Melbourne’s Pitch Music Festival: A Complete Review-Guide

Melbourne’s Pitch Music Festival: A Complete Review-Guide

March 2019 was the third edition of one of the most incredible emerging music festivals in the Melbourne area – Pitch Music and Arts Festival. Pitch Music Festival honestly had one of the best lineups I have ever seen, especially in Australia, and is clearly at the forefront of the country’s house and techno scene.

Located out in the remote Victorian bushland with the incredible backdrop of mountains in Grampians National Park, Pitch is surely one of the most scenic bush doofs in Australia. Labor Day weekend in Australia (second weekend in March) also usually has quite a temperate climate, making for the perfect settings for a fantastic music festival.

Hosting over 7,000 attendees over four days, Pitch keeps a minimalistic and refined vibe across a tree-dotted landscape, with quite a few extra activities and food/drink to accompany the main event of house and techno. This Pitch Music Festival Review will go into all aspects of the festival such as the festival location, crowd, fashion, activities, security, weather, timings, and more – designed for those who have been to look back at their weekend, and for anyone who wants to go in the future to know all they need to know before they go.

But First: Headed to Any Other Festivals in Australia? Check Out My Review-Guides:
pitch festival australia

 

Pitch Festival Location/Venue

Pitch Music Festival is held in the bushland outside Moyston in Victoria, Australia. The festival venue backs right up to the outer mountain peaks of Grampians National Park, which are absolutely beautiful and glisten in the golden afternoon light. Moyston is about 2.5-3 hours from Melbourne – but the drive will be worth it when you see the beautiful location.

The venue is quite flat and is scattered generously with massive leafy trees which provide ample shade both within the venue and in the campgrounds (which is good to remember when setting up your tent!). Walking from the end of the Resident Advisor stage (farthest south) to the end of the Pitch Black Stage (farthest north) wouldn’t be much more than 15 minutes, with the third (Pitch Black) stage right in the middle of the two. So, basically, the venue was nice, small, and manageable. It was easy to walk from stage to stage (and even back again), and also manageable to walk back to the campgrounds multiple times a day to regroup.

One thing to keep in mind is that the venue is extremely dusty due to the dryness of the dirt on the grounds, so it’s also important to bring something to cover your face as well. They had the water truck driving around and wetting the grounds, but it can only do so much!

There were three main stages at Pitch Music Festival:

Pitch black stage pitch music festival

Pitch Black/Boiler Room Stage

resident advisor stage pitch music and arts

Resident Advisor Stage

Pitch One Stage

The Pitch One Stage was essentially considered the ‘main stage’ of Pitch Music Festival. It was a big stage setup in front of white blocks, upon which amazing visuals were projected come nightfall. Pitch One was shaded by very plain black shade sails, but the passing clouds and jutting mountain peaks actually looked really beautiful behind them.

Resident Advisor Stage

The RA stage was a big red ribbed cube stage with a massive range of music played. Most of the music that had any live elements was held at the RA stage, but some of the hardest techno was held here as well. It was a good mixture of great quality house and techno.

Pitch Black Stage/Boiler Room Stage

The unique ‘Pitch Black’ stage held a live streamed Boiler Room event on the Friday evening of Pitch Music Festival, hence being called the Boiler Room Stage on that day. This stage was essentially a big rectangle raised around a stage with a downstairs platform and an upstairs platform. There was a thin film of tarp around the stage, giving it a transparent appearance that looked amazing against the strobes and lasers in the night time. They streamed four boiler room sets from here – see if you can spot me!

Pitch Pavilion/Reinvigoration Centre

The ‘Pitch Pavilion’ was a lineup of interesting activities and workshops held at the festival alongside the music. There was yoga held each morning near the market area, and interesting performances, sound journeys, and activities held inside the cylindrical Reinvigoration Center. This was a place to come, take off your shoes, and relax in reclined chairs looking at interesting artistic interpretations on a screen to music nor take part in immersive activities.

pitch music festival crowd

Pitch Festival Crowd

The Crowd at Pitch Music Festival was quite mixed. I’d say that nearly everyone was either Australian or living in Australia (many UK/Irish/working holiday makers) with a few international visitors drawn in from the amazing lineup. Most people came from Melbourne for the festival, however many traveled there from different places in Australia.

The crowd at Pitch was not the most conscious crowd I’ve seen at a music festival. You can often tell the respect level of a crowd by the amount of rubbish they leave behind at stages and how well they can clean up after themselves; I would say there were tons of attendees at Pitch that did more than their part cleaning up trash from themselves and others, but also many who were quite careless. This could be attributed to the fact that it may be be one of the first festivals many people at Pitch had attended, or may be new to the doof/festival scene.

For the most part people were lovely and nice, spreading good vibes all around. I really didn’t meet any d*ckheads at the festival, which is always a plus! Most people were nice and open and there to enjoy the music. People generally handled themselves and took care of each other, save a few instances.

bubble wand girl blowing bubbles pitch music festival

pitch music festival smile girl fun

Vibe

There were good vibes all around at Pitch! Many people did attend for the mere reason of having a good party, but there were also large portions of the crowd who truly enjoyed the music and cared about the amazing sets going on around the venue. There was an air of fun and silliness going through the venue and floating between the leafy trees, people, and stages all the way to the lovely backdrop of mountains. People were having fun dressing up in crazy outfits, letting their freak flags fly, and letting loose at Pitch, and it created a great atmosphere to meet people and have a good boogie.

I think the vibe and identity of Pitch Music Festival is still developing, but they have done extremely well to get it to where it is after a mere three years. I was a bit disappointed that the opening ceremony seemed to have been cancelled, only to learn that it had been moved two hours back in the schedule causing me to miss the whole thing (after waiting an hour and a half). A bigger focus on art and tie-ins to indigenous tribes via a timely and well-promoted opening ceremony would do wonders.

 

pitch music festival art hammock structure

Atmosphere/Decorations

Pitch is technically called ‘Pitch Music and Arts’ festival, and has this handle on all of its social media as it is committed to showcasing both music and, well, art. Throughout the venue Pitch displayed different art installations, many of which were minimalistic and interesting. The map details five different ‘artworks’ that attendees could check out between stages.

All in all I think the atmosphere of Pitch pretty much perfectly paralleled the minimalistic and monochrome quality of their website and promotional videos. The stages and posters all followed the same color scheme of mostly white, black, and red, and really did match the branding that they had set for themselves online.

However, to be honest, the art was very lacking – and all the punters knew (and joked about) this. The installations were comprised of a loosely constructed hammock temple, some large silver (goon sack looking) bags which were removed after the first day because people kept jumping on them, a really sad looking fake stone fountain on a few pads of grass and enclosed by wood and clear panels, five or six tall LCD screens that played different visuals throughout the day (which were actually really cool), and another rather sad looking circular structure of two rings of clear rubber curtain strips, with a light in the middle.

If I’m being honest, I shouldn’t be able to list every single one of the art installations of an arts festival in one paragraph.  But I also think I am preaching to the choir here because I think myself, the other festival-goers, and the organizers of Pitch all know this deep down. I am sure they will continue to improve and curate their art selection and installations as they scale the festival up over the coming years. They can only get better from here. 😛

david august pitch festival

recondite pitch festival melbourne

David August + Recondite doing their thing

Lineup/Music/Artists

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the lineup of Pitch Music Festival was one of the best and deepest I have ever seen and the best house and techno lineup in Australia hands down. I started to drool when they first dropped the lineup as it was comprised of literally all my favorite artists at one time, including many I had not even seen before but had been wanting to see for years.

The Pitch festival lineup encompassed tons of local/Australian talent alongside an unbeatable international roster as well – all of course generally within the realm of house and techno. Certain days/times of Pitch were impossible to decide which stage to go to/stay at, because all of the artists were that good. The Boiler Room stage added another amazingly exclusive and high-brow element to the festival, as myself and I’m sure many others have always dreamed of attending a live Boiler Room taping.

This year’s lineup included but is not limited to (in no particular order either): Denis Sulta, Mall Grab, Oliver Huntemann, Job Jobse, Monolink, David August, Ame b2b Dixon (for 6 hours!), Four Tet, Palms Trax, Ross from Friends, 16 Bit Lolitas, Recondite, Tourist, Roman Flugel, Perc, Sven Vath, Avalon Emerson, The Drifter, Dasha Rush, Charlotte de Witte, Daniel Avery, Optimo, Merve, and Oliver Schories. See – pretty incredible.

Pitch has pulled in just as impressive a lineup in each year of its existence, and there’s no reason to doubt that they’ll continue to do this as they get even bigger. So whether there’s art, yoga, etc or not – the lineup will ALWAYS be a no-brainer to come to Pitch Music Festival. It’s almost as if they should just leave it at that! 😉

camping review pitch festival

Morning vibes at the campsite

Pitch Festival Camping

The camping area at Pitch Music & Arts was just outside two main entrances to the festival venue, sort-of wrapped in a lopsided semicircle around the venue. The farthest campsite wouldn’t ave been much more than a 10-15 minute walk to the venue entrance (maybe 20 if you camped out in the sticks); it was very manageable and fairly small, meaning that it was very easy to get around.

The campground was scattered with really large, thick trees that provided lots and lots of shade to those who were lucky enough to camp under them. I beelined straight to a lower-hanging tree to camp, and I was unbelievably glad I did when the sun got too hot a few of the mornings but I was still able to sleep under the shade of my tree.

The camping area is a total free-for-all without any direction or rules as to where you could or couldn’t camp. Many of the shaded areas were snapped up early, but it’s always a good idea to bring your own shade/gazebo to create even more.

There were a few composting toilet blocks throughout the campgrounds, but not nearly enough in my opinion. Lines often got quite long, leading many to use the trunks of said massive trees to relieve themselves, but the lines always moved fast enough. See below for more info on toilets and weather conditions.

Pitch Festival Glamping

There was a sectioned-off Glamping area at Pitch Festival with massive teepees and pre-set tents. I will never understand the high prices of Glamping at Australian Music Festivals, but the prices started at $325 extra per person for a 10-person tipi, and had options for canvas tents or tipis for different numbers of people. There was an 8 person tipi ($350pp), 6 person tipi ($375pp), and a 4 person tipi ($400pp), and they also had ‘ High Pitch’ and ‘Low Pitch’ bell tent options, with similar pricing for 2, 3, and 4 persons. The super fancy ‘Luna Pitch’ Bell tent rang in at a hefty $750pp for two people. It did however have ALL the trimmings – power, memory foam mattress, couch, fan, lights, water, rug, tables, mirror, clothes rack, and more.

Camping Amenities

Because the venue was fairly small, all the festival amenities were also the camping amenities – it was easy enough to walk into the festival venue to get anything you needed. The camping area was close enough to just use the festival market stalls, info areas, bars, and food stalls. There were a few areas of course of toilets, ‘helper hubs,’ drinking water, and showers within the campgrounds, but most of the festival amenities were concentrated within the actualy festival venue.

rejuvenation station pitch music festival

poof doof pitch music festival

Rejuvenation Station + Poof Doof 

Festival Amenities – Other Stuff to Do

Pitch was one of the only Australian ‘doofs’ that really didn’t even try to have a yoga tent, art gallery, or activity area. It was more focused on music. There was a morning yoga class every day, but not many people knew about it and it was held out in the open near the food stalls. The only real activity center was the white ‘rejuvenation center’ tent, which was still an awesome space:

Rejuvenation Center

This was one of the only interactive structures besides the stages. The Rejuvenation Center was full of soft sand and reclining day beds, and you had to take your shoes off to come inside (which kept it extra zen!). As I mentioned above, they had different activities and screenings of artistic/interesting films to music, some meditation sessions, other activities and art sessions, tarot, spiritual sessions such as affirmations, and other unique sessions lead by thought leaders.

Market Stalls

Pitch Music Festival had a fairly massive circus tent that held all of the festival’s market stalls. They had everything you could possibly need for a doof and more – from artisan jewelry to steampunk fashion to glittery leotards to accessories like hats, fans, sunglasses, and eve dress-up.

Poof Doof Event

Poof Doof, one of the best gay/drag clubs in Melbourne, put on an event all day on the Saturday of Pitch. They pulled up a stage on a truck and served mimosas and a full dose of drag queen sass along with great music for their epic show. I’ve seen them at quite a few Melbourne festivals now, and I won’t hesitate to say that they throw some of the best parties of the festival! They had a full crowd all day and some of the funniest drag performances I have seen – not to be missed!

poof doof pitch fesival

Roller Disco

Inside the market stalls tent they actually had a ROLLER DISCO! How epic is that?! If you ever needed a break from dancing to music, you could always go and roller skate to some instead.

Movie Tent

There was a tent just by the general store (outside the main entrance) that projected movies onto a big wall. I walked by one night and saw a few dozen people watching David Attenborough in the early hours of the morning – if that’s not a great end to the night, I don’t know what is!

General Store

There were also a few General Stores on site near the entrances with extra toiletries, camping supplies, snacks, and drinks in case you run out of anything.

pitch art installations pitch festival victoria

Transportation/Hotels/Parking – Getting to Pitch Music Festival

Most people going to Pitch Music Festival either drove their own car, rented a private charter bus for their group of friends, took public transport to the closest town/a  shuttle, or took the official Pitch Charter busses.

The official charter busses were about $65 round trip to the festival from Southern Cross Station (about 3 hours), and they had plenty of times to choose from to go there/back on Friday/Saturday and Monday/Tuesday. They had multiple busses for popular time slots, and were fairly organized and almost punctual… which is all you could ask for, really! People who rented out a charter bus for their group would pay a large range of prices depending on the company and number of people. You can also take public transport to Ararat train station and jump on the Pitch shuttle bus from there for a cheaper way to get to the festival. You can also take a taxi to the venue from Ararat.

People driving to Pitch Music Festival would have had a bit of a quicker trip than the busses, but not by much. There are no rules for parking at Pitch Festival; as soon as you get in the gate you’re free to drive anywhere in the venue as long as its reachable by the gridded road lanes. The closest thing that could come to a hotel at Pitch would be the Glamping area – see the camping description above!

mac n cheese burger australia festival vendor

My personal favorite: the mac-n-cheese BURGER!

Food/Drink

There were TONS of options for drinks and food at Pitch Festival. I was impressed with the food vendors at most Australian bush doofs as a whole, and Pitch was no different. There are definitely certain vendors who make their rounds to every single festival, which is great because they are all high quality, delicious, and diverse food!

There were Food vendors/trucks wrapped around a very generous portion of the venue, where you could try everything from delicious Chinese dumplings to the Avocado tent (burgers/sandwiches/fries/everything avo), my favorite mac-n-cheese burger place (pictured), pizza, Gozleme, smoothies, calamari, pork crackling, Indian food, a community tent with classic sausage-in-bread and burgers, gourmet toasties, and more. Man, I’m getting hungry as I write this! I tried to stick to food that I had brought to Pitch but the reality was that the food options were just too good to miss out on.

As far as drinks went, the festival is BYO so most people brought in drinks with them. It was technically ‘limited BYO’ with a no-glass policy (and one slab per person I believe), but this was not enforced very harshly. Most people had plenty of cans of their drink of choice and also options for mixed drinks as well. That being said, there were some great bars inside the venue as well. If you forgot to get morning ice or ran out of drinks at your campsite (or just wanted a nice delicious cold bev), the bars served quite the selection of cocktails and drinks. They had cider and beer alongside nearly 10 craft cocktails. I even succumbed to a few $14 bloody mary’s and espresso martinis when the only option at my camp was warm goon… and ohhh they were worth it!

pitch bush doof festivbal sunset silhouette

grampian mountains pitch music festival

Price

The Pitch ticket cost depended on how many days you wanted to go. The festival ran from around noon on Friday to Monday evening. 4-Day Pitch Festival tickets started at $350 and went up to $370. 3-Day tickets started at $310, and 2-Day tickets started around $260. To some it may seem pricey, but for the length of the festival and the *actually insane* lineup (many of the artists could charge quite a lot for one ticket), I think it’s totally fair!

Security

The Pitch festival security and police presence was quite easygoing. Upon entering the festival, there were police at the ready outside the gate, but all that was done (to my bus, at least) was having volunteers come on the bus to scan tickets and give wristbands. I believe there was an occasional lax look-through for some vehicles, but once we had our wristbands, our bus just went through to the drop-off point and we all got off and walked into the camping area.

There were occasional police roaming around the festival venue, but they were usually just making sure everything was okay and even having a good time themselves. Most of the attendees at Pitch festival were quite responsible and the need for extra precautions may not have been there.

pitch music festival night RA stage

rain lasers music festival pitch

RA Stage by night 

Bathrooms/Showers

The toilet situation at Pitch Music Festival was fairly pleasant. There were blocks of art-covered composting drop-toilets scattered throughout the venue and the campgrounds. Composting toilets come with sawdust bins for people to cover their business with to reduce odors, and they never became too clogged or overwhelming.

However, my one complaint would be that there weren’t enough. The campgrounds only had two toilet blocks that I knew of, and they only had about 10 toilets each. There was nearly always a line to get into them – up to 15/20 minutes at times – which was quite inconvenient. There were massive circus tent-covered toilet block rings within the venue which rarely filled up, and it would have been nice to have one of these within the campgrounds to reduce wait times.

Pitch Festival Showers

There were a few blocks of showers next to the campground toilets as well, so that people could shower in the mornings. The toilets were open for a select few hours each morning and again for a select few each evening – they weren’t open all the time. They were free, however, which was nice. I believe they only had 1-2 blocks of 6 showers at each point, though, meaning that wait times could reach up to an hour in the mornings when they opened. Make sure to ge there early!

pitch music festival grannies

Weather

Pitch music festival is held on Labor Day weekend in Australia the second weekend in March. March is the bridging season between summer and fall for Australia; some would say it’s in fall but personally I don’t believe the seasons change until the 21st of the month! 😛 Whichever season it is, you can expect very variable weather.

Melbourne is known for its crazy up-and-down weather, and as Pitch is still within the state of Victoria, it will be subject to the same. Early March should typically bring quite temperate to warm weather, but be prepared for rain, wind, and maybe a storm or even a scorching hot day (you never know out here!). It wouldn’t be abnormal to have one day at 32 and one at 20… Basically what I mean to say is – bring a little bit of everything!

When I went, the temperatures ranged from 22-24 most days to 29 on the hottest day. It got quite cold at night – maybe down to 11-13 – so warm clothes for the evening are essential. On Sunday morning quite a big storm rolled in with very heavy winds (gazebos flying everywhere) and persistent rain, which proceeded to clear into quite a warm day come the afternoon. This is to be expected.

the wiggles dress up pitch music festiva

pitch music festival fashion

Fashion

Punters at Pitch music festival wore all kinds of fun and silly outfits. Many of the girls definitely shopped at some of Melbourne’s popular ‘doof fashion’ stores – sporting patterned leotards, glittery bikinis, leather body straps, chain-mail jewelry, fishnets, platform/high boots, and all the glitter. Other gals, however, were happy in shorts and a t-shirt or a flowy kimono (and a bit more covered up for the rainy days). As it should be, people wore whatever they wanted at this festival, and many decided to go with what has become classic doof fashion.

For the guys, it seemed that anything fun was the outfit of choice. Party shirts, matching colors, and silly patterns/hats/scarves dominated the fashion, with the occasional mullet wig or Bunnings apron :P. A few groups dressed in matching outfits, too – I saw a group of monks, The Wiggles, a safari theme, and more!

pitch festival face paint

Time

Pitch Music festival begins on the Friday around noon, and finishes with a few sets on the main stage on Monday around 8pm/dusk.

