10 Summer Music Festivals Around the World

Posted on July 5, 2012 by

This is a guest post by Cathy Mack.

With summer upon us, the festival season is in full swing. From pop and indie to punk rock, hip-hop and dance to name just a few, there’s plenty of options to suit every musical taste. So whether you’ve just come back from one, getting ready for one, or perhaps you can’t decide on which big bash to attend next year, whatever the case, we’ve rounded up a list of our favourite summer music festivals from around the world to add to the old bucket list.

1. Glastonbury – England, UK

Based in Somerset, Glastonbury is Britain’s biggest music festival boasting over 150,000 attendees every year. Also known as Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts the multi-genre event has been running since the ‘70s, taking a year off here and there to give the extensive grounds – and the cows (it’s a working farm the rest of the year) – a well-earned rest. Glastonbury 2012 is cancelled due to the Olympics but it should be back in full-force in the upcoming year.

Glastonbury Festival

Flickr photo by jaswooduk

2. Bonnaroo –  Tennessee, USA

Based on a farm in Manchester, Tennessee, the four-day event attracts around 80,000 campers annually. Known for its hippy atmosphere, the festival features a range of genres from blue grass and jazz to gospel and electronica, suiting all types of music lovers. Be sure to book in advance though, as this Southern festival sells out quickly.


Flickr photo by rocknroll_guitar

3. Coachella – California, USA

Set in the midst of the Californian desert in a place called Indio, temperatures at this annual April festival have been known to reach well into the mid-40s, so although it’s a spring event, it certainly feels like the middle of summer. Held over two consecutive weekends, you’ll hear mostly indie rock, electronic and hip hop during this three-day occasion.


Flickr photo by Jason Persse

4. Splendour in the Grass – Byron Bay, Australia 

One of Australia’s largest music festivals, the July event boasts around 30,000 concert goers each year. Held in Belongil Fields just outside Byron Bay on Australia’s east coast, the festival has been held annually since 2001. If you want to attend this event, you’ll have to be quick, however, as this year the organisers saw tickets sell out in a record time of just under 45 minutes, with camping spots snapped up within 10 minutes.

Splendour in the Grass

Flickr photo by burntfeather

5. RockNess – Scotland

Set on the banks of the iconic Loch Ness in the heart of the Scottish highlands, RockNess is the Scotland’s largest music festival, taking place every June and attracting crowds between 25,000 and 30,000. Although a wide range of genres, the music fits the event’s name and is generally pop, dance and indie based with previous acts including Blondie, Fatboy Slim and The Strokes.


Flickr photo by CapnOats

6. Electric Picnic – Ireland 

Set in Stradbally Hall in County Laois in the middle of the Irish countryside, the week-end long festival is often dubbed ‘Ireland’s Glastonbury’ as it attracts an extensive line-up of artists each September. This year’s line-up includes the likes of Hot Chip, Sigur Ros, The Cure and The Killers and is expected to host around 35,000 festival goers.

Electric Picnic

Flickr photo by norsenut

7. Hip Hop Kemp – Czech Republic

If pop and rock aren’t your scene, then this hip hop festival might be your cup of tea. Held in the city of Hradec Králové in the heart of Bohemia, the event is one of Europe’s largest hip hop events with around 20,000 people attending yearly since 2002. If you’re craving a bit of variety, you’re in luck as Hip Hop Kemp festival also has stages dedicated to grime, dubstep and club music.

Photo by Hip Hop Kemp

8. Ibiza Rocks/Mallorca Rocks – Ibiza & Mallorca, Spain

Based in the popular clubbing hub of San Antonio, Ibiza Rocks is a three-month long festival that lasts throughout the 13 weeks of the summer from June to September in the Ibiza Rocks Hotel. Founded in 2005, each concert takes place every Wednesday.  If you can’t get tickets, then be sure to check out Mallorca Rocks, a sister festival, which takes place at the Mallorca Rocks Hotel in Magaluf during the same time and live acts take to the stage every Thursday. If you don’t want to miss out, get your holiday to Spain booked now.

