. During the second edition, a third stage was already added: the ‘Skate Stage’ (later renamed ‘Marquee 2’). A few years later, the ‘Metal Dome’ and ‘Jupiler Stage’ made sure the variety of music could increase even more. A fifth stage, located at the Classic Rock Café, completed the festival area. In 2014 and 2015 the festival provided two Main Stages at the expense of a marquee. Needless to say every metalhead will find a place to party at GMM this year!
If you wish to make your own running order, you can find the schedule here.
Remarkable to see is that 60 bands are performing for the first time at Graspop this year. The positive thing about this number is that you might get to know bands, might be surprised by music you barely or do not know and have a blast when you discover a ‘first time’ band!
Some of the bands that we are looking forward to:
For the first-timers we are looking forward to hear Abbath play. Fleshgod Apocolypses performances are filled with action and we are curious how they bring their setlist to a great open stage. Halestorm, Myrkur, Gojira, Trivium, Ghost, Twisted Sister, Dropkick Murphys and many more are known to create a party. We also recommend Firewind (with the famous Gus G), Heaven Shall Burn, Amon Amarth (with their new work), Anthrax and Behemoth for a visit.
Did you not get a chance to buy your GMM-ticket? We will review the festival to make sure you can enjoy it in another way!
The festival is located in Dessel and is situated about 60 km from Antwerp, 99 km from Brussels and 35 km from Eindhoven in the Netherlands.
The festival area opens at 10AM and closes at 1:30AM. Every day (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) you can enter and leave the area as you wish between those hours. Your textile wristband is your ‘badge’ to get in and out. The Metal Plaza can only be entered by people who possess a combi ticket. The party can already be started at 2PM on Thursday, but on Monday it will be closed.
The formation of the stages looks the same as the previous years. The only change is that the Metal Market will be available before you go through the main entrance (as you can see on the map).
During and after the last shows, you can keep up the party at the Metal Dome and Classic Rock Café.
Does your beard need a trim or do you need help getting that unruly mop of hair under control? Do you want to cure your hangover with a shot of pure oxygen after a grueling festival night? Then take a stroll along Metal Boulevard, situated between the campsite and the festival area. You can also collect free earplugs and have your hearing tested at the Earplug stand.
At the Festival Fair you will find everything from unique clothing items to rare CDs and cool accessories. And, as of this year, access to the Metal Market is free of charge!
Lockers will be available to stock your stuff, for one day or for the whole weekend. The lockers are located near the main entrance.
There are two free WiFi hotspots: one is next to the covered sitting area in the festival arena and the other next to the restaurant tent in the Metal Plaza.
To buy merchandise at the festival fair: there are stalls with merchandise of the bands and merchandise of the festival. The objects can change from day to day, according to the daily schedule. For the GMM merch, most of the times it sells quick so don’t hesitate too long if you really want to buy something.
If you want to add extra metal to your body, some piercers will be at your service!
If you need medical help, go to one of the first-aid stations (they are designated with red flags) or approach one of the first-aid workers on the grounds. If you don’t see anyone, ask someone from the security or a police officer (they can reach the Red Cross stations at all times).
If you’ve lost something, report it to the info desk! Theft, material damage, loss of property … report it to the police post! Any items that haven’t been picked up in the course of the festival will be taken to Dessel police station.
FOOD & DRINKS
At the festival area there will be lots of trucks serving food: french fries, pizza, pasta, burgers… For the vegetarians there are several options: fruit, noodles, wraps etc. NEW this year is the presence of Foodtruck Fest, a cosy little square next to the Ferris wheel where you can treat yourself to anything but traditional festival food.
The drinking stands are located near each stage: beer, soda, water, energy drinks and coffee bars. For the very thirsty people: there is the 0.5L-tent! For the fancy people there are the Belgian Beer Bar and Cava and Wine bar. All of the drinks have to be payed with Graspop-tokens. Drinking water is free and can be found at the sanitary blocks on the festival area.
PAYCARD / MONEY
There’s an ATM available at GMM. At the counter all bank and credit cards are accepted. Please note that all token machines accept both cash payments and bank or credit cards (Mastercard/Visa). Foreign currencies are not accepted. There is no exchange office on the festival grounds.