The set times slowly build and then fall over the weekend. Music goes until 4am on Friday night, 7:30am Saturday night (on one stage, and 5am on the others), and 6am Sunday night (on one stage, 5am on the others). Monday sees a great last hurrah on the main (Pitch One) stage with three great sets  to close out the weekend. There were a few campsite kick-ons, but no official renegades that I knew of at this festival.

Money

Most of the food and market stalls accepted only cash, as the signal out in the bush could get quite iffy. Some of the bars were able to accept credit card. There were a few ATM’s near the food vendors to get cash out, but I would recommend bringing some because there were periods that the ATM’s didn’t work.

Volunteering

There is a great volunteering program at Pitch music festival, which ran smoothly largely because of the amazing volunteers who came out to help. Volunteer applications will be live a few weeks/months before the festival, and you can apply to work shifts at the gates, camping/glamping, environment/cleanup, the info tent, and the bars. They also take on tons of food and market vendors of course, with prior applications necessary for those as well.

pitch music festival crown monolink

The crowd going wild for Monolink at Pitch Black

Surrounding Areas of Pitch Music Festival

If you aren’t in a rush to get back to a job, it would be an amazing idea to spend more time out in the area where the festival is held. As it is right up against the amazing Grampians National Park, going to Pitch music festival would be the perfect excuse to explore one of Australia’s most beautiful parks and check out some authentic country towns.

Grampians National Park is best known for amazing mountains, scenic hikes/views, and some gorgeous waterfalls such as Mackenzie Falls. Halls Gap is a small town just outside the National Park where you can stay in quaint accommodations and watch the wild kangaroos graze on the fields at dusk. Ararat is a small town known for its ghost tours, museums, beautiful gardens, scenic walks, and proximity to Pyrenees wine region.

grampians mountains pitch music festival

Sunset over the  Grampians 

Final Pitch Festival Tips

  • Definitely schedule time to see some of your favorite artists, but make sure to also leave time to see the sets of artists you haven’t seen before. I was the most mind blown by artists I had never heard of (which happens to me at most festivals, ha), and I’d have been sad if I only stuck to what I knew. Hats off to you, The Drifter, for one of my favorite sets of the weekend!
  • Don’t miss the boiler room live stream if it becomes a yearly tradition. That stage was absolute amazing mayhem, and the sets were top notch.
  • Do your best to check out all of the art – hopefully there will be more in the coming years.
  • Try the FOOD. The options are endless.
  • If you need to use the toilet, go to the massive circus tent ones – the lines are shorter.
  • Go into the rejuvenation station at least once. They have cool things going on in there and it’s really easy to miss.
  • Don’t forget the roller disco!
  • When at Pitch Black stage, make sure to go on the upstairs level at least once. It’s a great bird’s eye view from there!

 

pitch festival stages pitch black boiler room stage night

 

 

March 26, 2019

Babylon Festival Review + Guide: All You Need to Know for Victoria

Babylon Festival Review + Guide: All You Need to Know for Victoria

I had the privilege of visiting the third edition of Babylon Festival this year – a house, techno, and psytrance bush doof held out in the country of Victoria, Australia. It’s quite a small festival for what it is – only about 5,000 people – but was the perfect size to be an almost-intimate gathering of likeminded music lovers.

Nestled on some rolling hills and between various patches of bush and shady trees, Babylon creates a remote vibe right from the start. As I danced alongside what was designed to look like a shipwrecked pirate ship, kicking up dust as I moved to the deep and resonating baselines, I thought to myself that this is the epitome of what you would think of a bush doof. Smiling people dressed in vibrant colors and sparkles moved about the countryside venue, going between yoga classes and shopping at the markets between dance sessions at any of a few main stages.

The festival really took off at night, though, when colorful lasers would begin to flicker through the crowd after a cotton candy sunset. This is when the stages started to get packed as the people gathered for what they had come for – to get lost in the deliciously deep music. The following Babylon festival review was written from a combination of my own and listening to others’ experience, and was designed to either help you look back fondly at your own experience at Babylon or to inform and guide you about every aspect of the festival you’d need to know for your trip there any other year.

Heading to any other music festivals in Australia?! Check my other Review-Guides:

babylon festival australia

Babylon Location/Venue

The Babylon location is out in the bush near Carapooee West, Victoria. Babylon’s venue is quite small and manageable and possible to walk from one end to the other in not much more than ten minutes. There were four main stages, an enclosed independent stage, lots of food vendors, heaps of market stalls, some art, and a yoga/art/chill area that made up the main parts of the venue. The main three stages had misters above the dancing areas, to keep people cool during the day and ended up keeping dust levels down as well.

Although quite small, the venue for Babylon actually seemed a bit large for the amount of people there. It seemed quite empty each day until the sun went down, when most of the punters would emerge from the campground for a night full of beats.

Mandala Stage

The Mandala Stage was the psytrance stage located at a more removed corner of the venue. This is the stage that the faster BPMs would play at, from surface level minimal/psytrance to some more of the deeper stuff.

Hanging Gardens

The hanging gardens were a beautiful stage designed like a wonky wooden pirate ship where all the deep house and slower playa techno-type vibes would play. It was nestled among some trees with multiple levels for dancing, and was great to relax in the shade or dance in the dust.

mandala stage babylon festival

Mandala Stage

hanging gardens stage babylon festival

Hanging Gardens Stage 

Bloc 9 Stage

>Bloc 9 was the techno stage – enough said. Bloc 9 had a bit of bouncy house and tech house during the day but by nightfall it was bona fide hard techno.

Chillimanjaro

Chillimanjaro was, as its hilariously creative name suggests, the chill stage. It was a bit hard to find but was always emanating with slow and wompy chilled out baselines.

Healing Sanctuary/Hammock Garden/Art Space

Between the stages around the outside of the venue was a semi-circle of creative and chill spaces. Centered around a massive hammock structure, there was a flow art space, a small art gallery, a jam band space with tons of instruments, a help-yourself art space with body paint and group murals, and more. The Healing Sanctuary was a tent space with its own lineup of yoga, meditation, healing sessions, and even eye gazing.

Day Spa Stage

The Day Spa stage was run by the people at the Day Spa event (Sundays at Pawn & Co in Melbourne) and taken over independently by different record labels/event companies each day with their own lineups. This created a massively Melbourne stage with well-known Melbourne local dj’s in house and techno arenas. Most of the dj’s here would be residents at Melbourne clubs. They also had dress-up themes each day.

Renegade Stages

Right outside main festival entrance were a couple branded renegade parties that basically went all day every day – with their own dj’s and mini-parties. One was called ‘Let’s Get Natural’ and the other was ‘District of Love.’

babylon festival crowd

Bloc 9 Stage Crowd

Babylon Crowd

It’s tough to make an overarching statement about the crowd at Babylon. There were mixed reviews about the crowd’s behavior after the festival (mostly sourced from facebook) but from my experience Babylon was mostly a party crowd. They had extra activities but I would say that most people came to this festival to have a good time at the music stages and go hard. People were social but seemed to be a bit more cliquey/in their own world than some festivals I’ve been to. The classic festival vibe was still definitely present in that you were able to have a laugh with strangers and make random friends in the crowd, but it was definitely a bit scaled back at Babylon.

I would say that nearly all the attendees of Babylon festival were Aussie – mostly from/living in Victoria. There was actually a really high percentage of British and Irish people here, presumably ones that had moved to Melbourne. It didn’t seem like too many people had traveled far and wide for the festival (maybe just from NSW or SA) as Melbourne has a built-in psytrance and techno crowd who attend lots of doofs in the area.

Vibe

As with any festival, Babylon was full of happy people roaming around, dancing, laughing, and having a good time. Apart from the normal great festival vibes, the vibe could occasionally get a bit intense here. This is because quite a few of the punters didn’t really know how to properly conduct themselves – either going a bit too hard or not understanding how to take care of their own messes/rubbish. This was rare however and it was mostly happy and fun.

babylon festival dress up performer grasshopper outfit

Some performers at Bloc 9 Stage

babylon festival sunset

Amazing bush sunsets

Atmosphere/Decorations/Organization

Babylon did  REALLY well with the stages and design, and had a fair amount of fun art around the venue as well. There were quite a few colorful shade structures through the venue both above the stages and above some seating areas near the food stalls and healing gardens area that added a nice vibrant vibe to the space.

The festival entrance was graced by an absolutely gorgeous female buddha-like wooden installation that sort-of became a part of the tree it was up against. This and the small hut made from scraggly branches near the mandala stage were my favorite; the hut had a little herb garden and crystals hanging around it that made for a lovely chill space.

The stages were organized well – far enough apart from each other that there wasn’t too much noise pollution (although sometimes there was a crossover between the Day Spa stage and the Bloc 9 Stage) but close enough to walk very easily. As i mentioned before, however, the venue sometimes seemed a bit large for the amount of people there. I’m not sure if tickets were undersold, if most of the people didn’t come into the venue until night time (entirely possible), or if there was simply a bit too much space for the capacity, but it did sometimes feel quite empty to my group and I.

olivia Dawn performing babylon festival

Olivia Dawn performing live violin over house music

artist painting babylon festival

Live painting going on at the Hanging Gardens stage

Lineup/Music/Artists

Babylon Festival had an all-time lineup of house, techno, and psytrance. There were big names in all three of these genres that no doubt brought in masses of crowds for their specific shows.

At the hanging gardens (house and ethereal tech), headliners were Guy J, Eagles & Butterflies, Damian Lazarus, Olivia Dawn, Behrouz, and Undercatt.’
At Bloc 9, the headliners were Nina Kraviz, Carl Cox, Sam Paganini, Luigi Madonna, Amelie Lens, Solardo, Butch, and Dax-J.

At the mandala stage, some of the headliners were Bliss, Laughing Buddha, Waio, Skwid, Earthlink, Emok, and Rayman.

The organization pf the music was great and the lineup and set times were on point, rising in intensity with the hour of the night. You could expect dj’s to increase the heat until about midnight, where the biggest headliners would come on consecutively until about 4am. The heaviest part of the night was definitely midnight to 4am or so (other stages too?) with the daytime bringing lighter and bouncier tunes.

A few artist highlights/mentions:

Nina Kraviz headlined night one, bringing a very interesting and fairly intense vibe to the beginning of the night. She started out with techno, eventuating even to some more hardstyle-esque beats with an acid sound. Dax-J brought the crowd up with a heavy techno set afterwards, as did an absoplutely all-time lineup of Butch (rising into the night with some tech house), into Luigi Madonna, Carl Cox, Sam Paganini, and Amelie Lens IN A ROW on the Saturday night. This night of heavy techno was balanced by some vibey house at the Day Spa stage for a change, a night of local Melbourne DJ’s at the Hanging Gardens, and some heavier psy at Mandala.

As he has for the past three years, Carl Cox and Eric Powell closed out the festival on Day 3 with their amazing, light-hearted Mobile Disco set full of 80’s bangers and good vibes. This was rivaled by am amazing psytrance set topped with amazing electric guitar by Bliss, and a very progressive 4-HOUR set by the incredible Guy J at Hanging Gardens. It was hard to decide where to go!

My favorite sets at this festival were actually all by artists that I hadn’t seen/heard of before – probably because I didn’t know what to expect from them but had an amazing time. These were by Olivia Dawn at Hanging Gardens (ethereal house/techno with live violin), Butch (bouncy + fun tech house at Bloc 9), Eagles & Butterflies at Hanging Gardens (amazingly melodic playa techno), and Bliss (progressive + bouncy psytrance with live electric guitar).

babylon festival relax art installation

Relaxing in the shade of a beautiful little hut made from tree branches

Babylon Camping

There were five main camping areas at Babylon, laid out nearly into a grid next to some areas of bush and a glamping ‘alpha camp.’ Gridded roads passed through these different areas where people were free to camp at their own will. There was no arranging people in any specific order; you could literally drive anywhere and set up wherever you pleased.

The farthest corner camp spot from the entrance was probably about a 15 minute walk to the venue – not too far at all. There were a few trees scattered throughout the area, but not too many – don’t count on tree shade; make sure to bring shade structures because it can get very hot!

Camping Amenities

Because the festival/venue was quite small, there weren’t any amenities that were specific to the camping area besides some toilets and showers. all the food, activities, markets, and extra amenities were inside the venue.

The showers at Babylon were scattered on a few sides of the camping area, and were stall-type warm showers that were free to use. The lines got slightly long in the morning but with the dust and grime the wait was worth it!

pawn shop jam space Babylon Festival

juggling Babylon festival

Some interesting trinkets for sale near the public jam space, and a juggler at work in the flow arts tent

Festival Amenities – Other Stuff to Do

There was a corner of the festival entirely dedicated to other activities, arts & crafts, yoga, and more. Here’s what they had:

Art Space

This was a dome tent full of different kinds of art, paintings, murals, prints, and trinkets for sale. The work of a few different artists was on display along the walls.

Jam Space

This was a really cool covered area with tons of different instruments that different people would pick up throughout the day and play together. There were hooked up microphones, tons of instruments: bongos, guitar, drums, microphones, and even people banging along on anything at all to the beat. This was all next to a  quirky pawn shop-esque stand selling all kinds of interesting trinkets – fun to browse through!

Healing Sanctuary

This was a stretch tent and carpeted area that hosted a range of workshops and activities such as yoga, meditation, festival recovery, eye gazing, sound healing, and even pilates. There were about 5-6 different activities scheduled each day for people to come and have a bit of a release from relentless baselines, flow a bit, and let their creativity free.

Market Stalls

There were dozens of awesome market stalls at Babylon, all along the back fence of the venue. From door clothes to sunglasses to special Chili sauces and dread locks, Babylon really had it all. It was hard not to get sidetracked looking at some awesome shopping options while on the way from one side of the venue to the other.

Creative Corner

This was an open area with tubs of body paint for anyone’s use, and open art walls for anyone to contribute to. It was a carpeted and shaded space that was perfect to relax or unleash a bit of creativity either on a wall, on yourself, or on a friend!

babylon market stalls by night

Babylon Market Stalls by night 

Babylon Transportation/Hotels/Parking

Babylon had some official buses traveling from the CBD to the festival run by the popular festival bus company, Banana bus. These buses left from the city and dropped off near the intersection of the Alpha camp, the pink camp, and the bush which were very affordable and convenient.

Other than that I would say that most people either drove or hired their own bus to transport a group of friends (which is what I did). Parking was anywhere that you wanted to put your car within the camping areas (no different camping areas with car/no car). I highly doubt anyone stayed in hotels as the festival was quite remote and everyone camped.

festival hamburger

Kebabylon

Some food options at Babylon Festival

Babylon Food/Drink

The food at Babylon Festival was outstanding. There were dozens of vendors offering too many different options to possibly be able to choose – all along the front side of the venue between the entrance and the Bloc 9 Stage.

Babylon had quite similar food vendors as many of the Victoria doofs – but they are all awesome! They have the chai tea lounge which was well-loved at Rainbow Serpent, the delicious royal Burgers (and mac-n-cheese croquettes) stand, superfood smoothies, El Chivi hour get burgers, the avocado-on-everything booth, tons of different pizza, much more, and my personal favorite – KEBABYLON. I would say most full meals went for about $12 – $17AUD.

Although Babylon was a limited BYO event (allowed one slab and one decanted bottle of spirit per person – not that they really checked!), there was also alcohol for sale. There were a couple bars – the most prominent of which was right next to the Day Spa stage. The bar was selling classic mixed drinks into reusable cups, a couple different pre-mixed cans, and other soft drinks too. You’d be looking at about $10 for a can of pre-mix here.

Babylon Ticket Price

Babylon tickets go for just over $220 pre-sale, and go up to about 300. If you add in transport of $89 return taking the Banana bus, and a certain amount for food/drinks/etc each day, you should have your budget!

babylon festival crowd

Hanging out at the Day Spa Stage

Babylon Security

Babylon security was fairly lax. Upon going into the gates, my experience was that a security guard came onto our bud (about 17 people) and said hello, asked if we had any glass containers or anything else that we shouldn’t have, and upon hearing us say ’no,’ wished us a great time and gave us directions to the camping area we were looking for. We then had a few volunteers come on and scan/give wristbands, and then we were in.

The line to get in took ages, which makes me think that they had searched some cars better than others. I believe however that they were also searching for glass to keep the campsites safe.

Bathrooms

Babylon Festival had blocks of porta-potty style toilets scattered throughout the venue. They were in blocks of about 16 or so and were the kind with miniature sinks and flush functions inside them. Honestly, if I could say one bad thing about this festival it would be the bathrooms,. The year I went, they were honestly some of the  most rank toilets I have ever seen at a festival, which really is saying something if you know how many I have been to!

I’m not sure if the problem was the people being messy, or the fact that they weren’t cleaned enough. I think it was a bit of both, honestly – I only saw them getting cleaned a couple times and the ones near my tent definitely went nearly full days without being seen to multiple times, when they were already extremely unsanitary and at the point i thought it would be a legitimate threat to health. I think having drop/compost toilets would fix this problem – having tiny flushable toilet bowls that easily clog is a big problem with heavy use and rare cleaning.

babylon festival art installation wooden buddha

My very favorite installation at Babylon festival, right outside the entrance. 

festival sunrise

An amazing sunrise I was able to catch when I woke up in the middle of the night! 

Weather at Babylon

The bush of Victoria in mid-February can get hot, hot, hot! It would be wise to prepare for high temperatures during the day. My year it was about 28, 31, and 33 on the three festival days, which was very bearable and actually quite lovely. But, it can get much hotter around these parts.

It cooled down substantially at night, to the point that you would probably be uncomfortably cold without a coat unless you were in the middle of the crowd dancing nonstop (which is obviously very possible!). Warmth for sleeping is also a must – it got pretty chilly just before dawn in the camping areas so sleeping bags/blankets are a good idea.

The Babylon festival venue was also very dusty! Many people coped with this with bandanas around their noses/faces to breathe in cleaner air and not sniff tons of dust up their nose (hello, dove boogers! :P).  The ground was also quite rocky so boots would be a good idea as well as a bandana. The sun was also really strong, so hats and sunglasses are also important for commutes in the hot sun (as with anywhere in Australia!).

festival doof fashion

Some gorgeous festie gals on their way to a stage

Fashion

Babylon was some pretty classic doof fashion. It almost seemed as if the whole festival had shopped at Tibbs & Bones, Dolls Kill, or Frothlyf together and come in wearing the same outfits. You’d see leotards/high-waisted bottoms and shiny tops, fishnets, boots, braids, colorful thin sunnies, and tons of stick-on gems and glitter for the girls, and either party shirts and/or tight shiny leggings and silly accessories and sunnies for the boys. Plus, there were parasols and bandanas all around! I definitely saw quite a few girls in the same expensive shiny leotards over the weekend, which seems to be a shame given that doofs were originally a place of radical self-expression and have become their own mainstream fashion in and of themselves. But hey, the outfits were still cute as hell 😛

Timings

Babylon ran from the early afternoon each day (Mandala and Hanging Gardens started up around noon each day and 10am on Sunday) until LATE at night. The Bloc 9 Stage didn’t start until 3-4pm each day (and 12pm Sunday) and ran until 5am with its hard techno and incredible light shows.

