Life is too short to leave any great music festival unattended. And with so many great ones to choose from, where do you start? From huge events like the Glastonbury Festival to tiny secret shows in tiny secret fields, here’s our guide to the most exciting festivals across the world.
Music festivals are where music fans go to soak in the sounds of their favorite bands. Whether you’re into EDM, hip-hop, rock, punk, or even country, you’ll find the right festival for you on this list. Besides listening to music, there are also many other things to do at music festivals, whether you want to get lost in the crazy crowds or have a mini getaway.
- Coachella — If you are not familiar with the Coachella Music Festival, it is held annually in Indio, California’s Empire Polo Club. The festival has been running since 2008, and it has come to be regarded as the “Crown Jewel of the Summer Festival Circuit.” The festival was created by Rick Van Santen and Paul Tollett, who was inspired by the Electric Daisy Carnival.
- Lollapalooza — Lollapalooza is one of the most popular music festivals in the world. It is one of the longest-running music festivals in the United States. Lollapalooza is a great chance to see some of the world’s best bands in one place. With over 80 different artists set to perform at the festival, no matter if you’re a die-hard fan of the genre or are new to the scene, there are sure to be nights of non-stop entertainment to keep you dancing through the night.
- Austin City Limits — Austin City Limits Music Festival (ACL) is an annual three-day music festival that was founded in 2002 by the creators of South by Southwest (SXSW) to promote new music and acts at the same time. The first festival took place at Auditorium Shores in Austin, Texas, but it was then moved to Zilker Park (ACL is now held at Zilker Park).
- Bonnaroo — Bonnaroo Music Festival is a music festival held annually in Tennessee and features some top artists in the music industry. Bonnaroo is a 3-day camping festival that takes place on a farm that’s been transformed into a festival atmosphere. No one knows exactly how many people attend Bonnaroo, but the 2013 attendance was about 80,000 people.
- Firefly Music Festival — The Firefly Music Festival is a unique experience unlike any other, so you have to experience it at least once in your life. It’s a festival with a full lineup of artists, a beautiful sight, and a unique atmosphere. The lineup is always a treat, but this year’s lineup of performances is a little more special.
- The Glastonbury — Glastonbury Festival is an annual music festival held at the end of June in the English countryside. The festival was founded in 1970 by Michael Eavis and has taken place at the Worthy Farm site since 1970. It is the world’s largest music festival and attracts around 175,000 people over two and a half days, making it the largest greenfield festival site in the world.
- Reading Festival — The Reading Festival has an annual music festival held in Reading, Berkshire, England, since 1994. The Reading Festival is the biggest festival of its kind in the United Kingdom, drawing crowds of about 150,000 people.
- Rock Werchter — Belgium is one of the best countries in the world to be a music fan. What other country offers up such an array of sounds and styles? Since its inception in 1972, Rock Werchter has become a cornerstone festival for the country. And each year, the festival becomes more and more important for Belgium and its music fan base.
- Big Day Out — Big Day Out is a festival in Canberra, Australia, every year. It kicks off on a Sunday and runs for a whole weekend, from Friday afternoon to Sunday morning.
- Isle of Wight — The Isle of Wight Festival is the UK’s largest music festival. It is set to take place on the beautiful Isle of Wight. There are four days of music, arts, comedy, theatre, family fun, and loads of fantastic people to meet.
Music festivals are arguably the best way to spend an entire weekend. They bring together passionate fans of all different music genres, all the while providing a spectacular backdrop to capture the essence of the event. This is why music festivals are often considered the best, most exciting events in the world.