Body & Soul 2017: Driving directions and last-minute information

Time to pack your bags and plan your route

Body & Soul is almost upon us. We are now officially knee-deep in the festival season. Prep your ears. Gird your loins. Bolster your liver. The summer is upon us.

Elsewhere on, you'll find Louise Bruton's guide to your last-minute festival essentials, to keep you smoothly motoring over the whole weekend. So here are a few other things to keep in mind if you're heading to Ballinlough Castle.

There are no physical tickets this year, with new partner Ticketbooth, so print off the PDF at home or simply show up with it on your phone. If you need a lift or have space in your vehicle, check out Go Car Share where people can get there for the price of the petrol. Drivers who arrive with full cars might even get a Green VIP pack from the organisers.

In terms of directions, if you are coming from Mullingar, take the N52 towards Delvin. Travel through Delvin, turning right on to the N51. Follow this road and then turn left at Crowenstown National School on to the L5525. You will soon be all up in the festival’s grille.

If you are coming from the M3/N3/N52 or Clonmellon direction, take the M3/N3 North past the toll plazas to the N3 Kells roundabout. There, take the 1st exit N52 towards Clonmellon. In the village, continue on the N52 into Delvin, before turning left on to the N51 in the village. From there, turn left at Crowenstown National School on to the L5525.

Option three is from the direction of Athboy. Travel on the N51, before turning right after The Crowenstown Inn on to the L5525.

Bus tickets to the festival can be bought on the coaches for €25 in advance or €30 return with Marathon Coach Travel. Some times may already be sold out. They leave from Custom House Quay; look for the temporary bus sign with the Marathon Coach Travel logo. Departure times on Friday are 10:30am, 11am, 11.30am, 2.30pm, 3pm and 7pm. On Saturday and Sunday, it's 11am only.

What else?

What else is worth knowing? The event is strictly over-20s and photo ID will be requested. Children under 12 go free. Weekend tickets were still on sale at time of writing, but have typically sold out as the festival opens. One-day tickets are available only for Sunday.

In terms of provisions, punters can bring 24 cans or one bottle of spirits or three bottles of wine on site. No alcohol is permitted with Sunday day passes. Decant drinks into plastic before you arrive, as no glass is permitted on site. One-litre plastic bottles will be available at the main entrance for €1.

The good news is that the festival operates a free-flow policy, meaning you can bring alcohol from camp sites into the arenas.

What else are we looking forward to? Check out Dean Van Nguyen's guide to the best acts to see. Dean has already picked a selection of six fine acts to see this year, though we'd add Icelandic musician Jófríður Ákadóttir, aka JFDR, to the list. She takes to the Wonderlust stage at 9.15pm on Sunday night, for those going the distance. You can also check out the full list of performers and stage times here.

The Dark and Stormy bar has a whopper musical line-up to go with the best drinks selection to be found in Ballinlough. We’re also dying to see the stunning brick Funicular Folly built by architect Rae Moore, along with Connor McGrath and Create CNC and their team deep in the woods around the Walled Garden.

And of course you wouldn't want to miss The Irish Times selection of talks, discussions and entertainment on the Wonderlust stage all Saturday afternoon, curated by, well, me.

Shake out that tent. Crack that can. Spread that sunblock. It’s Body and Soul time.