However, this festival honestly seemed quite dead during the day. I think it attracted the after-party type crowd who like to go to kick-ons and attend the later-night parties rather than the daytime ones. It seemed to go from quite sparse during the day to absolutely packed and crazy a few hours into the night, and this was something we found really interesting  about Babylon. Some of the craziest times on the dance floor were when it was about to close, and some of the loudest campsite parties were actually Sunday night after the entire festival was over. I’m not sure what that means, but it was an interesting observation!

babylon festival entrance

Hustle & Bustle outside the festival entrance

 

yoga workshop babylon festival

One of the first yoga classes on Friday afternoon at the Healing Garden

Money

Babylon merchants pretty much only took cash, in that there wasn’t much phone signal whatsoever to connect to the internet for cards. I would just bring plenty of cash with you!

Broadband/Reception

Babylon reception was slim to none. There were a few random high points in the venue where I would receive a bunch of text messages (like the toilets near my camp, strangely enough),  but I really would not count on being able to get in contact with anyone. You ‘might/ be able to send a text or two,  but the reception is so scarce that it would be to your benefit not to even try and to just enjoy being present.

Babylon Volunteering

There were tons of volunteers which helped to make the festival such a success. Many of them went around the campgrounds helloing to clean and giving out trash bags, some went around the crowds to give out water and make sure everyone was okay, and some helped with the crowd flow in and out of the venue.

If you are interested to volunteer at Babylon festival, make sure to check the website a few months before to apply! The volunteers  were vital to the event and super helpful.

BABYLON MUIC FESTIVAL NIGHJT

One of the art installations lit up by night!

Final Babylon Festival Tips

  • Check out the extra activities – they’re heaps of fun and a lot of effort went into the healing garden program! drop by a yoga or sound healing class to get some zen in your busy day of dancing.
  • Make sure to check out some different food – the options were fantastic and delish.
  • Try all of the stages and experience all the different kinds of music that people come for! Rather than sticking to what you know, try to branch out a bit – the talent in each genre is top-notch.
  • Make sure to stop by Chillimanjaro – it’s a bit tougher to find as it’s technically outside the main venue, m but it’s a cool space.
  • Keep in mind that this venue is extremely dusty – especially anywhere there weren’t misters going (i.e. Day Spa stage). It’s smart to bring a bandana.

 

March 6, 2019

Petting Zoo Festival: A One-Day Animal Themed Festival in Central Melbourne

Petting Zoo Festival: A One-Day Animal Themed Festival in Central Melbourne

This December I had the pleasure of visiting one of Melbourne’s epic one-day music festivals, The Petting Zoo festival. I’ve quickly realized that there are one-day festivals and events in this city every single weekend (dangerous), but this one was something special. Taking place in a new and larger venue from its previous years, The Petting Zoo Festival took place in Yarra Park this year, directly outside the MCG Cricket oval.

The Petting Zoo festival encourages all its attendees to dress up like animals, thereby creating an awesome ‘zoo’ of house + techno lovers partying in the (hopefully) sun on a gorgeous Melbourne summer day.

petting zoo festival location melbourne

The Petting Zoo Festival Venue

Yarra Park was a perfect grassy area to hold this multi-stage daytime fest. The only problem was that it rained buckets the night before, leaving the area quite extremely muddy. But The Petting Zoo did a great job laying down carpets and trying to ease the mud situation for us all.

There was a totally decked out main stage, called the Enclosure, decorated to the nines with colorful animal print and silly animals shapes and figures. It was equipped with CO2 and confetti cannons, function one speakers, and all the good stuff you look for in an awesome main stage experience. Most of the headliners threw down on these main stage decks, to a crowd scattered through the grass and little shaded platforms as well.

There was another tiny stage around the side of the main stage called the Sanctuary, and another just around the other side of the park called the Playpen. The whole venue was extremely manageable, with it being more than possible to pop over to each stage to check the music to make an assessment on where you wanted to go.

petting zoo festival ball pit melbourne

petting zoo festival crowd

Atmosphere + Extras

The venue was adorned with colorful animals, crazy animal patterns, and all-in-all fun stuff to add to the carefree and light hearted vibe of the day. The perfect example of the vibe this festival goes for is the fact that there was a legit ball pit inside the venue, with festival-goers periodically burying themselves inside leaving only their face to remain exposed. This was a lot of fun and a nice little break from dancing to totally feel like a kid again.

The Petting Zoo Lineup + Music

Petting Zoo Festival was stacked with house, techno, more house, and tech house… but mostly house. Hey, did I mention house?! 😛 DJ’s like Latmun, Friend Within, Dennis Cruz, Miguel Campbell, and Angelo Ferreri rained down upon the crowd with relentless baselines and bouncy house tracks – rain or shine.

Although most of the headliners played at the main stage, the second stage was always going off as well. I didn’t hear a single bad set there, and heard a few songs that I couldn’t get enough of. Although I was moving back and forth between stages most of the night, my group mostly remained at the smaller one.

When the night fell over the late Melbourne summer day, the lasers turned on and the night festival was in full swing. Although the sun sets quite late in mid December, there were still a good few hours of darkness for the animals of the night to emerge. The shift between daytime and night time at festivals is one of my favorite transition periods, and it was no different at Petting Zoo festival as the darkness fell over the hundreds of dancing bodies.

The closing sets were on point, bringing a bit of a deeper vibe than the bouncy daytime sets to match the progressing intensity. People crowded more closely into the stages and stayed for good, riding out the 11pm shut of the outdoor party and then moving to any of a few official Petting Zoo after parties.

petting zoo festival outfits animal makeup costumes

music festival blowing bubblesd pink petting zoo festival

Petting Zoo Festival Food + Drink + Shopping

There was also a fantastic food + drink lineup to go with the musical lineup. Food trucks lined the side of the venue, serving things like blended smoothies, pizza, Mexican chorizo and churros, and even artisan popsicles. There were never too long of lines, and plenty to go around!

As any good festie should be, Petting Zoo Festival was lined with bars basically on all other sides. We’re talking all the basic festival drinks – canned beers and ciders, basic mixes, and that. You can expect to pay about $10 for one of these bad boys, which is also fairly standard for a festival.

If you fancied a dance break, you could wander through any of a few different festival clothing stands, such as Frothlyf. Aussie festivals always have amazing ‘doof clothing’ options.

The Weather

As always, the weather in Melbs is, well, the definition of UNPREDICTABLE. There were a few showers during the fest this year at Petting Zoo Festival, but luckily there was ample shade to wait out the water if you needed to.

The Petting Zoo Festival was an awesomely successful little ‘day doof,’ and I’m stoked that I could see such talented artists in such a fun atmosphere. Thanks for having me!

petting zoo festival crowd

petting zoo music festival girls

January 4, 2019

Festivals in France: The 20 Best French Music Festivals (2019)

Festivals in France: The 20 Best French Music Festivals (2019)

I was actually very surprised at the sheer volume of festivals in France. Like, there are TONS. There are lots of French music festivals that are extremely international, and there are also lots that are extremely, well… French. No matter what kind you are looking for or what genre you like, there will be something in this list of music festivals in France for you. There are lots of different genres, sizes, locations, and french-ness of these french festivals  (:P) see which is right for you!

But wait – how did I manage to rank them into a top 20 list? Well, Festicket actually shared with me their data for the top revenue-generating festivals (aka the most popular festivals among the general population) and I ranked them that way.

So it doesn’t necessarily reflect my personal opinion or many underground-type festies, but rather the most generally popular ones. I’ve researched each one and let you know all the info you will need about these 20 top festivals in France.

Need to learn any French before your trip? – Try Lingoda – online live classes at any time of day.

But First, Check Out Some More Music Festival Inspo:

Festivals in France: the 20 Best French Music Festivals to add to your bucket list this season! Ranked by popularity, here are the top music festivals in France from rock and pop to electronic and house music.

Planning to visit some music festivals in France?! Pin this article to save it! 

And without further ado, here are the best French music festivals!

1. Lollapalooza Paris

A global favorite in the festival scene, Lollapalooza has made its mark in France over the past two years… so much so, that it’s one of the most popular festivals in France! Similar to and other edition of ‘Lolla’ as many call it, Lollapalooza Paris will bring in big names from a vast range of genres and many up-and-coming’s as well. The festival has a wide range of other experiences as well as famously great food.

The past two editions of Lollapalooza Paris have brought giants like The Gorillaz, The Killers, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Lana del Rey, Depeche Mode, Travis Scott, Diplo, Imagine Dragons, Kasabian, Parov Stelar, Lil Pump, Rag’n’Bone Man, and DJ Snake. With names like that it’s no surprise it has risen quickly to the top of French music festivals.

Location

Hippodrome de Longchamp, Paris, France

Dates

20-21 July

Genre

Multi Genre – Rock, Pop, Electronic

 

2. Garorock Festival

Garorock is one of the veteran music festivals in France, and has been going since 1997. This festival welcomes tons of different musical genres to the vine-laden countryside outside of Marmonde each year. From techno to rock to indie to house music, Garorock has everyone covered. There are also famously lots of other activities to do at the festival, from workshops to group games and sports to carnival rides.

Christine and the Queens, Paul Kalkbrenner, Aya Nakamura, Macklemore, Sum 41, and Beirut are confirmed for next year, while in the past there have been names such as Indochine, Marilyn Manson, DJ Snake, Odesza, Polo & Pan, Black Coffee, Muse, Amelie Lens, Alt-J, Purple Disco Machine, Parcels, and Disclosure. Sounds good to, well, basically anyone who likes any kind of music!

Location

Countryside of Marmonde, France

Dates

27-30 June

Genre

Multi – basically everything!

 

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3. We Love Green Festival

As it’s name quite clearly suggests, We Love Green is an ecologically-focused music festival that takes place in Paris’s largest public park each June. Along with amazing headliners, the festival has a massive focus on sustainability, eco-friendly living, and locally sourced organic/vegan food. There are panels and discussions about science and innovation during the day, but at night the lasers are turned on over a sea of eco-conscious music lovers.

In the past, We Love Green festival has hosted headliners such as Foals, Anderson.Paak, Diplo, Nicolas Jaar, Hot Chip, Lorde, LCD Soundsystem, Solange, Mura Masa, Ame, Angèle, and Christine & The Queens. As you can tell just by that short list, there are loads of genres and nationalities represented at one of the most eco-friendly French music festivals, and there will be a bit of something for everyone.

Location

Bois de Vincennes Park, Paris, France

Dates

2-3 June

Genre

Multi: Hip Hop, Urban, Electronic, Rock

4. Download Festival Paris

Download Festival Paris is the satellite version of the world-renowned Download Festival in the United Kingdom. It’s a bit smaller than its giant counterpart but there are no shortcuts taken on the amazing lineups, sound, and stage production at one of the biggest rock/punk festivals in France. Download is sure to bring in the biggest names in rock, as well as tons of smaller talent across its multiple stages at an air force base.

Ozzy Osborne, The Offspring, Linkin Park, Foo Fighters, System of a Down, Blink 182, Marilyn Manson, Guns’N’Roses, and Green Day have headlined in the past. If that lineup doesn’t blow your mind and get you itching for some good headbanging, then maybe you aren’t a true fan of rock! 😛

Location

Base Aérienne 217 Air Force Base, (south of) Paris

Dates

14-16 June

Genre

Rock, Metal, Punk

 

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5. Main Square Festival

Main Square is one of the most unique music festivals in France and perhaps all of Europe, taking place in a 1600’s UNESCO protected citadel. I don’t know what it is with Europe and making party venues out of ancient landmarks, but I’m not mad about it. As it’s name suggests, Main Square Festival indeed does take plce in the main square of the Arras Citadel, with one stage delivering the heat the entire time.

This year some headliners have already been announced, such as DJ Snake, Christine and the Queens, Cyprus Hill, Martix Garrix, Macklemore, Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals, and more.

In the past, the square has welcomed the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, Jamiroquai, Liam Gallagher, Justice, Coldplay, Above & Beyond, Die Antwoord, Iron Maiden Portugal. the Man, X Ambassadors, Paul Kalkbrenner, and well.. you get the point, I hope.

Location

Arras Citadel (UNESCO World Heritage Citadel), Arras, France

Dates

5-7 July

Genre

Multi: Rock, pop, house, electronic

6. Les Francofolies de La Rochelle Festival

Les Francofolies de La Rochelle is quite possibly the longest-running and most scene-shaping French music festival. Taking place in a scenic seaport on the west coast, this festival really takes over the town of La Rochelle and makes it come alive with music and art.

There is a main stage, but also smaller activities, workshops, games, theater, and other events going on all over the city. The festival sells tickets to certain performances and also to full experiences.

This year’s edition already has a big lineup of both French and international artists – with a focus on French. The current names announced include -M-,The Blaze, Christine and the Queens,Patrick Bruel, Soprano, Angèle, and Boulevard des Airs. In the past, people like Vianney, Julien Doré, DJ Snake,Michel Jonasz, and Renaud have performed.

Location

Esplanade Saint-Jean d’Acre Seaport + surrounding venues, La Rochelle, France

Dates

10 – 14 July

Genre

Multi – Rock, pop, electronic, acoustic, everything!

7. Solidays Festival

Solidays is an incredible annual festival with a primary aim to raise money for an HIV and AIDS charity. Each performer helps in this effort by accepting reduced pay for a good cause. Across three days, dozens of acts perform inside the famous horse racing course Hippodrome de Longchamp, across tons of different genres. The festival has raised tons of money over the past years, so if you want to party for a good cause, this is your chance!

In the past, Solidays has hosted Shaka Ponk, Two Door Cinema Club, Diplo, Juliette Armanet, DJ Snake, David Guetta, Nekfeu, IAM, The Prodigy, and Kungs, and you can expect similarly genre-spanning artists at the next year’s edition too.

Location

Hippodrome de Longchamp Racecourse, Paris, France

Dates

21-23 June

Genre

Multi – Electronic, Rock, Pop

 

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8. Reggae Sun Ska Festival

Reggae Sun Ska Festival is best described in its own name. One of the best reggae music festivals in France and quite possibly Europe itself, this festival is indeed full of Reggae, sun, and ska – but also much more than that. It’s been going for over 20 years, and is known for bringing in the genre’s best dj’s, live acts, MC’s, and more.

SOJA, Fat Freddy’s Drop, Jimmy Cliff, Shaggy, Damiam Marley, Naâman, Groundation, Alpha Blondy, and more have headlined in the past, and you can be confident there will always be great music and vibes all around.

Location

Vertheuil

Dates

2-4 August

Genre

Reggae – Roots, Dancehall, Ska, etc.

9. Insane Festival

Insane Festival is an electronic genre-diverse festival taking place on the bank of a lake in the small town of Apt, France. It was previously held in large indoor venues, but has now moved to an outdoor space to make room for more avid festival-goers. Insane Festival prides itself on involving ALL different aspects of the electronic music umbrella, and bringing fans together through their passion for it. You can always expect top-of-the-line production here as well.

To give you a taste of how diverse the electronic music is at this festival, past headliners have included Stephan Bodzin, Pendulum, Angerfist, Rodhad, Nastia, Patrick Topping, Ace Ventura, Astrix, Rodriguez Jr, Vini Vici, and Matador. Sounds like something for everyone within the electronic world!

Location

Lakeside in Apt, France

Dates

9 – 11 August

Genre

Blend of All Electronic

10. Les Nuits Secrètes Festival

Taking place in the northeastern countryside, Les Nuits Secretes is another of the multi-genre and long-running French music festivals. Taking place out in the countryside of Aulnoye-Aymeries, you can find smaller stages in the trees or bigger main stages out in bigger fields.

Jungle, Boris Brejcha, Shaka Ponk, Alt-J, Jain, Julian Dore, Petit Biscuit, Angele, Tale of Us, Mind Against, Cigarettes After Sex, Amelie Lens, and more have headlined in the past – which is CRAZY diverse. You can techno to your heart’s content, headbang to some bona fide rock, or sway to some acoustic artists – it’s totally up to you!

Location

Cuntryside of Aulnoye-Aymeries, northeastern France

Dates

26-28 July

Genre

A Bit of Everything!

 

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11. Marsatac Festival

Marsatac has been in Marseille for over 20 years now – changing locations a lot but always bringing an epic production value and party. In its recent editions it has spend two days at Parc Chanot before moving to the beach of Plage du petit Roucas on the third day, making the previously two-day event into three. Interesting indeed! Marsatac bring in crowd-loved favorites in both rap and electronic music, with hip hop stars and also techno bangers taking the stages.

Paul Kalklbrenner, IAM, Bicep,Petit Biscuit, Nina Kraviz, Nekfleu, Nicolas Jaar, and De La Soul have headlined in the past, and this yuear they have already announced the likes of Jon Hopkins, Caballero & JeanJass, Orelsan, and more.

Location

Parc Chanot Exhibition Center + Plage du petit Roucas, Marseille, France

Dates

14-16 June

Genre

Hip Hop, Rap, Electronic

12. Les Eurockéennes Festival

Les Eurockéennes is another of the amazing multi-genre music festivals in France, but this one is especially scenic taking place on a forested peninsula in Belfort. There are big lakes on either side of the festival site, leaving a beautiful scene to listen to any kind of music your heart could dream up. You can also view some amazing art and different dance and other performances in between big acts.

Queens of the Stone Age, Alice In Chains, Nine Inch Nails, Richi Hawtin, Macklemore, ZZ Top, Liam Gallagher, The Black Madonna, Arcade Fire, Rick Ross, and Disclosure. If you thought that French music festivals couldnt get more genre-diverse… think again!

Location

Lac du Malsaucy peninsula, Belfort, France

Dates

5 -7 July

Genre

Rock, Metal, Pop, Hip Hop, House – literally everything

 

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13. Touquet Music Beach Festival

Touquet is one of the relatively new French music festivals, and it has done very well since its 2016 debut. This could easily be attributed to its amazing location – it really does take place right on the beach in Le Touquet.

Not only are there amazing headliners in the electronic and alternative genres, but there is a LOT to do in the area, too! Festivalgoers are encouraged to take part in lots of adventure activities and watersports in the area, such as surfing (it’s on the north coast, so there are waves!), sailing, windsurfing, and paddle boarding.

This festival has a lot of different electronic/disco music and also some alternative. In the past few years, the headliners have been Phoenix, Kungs, Martin Solveig, Todd Terje, The Avener, Juliette Armanet, Breakpot, Boys Noize, Malaa, andPurple Disco Machine. So, a pretty good variety!

Location

Le Touquet Beach, France

Dates

23 – 25 Augustr

Genre

Electronic, disco, alternative

14. Les Plages Électroniques Festival

Taking place at the same beachside venue as the famous Cannes Film Festival, Les Plages Électroniques takes over the venue for a very different reason. Known for bringing in tons of different genres within the electronic music umbrella, and is one of the great electronic music festivals in France. From EDM to minimal techno. What is more, it takes place right next to the Mediterranean where a relax on the beach or a dip in the warm clear water is just minuted away at any moment.

To give you an idea of how diverse this electronic festival is, the past headliners have been Kygo, Amelie Lens, Damian Lazarus, Zeds Dead, Netsky, Satori, Kolsch, The Avener, Agoria, Shy FX, Carl Craig, Tale of Us, and more. Check info below to see who might be headlining next.

Location

Palais des Festivals, Cannes (near/on the beach)

Dates

9 – 11 August

Genre

Electronic, house, techno

 

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15. Le Printemps de Bourges Festival

Le Printemps de Bourges is a weeklong festival held across many different venues in Bourges, France. The whole city comes alive during the festival week with various headliners playing in different places and most venues putting on their own events for the week too. There will be something going on everywhere, and it’s a perfect time to explore the city and check out some amazing artists.

