ZNA Gathering Festival 2017
Over the past two decades Portugal has come to be known as the Mecca of the psytrance culture, mostly due to the notorious Boom festival, which since the late 90’s takes place in Idanha-a-Nova and attracts tens of thousands of electronic music enthusiasts to the warm climate of southern Europe.
[ZNA Gathering] has gained its popularity among many trance-heads around the world mostly due to its persistent will to stay true to the old-school basics of the psychedelic festival culture
But we’re not here to once again talk about Boom as more than enough was said already over the years (and much more is sure to follow). There’s something else happening in Portugal during the festival season, to which we’d like to draw our reader’s attention to. Something quite different, less crowded, more intimate and nevertheless exciting and significant. We of course mean the smaller gatherings that provide a lovely alternative to the massiveness of the Boom-giant and in their own way preserve the “what it used to be like” approach and spirit of the world-wide underground psytrance scene. One of such events is our today’s topic. That is the ZNA Gathering Festival.
The ZNA Gathering takes its place on a beautiful lakeside resort of Montargil which kindly welcomes the participants with its wide-open arms of green landscapes and provides the travelers with a perfect setting for their anticipated psychedelic voyage.
The ZNA story starts back in 2010, while additional chapter is being added to the narrative every two-year cycle. Ever since it has been organically growing in numbers and yet succeeded to remain small and friendly (around 6000 tickets are expected to be available for the upcoming 2017 gathering). It has gained its popularity among many trance-heads around the world mostly due to its persistent will to stay true to the old-school basics of the psychedelic festival culture – a principle that is mainly reflected in the musical aspect of ZNA and their line-up.
Why ZNA Gathering?
According to the narrative found on the official website, the name stands for Zeoxyribonucleic Acid. Those of you who’ve found ZNA similar to DNA are absolutely right: ZNA is the organizers interpretation of DNA with a small and yet significant difference – it is the DNA of the so called “Zambu”, which is apparently the way to refer those party enthusiasts that at the time were lucky enough to experience the golden era of psytrance back in the 90’s (in the famous “fluoresta do Zambujal” – the birthplace of Boom Festival). ZNA is therefore the representation of the specific genetic code of the Zambu people.
ZNA Gathering location
The ZNA Gathering takes its place on a beautiful lakeside resort of Montargil which kindly welcomes the participants with its wide-open arms of green landscapes and provides the travelers with a perfect setting for their anticipated psychedelic voyage. Location wise the Montargil lake can undoubtedly be considered as the crowning of the gathering, as any experienced festie gypsy can truly appreciate the huge contribution of a decent water source on a festival site. Nothing resembles that overwhelming feeling of dipping your whole body in the cooling sweetwater of a lake after a good session of dancing your feet off on a dusty dance-floor!
Music & Activities on ZNA Gathering
The musical spectrum of the event seems to be aiming to the very roots of psychedelic trance culture’s old-school agendas that go way back to the early 90’s , while the genres vary from retrospectives of Goa through the timelessness of psychill and down-tempo, all the way up to the psy, progressive and tech-trance of nowadays and a vivid glimpse into the future. There are two dance-floors on ZNA: Main floor and chillout area. Both are self-explanatory. With the help of gigantic acts such as X-Dream, Ticon, The Delta, Atmos, Eat Static, MWNN, The Infinity Project, Indoor, Xenomorph etc. – any trance-dimensional journey is ought to be smooth, fulfilling and mind-opening. And if those 6 days of consciousness-widening fiesta are still not enough for you – well, there’s an after party on which the chillout stage is kindly taken by some alternative genres, enriched with psychedelic touch, such as deep house, minimal and progressive techno, to ensure the last standing psychonaut a smooth and gradual way back to earth.
Those of you who are traveling with your youngsters – a ZambuKids area dedicated to the little ones will provide them with a variety of activities guided by fully trained childcare professionals, allowing the parents to have some time for themselves and participate in youthful activities of their own.
The musical spectrum of the event seems to be aiming to the very roots of psychedelic trance culture’s old-school agendas that go way back to the early 90’s
In addition, the gathering provides its temporary settlers with a variety of therapy programs and massages, workshops and exhibition areas, video arts, healthy food zone and much more, to keep them engaged, sincerely happy and satisfied.
How to get to ZNA Gathering
On the festival website, you will find several maps showing the routs from three central locations: Lisbon, Porto and Madrid. Driving from both starting points in Portugal takes up to 2 hours while traveling from Madrid may take around 5-hour driving. We recommend taking the charter bus from Lisbon airport, which goes directly to the festival site. Those of you traveling with RV’s – a wide camping area will be waiting for you to enjoy it.