HIPPIE ARCHITECTURE: The Psychedelic Way

10 04 2010

This hippie’s did everything their way, and their means of “architecture” is no exception. Not only did they use their homes as their means of transportation, they also used these vehicles as canvases. The vehicles and the way they adorned them, in their psychedelic art, represents the 60’s and hippie generation to a t. Free love, colors, artists and musicians that inspired them – EVERYTHING was included, each making a similar style but actually leaving them each unique. Another important point to note would be how most of the vehicles were Volkswagen, and the hippie attention this brand was given still leaves them the symbol for counter-culture mode of transportation.

During festivals, if you weren’t traveling in your beetle or van, tents were the makeshift shelter of choice. The following is a photograph by Bob Alycott, taken at the Isle of Isle of Wight Pop Festival in 1970. The girl in the center is still unknown, but this photo still remains iconic of the time. At a hippie festival, smoke-in-hand, pregnant, and barefoot. Ah, the ideals of the time.

And if you weren’t making a home in a van, or a tent…

… Then you used a little piece of God’s architecture called your feet, and your thumb. And your overly large backpack.

Much hippie love,





HIPPIE TRAVEL DESTINATIONS: A Top Ten, Past & Present

9 04 2010

1). San Francisco’s Haight Ashbury District

This was the go-to place and attraction point for hippie’s starting out in the 1960’s. The traffic there in the initial Summer of Love even got SO high that in an effort to reduce the influx of the longhaired and high spirited, the government officials released statements warning people about the growing numbers and it had an adverse effect and drew in even more. Try listening to song San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair) by Scott McKenzie to really get a feel for the mood.

2). Central Park, New York for the “Be-In”

This convention attracted over 10 000 hippies, and was significant as now the hippie mentality begun to spread out instead of being concentrated in San Francisco. This protest was mainly about various issues that were going on in the US at the time, including racism, controversies over the Vietnam War, and so on and attracted many when it was headed up in April during Easter. The numbers continued to grow drastically as the days passed, up to 100 000 – 400 000, concentrating on anti-war protests.

3). Woodstock Festival, White Lake, NY

Coined the concert that changed rock and roll, if you could go back to ONE hippie festival and were big on music, this would be the one. It attracted over 40 000 people, and over the course of 3 days it featured 32 acts such as Jimi Hendrix, CCR, Grateful Dead, The Who, and many others. Plaques have been resurrected in remembrance, soundtracks produced, and documentaries have been released… Now, how many events do you remember that were paid this much attention, and grossed this much attraction on something was POSITIVE? Not many, I’m sure. Woodstock of 69, people.

4). Stonehenge Festivals, UK

This was a free festival that started in the early 70’s and continued each year in June for the Summer Solstice until the mid-80’s. It always featured a number of popular bands, including Jimmy Page, the Mob, and many others. Considered a highly spiritual event, it continued to grow in numbers as years passed and with the growing drug use that came with the hippie’s, restrictions were put and conflicts ensued (The Battle of the Beanfield) in place banning everyone from having a festival there until 1999. Now, your welcome to go back on the solstice and enjoy watching the sun rise perfectly over one of the most beautiful and complex and mysterious archaeological structures still in tact on Earth.

5). El Bolson, Argentina

Considered a “hippie haven,” and a place where “sustainable lifestyle choices are the norm rather than the exception,” it is by no means questionable as per why it is a destination of choice for the peace wielding people. It began to gain popularity in the 70’s as a hippie destination, and has still maintained its green and happy ways to date. It has a very temperate climate, a flourishing arts and crafts market, and has many outdoor activities such as skiing, rafting, climbing, and so on to spend time doing as well.

6). Nimbin, Australia

Much like El Bolson, it too gained popularity in the 70’s and maintains its hippie roots to this very day. It actually gained the majority of its current residents after it hosted a festival called the Aquarius Festival, as many of the attendee’s never left and still maintain the population. Certain other notable facts include how a HEMP Party has been founded as well as a HEMP embassy, promoting the legalization of marijuana and selling it at a hemp bar.

7). Goa, India

Called “the original hippie getaway,” it gained popularity in the 60’s and still gets plenty of traveller traffic to this day. Planning a trip there, and looking for some excitement? Head down there, and haul up a spot on the beach. Come nighttime, you’ll find where all the hippie’s went. That’s right, you’ll be dead center of a rave. Apparently, “old hippie’s don’t die. They just go to Goa.” However, to find that perfect spot may be a bit of an adventure, and an expensive one at that. Warning: definitely abandon some hippie ideals and do your research before heading down there. It’s no longer considered to be all picture perfect, and to find THAT spot your going to go through several less wonderful spots to find what your looking for, particularly up north.

8). Iziba, Spain

Considered “the birthplace of raves,” it has definitely changed nowadays but provided you have a working time machine, it would undoubtedly worth checking out in the 60’s when it was gaining popularity from the growing hippie culture. However, if you are dead set on checking it out present time to learn about hippie culture, certain districts are preserved under World Heritage site protection. This means that you can still see the some beautiful architecture and and walking trails that have been noted by many tourists to be worth checking out, and may just be lucky enough to catch a rave that’s going on not in a typical hippie setting, but in one of the popular clubs that keep up the active nightlife.

9). Vancouver, Canada

Finally, Canada debuts! While this spot may not have been one of the go-to places for hippie’s in the 60’s, it is certainly a PRESENT time hippie attraction. It is known for having a widely multicultural population, and has very open marijuana ideals. It is also the birth place of green peace, and if you head to a place like Kitsilano you are bound to see a longhaired tie dyed friend still wandering about. Not to mention… it’s beautiful and Canada. 100 points for this alone.

10). Kathmandu, Nepal

Deemed “the final dream destination for the tired hippie” in the 60’s, it is undoubtedly different today but you can still find traces of the old times. Drugs, such as hashish, can still be found with ease, and it has been said that the scenery of the Himalayas can speak and inspire to even the most spiritual of people.