Étienne de Crécy, Orelsan, Rag’n’Bone Man, Sam Paganini, Paul Kalkbrenner, KOMPROMAT, Nina Kraviz, Shaka Ponk, Boris Brejcha, and Damso have headlined this festival in the past. However, Le Printemps de Bourges has historically been a festival for rising stars and to showcase up and coming talent across the city, so make sure to branch out a bit because you never know if you’ll see the next big act. 

Location

Various Venues in Bourges, France

Dates

16 – 21 April

Genre

Electronic, Pop, Alternative, Rock

16. AFROPUNK FEST Paris

Originally started in Johannesburg, Afropunk is an amazing music festival celebrating art, fashion, film, and music produced by black artists. The festival has a few satellite versions that have piggybacked off the original’s success, one of which has become one of the top festivals in France. Taking place in Paris, Afropunk Fest presents an inclusive and tolerant environment for all kinds of African expression – nearly a movement in itself.

You can find all kinds of music at Afropunki, from reggae and rap to pop and rock. Some past headliners have included SZA, D’Angelo, Faada Freddy, Wizkid, Damian Marley, Lion Babe, GoldLink, and Willow Smith. No matter what the genre you can expect everyone coming together over the talent and community of people of African descent.

Location

Parc de la Villette, Paris, France

Dates

13-14 July

Genre

Reggaeu, Pop, Punk, Rock, Hip Hop, Soul, etc

 

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17. Delta Festival

Taking place right on the coast of Marseille, Delta Festival brings much more than just music to fans each summer. Look for obstacle courses, water spots, and tons of extra stuff to do next to four sun-soaked stages on the south coast of France each summer. You can split your time between relaxing on the beach, taking part in amazing games, reveling at art acattered through the venue, and of course dancing the night away to the many different electronic acts.

Delta is another of many mixed electronic music festivals in France. Past headliners have included Angerfist, Putple Disco Machine, Stephan Bodzin, Feder, Bakermat, and Etienne de Crecy. You can jump around to some hardstyle or sway to melodic/tropical house – whatever you prefer!

Location

Plage de la Vieille Chapelle Beach, Marseille, France

Dates

6-7 July

Genre

Mixed Electronic

18. Snowattack Festival

Snowattack is one of the more unique French music festivals, taking place over a whole week at a skit resort in Les Orres, eastern France. Along with being able to shred up over 100kno of ski slopes, you can catch some massive names in the electronic scene along some main stages and some smaller events and artists along all the town’s bars and clubs. The whole area comes alive with a party vibe each January, where you can fulfill your festival itch even in the winter.

Rudimental, Sub Focus, Pendulum, Dimitiri Vegas & Like Mike, Lost Frequencies, Henry Saiz, Netsky, James Zabiela, and Borgore have headlined in the past. The festival brings in all kinds of electronic music, from deep house to EDM to drum & bass.

Location

Les Orres Ski Resort, France

Dates

26 January – 2 February

Genre

Electronic: EDM, Drum & Bass, House,

 

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19. Rock en Seine Festival

Rock en Seine has risen to be one of the biggest music festivals in France over the last 15 or so years in the country’s capital. It does cover a lot of rock music as its name suggests, but does however have TONS of other music wrapped up into the package as well. Over three days you can see tons of both massive and up-and-coming artists perform at the stunning estate/gardens at Domaine National de Saint-Cloud, with Paris not too far away at all.

Rock en Seine regularly brings in giants in both the rock scene and other genres. Past headliners have included Massive Attack, Iggy Pop, Foals, the XX, Arctic Monkeys, Franz Ferdinand, Flume, MØ, If that wasn’t convincing enough, The Cure have already been announced for 2019. Sounds like a plan to me!

Location

Domaine National de Saint-Cloud Parkland, Paris, France

Dates

23-25 August

Genre

Rock, Pop, Indie, Electronic

20. Calvi On the Rocks Festival

Calvi On the Rocks probably has the coolest venue of all festivals in France – a mediterranean island! Who could say no to 5 days of dancing at stages directly on the sand and actually swimming in the Mediterranean to the beats of your favorite artist?! I know I couldn’t – which is why this French music festival is high on my list. There are various indoor and outdoor venues at this festival, but all are right near the water. Some festivalgoers even bring their yachts right up into the bay, which seems like an extremely ideal idea.

Primarily showcasing the house and techno branch of electronic music, Calvi on the Rocks is truly an underground party right on the sand. Past headliners have included Seth Troxler, IAM, Nina Kraviz, Mark Ronson, Kerri Chandler, Amelie Lens, Black Coffee, Tale of Us, Crazy P, and Étienne de Crécy – branching also out into the funk + soul category occasionally as well.

Location

Corsica Island, France

Dates

5 – 10 July

Genre

Electronic – House, Techno, Disco

Want more Music Festivals in France?! These are Also Very Popular and Deserve Honorable Mentions:

      • Django Reinhardt Festival – Fontainebleu / Jazz / July
      • Birraritz En Ete Festival – Biarritz / Alternative / July
      • La Route du Rock Festival – Saint Malo / Rock / August
      • Musilac Aix-Les-Bains Festival – Aix-Les-Bains / Pop+Rock / July
      • Musilac Mont Blanc Festival – Chamonix-Mont-Blanc / Rock+Alternative / April
      • Snowboxx Festival – Avoriaz / Electronic / March
      • Pitchfork Festival Paris – Paris / Multi-Genre / November

 

Here are the 20 most popular festivals in France, according to sales data. These French music festivals have a little of something for everyone, with genres ranging from rock, pop, house, techno, indie, alternative, and more - some with ectra activities and some purely music-focused!

Can’t decide which French music festivals to attend?! Pin this article for later!

December 13, 2018

Festivals in Germany: The 15 Best German Music Festivals (2019)

Festivals in Germany: The 15 Best German Music Festivals (2019)

There are so many festivals in Germany that it was even tough to list the top 20. Germany is known as a haven of music, with some of the most amazing clubs, music scenes, and djs in the world calling Germany home. This situation gives way to tons of German music festivals that are among the best in Europe and the best in the world.

While Germans definitely lean toward electronic music, there are festivals in Germany of every genre imaginable (is beer a genre?! Yep, Oktoberfest is listed of course!). No matter what kind of festival you’re looking for, this list of German music festivals should have you covered.

These rankings are made from sales data shared with me by Festicket. This means that they really are ranked as the top 20 most popular festivals in Germany, according to the people who buy tickets to them. So this was not written from my personal opinion (you know I LOVE my techno :P), but it means that there will be a lot more variety in this list with festivals bridging all different kinds.

But before planning your German music festivals, check out some other festival content (they open in new tabs!):

Festivals in Germany: The complete list of the top 20 german music festivals of every genre, location, size, and intention. Oh, and Oktoberfest counts too. Which ones have you been to?!

Planning to visit some festivals in Germany?! Pin this article to your Pinterest boards!

1. Airbeat One Festival

Airbeat One is one of (if not the) most well-known festivals in Germany. Taking over a usually quiet little town of Neustadt-Glewe, Airbeat One comes alive each July with five different stages across every possible electronic genre. And these aren’t normal stages, either. Airbeat One festival is known for its extraordinary stage design, with fantasy-like stages and atmosphere paired with mind-blowing lighting and production to create a fully immersive environment for festival-goers. There are even carnival rides and tons of crazy activities to do as well.

It doesn’t stop there, either. Airbeat One matches its top-notch production with an equally impressive lineup. Already announced for next year are Armin Van Buuren, W&W, and Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike. These names join past greats such as Tiesto, Adam Beyer, Paul Kalkbrenner, Angerfist & Partyraiser, Nervo, Richie Hawtin, Hardwell, Steve Aoki, DJ Snake, Above & Beyond, Black Coffee, Headhunterz, and more. So yeah, a bit of everything.

Location

Flugplatz Neustadt-Glewe, Germany

Dates

10-14 July

Genre

Electronic – EDM, Hardstyle, House, Techno

2. Nature One Festival

Nature One perhaps has one of the most unique venues of the German music festivals, converting an old NATO missile base into a venue with four main large dance floors/stages and tons of smaller dance areas as well. All together the different areas total easily up to 20 different stages, with upcoming talent and something different going on at each. The interesting industrial background adds an even more unique element to this massive festival, which takes in more than 50,000 guests each year.

Past headliners have included Sven Vath, Nina Kraviz, Charlotte de Witte, Aly & Fila, Joseph Capriati, Sebastian Ingrosso, ATB, Fedde Le Grand, and Robin Schulz. The festival doies lean towards house + techno, but has artists of all different backgrounds there as well.

Location

Pydna, former NATO missile base in Kastelluan, Germany

Dates

2-4 August

Genre

Electronic – House, techno, EDM, trance

 

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3. Time Warp DE Festival

Time Warp is possibly one of the world’s best known and longest-running techno festivals, bringing the world’s biggest names into a 19-hour warehouse rave each April. This year will be Time Warp’s 25th – yep, twenty-fifth – edition, and it shows no signs of slowing down its multi-story hangar party anytime soon.

It would be tough to even find one name on the Time Warp lineup that you didn’t know, with world-famous names taking over the decks for the full almost-day. In the past you could see Nina Kraviz, Magda, Solomun, Rodhad, Loco Dice, Seth Troxler, Ricardo Villalobos, Dixon, Tale of Us, Pan-Pot, and more, and you can guess the lineup will be similarly amazing this year too.

Location

Maimarkthalle Hangar, Mannheim

Dates

7 April

Genre

Techno, house, techno… and more techno

4. Sea You Festival 2019

Sea You is a super unique house + techno festival located on the banks of Tunisee Lake outside of Freiburg, Germany. Festival-goers can immerse themselves into water sports, floatie races, swimming, and lakeside barbecues between stints boogie-ing to some of the world’s best house and techno. The area, which is in the countryside near to the borders of France and Switzerland, had been dubbed the ‘Beach Republic” due to its serene nature.

It’s not all relaxing and floating, however. Alongside all the relaxing on the beach is a lineup to rival any house and techno festival. Next year the names Amelie Lens, Boris Brejcha, and Neelix have already been announced, while in the past there has been Solomun, Nina Kraviz, Len Faki, Paul Kalkbrenner, Maceo Plex, Vini Vici, Richie Hawtin, and more. The festival tickets are extremely cheap, too!

Location

Tunisee, Freiburg, Germany

Dates

13-14 July

Genre

House + Techno

 

 

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5. World Club Dome 2019

Perhaps one of the most unique and interesting concepts for festivals in Germany, World Club Dome transforms a sporting arena in Freankfurt each summer into what it dubs the ‘world’s biggest club.’ So what it goes for is making an ENTIRE covered sports arena into one massive single-stage club, with off-the-scale production and lighting that fills the entire thing.

There are a few more open-air stages outside and around the stadium, and camping/food/activities in the fields surrounding it as well. But the main stage with the EDM headliners is of course within the stadium.

This festival mostly brings in EDM giants, such as Tiesto, Steve Aoki, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Nervo, deadmau5, Klangkarussell, W&W, Robin Schulz, and more.

But at their ‘WCD Pool Sessions’ at a nearby outdoor pool, you could find some equally great names within the house music umbrella such as Solomun, Kollektiv Turmstrasse, Adriatique, ANNA, and H.O.S.H. In recent years they have been bringing in some more stage areas such as Q Dance (hardstyle) and another future/G-house stage with the likes of Jauz, Yellow Claw, EDX, and Malaa.

Location

Commerzbank Arena, Frankfurt, Germany

Dates

7-9 June

Genre

Mostly EDM, some house + techno

6. Love Family Park Festival

Quite contrary to its name, Love Family Park festival isn’t a family festival…. it’s a techno one. I mean, your techno family is debatably just as close as your actual family, right?!

One of many techno festivals in Germany, this one takes place in a park (one thing that’s true to its name!) in Russelsheim am Main. The one-day gig is a massive celebration of all things techno, during the daytime outdoors in the German summer.

Techno giants such as Carl Cox, Luciano, Andhim, Ricardo Villalobos,  and Sven Vath (who headlines every year!), have made appearances in the past, and you can also expect a similar vibe in the future.

Location

Russelsheim am Main, Germany

Dates

28th July

Genre

Techno, house

 

7. Indian Spirit Festival

Indian Spirit is one of the proper transformational festivals in Germany that focuses on psytrance and everything spiritual. Alongside the music you can expect to find vibrantly colored stages, tons of art and installations, crafts, markets, workshops, yoga, and more, all designed to elevate the spirit. The festival goes for 5 days, so there’s plenty of time to check out all that they have on offer.

In the past, headliners such as Neelix, Vini Vici, Astrix, Infected Mushroom, Liquid Soul, Ace Ventura, have made appearances, alongside dozens and dozens of up-and-coming or underground talent as well.

Location

Eldena

Dates

29 August – 3 September

Genre

Psytrance, electronic

8. New Horizons Festival 2019

New Horizons has quickly taken German music festivals by storm after its first year in 2017 – that’s right, this will just be its third edition! Dubbed ‘seven festivals in one’ due to all of the different music and things to do, New Horizons really reels attendees into another world.

The stage production, atmosphere, and decorations are like something out of a fantasyland, and when you add in different performers and actors, art installations and fun areas, and different activities going on all over the place, you get a fully immersive experience.

If you even have time to see the headliners alongside everything else there is to do, you will not be disappointed. In the past, New Horizons has seen Steve Aoki, Tieso, Dimitri Vegas + Like Mike, Axwell V Ingrosso, Chris Liebing, Armin van Buuren, Dillon Francis, Marshmello, Angerfist, Claptone, Malaa, Ghastly, Charlotte de Witte, and Flosstradamus… creating what is surely one of the most diverse lineups of all the electronic festivals in Germany.

They have different stages for each genre – trance, trap, urban, goa techno, house, EDM and more – making it easy to decide where you’d like to get lost.

Location

The Nürburgring, Nurburg, Germany

Dates

21-25 August

Genre

Electronic- House, EDM, Techno

9. Ruhr-in-Love 2019

Going since 2003, Ruhr in Love is on of the favorite one-day electronic festivals in Germany. Happening from noon across a massive 40 – yes, FOURTY – stages, I will absolutely guarantee to you that you’ll find at least something that you like, whether that be trance, techno, EDM, hardstyle, psytrance, house… you get the idea.

You’ll witness loads of up-and-coming and local talent alongside some bigger headliners, but the focus here is on smaller-yet-still-amazing talent from the area. No matter what, you’ll surely have an adventure exploring around the many, many stages that there are.

In the past years, the headliners included Klaudia Gawlas, Party Favor, Plastik Funk, Ostblockschlampen, Moonbootica, Tujamo, and Pappenheimer. See if you can catch them all while still checking out all of the stages – it’ll be an adventure! If you want to check out the Netherlands while you’re at it, you could spend a day in Nijmegen – it’s just an hour away from this part of Germany.

Location

OLGA Park, Oberhausen, Germany

Dates

6 July

Genre

All Electronic – literally ALL.

 

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10. Echelon Open Air & Indoor Festival 2019

Echelon Open Air + Indoor Festival is yet another one-day techno banger, which as its name suggests takes place in both indoor tents and outdoor stages. It takes place on a Cold War satellite tracking station, and there are still massive tracking orbs present at the venue. It takes place across five stages that are supplemented by the interesting and historic venue.

This German music festival is knows for its techno, but also has some house, EDM, and other electronic. Past headliners have included Carl Cox, Deborah de Luca, Boris Brejcha, Don Diablo, Yellow Claw, Neelix, and Yen Faki. Oliver Heldens, and Sam Paganini.

Location

Ehemalige US Kaserne (Cold War NSA Satellite Tracking Station), Bad Aibling, Germany

Dates

17 August

Genre

House, techno, electronic

11. Ikarus Festival

Ikarus Festival takes place each summer quite literally in an airport – well, on the grounds of an international one. And yes, you can still fly into it via quite a few budget airlines like RyanAir and WizzAir! Along with six different stages, Ikarus comes with performances, a circus program, and more.

Past headliners have been Richie Hawtin, Nina Kraviz, Solomun, Tale of Us, Pan-Pot, Oliver Koletzki, and Nina Kraviz, and you can bet that any house music-lover will be in heaven at Ikarus Festival in any year to come.

Location

Memmingen Airport, Memmingerburg, Germany

Dates

7-9 June

Genre

House, Techno, Electronic

12. MAYDAY Dortmund

MAYDAY is yet another of the many fantastic electronic music festivals in Germany. You can find whatever you are looking for at this festival as long as it’s within the electronic scope – techno, trance, house, hardstyle, EDM, and more. MAYDAY has been going for 25 years now and is well known for its immersive and incredible visuals, music, and production quality.

Past headliners have seen a range of artists from Ferry Corsten, Aly & Fila, Marcus Schulz, and Adam Beyer to Angerfist, Charlotte de Witte, and Chris Liebing. The festival takes place across tons of different rooms, and has grown lots since Sven Vath helped its inception in 1991.

Location

Westfalenhallen, Dortmund

Dates

30 April

Genre

All electronic

 

13. Habitat Festival

Habitat is yet another music festival in Germany that is much more than a music festival. This festival brings in all sorts of conscious festival-goers to experience art classes, installations, sustainability workshops, film, theater, performances, yoga, and more. This all occurs alongside a pretty massive lineup of all different genres within the electronic umbrella. Sounds like a pretty ideal festival to me!

If you can find time alongside watching theater, doing yoga, and learning all kinds of new things at the workshops, the lineups are always great. In the past they’ve included the likes of Charlotte de Witte, Rodhad, Reinier Zonneveld, Monkey Safari, Alex Niggemann, and other equally deep and amazing artists.

Location

Flugplatz Hungriger Wolf (an airfield), Hohenlockstedt, Germany

Dates

25-28 July

Genre

House + Techno

14. MS Dockville Festival

MS Dockville is a multi-genre festival that takes place each August around some industrial docklands along the Elbe River near Hamburg. Dockville prides itself in its creative expression, with loads of art, markets, and more to do alongside the lineup of alternative, rock, and electronic giants.

Caribou, Bonobo, Elderbrook, Flume, Moderat, Murea Masa, Foals, alt-J, Interpol, and more have headlined in the past, so you can expect similar types of live acts fused with electronic elements in the next editions of the festival as well.

Location

Wilhelmsburg Docks, Hamburg, Germany

Dates

16-18 August

Genre

Alternative, Rock, Electronic

15. Oldenbora Festival

Oldenbora is a one-day fest that takes place within and on the beaches surrounding a lakeside beach club called Nethen, which is near Rastede, Germany. They like to say that this festival brings the vibe of Ibiza to Germany for a day, in that there are huge beach parties with great dj’s playing to them. If you get tired of dancing (or need a quick break), the lake is a popular and scenic place for water sports as well.

Past headliners have included Moguai, Oliver Koletzki, Moonbootica, Will Sparks, Riva Starr, Tom & Jame, and more.

Location

Nethen Beachclub + Surrounding Beaches, Rastede, Germany

Dates

20 May

Genre

House, Techno, Trance, EDM

 

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16. Psychedelic Circus Open Air Festival 2019

Psychedelic Circus is pretty much exactly what its name says it is. This festival is a fully immersive atmosphere where nothing makes sense and everything makes sense at the same time 😛 . It is a true fantasyland where you can be whoever you want to be, while you listen to trippy music, play fun games with fellow attendees, explore around the decked-out venue, and forget the real world.

