Zwarte cross festival
Not sure how I can describe the Zwarte Cross…. Plenty of people asked us what it was about and other people, who heard about it, really wanted to hear about our experiences. I have attended many type of festivals, but this is one of a kind. It’s a mix between a motorrace and a music festival. It sells out within several minutes and over 200.000 people attend each year, reaching a new maximum in 2023 with 237.000 visitors. It all started back in 1997 with some 1000 visitors and quickly grew year of year. Wikipedia claims it’s the biggest paid festival of Holland and the biggest motorrace event in the world.
Due to it’s success it’s not easy to get tickets and you can compare the madness like obtaining tickets for Tomorrowland. We were lucky to obtain tickets for the Friday and Saturday. For the camping tickets (all days including camping) we were too late. But in the end, 2 full days were enough for me. The experience was super! Don’t hesitate to join this festival if you ever have the chance. With it’s 45 euro day tickets (2023) it’s quite affordable. Beers are 3.10 euro each.
The “Specialklasse” is where the participants go all-in or go crazy. You can’t imagine what kind of constructions are being created. They ride every day of the festival so make sure you are able to join 1 ride.
Zwaargewichtklasse (Heavy weight class)
When you thought you have seen it all with the Specialklasse, then you’ll need to rethink with the Zwaargewichtklass. These are monstrous vehicles and they come in all kinds. Plenty of them have a lot of horse power. We learned that being able to join these categories you have to apply and a committee will determine whether you are selected or not. There are so many people that want to give their best to build a great construction.
A main part of the Zwarte Cross festival are the motorraces. There are several series ranging from Calimero (kids), 125 cc, 250 cc, 500 cc and since 2023 there is also a ladies race. This is a permanent track and the Dutch riders can qualify for the national and European championship. During the festival you have several chances to see the races. I strongly advise to walk around the track during the races so you can see different parts of the track that the riders have to conquer.
BMX and motor stunts
There is a section where both BMX and motors perform all kind of tricks. Worth spending some time to see the riders perform back and forward saltos. I have filmed the final section of the show where all riders go directly one after the other. It’s a pity I stopped just before the last rider because he made a double salto.
The motors were unable to make their jumps when we decided to go watch them due to strong wind.
Next to the motorraces this is also a music festival with many podia. All kind of genres are present ranging from disco to dance and party tents. There is even a Tirorel tent, but unfortunately that one is only accessible for people staying on the official camping. The biggest parties we have experienced in the Megatent where there is mostly party music. Further more you have many other stages with obviously Main stage, Disco Tent, Reggaeweide, Undercovertent and some more.
We really enjoy Stuk XXL who played great music and what was incredible was to see that at 23:30 some motor riders performed stunts above the DJ and performers. Video quality is not that well, but if you look carefully at the second movie below, you’ll see flying by 3 motor riders. It’s really not the usual festival.
The Dansvloer (Dance Floor if you translate) is a little tomorrowland and music is ranging from dance to hard core. I like this kind of music but at moments it was even too hard for me, but mostly we had a great time over there.
The Stadsplein (City square)
Something new in 2023 was the extended “Stadsplein” or City Square where the organisation simulated a little town with pubs, a tattoo shop