As promised, Innertrip delivered all the nature, love, peace, respect, and music one would expect from a psy-trance, reggae and dubstep open-air festival. Getting there provided a gorgeous ride along the ITX line of the subway to Gangchon station. The only pitfall was the lack of reliable information about transportation to and from the venue. It was about a 20-minute taxi ride.

To respect nature, each guest was given an ashtray pouch to reduce litter and a souvenir bandana that doubled as a map of the festival. The festival space was well placed in a very natural landscape next to the Hongchun River, which is surrounded on all sides by extraordinarily luscious green mountains. Although a dip in the river was prohibited by festival security, frolicking in the pond-like reservoir near the main stage proved to be a great way to cool off after some poi practice and dance.

Early comers had the privilege of securing a prime resting spot and an opportunity to mingle with some of the artists. There were several vendors set-up around the festival offering everything from Vietnamese coffee and massages to hand printed scarves and uniquely crafted, ethnic jewelry. The House of Marley booth had headphone listening stations and offered festivalgoers a traditional Rastafarian colored body painting experience. Arriving early presented an opportunity to have a one-on-one lesson in the performance art of poi in the Fire Office area, free of charge. Of course, there was no fire allowed for the non-professionals.

Once the sun started to go down the festival picked up a lot of momentum, starting with the Windy City performance. They willingly appeased the crowd with an epic encore. The two main stages were situated back-to-back making it easy to go between performances. Some of the favorites were clearly the Psytonic/Galaxy Express juxtaposition that really got people wound up for DJ Astrix’s set, which did not disappoint. Then most people migrated to the late night dubstep with DJs Team Boner and Fenner.

Overall, the festival was a supreme success. The music was great. The venue backdrop was exceptional and complete with a sinister fog that slowly lowered in from the mountains. The late night bonfire dancing, the flame spinning poi artists and the positive vibes more than made up for the fact that the beer had run dry around 10 and the rest of the available alcohol was consumed by about 3; the mark of a growing festival that you shouldn’t miss in its future iterations.

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