It’s a vibrant festival in every sense, from the decorations to the lineup. This festival is not all about the performers like many are, but there are also usually quite a few names to get excited about. In the past it has seen Fabio & Moon, Berg, Neelix, Francis Inferno Orchestra, Phaxe, and Secret Portal.

Location

Near Gohlen, Germany

Dates

9-13 May

Genre

Trance, psytrance, house, acid house

17. Heroes Festival

Heroes Festival is somehow one of the only fairly large hip hop/rap festivals in Germany, taking place at a huge events center near Geiselwind (closest to Nuremberg). It has risen quickly in popularity since its recent inception in 2017 – perhaps because there was a bit of a void when it came to larger hip hop German music festivals. Heroes Festival is known for being an all-around amazing party for the rap and hip hop scene, with amazing sound and production, rap collectives, and MC’s from around Germany coming to strut their stuff.

Last year the headliners included SXTN, Nimo, Olexesh, Luciano, Sido, and MoTrip, and you can expect similar local DJ’s , MC’s and talent for this year as well.

Location

Eventzentrum, Geiselwind, Germany

Dates

15th June

Genre

Hip Hop, Rap

18. Snowbeat Festival

Snowbeat Festival is one of the few big winter music festivals in Germany, and surely one of the most unique. It’s an electronic music festival that takes place in an indoor ski slope complex, with multiple rooms full of amazing production, sound, and pyrotechnics. Oh, and you can of course hit the slopes as well!

Snowbeat bring in dj’s in many different genres, including EDM, hardstyle, and house. In the past it has seen names such as Salvatore Ganacci, Coone, Ostblockschlampen, Alan Walker and Headhunterz – lots of talentt from both Germany and international.

Location

Alpincenter Indoor Snowsports Complex, Wittenburg

Dates

2nd Feb

Genre

EDM, hardstyle, house

19. Wacken Winter Nights Festival

Wacken Winter Nights is an extremely immersive and unique rock and metal festival held in the small and charming village of Wacken. This festival even focuses on medieval and mystic rock/folk, with some attendees and performers even dressing the part. This immersive music works perfectly in a snowy small German Village, where you can almost go back in time through performance, food, and costume.

If you enjoy German rock and metal, you may recognize names who have headlined before. PEople such as Saltatio Mortis, Grave Digger, Korpiklaani, Moonsorrow, Schandmaul, and Orphaned Land have played on the past, all presenting their own unique take on both dark and passionate music.

Location

Wacken, Germany

Dates

22 – 24 February

Genre

Rock, Metal

Cultural Festivals in Germany: Oktoberfest of Course!

20. Oktoberfest

What is Oktoberfest?! Well, the biggest beer festival in the world, of course. This cultural festival could absolutely not be left out when making a list of the best festivals in Germany, because it very well may be more famous than all these German music festivals combined. And hey – it’s not completely devoid of music. To be honest, music is just as important to Oktoberfest as any of these festivals – in fact, there are bands playing live music pretty much all the time in all of the many massive beer halls that comprise the festival. It’s just that, in this situation, beer and delicious food take precedence.

Oktoberfest takes place in a massive lot in central Munich, which is bordered by 14 beer halls/tents with massive capacities. Beer is only available by the liter, and this is not beer for the weak, either! Pretzels, pork knuckles, bratwurst, and other German delicacies should keep you going through  crazy amounts of beer, and it would also be a good idea to take breaks and play carnival games or try the many amusement park rides outside.

I wrote a massive Oktoberfest Festival review-guide that will tell you 100% everything you need to know before attending one of the most famous festivals in Germany, so give that a read and check below for packages from Festicket and Stoke Travel.

Location

Munich, Germany

Dates

22 September – 6th October

Genre

Beer 😉 And live cover bands.

Book Camping/Accommodation/Coach Packages from Anywhere in Europe with Stoke Travel  (and use my promo code ADVENTURESNSUNSETS for unlimited beer and sangria at camp!)
The best music festivals in Germany, as ranked by sales data. These german music festivals are of every genre = house, techno, rock, alternative, indie, EDM, and more!

Don’t forget to PIN this article if you love German music festivals!

December 10, 2018

Festivals in Spain: The 10 Best Spanish Music Festivals (2019)

Festivals in Spain: The 10 Best Spanish Music Festivals (2019)

I initially had no idea that there were so many amazing festivals in Spain. It may not seem to be at the forefront of the European music festival scene, but there are actually tons of amazing Spanish music festivals of all different sizes, genres, and locations. Whatever kind of music festival you are looking for, you are sure to find a match in this list of festivals in Spain.

Most of these festivals take place over the warm summer months, and many of them even take place on beaches and other equally cool summertime festival venues. If you’re wondering how I ranked this Spanish music festivals list, I actually got data of the top revenue generating festivals from Festicket (the official partner of these festivals).

This means that these festivals really are the 20 top festivals in Spain that rake in the most revenue. It doesn’t necessarily reflect my opinion (I am a big fan of smaller and transformational festivals too) but these are the most popular among the general population.

Want to learn a bit of Spanish before your trip to Spain? – Check out Lingoda – Live online classes at all times!

But Before getting to your Spanish Music Festivals, Check out some Other Festival Content:

A list of Festivals in Spain: The 20 best Spanish Music festivals to add to your bucket list, ranked by sales amount and awesomeness. EDM festivals in spain, cultural festivals in spain, and rock festivals in spain are all included.

Pin this Spanish music festivals list to your Pinterest boards!

1. Mad Cool Festival

Mad Cool is one of the top music festivals in Europe and by far the best of the festivals in Spain, which is seriously impressive considering that it’s only been going for a few years. Taking place among both tented and outdoor stages in a massive park in Spain’s capital city, Mad Cool  will have a little bit of something for everyone.

It’s also extremely affordable. See the image below for the lineup  for 2019, including some of the biggest rock and alternative legends in the game!

Big names such as Bon Iver, Vampire Weekend, The Smashing Pumpkins, Kaytranada, and the Cure will join previous Mad Cool festival giants like Pearl Jam, The Who, Jack White, Queens of the  Stone Age, Green Day, Foo Fighters, and Neil Young who have headlined in the past. No matter what, you can expect this festival to absolutely smash it with the lineup, and pair it with some really cool Madrid attractions. It’s coming up soon, so get on your tickets before they sell out!

Location

Valdebebas Park, Madrid (80k capacity!)

Dates

11-13 July

Genre

Rock, Alternative, Multi Genre

2. FIB: Festival Internacional de Benicàssim 2019

FIB, or the Festival Internacional de Benicàssim, is an extremely diverse festival that takes place along the coast each sunny Spanish summer. Benicàssim is between Barcelona and Valencia, and the FIB Festival takes place in a park within walking  distance of the beautiful Mediterranean sea. Music starts in the late afterrnoon each day as well, so festival-goers are encouraged to take part in lots of outdoor adventure activities along the coast before getting stuck into one of the most unique Spanish music festivals at night time.

There are already a few artists announced for 2019, including Lana del Rey and the 1975, who will play after big names like The Weeknd, The Killers, Travis Scott,  Foals, Kasabian, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and Deadmau5 have played in the past. As you can see, it’s truly a diverse lineup full of something for everyone. Another awesome selling point is that the campgrounds are open for a whole week (while the festival is  4 days) so you can have fun with new friends for even longer than just a weekend.

Location

Benicàssim, Spain

Dates

18-21 July

Genre

Multi Genre, mostly alternative + rock

3. Primavera Sound

Primavera Sound is another one of the giant and world-renowned festivals in Spain. Located in a huge waterfront complex not far from the center of Barcelona, it’s the perfect place to welcome thousands of music lovers. Now going into its 19th year, Primavera Sound has really made a name for itself in the Spanish music festival scene.

You will find huge names performing along smaller up-and-coming acts at any of Primavera Sound’s small and large stages. You will also find lots of extra activities taking place not only in the venue but all over Barcelona, which transforms into a massive event on the weekend of this festival. There will be roaming performers, art installations and exhibitions, lectures, workshops, tons of featured food and drink, and even film screenings. In the past, headliners have included Grace Jones, Aphex Twins, Jamie XX, Bon Iver, Arcade Fire, Bjork, Lorde, Migos, Tyler the Creator, and more, and names for the next year will be available soon (although with a history like that, who needs to wait?!)

Location

Parc del Fòrum, Barcelona, Spain

Dates

30 May – 2 June

Genre

Alternative, Rock, Electronic

 

 

4. BBF: Barcelona Beach Festival

Barcelona Beach Festival, or BBF, is a one-day mainstream/EDM event held at the Playa del Forum in Barcelona, directly next to the Parc del Forum that holds Primavera Sound. Held on one single stage that really is right on the water at the beach, you won’t be spoilt for choice when it comes to choosing which famous act to watch. It goes without saying that Spanish music festivals like this also have an incredible sound quality.

Headliners in the past have included The Chainsmokers, David Guetta, Oliver Heldens, Axwell V Ingrosso, Armin van Buuren, Hardwell, and Don Diablo. As you can see there are some big names playing but they do bridge across EDM, House, and Trance music.

Location

Playa del Fòrum, Barcelona

Dates

13 July

Genre

Electronic, EDM

5. Bilbao BBK Live

Bilbao BBK Live has become one of the most loved Spanish music festivals, taking place in the Northern surf town of Bilbao. The festival quite literally takes place on the top of a mountain overlooking the city; you will camp in open grass areas and peruse through forests and slopes to find the different stages.

Florence + The Machine, Justice, The Gorillaz, The Killers, Depeche Mode, The XX, The Chemical Brothers, Alt-J, and Childish Gambino have headlined this festival in the past few years. Weezer is the fist act announced for 2019, but you can bet there will be more where that came from given the lineups of the pasts. Tickets are on sale now, don’t waste time!

Location

Mount Cobetas, in the forests/mountain overlooking Bilbao

Dates

11-13 July

Genre

Rock, Pop, Alternative, Electronic – Multi-Genre

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6. Rototom Sunsplash Festival

Rototom Sunsplash is one of the only reggae festivals in Spain, which takes place over a whole week across the 7km of shorelines in the coastal city of Benicàssim. This festival is more of an entire experience than a music festival in Spain, with over a dozen different areas with different genres, activities, mindfulness, and more.

You’ll find reggae (of course), caribbean uptempo, dancehall, dub, roots, and more different kinds of musco stages, along with tons of artisan and outdoor markets, the African village, a Pachamama area with health and sustainability practices and talks, beach activities, art galleries, a circus, the house of rastafari, and a social fosum with lectures and talks. Check here for all the different things going on – it’s awesome!

In the past, lineups have included Shaggy, Steel Pulse, Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, Julian Marley & The Uprising, Sly & Robbie Taxi Connection ft. Yellowman, Johnny Osbourne, Bitty McLean, David Rodigan & The Outlook Orchestra, Fat Freddy’s Drop, The Specials, and more. With 7 day tickets starting t only  100 Euro, well, it would be rude not to.

Location

Benicàssim Beach, Spain

Dates

16-22 Aug

Genre

Reggae (and all variations thereof)

7. DGTL Barcelona

DGTL is Barcelona’s version of the Dutch Music Festival of the same name taking place in Amsterdam. Festivals in Spain may not be as well-known for techno as festivals in the Netherlands, but DGTL takes care of that right away. DGTL Barcelona takes all the greats of house + techno and transplants them right into the middle of Barcelona at one of the city’s most prominent festival venues on the water.

The past years of this festival have seen the likes on Amelie Lens, Adriatique, Eats Everything, Jeff Mills, Ame, Ben Clock, Dixon, Solomun, Black Coffee, KiNK, Maceo Plex, Jamie Jones, and… oh wow now I’m getting carried away. If you like house + techno, this is one of the Spanish music festivals for you!

Location

Parc del Fòrum, Barcelona

Dates

24-24 Aus 2019

Genre

House + Techno

8. Daydream Festival

Daydream festival aims to be just that – a wonderful dreamlike festival presenting a fairytale-like world of color, interesting characters, decorations, and surreal situations. It was started in Belgium, and could be compared in a smaller scale to its similarly fantasy-like companion, Tommorowland. Daydream has five different stages, and you can easily expect each of them to seem like a beautiful world of their own.

Daydream pulls in some huge EDM names, but also some house + techno to balance it out quite nicely. In the past headliners have included Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Martin Garrix, W&W, Atreve Angello, Nicky Romero, and Martin Solveig, and on the techno end it has seen Nic Fanciulli, Loco Dico, Marco Carola, Patrick Topping, and more.

Location

Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya (a race track in Northern Barcelona)

Dates

30-31 March

Genre

EDM, House, Electronic

9.  Medusa Sunbeach Festival

Medusa Sunbeach takes place right on the beach in a town called Cullera in Valencia. The 6-day shindig is truly exemplary of all different genres of electronic music, with every possible sub-genre represented somehow behind renowned stage production and lighting.

A few headliners have been announced for 2019 – Dimitri Vegas + Like Mike and Ben Sims to name a few. In the past Medusa has hostel names like Carl Cox, David Guetta, Alesso, Art Department, Richy Ahmed, Borgore, Ferry Corstem, Pendulum, John Digweed, Adam Beyer, Nicky Romero, and more.

See what I mean when I said there was a little bit of everything?! Medusa Sunbeach Festival is also known to have themes, which is another thing that makes this one of the most awesome festivals in Spain.

Location

On the Beach in Cullera, Spain

Dates

7-12 August

Genre

Electronic – House, Techno, EDM, Hardstyle, Trance

https://www.festicket.com/festivals/medusa-sunbeach/2019/?referrer=adventuresnsunsets

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10. Amanecer Bailando Festival

Now taking on its second year as a one-day festival in a small town called Móstoles on the outskirts of Madrid, Almanecer Bailando Festival hosts all kinds of different electronic music. This brand took over for a similar festival that ran before it, and has shown lots of promise with some big promoters and clubs in Madrid hosting stages of both underground and other areas of electronic music.

Headliners in the past have been Marco Carola, Loco Dice, Jeff Mills, Angerfist, Natos y Waor, Antigone and more, and you can expect that even the unknown names at this Spanish music festival will be well-curated.

Location

Parque Prado Ovejero in Móstoles, outside Madrid, Spain

Dates

7 September

Genre

Electronic, House, Techno, D&B, Hardstyle

Bonus Festivals in Spain

Here are a few more popular Spanish music festivals that dind’t make the top ten list but are still worth a mention!

UNITE With Tomorrowland Spain

Held in the Parc de Can Zam in Barcelona, UNITE with Tomorrowland is an extremely unique event that combines the live performance of a few famous DJ’s with a live stream of Tomorrowland in Belgium. UNITE lasts for 12 hours (so not the entire duration of Tomorrowland!) but gives attendees the chance to feel like they were truly there in Belgium.

BEF: Benicàssim Electronic Festival

Benicàssim Electronic Festival is also held near the beach in the small coastal town, and hosts lots of names in the underground house, techno, and electronic area. Most headliners are more up-and-coming but that doesn’t make then any less awesome to see on the Mediterranean coast!

 

 

Cultural Festivals in Spain

An article about festivals in Spain would not be complete without a mention of some of the extremely popular cultural festivals that go on here. Sure, a lot of the Spanish cultural festivals have been blown up a lot by tourism and no longer hold the same charm they once did, but they are still traditional and a sight to behold at least once in your life. Here are some to look out for:

Running of the Bulls

Running of the Bulls is an annual cultural festival in Spain that involves literally running from a herd of angry bulls all through the city into a stadium where they are minded by professional bullfighters as the sangria-soaked crowd goes wild. It’s a long standing tradition and one hell of a party through the town of Pamplona, involving lots of amazing food, live music, fireworks, and enough sangria to get an entire country drunk.

Check Tickets and Packages for Running of the Bulls With Stoke Travel, including packages with transport from many European cities, packages with Bilbao BBK Festival, and more. Use my code ADVENTURESNSUNSETS for unlimited beer + Sangria!

La Tomatina

La Tomatina is basically a massive tomato fight that takes place in the streets of a town called Buñol outside of Valencia. It’s been going for many years and now attracts crowds from all over the world for one of the most unique festivals in Spain and perhaps the world! Make sure you bring your goggles as you prepare to hurl hoards of tomatoes through the air and get caught in a massive crowd of locals and travelers alike.

Check Tickets and Packages for La Tomatina With Stoke Travel, including packages with transport, trips to Barcelona/Ibiza, and choice of hotels, camping, and hostels. Use my code ADVENTURESNSUNSETS for unlimited beer + Sangria!

 

A list of Festivals in Spain: The 20 best Spanish Music festivals to add to your bucket list, ranked by sales amount and awesomeness. EDM festivals in spain, cultural festivals in spain, and rock festivals in spain are all included.

Don’t forget to pin this to your Pinterest boards if you’re interested in these festivals in Spain! 

December 5, 2018

Strawberry Fields Festival Review + Guide: All You Need to Know for Australia

Strawberry Fields Festival Review + Guide: All You Need to Know for Australia

Strawberry Fields Festival is an absolute oasis in the middle of Australia’s bushland, nestled in a serene nook on the Murray River right between Victoria and Tocumwal, New South Wales. This Strawberry Fields festival review + guide will tell you all you need to know for your trip to the festival through reviewing my experience there; from the location, venue, lineup, and camping to the workshops, art, clothing, and extra activities, to the nitty gritty stuff like security, bathrooms, and tickets… I got you covered!

A small and manageable venue, Strawberry Fields (or ‘Strawbs’ as it is lovingly called by those who attend it) is the perfect mix of open air, river-side beach, and tall tree forests. It is known by many to be one of the best Transformational Festivals in Australia, bringing in crowds of colorful festival-lovers to the banks of the cool Murray River each November.

Strawberry Fields Festival Review + Guide in Tocumwal, Australia on the banks of the Murray River in 'the Wildlands,' an amazing camping music festival/bush doof on the border of New South Wales and Victoria!

Pssst… this is a LONG review-guide. Pin it to Pinterest?

Strawberry Fields Location/Venue/Stages

Strawberry Fields festival is located in the deep bush area on the Murray river which separates Victoria from New South Wales. Strawbs is on the NSW side of the river, just outside a small farming town called Tocumwal. Tocumwal is about 3 hours from Melbourne and 5 hours from Canberra, most easily reached from Melbourne.

Strawberry Fields’ location is aptly named ‘the Wildlands,’ which is a fitting name to describe the open bush areas, forests, and river side parts that make the venue whole. Throughout the Wildlands you will find 5 main stage areas, each with a vibe of their own, and many different areas of market stalls, gourmet food, art, workshops, creative spaces, galleries, and a beach along the river. There’s even a ferris wheel!

Apparently they do change the layout of the stages and camping a bit each year – a lot of my campmates said that everything was in a different place this year, but it worked well. Either way you’ll still find the main components and stages. Here are the main areas that you’ll find:

strawberry fields festival beach stage

The Beach Stage – right next to the Murray River! 

The Beach Stage

This was the absolute place to be during the day at Strawberry Fields festival. When the sun comes up and it’s a bit too hot in your tent, it’s time to head straight to the Beach Stage (perhaps stopping for a brekkie sandwich) to have a dip in the cool Murray River.