Electric Picnic

Photo by Ibizarocks

9. Peace & Love Festival – Sweden

This Scandinavian festival offers a diverse dynamic promoting the concepts of solidarity, diversity and understanding throughout this five-day festival. Sweden’s largest music festival, it’s held in the city of Borlange in the middle of the country. If you’re looking for a laid back atmosphere where you can let loose, this multi-genre festival might just be worth your time.

Photo by Jon Wallsten

10. Independence Rock – India

If you’re partial to a bit of rocking out, the country’s largest music festival in Mumbai, also known as I-Rock, could be the event of the summer for you. The two-day festival is held at Chitrakoot Grounds in this Maharashtra capital. Sometimes referred to as “The Woodstock of India”, the weekend includes acts mostly from hard rock, metal, indie and experimental genres, but disappointingly, no Bollywood beats in earshot.

Photo by Independence Rock India

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About Nellie Huang

Nellie Huang is a professional travel writer and blogger with a special interest in off-grid destinations and adventure travel. Her mission is to visit every country in the world. In her quest, she's climbed an active volcano in Iceland, swam with sealions in the Galapagos, built a school in Tanzania, waddled with penguins in Antarctica, crossed into North Korea and drank beer in Palestine.

12 Responses to “10 Summer Music Festivals Around the World”

  1. Ian [EagerExistence] July 5, 2012 1:22 pm #

    How could you forget Sziget?

  2. techincal writer August 3, 2012 6:55 pm #

    I love music festivals. and those look great

  3. Sophie August 31, 2012 10:15 pm #

    Great list – it's tough to choose the top 10 though. Especially as I've only been to one of these. Great to do list though :)

  4. exotic travels September 2, 2012 3:06 pm #

    I always enjoy music festivals. Love to watch your top 10. :)

  5. Addison S. @ Visa Hunter October 5, 2012 9:02 am #

    The festival in India has to be incredible. There must be some great festivals in Africa, as well. For me, music is a wonderful way to get to know the true spirit and culture of a country. Watching as it brings people together and evokes such happy emotions is a truly touching moment.

  6. hemanth October 14, 2012 4:15 pm #

    If you have attended a musical festival / fair, you must have also enjoyed the other attractions that form an important part of such musical events. These include – food courts, stalls and counters selling different items of merchandise etc. Music Festivals are usually held outdoors in grounds and are an open air event.

  7. Diana Ashlay October 16, 2012 1:35 am #

    These 10 Most Visited Countries in the World are not enough because i want to add one more country that is INDIA
    .It was most beautiful place for visiting Here we visit most populer places like Tajmahal, Rajastani places etc.. But this 10 list also very beatiful and good places for visiting

  8. Augstin Prince October 16, 2012 1:39 am #

    The festival in India has to be incredible. There must be some great festivals in Africa, as well. For me, music is a wonderful way to get to know the true spirit and culture of a country. Any way thanks for it.

  9. deepugerman October 16, 2012 1:44 am #

    The Festival brings the best artists from around the world.A good music festival is the coolest place to unwind, revel, meet people, and have your dream playlist come alive in front of you. And Traveller presents its list of summer’s coolest music festivals for that perfect sunny holiday. http://deepugerman.wordpress.com/2012/09/18/findi

  10. India music festival October 26, 2012 8:08 am #

    I love music festivals. and those look great

  11. Laurie October 30, 2012 10:00 pm #

    Been to the Glastonbury – England, UK party. Great times. Great mix of people also.

  12. Natalie November 27, 2012 1:05 pm #

    They all look really good. I've only been to the Ariwa – Back to Africa Music Festival – Banjul, the Gambia and planning to go again in Jan 2013. Good music and winter sun. You don't need wellies!

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