The camping opens the doors on Thursday at 2PM and is continuously open until noon on Monday. For people with a one day ticket, camping is available the day of your valid ticket at 8AM until noon the day after. Most people who stay at Graspop Metal Meeting will camp in a tent. Campsite accommodation is provided in the cost of a combi ticket but festival-goers must bring their own tents.
There will be a camping store where you can buy tents, sleeping bags, cooking gear, dry food and toilet stuff. If you don’t feel like dragging too much stuff, you can always hire a tent. Caravans and trailer tents are not allowed onto the camp site. However you can book a pitch in addition to the main ticket which allows access to Graspop Metal Town.
Those who have a spot in the Metal Town, can check in at the reception starting from 2PM. There you will receive your wristband and coins for breakfast. Graspop Metal Town is located at just 1 km from the festival site; and is a veritable open air hotel with its proper sanitary facilities, breakfast tent, bar and reception desk. You can either spend the night in a festihut or you can book a pitch for your motorhome, caravan or tent.
To know what you can or can not bring onto the festival site and camping, you can consult the following link.
SANITARY FACILITIES & WATER
The toilet facilities are scattered across the festival grounds. Toilet-use is free and the toilets are stocked with toilet paper. The water from the wash basins at the festival grounds is drinkable! There are also accessible toilets for wheelchair users.
PHONE CHARGING, INFO POINT
Thanks to Proximus you’ll be able to charge your phone using one of the charging sticks available both on the festival grounds and at the campsite. You’ll be asked for 6 Graspop tokens (deposit included); when you’re done you simply return the stick in exchange for your deposit (5 tokens).
Free mobile charging is also possible at one of the charging stations in the arena. At the charging stations you will find different kinds of chargers. In this case, we advise not to leave your phone unattended while charging.
The safety of the visitors, artists and their crew, festival staff and local residents has always been a top priority for all the Belgian festivals. GMM consults with the authorities and emergency services on a regular basis, and implements a solid security policy. Still, the reality is that our world has changed recently. Graspop Metal Meeting takes action and clear directives will be established on what to allow or prohibit at the festival.
To access the festival area, you will have to pass through a metal detector and you will also be asked to open your backpack or handbag to have the content checked.
In the next few days and weeks Graspop will inform its festivalgoers, staff and other interested parties of the directives and guidelines that must be observed. The organisers would like to thank the fans in advance for their understanding, their willing cooperation, the extra effort they are asked to make and also for their continued vigilance.
GMM has issued an explicit ban on crowd surfing. People who ignore this rule will be removed from the field.
Here you will find a list of items that are either allowed or prohibited at the festival.
Combi tickets for the Graspop Metal Meeting include camping from Thursday to Monday, parking for a vehicle and entry to the festival site. Day tickets are available and include admission to the campsite for the day of the ticket and are valid until the next morning.
ACCESS AND DISABILITY
In collaboration with Inter, the organisation responsible for the accessibility of events, Graspop Metal Meeting goes the extra mile to make the festival accessible to the disabled.
– There is a disabled car park at 500m from the festival/campsite entrance.
– There is an accessible and less crowded entrance for people with a disability. One carer can accompany him/her through this entrance.
– There’s a separate box office where disabled customers can collect their wristbands so they don’t have to queue up at the main structure.
– Guide and assistance dogs are allowed on the festival grounds and at the campsite.
– Folding chairs are prohibited in the festival area. You need a valid medical certificate to submit a request with Inter to be allowed to bring a folding chair.
– A platform will be erected in front of the two main stages and in the Marquee so wheelchair users, people on crutches, people with ASD, etc. (+ 1 carer) can watch their favourite bands unimpeded.
– Several sanitary clusters with a disabled toilet are dotted around the festival grounds.
– Inter staff are present on the festival grounds (a.o. on the disabled viewing platforms). They will lend a hand wherever necessary: a visit to the toilet, food & drinks, wheelchair-related problems, etc. Security personnel will be there to keep an eye on things and volunteers with Inter and the Red Cross are always glad to help in case of problems.
WHEN CAN WE START?
Camping: Thursday the 16th of June @ 2pm, until monday the 22nd of June.
Festival: Thursday the 16th @ 4pm until sundaynight 04u45am
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