Right on the banks of the Murray after giving ample space for netting and hammock chill areas and for people to sunbathe, you’ll find the beach stage. Generally going off during the day and playing tunes that you would naturally associate with a beach (think funk, chilled house, etc), this is the place to be. There’s nothing better than being nestled amongst the trees  next to the water on a warm day in the bush. The Murray water is also just perfectly crisp and refreshing!

The Tea Lounge + The Village

The Tea Lounge was an actual tea lounge where you could pick up a selection of totally free and delicious teas during the day. Next to the Tea Lounge was The Village, which was also an activity space during the day – think, workshops on things like nutrition, bongo drumming classes, yoga and dance, etc – and a live music stage at night. After other stages close you can still count on the Tea Lounge/The Village to provide the vibes, with funky bands, jazz, and all of the live instruments.

monoss art garden strawberry fields festival

Monoss Art Area

Monoss: Art Garden + Workshop/Painting Area

Monoss was the center for art at Strawberry Fields Festival. The Art Garden was an inside space with tons of festival photography, paintings, and every possible type of art inside. It was beautifully designed and a nice quiet space that even had different seminars and workshops going on throughout the day in different kinds of art and even massage.

Monoss has a performance and workshop schedule that hosted some of the most creative and interesting shows. From hula hooping and disco dancing to choreographed dances and minuature plays, this place had everything and would be a true surprise each time you checked it out.

Next to the Art Garden was a massive hammock structure where lots of live art took place. Throughout the weekend artists covered the walls and spaces around the Art Garden in colorful and beautiful paintings. It was amazing to see the space come to life more and more each time I passed by it.

strawberry fields festival wildlands stage main stage

Wildlands Stage

Wildlands (Main Stage)

This is where all the ridiculousness went down! Covered in beautiful pastel tarps, the main stage (Wildlands) had enough space for practically the whole festival and was the center of the action all weekend. All the headlining names played here to a sea of crazy dancers, funny doof sticks, and groups of happy friends.

The production value was fantastic everywhere, but the Funktion One bassline especially moved the crowd into a beautiful unison at The Wildlands stage.

The Grove Stage

This was the place that always had quirky live music and jam bands going on at all hours. I saw some instruments I had never seen before, live trumpet/sax/flute, and some hilariously catchy beats here. If there was an act that featured more live elements, it would surely perform here at The Grove stage.

Strawberry Fields Festival deep jungle stage

Deep Jungle Stage

Deep Jungle

The Deep Jungle Stage was actually located closer to the campgrounds than anything else, which was slightly misleading because judging from it’s name you’d think you’d have to go on a few hour trek through the bush to get there 😛 This stage was a beautiful painted wooded bird-like structure with stairs to climb up and party above the crowd. It spread out like a bird’s wings in an almost-semicircle around the crown, with the dj playing inside the bird’s beak. It was really beautiful and complimented the forest perfectly.

There were generally deeper vibes here, with nice house, tech house, and techno beats emanating from within the trees.

The Playground

This was a fun adult playground with a hammock chill area and a big wooded pirate ship with a mirror maze inside.

Markets and Food

The main grass (read: dirt) area of the festival was bordered on all sides with stalls with everything you can imagine. There were dozens of food stalls (it was impossible to decide what to get) also dozens of market stalls (any doof clothes you could ever want) and also smaller tents with things like henna and shiatsu massage. See below for more info on food.

Strawberry Fields Festival crowd

Strawberry Fields Festival crowd main stage

Strawberry Fields Crowd

The crowd here were of all ages (well, 18+) and generally Aussie. Of course the majority of people were young but you’d see the veteran doofers here and there still practicing and perfecting their craft 😉 I met some Brits and Irish, but most of the people at Strawberry Fields festival were Australian, and at that I would say most were even based in Melbourne. I have heard it said that Strawberry tends to have a bit of a younger crowd and I would say that this is true – Strawberry Fields festival is often people’s ‘first doof’ and you could tell that many faces may have been younger and newer to the scene.

however, I did find that the people here were all completely into it and knew how to do a proper doof. Everyone was dressed up to the nines, getting weird in the best possible way, meeting strangers, sharing moments, and generally just being awesome. I didn’t come across one person here who was a bad vibe or didn’t know how to carry/handle themselves in a festival situation.

The only thing I found unimpressive about the Strawberry crowd was a bit of lack of respect for rubbish… okay a big one. It seemed to me that the crowd mentality took over everyone’s animal brains upon seeing one or two people throw trash on the ground… eventually everyone was doing it. It was a big shame to see some of the younger doofers carelessly tossing their cans and bottles onto the ground expecting someone to clean up after them at a festival that sound be ‘leave no trace.’

There were rubbish bins all over the grounds and always easily reachable, but like I said once people saw it happening it seemed to get worse and worse. Veteran doofers picked up some slack by collecting rubbish here and there and reprimanding those who littered, as did helpful volunteers. The grounds were quite despicable after the festival as well with tents and trash strewn about the grounds. But I think it may be a crowd mentality and a bit of a lack of education for the younger partiers – it was just unfortunate to see. If you’re going next year, don’t forget to respect the incredible venue so Strawberry Fields Festival can take place for years to come.

Lastly, it did seem occasionally to me that the crowd were more there for the party than the music. As a lover of music as well as the entire festival experience, I noticed that some of the people really just seemed to place themselves at the stage and move to the music no matter what it was, without a solid appreciation or knowledge of who was playing or how they were playing it. Now this didn’t go for absolutely everyone by any means (LOTS of people knew the music and knew it well), and other people’s lack of knowledge of the music of course doesn’t affect anyone else’s experience but their own. But, I had to note it – this is something I have heard Aussies say about how Strawberry Fields festival has changed over the years to become more of a mainstream party than a doof.

Strawberry Fields Festival performers artists vibe

Strawberry Fields Festival wildlands forest sunset

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It’s finally time for the return of FESTIVAL KIMMIE!☺️🎉🔥💃🏼 I just got back from the incredible @strawberryfields_festival , aka my very first ‘bush doof’ aka an awesome music + arts festival held out in the Australian bush. My true crazy self got to emerge and have a bloody fantastic time out in ‘the wildlands’ with incredible new friends, a top notch diverse range of music, amazing art, interesting workshops, delicious food, and a lot of the best kind of wierdness😜 (as you can see, my ‘fun meter’ was off the charts😏) . . Strawberry Fields, aka ‘Strawbs’ (the Aussies shorten absolutely EVERYTHING😂) is held on the border of the Murray River which forms the border of Victoria and New South Wales, well, in the middle of not much at all. But this is what makes it awesome! Think, morning swims in the crisp and cool river while floating on a flamingo listening to music from the funky beach stage, sunsets gleaming through the dust and tall forest trees, happy people wearing crazy colorful outfits and dancing the night away under the lights, morning campsite powwows, too much food to try it all, and fun workshops (I went to a bongo drum one!). . . Phew that was a lot – some is still up on my story if ya missed it! More will be coming, of course…. I’m super excited to share more of my photos!🙌🏽 . . . . . . . . . . . #strawberryfields #strawberryfieldsfestival #doofseason #bushdoof #musicfestival #festival #festivalfashion #festivalstyle #festivaljewelry #festivalgirls #festivalvibes #festivalseason #tocumwal #doof #funmeter #travelblogger #festivalblogger #transformationalfestival #dametraveler #femmetravel #ladiesgoneglobal #travelinladies #wearetravelgirls #globelletravels #femaletravelbloggers #girlslovetravel #sheisnotlost #explorerbabes #radgirlslife #freewanderess

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Vibe

The vibe here is light and airy, with a feeling of fun, happiness, and wierdness going through the air! You can tell that everyone here has been waiting for this weekend for a long time and is enjoying it to the fullest by dressing up, dancing, and having fun with their friends.

Strawberry Fields is very high energy and very open, with most strangers eager to have a chat, hug, or high-five with any random person who may walk by. In my eyes, this is the absolute best way for a festival to be! No one seemed to be ‘too cool’ here, everyone was a big family.

There was definitely a big party vibe at this festival, with lots of people out to party hard. That being said, I again didn’t witness any people who couldn’t handle themselves in the situation they’d chosen or went too hard. It was a caring environment  with people looking out for their friends while having a good time.

StrawberryFieldsFestivalExp1-161

Strawberry Fields Festival art hammoch structure installation music festival

Strawberry Fields Atmosphere/Decorations

As a music and arts festival, Strawbs did have a good amount of art scattered around the venue. From a few larger and more central wooden installations like a climbable ball, a tall pyramid, a massive wooded hammock structure, a coloful mist-spraying tree, and some more abstract structures, to a specified art area with live painting, it would be hard not to appreciate at least some art.

The “Monoss” art gallery and hammock structure was the center for art at Strawberry Fields Festival. It was here that artists did live painting in all sorts of psychedelic and colorful patterns, and where there was lots of art and photography from previous installations of the festival on display. Inside the Art Garden you could also purchase merchandise, or simply gaze at the work of some diverse yet equally incredible different artists. It was a wonderful space of a bit more peace and quiet, where you could get away from the vibrating basslines and take in some creativity.

Other than these areas, there was more art scattered here and there, lanterns and colorful things hanging from trees, loads of fairy lights that would come alive at dusk, wooded doorways crafted from branches, and much more. All of this came together with the sunlight shining through the kicked-up dust amidst the tall wildlands trees to create a vibe of total magic. Sunset in the Wildlands was a spectacle, and you’d be missing out if you didn’t spend at least a bit of quiet time sitting in the trees and appreciating the surroundings.

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Sasha throwing down his sunset set

Strawberry Fields Lineup/Music/Artists

Strawberry hosted a diverse lineup mostly within the house, techno, disco, and funk genres. For more live music, jam bands, funk, and soul, you could head to The Tea Lounge and to The Grove stages. Each time I passed by any of these there was always a really interesting vibe going on with the more creative types of live music on display. Some headliners here included Max Graef, Dirtwire, Hiatus Kaiyote, and Danika Smith.

The Wildlands Stage hosted most of the bigger names of the weekend and headliners. Bringing in the classic house music were the likes of Sasha, Honey Dijon, Oona Dahl, Carl Craig, Blond:ish, and Andhim, with some techno legends like Peter Van Hoesen and DJ Nobu raising the energy later into the night. Nicola Cruz slayed the trippy tribal beats during his legendary unique afternoon set. The Deep Jungle stage hosted more of the deeper vibes such as DJ Seinfeld, Hoj, and Township Rebellion. You could always head to The Beach stage in the day for the more chilled out and ‘beachy’ vibes to hear while you swim and lay out in the sun.

One thing that is for sure is that the headliners were supplemented by all kinds of awesomeness that I didn’t know by name but thoroughly enjoyed the beats of. This is the type of festival where you often get more drawn in by DJ’s you don’t know. you would often end up dancing for hours at at stage you didn’t even intend to go to in the first place, and leave with some new favorite artists to look up when you get home.

Strawberry Fields camping info

Friends getting ready at the campsite

Strawberry Fields Camping

Getting In

After waiting in line to have wristbands checked and put on, you’ll be let out into the large camping areas. Apparently the camping areas have changed in the past editions of Strawberry Fields, but this year they were mostly in large open grass/dirt fields. The line to get in a few hours after the gate opening couldn’t have taken much more than about 30-45 minutes, which is not too bad considering the amount of people. Cars split into multiple lines to check tickets and were then let in.

Camping Areas

A few different massive camping areas were wrapped like a glove around the festival site. These were divided into two main areas, Redgum and Woperana, and if you looked at the map you could place your camping area on a grid that corresponded to a letter and a number. This was extremely convenient to find people, given that they had a map and knew which spot they were at! I definitely heard a lot of people exchanging their letter-and-number camping areas with others for an easier meetup later on.

The camping areas had main roads etc going through them, making most areas quite easily accessible by car. The camping extended all along one side of the venue and on either side of the main entrance road. Most camping was such a close walking distance to the venue that it was quite easy just to walk back to the tents to grab some beers or rest for a bit if you wanted to. This was a great benefit of having a fairly compact venue – nothing eas ever too far away.

The Strawberry Fields camping had toilets scattered here and there (usually within 5 minutes of any campsite) with water refill stations and some medic tents and that along the different streets. There was one shower area.

Best Strawberry Fields Camping Spots

Most of the camping areas are quite open to the sun, and it was hard to find the stray tree here and there in the middle of the campgrounds to set up under to grab some shade. I would recommend either getting in very early and taking one of the maybe 4-5 trees in the main Redgum area, bringing plenty of shade structures and EZ-ups for your tent and your group chill space, or possibly setting up at the very back of the camping area near the road to get in, which is fully covered in trees but a bit hilly and farther away. You’ll see it when you drive in! Setting up near the glamping tents would also be a good idea and very close, but no shade.

Strawberry Fields festival glamping options WOW tents

Glamping at Strawberry Fields Festival

Strawbs did have glamping options available, called “WOW” tents. There were a few different sizes of these and essentially they were either massive teepee shade structures or pre-erected bell tents for 2-10 people.

There were four different WOW options available, from the ‘Wildlands Wonder’ tent for two with a memory foam bed, power, lighing, mirrors, and a fan, to the ‘Doofers Dream’ and the ‘doofers den’ with similar amenities for up to 5 people but one with BYO linens, to the ‘Basic Bell Tent’  which is pre-erected but BYO everything else. There were options for everyone!

Camping Amenities, Showers, Etc

Since camping was so incredibly close to the festival, and because there was no border/entrance/barrier between the camping and the actual venue, the festival amenities and the camping amenities were one and the same.

Again, there were drop toilets scattered through the campgrounds, most of which were kept fairly clean. There were water refilling stations next to most bathrooms.

The Strawberry Fields camping did have some showers, located near the main entrance next to the glamping areas, if anyone was actually  so inclined as to take a shower. You could walk to the showers or pull the classic baby wipe wipe-down, which a lot of people did. 😛

 

Strawberry Fields Festival bongo drum class festival workshops and activities

A Bongo Drumming + Rhythm Class

Strawberry Fields Festival massage and stretching at the monoss art garden

Some massage and stretching going on outside the Monoss Art Garden

Festival Amenities – Other Stuff to Do

As I have already mentioned, there were tons more things to do at Strawberry Fields festival than just doof your little heart away (although that’s fine too!). Strawberry boasted a fantastic lineup of roaming performers, workshops and classes, live art and painting, activities, and LOTS of gourmet food and drinks.

Many may not have specifically known it, but Strawbs has just as an extensive of a lineup in performance, art, and workshops as it did in music and food.  Surely you had to put in a bit of effort to make some of the shows at Monoss, see the roving performers, and make it to yoga classes on time, but to me it is also an important part of a transformational festival to make it to some, well… transformational experiences.

I went into most of this above but will include another summary of extra Strawberry Fields festival activitied below.

Workshops – Tea Lounge

The Tea Lounge and Village had massage, bongo drumming, yoga, meditation, hula hooping, tarot card reading, all different types of tea, jam and funk bands, and interesting discussions.

Monoss Art Classes + Roaming Performers

Monoss was the center for live art and workshops. Art workshops included things like pottery and macrame. Each day there was an aerial hour near the hammock structure with amazing aerial artists doing their thing. There were fire spinners, belly dancers, twirlers, and more who would road around the festival grounds creating even more magic.

Market Stalls

There were nearly as many epic market stalls at Strawbs as there were amazing food stands. The markets had a lot of epic and eclectic doof clothes, but had other things like sunglasses, hear dreading, henna tattoos, and more.

Amazing food

See below for details!

Strawberry Fields festival food and drunk options

Some of the shaded space near the dozens of food stalls 

Transportation/Hotels/Parking

Strawberry Fields Accommodation

I do think you could stay in Tocumwal if you really want to, but as I always say, you’re doing it wrong if you don’t camp at festivals. The camping here is freaking awesome and so much fun, and its cool enough/ends early enough to sleep at night too.

If you’re totally adamant not to camp, there are hotels in Tocumwal and Airbnb’s as well.  But, driving would definitely be a hectic experience each day with a massive police presence, and getting in and out would likely be more trouble than it’s worth. There’s a shuttle bus from/to Tocumwal from the venue but it’s only on Friday and Sunday for those who take the train. Creating an awesome camping haven for you and your friends in the best option.

Strawberry Fields Transportation

I would say most people at Strawberry Fields Festival either drove themselves, rented a bus among friends, or took one of the Strawberry official busses from the city in Melbourne. The official shuttle bus was definitely the easiest and cheapest option at only $25, but it sold out very quickly.It was really convenient to share a big 24-person bus among friends and split costs, and not have to worry about all the crazy drug testing upon exit of the venue – see ‘security’ section below!

Lastly, it was possible to take public transport from Melbourne to Tocumwal via Shepparton. For anyone waiting at the Tocumwal train station they had a bus to the festival venue.

Parking is simply amongst the camping area wherever you would like, or wherever they shuffle you into as you arrive. I didn’t see much shuffling as it was essentially a free-for-all camping-wise, as long as you parked within the designated lines. If there was any assigned camping, I didn’t see it as we simply drove into the site and drove around until we saw a spot we liked.

Strawberry Fields Festival food options

Just a few menu options at the Aussie food stand!

Strawberry Fields Food/Drink

Strawberry Fields Food

Strawberry Fields was almost just as much a food festival as it was a music festival! They took a great deal of pride in their extensive food options, whicvh lined a goof few hundred meters of the main festival area. There were dozens of food stands and you were really spoilt for choice when it came to deciding just which stalls to allot your daily food intake to.

Some of the most popular food stalls were gourmet grilled cheese, Mexican food/tacos/nachos, Greek gyros, breakfast sandwiches, smoothies, Indian wraps, and loaded fries. Some other stands around included Acai Bowls/Superfoods, gourmet burgers, noodles, Japanese street food, pizza, and more. There was even a classic Aussie tent that sold $3 sausages in bread among other classics like brekkie rolls. Here is a detailed list of all the food… yummmm!

Strawberry Field Drinks

Strawbs was a FULL BYO festival – no bars or drinks available onsite! This might sound funny but in reality it’s totally awesome. People dragged their coolers around with them from stage to stage, cracking open another cold one  literally from right at their feet whenever they felt like it.

That being said, there was no glass allowed. I must say that they didn’t really search for glass upon entry, but if someone saw you walking around with glass onsite they would ask you to throw it away once you finished it.

Strawberry Fields beach stage murray river swim

Daytime beach chilling

henna tattoo

A beautiful henna tattoo

Strawberry Fields Tickets Costs + Prices

Tickets include camping and entry Friday to Monday, and cost about $250 early bird to about $300 final release.

Car Passes cost $30 (and don’t sell out) and early entry for Thursday night is about another $100 per car. Not everything is open on Thursday, but it’s great for getting a good spot and checking out the grounds before they become too crowded.

If you wanted a WOW tent you could add another few hundred bucks depending on how many people and which tent you got. Factor in your food each day, BYO alcohol and other drinks, ice, and camping stuff, and make your budget for the weekend.

strawberry fields security

Just a coupla kind-looking security dudes making their round at the beach

Strawberry Fields Security

There was a heightened police presence going to/from Strawberry Fields festival, as can apparently be expected at pretty much all Australian festivals. You can expect:

Getting to the Venue

There were random police/dog checks on the way into the venue on the main road to/from Tocumwal. It didn’t seem that too many cars were pulled over into the security/dog tests (my bus did not get stopped) but they were definitely apparent. I only saw one police/dog checking area on our way in and there were maybe 4-5 cars in it and the same amount of police cars.

Getting into the Venue

There was no specific security check upon entry – it seemed that the festival left that responsibility to the local police who did a plenty good job with it! After waiting in line outside the entrance they scanned everyone’s tickets and gave out wristbands. Some may have done a quick car check or looked for glass, but with my vehicle there was nothing.

At the Venue

Once inside the Strawberry Fields festival venue, there was not too much security. There was a higher presence of volunteers who roamed around checking that everything/everyone was all good. There were definitely some police roaming around here and there, generally in teams of two and just walking through the grounds checking on things. They seemed fairly chilled however.

Leaving the Venue

Upon exit from Strawberry fields festival, there were TONS of cops doing testing for all types of alcohol and drugs. There were multiple breath tests within the first few miles of the venue, and I would say most cars got pulled in to be tested (while busses were safe). Australia is extremely serious about their driving laws, and if would be risky for anyone to drive if they shouldn’t.

However, within the venue, you could could pay for a preliminary alcohol/drug test to make sure you’re all good. The lines for these tests were understandably long as everyone wanted to make sure to stay safe and ensure they were ok to get their friends home.

StrawberryFieldsFestivalExp1-60

Yep, that’s me, with my tiny hand. 😛 

strawberry fields festival attire

Happy Strawberry Fields festival boy

Bathrooms

The bathrooms were long blocks drop toilets set around the venue, painted across their fronts. At that, they were actually really good for drop toilets! They were the kind of sanitary bin drop toilets with sawdust to put in after you do your business, which helps them not to smell! They being said, many doofers can’t really be trusted to remember to pout sawdust in. All in all the bathrooms were really not too bad and I would say they nearly always had toilet paper in them, which is also impressive.

StrawberryFieldsFestivalExp1-91

Only like, 1/3 of the vendor stands at Strawbs!

Weather

The Strawberry Fields weather is quite perfect in November in the Wildlands. It ranged from very warm to hot in the day, and definitely got chilly at night. The temperatures on either side of the spectrum were generally very manageable, with a small fur or light jacket enough to keep you warm at night. During the day it sometimes got a bit too hot in the sun, but many people set up in the shade, had water spray bottles, or most importantly took a dip in the Murray River to cool off.

The Murray River is truly one of the best selling points of Strawberry Fields festival, with its crisp and chilly water doing a perfect job to cool down your body temperature to the perfect level before you head back out into the sun. Lots of people took the opportunity to lay out and work on their tan. Jsut remember sunscreen is extra important here!

strawberry fields clothing

strAWBERRY FIELDS CLOTHING

Strawberry Fields Clothing + Fashion

Strawberry Fields clothing was the classic doof/party attire, with everything weird and wonderful encouraged the most. It does seem that doofs/burns/festivals are taking on a life of their own when it comes to fashion, with leotards and fishnets paired with chunky boots, sparkles, wigs, and body paint paramount for girls and party shirts (crazy patterned button-ups) and silly tights for the guys,

I would say if you were packing to dress up at Strawberry, bring sparkles, colors, chaps, everything colorful spandex, necklaces, glitter, wigs, party shirts, anything robotic or shiny, leotards, silly jewelry or accessories, fishnets, bathing suits, crazy tights, body chains, gloves, high-waisted swimmer bottoms, silly hats or headdresses, big sunglasses, fur coats, silly patterns, and anything bright and silly.

Many people had hilarious ‘doof sticks’ (as they call them in Australia; we call them ‘totems’ at home) in the crowds to help find their friends. The doof sticks here were probably the funniest out of any festival I have been to, with punny jokes and hilarious pictures holding high in the sky. I even saw a guy who brought a vacuum cleaner to the main stage and was hilariously pretending to vacuum up the dirt while wearing octopus tentacles as hands, and it made my day! These kinds of events really enable to to act like a kid again, and anything goes. I ended up making friends with this guy because I was wearing a tiny mini-hand on one of my fingers and high-fived his tentacles with it. 😛

strawberry field festival venue forest doof

strawberry fields sunset venue

Strawberry Fields Timings

Early entry began from 2pm Thursday, with regular entry at 12pm Friday,

Music ran until about 2:30/3am Friday and Saturday. On Sunday the main stages stopped at 7pm and the Tea Lounge stopped at 930pm.

I found this early ending time extremely strange and unfavorable, but as this was my first real Aussie doof I did not realize that many festivals apparently run like this? I understand the intention of getting people out early, but as most people take Mondays off of work after festivals anyway I saw it as an unnecessary limit to the fun. Rather than get people to leave early, this early ending time just made everyone go back and throw campsite parties and run amuck around the festival grounds trying to find other things to do.

I most definitely didn’t go to bed early that night, most people just hopped from campsite to campsite looking for renegade parties and trying to squeeze the last drops out of an epic weekend. For me this was one of the most strange and disappointing parts of the festival – it was like the last half of day three (kind of like, 1/6 of the festival if you think ab out it) was randomly removed, which I’ve never seen at festivals on the other 5 continents. But again, everywhere is different and there is logic behind it somewhere, I suppose.

Strawberry Fields Volunteering

Strawberry Fields had a great volunteer program where you would exchange three 4-hour shifts for your festival ticket. Volunteers came in three different types:

General: Worked at the gate giving/checking tickets, directing traffic, or helping with trash and recycling.

Harm Reduction: did things like carrying water around to people who needed it (cups and all), checking that things were generally going well and radio’ing in anything that was not (any people needing help, missing water stations, working bathrooms, etc)

Wilderness Restoration: Helped clean up after the festival and restore the Wildlands to their ‘leave no trace’ policy standard.

Money

Money worked normally at Strawbs – pay for things with card or cash. Some food stalls only took cash. There was an ATM on site.

 

straberry fields festival vacuum cleaner

Strawberry Fields costumes clothing dress up wedding dresses in the river

Just one more dose of weirdness for your day 😛

Strawberry Fields Cell Phone Service

Phone service was spotty at the festival. There were certain places you could get a call or text through, or an email read, but generally you wouldn’t be able to load things like videos, social media, or many internet pages. I only used my phone to take photos and videos which I posted to my story after the fact. Other than that it’s a good idea to unplug and enjoy the moment! You can see my Strawberry Fields story on the highlights on my instagram.

Final Strawberry Fields Tips

  • Make sure to take time out of dancing to check out all the other things on offer! Pencil in at least one yoga class, art workshop, or fun session. It’s so much more fulfilling to know you made the most out of all that was available.
  • Do know the music before you go! Research a bit on artists you prefer and familiarize yourself with parts of the lineup.
  • THROW AWAY YOUR GOD DAMN TRASH. If each person just takes care of their own sh*t, ther festival would be spotless. It’s not that hard. It’s actually sad how hard people make it seem. Don’t be careless for the incredible venue that Strawberry Fields festival is lucky to have. If you want to keep coming back, pull your weight!
  • Swim in the Murray each morning before you get all ready. It’s honestly THE BEST THING. Nothing is more refreshing!
  • Don’t forget to eat! There is so much amazing food there it would be silly to miss out on trying some. I thought I would try and save money and bring my own food but it’s honestly worth splurging on some of these food stalls.
  • Spend at least some time checking out the live painting and art gallery.
  • Try the ferris wheel! Why not?
Strawberry Fields Festival Review + Guide in Tocumwal, Australia on the banks of the Murray River in 'the Wildlands,' an amazing camping music festival/bush doof on the border of New South Wales and Victoria!

Don’t Forget to pin this Strawberry Fields festival review + Guide! 

strawberry fields art live painting

An amazing painting being done live 

 

Thanks for hosting me, Strawbs! As always, all words are my own…. I had the time of my life!

November 28, 2018

Festivals in the Netherlands: The 20 Best Dutch Music Festivals (2019)

Festivals in the Netherlands: The 20 Best Dutch Music Festivals (2019)

Music festivals in the Netherlands are at an all-time peak, as the country maintains its position as one of the top European music + party destinations. The music scene in Amsterdam has always been notoriously bumping, known not only for club nights but for forest/warehouse raves and park parties as well.

Dutch music festivals had no choice but to evolve with the scene, pulling in amazing lineups and always a high production value. Amsterdam is also widely considered the home of EDM/electronic music, with many world-famous DJ’s beginning their career here, and that fact is definitely reflected  within all of these festivals in the Netherlands.

From the annual Amsterdam Dance Event each October, which is like one big Amsterdam festival spread out across tons of amazing venues in the city, to quite a few more remote camping festivals scattered through the Dutch countryside, The Netherlands really do have it all when it comes to music festivals… and I’m here to share the best ones with you.

The best festivals in the Netherlands to get to for amazing music, art, and vibes at the best dutch music festivals!

Planning to hit some festivals in the Netherlands this season? Pin me!

The 20 Best Festivals in the Netherlands

So, these festivals are ranked solely by the amount of ticket sales they bring in. Festicket shared with me their data on festivals in the Netherlands (and festivals in Europe, too… see below) so these are ranked by the amount of revenue they generate.

This does mean that the ones higher on the list will tend to be bigger in size, but also means that this is a list of the ‘true’ top 20 most popular music festivals in the Netherlands.

First, Check Out More European Music Festivals:

DLDK: Don’t Let Daddy Know Festival

Where:

Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam

When:

1-2 March

Genre:

EDM

Don’t Let Daddy Know, or DLDK, is a massive EDM festival of a 17,000 capacity located within the biggest events venue in Amsterdam, the Ziggo Dome. Big EDM names such as Don Diablo, Skrillex, Timmy Trumpet, Tiesto, Steve Angello, and Laidback Luke will play beats over incredible sound systems to amped-up festival-goers at one of the biggest festivals in the Netherlands.

DLDK has grown more and more after its inception as a beach party in Ibiza, and how holds the title of one of the most famous EDM festivals with a community vibe inside a massive arena.

 

2. AMF 2019

Where:

Johan Cruijff ArenA, Amsterdam

When:

20 October

Genre:

EDM, Electronic, House

AMF, or Amsterdam Music Festival, is held in another massive arena each October. This Dutch music festival is special because it pairs up with the famous electronic music magazine, DJmag, to announce the year’s vote in the ‘top 100 dj’s.’ It’s always an exciting and interesting announcement each year, and when you pair it with top-of-the0line production and sound systems  at AMF, it’s pretty special.

Amsterdam Music Festival is generally known for having the biggest names in mainstream EDM/electro, such as Axwell, David Guetta, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Armin Van Buuren, and Tiesto, and W&W. There is a small but curated lineup each year and it’s always a fantastic show for the one-day event.

3. Elrow Town Festival

Where:

NDSM Warehouse, Amsterdam

When:

18 Aug 2019

Genre:

House + Techno

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – Elrow is probably the craziest party that ever roamed the Earth. If you don’t already know, Elrow puts on the weird and wonderful house + techno party that has now touched down in dozens of countries with its confetti, streamers, blow-up toys, and costumed actors running (and surfing) through the crowd.

Elrow’s Amsterdam edition takes place at what used to be the largest shipbuilding factory in Europe until 1979, and is now, obviouisly, a massive industrial warehouse party venue. If that doesn’t sound like one of the best festivals in the Netherlands, I don’t know what does!

 

4. Loveland

Where:

Sloterpark, Amsterdam

When:

10-11 Aug + 27 April

Genre:

House + techno

Loveland is a long-running house + techno festival that makes its way to the open green lakeside space of Amsterdam’s Sloterpark each summer. Loveland is about more than just the music, though – as a full art + music festival you can head to different areas to do/appreciate art, relax in hammocks, and shop in markets. The stages are always more than stages, too – rather, creative and unusual structures blasting the music.

To guarantee the intimate experience, Loveland actually narrows its six stages down to three on day two. House, techno, and underground artists that Loveland has seen in the past include Sasha, the Martinez Brothers, Pan Pot, Adam Beyer, Tale of Us, Marco Carola, Dixon, and Henry Saiz.

5. The Flying Dutch 2019

Where:

Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and Eindhoven

When:

2 June

Genre:

EDM

The Flying Dutch is a very interesting 11-hour party spanning three different cities at the same time. Wondering where the name came from? Get this – they host a lineup of all Dutch DJ’s, and actually fly them from one venue to the other via helicopter so they can make it to all three. Get it – it really is ‘flying Dutch’ 😛

Last year’s lineup included the Netherlands’ biggest – Afrojack, Armin van Buuren, Tiesto, W&W, Don Diablo, R3Hab, and Sunnery James + Ryan Marciano, among others. If you wante massive production value and to take part in one of the most unique festivals in the Netherlands, check this one out! And if you end up in there – make sure to check out all the amazing innovation and food in Eindhoven!

 

6. Music On Festival

Where:

Amsterdam, Netherlands

When:

11-12 May

Genre:

House + Techno

Music On is a festival put on my Marco Carola’s record label of the same name, and has brought in massive names within a similar genre. It’s a new festival, but the last year or two has seen the likes of Loco Dice, Marco Carola, Sam Pagiani, Claude Von Stroke, Luiciano, and Loco Dice.

7. DGTL Festival

Where:

NDSM Warehouse, Amsterdam

When:

19-21 April

Genre:

House + Techno

DGTL is an underground and up-and-coming festival with its flagship edition in Amsterdam and satellite editions from Barcelona to Sao Paulo. Located at an incredible massive shipbuilding warehouse, it has the perfect vibe for an underground warehouse party and is sure to be a good time.

Stars at DGTL have included Theo Parrish, Maya Jane Coles, Honey Dijon, Nachtbreaker, and Floating Points, of course backed up by name smaller yet equally talented names who will be the at the forefront of tomorrow.

8. Mysteryland 2019

Where:

Haarlemmermeer, Netherlands (5k from Schipol airport)

When:

23-26 Aug

Genre:

Electronic, EDM, House, Techno

Mysteryland is one of the ‘OG’ electronic music festivals. It’s been going since 1993 (Yep, 25 years), and it considered to be one of the first festivals to solely offer an array of electronic music genres. Like its name suggests, Mysteryland transports you into another world of fantasy with incredible colorful stages, decorations, psychedelic art, and Alice-in-Wonderland-esque vibes. You won;t find a ‘normal’ stage here – all are decked out to resemble some fairytale-like setting.

Mysteryland is a camping festival located between the fields and trees of Haarlemmermeer, 25km south of Amsterdam. Headliners in the past have been Hardwell, Sven Vath, Axwell V Ingrosso, Green Velvet, Loco Dico, Alesso, Jamie Jones, Dillon Francis, Headhunterz, and Patrick Topping. So basically, everything you can imagine within the electronic music umbrella – there’s something for everyone!

9. Liquicity Festival

Where:

Geestmerambacht parkland,Oudkarspel, an hour north of Amsterdam

When:

19-21 July

Genre:

Drum & Bass

Liquicity quickly grew from a club night label to having its own festival, drawing in d&b lovers from all walks of life. Taking place in in open parkland with relax areas, hot tubs, volleyball courts, and more, Liquicity provides a great environment for three stages of nothing but bass (okay, sometimes a new other things 😛 ).

High Contrast, Zazu, Maduk, Sub Focus, Selektor & Subsequent, Edlan, and Lexurus have headlined in the past, and there’s sure to be even bigger lineups planned for one of the only drum & bass music festivals in the Netherlands.

 

10. Oh My! Music Festival

Where:

Johan Cruijff Arena, Amsterdam

When:

29 June

Genre:

Hip Hop, Urban

Oh My! is a classic one-day Dutch music festival for all lovers of rap and hip hop. Big names such as Wiz Khalifa, French Montana, Young Thug, Big Sean, and T-Pain will frequent a few different stages across one of Amsterdam’s best outdoor arenas.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BqRqrDqlqeW

11. Milkshake Festival Amsterdam

Where:

Westerpark, Amsterdam

When:

27 – 28 July

Genre:

House, Techno, Electronic

Milkshake is an epic two-day weekender festival in a sunny Amsterdam park that is dedicated to the idea of being yourself, dressing up, having fun, and acceptance. Bringing in a local lineup of mostly house + techno artists and curated by two of Amsterdam’s biggest clubs, Milkshake is a fun time for all who attend. Sandrien, MC Monsieur Plastique, Chris Bekker, Vieze Poezendek, Supertoys, and Pornceptual have headlined in the past.

12. A State of Trance Festival

Where:

Jaarbeurs event space, Utrecht, Netherlands

When:

23 Feb

Genre:

Let’s have a guess…. trance!

A rare February festival in the Netherlands, A State of Trance (ASOT) Takes place over 5 stages in Utrecht. ASOT is one of the world’s leading trance labels, and really comes to life with all the world’s best trance DJ’s for an awesome one-day Dutch music festival.

This year’s headliners are already out – they include Cosmic Gate, Above & Beyond, Armin Van Buuren, Vini Vici, Astrix, and more.

13. Best Kept Secret 2019

Where:

Safaripark Beekse Bergen, Hilvarenbeek, Netherlands

When:

7-9 June

Genre:

Indie, Rock, Alternative

Best Kept Secret is one of the best Rock festivals in the Netherlands, and get this – it takes place within a SAFARI PARK. Like, a zoo. Between headlining sets you can casually head to the animal area to watch the zebras or giraffes, making it surely one of Europe’s most unique music festival venues. The five stages are also set along a beautiful lake, giving it a perfect vibe to relax or dance to amazing artists.

In the past, Best Kept Secret has seen the likes of The XX, Arctic Monkeys, Beck, Alt-J, Angus & Julia Stone, Khruangbin, and Gang of Youths. And if you add camping alongside elephants, that sounds pretty damn cool.

 

14. Boothstock Festival

Where:

Kralingse Bos park, Rotterdam, Netherlands

When:

9 June

Genre

House, Techno, Hip Hop

Boothstock takes place within the lakeside forest and park of Kralingse Bos in Rotterdam: a beautiful venue for one of the best outdoor multi-genre Dutch music festivals. With multiple stages simply named for their genre (‘house,’ ‘techno,’ ‘main,’ ‘urban area,’ etc), it’ll be hard to get lost from the music you like here.

Headliners in the past few years have been Kerri Chandler, Monika Kruse, Juan Sanchez, Dennis Ferrer, The Partysquad, and more. If you;re in Rotterdam, this is one of the music festivals in the Netherlands not to miss.

15. We Are Electric Weekender 2019

Where:

Velder Woods, Liempde, Netherlands

When:

6-8 July

Genre:

All Bass: Dubstep, Drum & Bass, Techno

We Are Electric weekender is an awesome festival in some beautiful woods, with a serene setting for some hard-hitting basslines. Rudimental, Knife Party, Pendulum, Tiga, and Rodhad are some of the very electronically diverse lineup that has shown up in the past few years. Match those beats with a waterfront venue and you have a great weekend.

 

16. Oranjebloesem 2019

Where:

Blijburg Aan Zee Beach, Amsterdam Netherlands

When:

King’s Day Weekend, 27th April

Genre:

House, Techno, Electronic

Oranjebloesem is a beautiful sunny festival on King’s Day weekend that legitimately takes place at a vast sandy beach venue outside of Amsterdam. Located across 5 stages that are both outdoor and tented, attendees will have plenty of choices between music or simply laying out in the (hopefully) sun. With loads of vendors and bars, this festival is a perfect way to celebrate King’s Day.

Oranjebloesem has seen lineups in the past with the likes of DJ Tennis, Joris Voorn, KiNK, Job Jobse, Weval, Ame, and more. House music lovers unite on the beach!

17. Kingsland Festival Amsterdam 2019

Where:

RAI Exhibition Center, Amsterdam

When:

27th April, King’s Day

Genre:

EDM, House

Kingsland is actually four festivals in the Netherlands at once, in that it takes place in four cities at the same time! Kingsland Amsterdam is of course the pioneer and most popular of these festivals, taking place at a massive convention center called RAI. All of the festivals of course take place on the famous Dutch holiday in April, King’s Day!

Kingland Festival usually brings in some massive names in the mainstream/EDM/electro category, as well as some house. In the past it has seen Tiesto, W&W, Axwell V Ingrosso, Oliver Heldens, DJ Snake, Hardwell, and Lost Frequencies – playing to a sea of fans dressed in the traditional King’s Day color – white!

18. Toffler Festival

Where:

Roel Langerakpark, Rotterdam,. Netherlands

When:

19 May

Genre:

Techno

Toffler is a quaint one-day event full of the most epic techno and a beautiful park backdrop. Expect amazing stages and production value within the grassy fields of Roel Langerakpark in Rotterdam, and relentless techno beats.

Adam Beyer, Amelie Lens, Dubfire, DJ Rush, Pan-Pot, Agoria, and more have headlined in the past and you can always expect and equally amazing techno lineup in the future.

 

19. Lief Festival 2019

Where:

Recreatieplas Strijkviertel, Utrecht, Netherlands

When:

1 Sept

Genre:

House + Techno

Located in a beautiful grassy recreational space in Utrecht with lakes and forests alongside its open spaces. It’s the perfect venue for a house + techno festival that has seen artists such as Klaudia Gawlas, Benny Rodrigues, Jungle By Night, Dubfire, and Enrico Sangiuliano.  It’s only a one-day affair so make sure to get in early so you don’t miss any of the amazing day-into-night party.

20. Amsterdam Open Air 2019

Where:

Gaasperpark, Amsterdam

When:

2-3 June

Genre:

Electronic, House, Techno

Amsterdam Open Air is exactly as its name suggests – an open air festival in Amsterdam (ha, ha). It takes place across nine stages in a beautiful wooded park, of which none are ‘main’ and all are equally important within their own vibe. Amsterdam Open Air is one of the amazing outdoor festivals in the Netherlands that also focuses heavily on art, installations, and incredible options for food and drink, too.

In the past this Dutch music festival has had amazing lineups including Maya Jane Coles, Malaa, Hot Singe 82, Sigma, Boys Noize, Eats Everything, MK, Kerri Chandler, and more across even more different electronic genres.

The Top 20 Dutch Music Festivals - 20 music festivals in the Netherlands not to miss this festival season
Don’t forget to pin this list of festivals in the Netherlands!

November 23, 2018

UK Music Festivals: The 20 Best UK Festivals + Travel Packages

UK Music Festivals: The 20 Best UK Festivals + Travel Packages

UK music festivals are hard to rank, because there are literally dozens of UK festivals popping up each new summer alongside the veteran festivals in the UK that have been around for years. The United Kingdom has proved itself as at the forefront of the European Festival scene, taking up a majority of the top spots for the most popular and best festivals in Europe.

There are UK music festivals for every imaginable genre, all over the country. From Scotland to Wales to the south coast to London you’ll find festivals from House + Techno to EDM to Drub & Bass to Rock. These UK festivals have you covered for any need you may have – and to think that this is only the top 20 and that there there are (many) more!

Festicket shared with me their data for the highest revenue-generating UK festivals, meaning the ones that the most people go to and are buying tickets for. So these UK music festivals quite literally are the ‘top 20.’ I’ll do a post eventually on more off-the-beaten-path UK festivals (Lost Village is one of my favorites), but for how, here are the bona-fide 20 best festivals in the UK (plus a few bonuses) with info on any and all travel/accommodation packages you can book to save money.

But First, Check Out My Other Festival Content:

the 20 best uk music festivals

Want to look back at which UK festivals are in the top 20?! Pin this for later! 

1. Leeds Festival

Where:

Leeds

When:

Aug 25-27

Genre:

multi – electronic, rock, pop, indie

 

Leeds is one of the most popular festivals in the UK. It’s actually one of the most well-known festivals not only the UK but in Europe (and the world?) and is sort-of like a right of passage for UK festival goers – nearly all of them will have been to Leeds or its sister festival, Reading.

What began as a rock festival has not expanded to nearly every genre imaginable. You’ll still see huge names in the rock and alternative scene as well as house, techno, pop, trap, hip hop… and basically everything. Some previous headliners have been Bastille, Kings of Leon , Dillon Francis , Bicep, Red Hot Chilli Peppers, and Muse.

There is also a great lineup of comedy and cinema for when you aren’t out chasing different artists at different stages!

 

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Always a mad ting @officialgiggs 🙌🏼

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2. Parklife

Where:

Manchester

When:

8-9 June

Genre:

Mixed – hip hop, house, indie

Parklife has long been regarded as one of the finer UK festivals. The lineup is always mind-blowingly massive (like many festivals in the UK), but there are also funfair rides, interactive performers, busking, cabaret, and more art.

The XX, Skepta, Eric Prdydz, Jamie Jones, and A$AP Rocky have been previous headliner of this awesome two day festival. You can expect big names across all stages all day – it might be hard to decide where to go, but all options will be awesome!

3. Creamfields

Where:

Daresbury

When:

22-25 August

Genre:

House, Techno, EDM, Grime

Creamfields is another one of the iconic UK music festivals that are well-known and well-established. Creamfields is specifically a dance music festival, and the UK’s biggest at that at 70k people.

Creamfields has different stages for the different genres under the large ‘electronic’ umbrella, and big names such as Carl Cox, Armin Van Buuren, Green Velvet, Andy C, Above & Beyond, Alesso, and MK, just to name a few! You can guarantee that there will be a great lineup all weekend at each stage here.

4. Wireless Festival

Where:

Finsbury Park, London

When:

5-7 July

Genre:

Hip Hop/Grime/Urban

Wireless is the UK’s most popular urban/hip hop centered festival. With previous headliners like Post Malone, DJ Khaled, Cardi B, Chance the Rapper, and Fetty Wap, it’s sure to be a shoe-in for anyone who is into that kind of music scene. It’s held just outside on London in Finsbury Park and is easily accessible.

 

 

5. Isle of Wight

Where:

Isle Of Wight, off England’s South Coast

When:

13-16 June

Genre:

Mixed: Indie, rock, pop

Having started FIFTY YEARS ago (you read that right), Isle of Wight is much more than a music festival. Expect games, performances, theater, cinema, comedy, and more at this 4-day family-friendly festival.

It brings in a massively diverse lineup from lots of different genres, from big names to local up-and-coming’s. To name a few, Depeche Mode, The Killers, Jessie J, Wheatus, and even Queen and Jay-Z have been to Isle of Wight.

5. TRNSMT Festival

Where:

Glasgow, Scotland (Glasgow Green- City Center!)

When:

12-14 July

Genre:

Indie, Rock

TRNSMT is a festival held within walking distance of anywhere in central Glasgow, and has a great lineup of fun rock, alternative, and indie bands. TRNSMT has seen the likes of the Arctic Monkeys, Radiohead, London Grammar, The Kooks, Two Door Cinema Club in the heart of Scotland.

One of the cool things about TRNSMT is that most people head out to parties and bars in Glasgow afterwards to keep the party going. It’s a great way to experience great music and Glasgow in one weekend.

6. RiZE Festival

Where:

Hylands Park, Chelmsford, Essex

When:

Aug 16-17

Genre:

Mixed Electronic, Indie

 

It would be impressive to see the new RiZE festival in the top 10 best UK festivals if you didn’t know that it actually took over the reigns from the hugely popular V Festival. V was a big player in the Uk music festival game for many years, and now we have the diverse RiZE in its place.

RiZE saw the likes of Years & Years, Sean Paul, Example, Bastille, Craig David, and Disciples before, and shows a lot of promise for the future.

 

 

7. Lovebox Festival

Where:

Gunnersbury Park, London

When:

12-13 July

Genre:

Multi-Genre: House, Techno, Hip Hop, Grime/Urban

Lovebox is a popular weekender which grew from a tiny show at a strip club to a massive park affair moving through different parks in London as it grew. Now in the lovely Gunnersbury park, Lovebox will be back for its 14th edition and possible biggest lineup yet.

Lovebox in the past has seen the likes of Annie Mac, Childish Gambino, Diplo, Jamie XX, Bonobo, N.E.R.D., Loco Dice… you can see the sheer variety by just those artists! It’s also known for its art installations, fun themed bars, and even a roller disco.

8. Reading Festival

Where:

Little John’s Farm, Reading, UK

When:

23-25 August

Genre:

Multi-Genre: historically rock, now with electronic, house, hip hop, and more

Reading is the equally famous sister festival to Leeds, which share the same lineup and weekend as each other. It’s up to you which location is more convenient! Obviously Reading is a bit more convenient to Londoners and Southerners, while Leeds may be easier for Northerners.

Reading has of course also seen some of the most massive names in the music sphere, from Muse, Major Lazer, Flume, Blink 182, Paramore, Arctic Monkeys, Arcade Fire, Andy C, and more. If you haven’t been yet, you need to go at least once to experience it!

 

 

9. Download Festival

Where:

Donington Park, Derby, UK

When:

14-16 June

Genre:

Punk, Rock, Metal

Download is the UK’s quintessential rock and punk festival, for all the headbangers out there who enjoy the live bands or the screamo! This festival is definitely at the forefront of the world in terms of rock festivals as well, and can guarantee to sell out with the big names it pulls in on the racetrack each year.

It will see/has seen the likes of Def Leppard, Slipknot, Die Antwoord, Ozzy Osborne, Avenge Sevenfold, Guns N Roses, System of a Down, and Sum 41 – which anyone will agree are the most massivge names in the industry, along with lots of up-and-comers. You can expect rocker-type side shows and comedy along with markets and lots of food.

10. Latitude Festival

Where:

Henham Park, Southwold, UK

When:

18-212 July

Genre:

Folk, Alternative, Mixed

Latitude is so much more than a festival; it’s a center for culture surrounding music, art, poetry, cabaret, theater, comedy, and wellness. Between some pretty massive headliners you can catch live art or roaming theater performances, or you can always do some yoga amongst the trees. For these reasons, Latitude os quite popular among families and can be quite laid back if that’s what you’re into.

Previous headliners have included The 1975, The Killers, Alt-J, Mumford & Sons, Jack Garratt, Milky Chance, and Glass Animals, along with an entire loineup for the theater, poetry, film, cabaret…. you get the gist!

 

11. Fusion Festival

Where:

Otterspool Promenade, Liverpool, UK

When:

Sept 1-2

Genre:

Pop, EDM

Not to be confused with the Fusion Festival in Germany, Fusion UK has quickly become one of the top UK music festivals in the popular genre. All kinds of artists famous for their top 40 songs frequent Fusion fest each early September on the beautiful seaside Otterspool promenade.

Fusion keeps it simple with one stage as not to confuse attendees as to who they should be watching. Past editions have seen the likes of Jess Glynne, David Guetta, Shawn Mendes, Zara Larsson, Clean Bandit, Little Mix, Tinie Tempah, and Jason Derulo.

 

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Golden hour at the Main Stage ☀️

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12. Field Day

Where:

Meridian Water, North London

When:

7-8 June 2019

Genre:

Mixed: Electronic, House/Techno, Hip Hop

Field Day is a two day well-known weekend festival now residing in North London. Going since 2007, Field Day has grown to be one of the best UK Festivals in London and pulls in a lineup to please any attendees as well as a diverse range of workshops and activities. The festival has moved to a bigger and better venue for 2019 which will allow later and louder music, which will please lots of festival-goers in the capital.

Field Day has seen the likes of Four Tet, Thundercat, Helena Hauff, Fever Ray, Mount Kimbie, Zhu, Caribou, Run the Jewels, and Nicolar Jaar. Next year is sure to be even bigger and better!

 

13. Bestival

Where:

Lulworth Estate, Dorset, UK

When:

26-29 July

Genre:

Miced – hip hop, garage, house, techno, alternative

Claiming ‘the most colorful show on earth,’ Bestival is always going to be a fun, crazy, and expressive party drawing all kinds of crowds. Bestival is much more than a festival, with crazy circus acts, fun and interactive art installations and structures, comedy, theater, and anything you can imagine going on inside Lulworth castle.

Each year has a different theme, which encourages festival-goers to dress up even more than your standard festival. The lineup is also crazily diverse, with stages and artists in every genre imaginable. Past headliners have included London Grammar, Honey Dijon, Mura Masa, Grace Jones, Charlotte De Witte, MIA, Chaka Khan, Rudimental, Amelie Lens, The XX, Pet Shop Boys, Annie Mac, Maceo Plex….. I think you get the diversity point, don’t you? 😛

 

 

14. Sundown Festival

Where:

Norfolk Showground, Norwich, UK

When:

30 Aug – 1 Sep 2019

Genre:

Pop, bass, grime

Sundown brings in the best in pop, bass/drum & bass, and house music, with lineups ranging from Zara Larsson, Clean Bandit, and John Newman to Sigala, Sigma, and Amine Edge & Dance, to Disciples, CamelPhat, and Hannah Wants. So, there’s a bit of everything to enjoy.

When you aren’t deciding what music genre you want to experience, you can take a ride at the fairgrounds or wander through the trees finding secret stages and art installations to entertain you.

15. Community Festival

Where:

Finsbury Park, London

When:

30 June

Genre:

Indie, Rock, Alternative

Community Festival is a one day fest in the heart of London that has grown massively in popularity over the last 3 years it has run. Bringing in names like The Kooks, Kate Nash, The Amazons, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Nothing But Theives, and more.

With just two stages you aren’t too spoilt for choice as to where to enjoy some great rock music in the sunny London summer – it’s very affordable, too!

16. Mint Festival

Where:

RAF Church Fenton (Leeds Airport), Leeds, UK

When:

21 September 2019

Genre:

Electronic, house, techno

MiNT is the end-of-summer house  + techno party in Leeds, held across some very industrial warehouses, hangars, and sea containers in an area of Leeds airport. Alongside some hard-hitting house and techno baselines, you’ll find a funfair, hot air balloons, and street food.

Expect names such as Adam Beyer, Moodymann, Gorgon City, Dixon, Eats Everything, Patrick Topping, and Joseph Capriati at this unique one-day celebration. It’s also much more affordable than it’s many other 3 or 4-day counterparts.

 

 

17. Love Supreme Jazz Festival

Where:

Glynde Place, Lewes, UK

When:

5-7 July

Genre:

Jazz

 

Love Supreme is a unique 3-day jazz camping festival in a large green park in Lewes – the only one of its kind in the UK. Love Supreme combines the camping and extra activities aspect of music festivals and combines with with jazz, funk, and  soul music for an all-around awesome weekend for jazz-lovers. They even have classic album playbacks along with interesting panels, dance classes, film, and even a kids area so parents can have their fun too.

The lineup has seen groups like Earth, Wind, and Fire, Tom Misch, Elvis Costello and the Imposters, PP Arnold, Portico Quartet, Orphy Robinson Allstars, Herbie Hancock, Robert Glasper Experiment, and more!

18. Elrow Town London 2019

Where:

Olympic Park, London, UK

When:

17 August

Genre:

House + Techno

 

If you don’t already know what Elrow is, you’d better get on your game. Started in Barcelona, Elrow is surely the craziest party out there with the most colorful assortment of confetti, streamers, blow-up toys, crazy costumes, and actors in costume doing crazy things through the crowd (think, people in chicken suits crowd-surfing on rafts). It’s an awesome time.

Elrow lineups are always on point, with house and techno giants like Waff, Paul Kalkbrenner, Richy Ahmed, Steve Lawler, Claptione, and Fatboy Slim attending the last edition of Elrow Town London. It’s one of the most fun and unique UK music festivals for sure.

19. Blue Dot Festival

Where:

Jodrell Bank Discovery Center, Macclesfield, UK

When:

18-21 July

Genre:

Pop, Electronic, House

Bluedot is a very unique arts, science and music festival at an actual science center in Macclesfield. It’s got live science experiments, discussions, debates, film screenings, panels, and fascinating workshops (think, robots, astronomy, and more) alongside am alternative/electronic lineup. How fascinating is that?! I truly haven’t seen such a unique festival experience before!

Alongside its interesting science and cosmic classes, Blue Dot has seen artists like the Chemical Brothers, Helena Hauff, Little Dragon, Future Island, and The Flaming Lips at its last few editions. If you happen to like science and music, this might be your holy grail.

 

 

20. Wilderness Festival

Where:

Charlbury, UK

When:

1-4 August

Genre:

House, Electronic, Pop/Rock

Wilderness is one of the most well-known UK Music festivals, and it’s famous for its nearly Alice-in-Wonderland type vibe with whimsical decorations, themes, colors, and costumes within, well, the Wilderness. Like tons of UK festivals, Wilderness has a totally immersive vibe with workshops, yoga, wellness areas, theater, art, and more scattered throughout its grounds. Oh, and they take lots of pride in their amazing food and drink as well!

Lineups for Wilderness have always been great, with a focus on more popular/indie and also electonic. It’s seen the likes of Bastille, Nile Rogers, Peggy Gou, Groove Armada, Bjork, Empire of the Sun, Damian Lazarus, Sam Smith, Two Door Cinema Club, and Bonobo.

 

Bonus UK Music Festivals I Couldn’t Leave Out:

We Are FSTVL

Where:

Upminster, UK

When:

24-26 May

Genre:

House, Techno, Electronic

At the very end of the eastern district line, you’ll find  the wildly popular We Are FSTVL each late May. This festival brings in an absolutely massive lineup each year, and has quite a few different tent and outdoor stages with different predominant genres. It also has a massive and separate VIP area with its own stage, which is only slightly more expensive than a regular ticket and very worth it! I’ve been twice and remember being so impressed by jacuzzi areas and special food stands in VIP each time.

Lineups at ‘We Are’ as it’s called for short have seen people like Solomun, Sam Divine, Jauz, Nina Kraviz, Eric Prydz, Jax Jones, Loco Dice, Craig David, the Black Madonna, Marco Carola, Carl Cox, and more – always stacked!

 

 

Common People

Where:

Southhampton Common, Southhampton, UK

When:

25-26 May 2019

Genre:

Multi-Genre: Electronic, pop, rock, indie

Common People is one of the top Southern UK music festivals and brings a diverse lineup to yet another British grassy fields in May. Founded by the same guy as Bestival, you can expect similar creativity flowing through the grounds with art, workshops, dance classes, and interactive fun.

There are actually two editions of Common People now – in Oxford and Southhampton. Lineups in the past have included Lily Allen, All Saints, The Jacksons, Pete Tong, Sean Paul, Groove Armada, Goldie, Craig David, and Duran Duran.

 

the 20 best uk festivals in the uk

Don’t forget to pin this Uk Music festivals guide! 

November 21, 2018

The Definitive Best Melbourne Summer Festivals/Doofs/Events Schedule

The Definitive Best Melbourne Summer Festivals/Doofs/Events Schedule

Having just moved here as a music lover, I have been pretty overwhelmed looking at how much there is going on over the Melbourne summer. I’ve had my eyes on quite a few Aussie festivals over the years, but after moving to Victoria I’ve been hoping to hone in on the awesome events going on in this state (I would be in way too deep if I tried to make it to festivals all over the country!) After making my own little list of events I’ve seen here and there, I wanted to share it with all of you fellow music lovers so you can have some insight into what kinds of things are going on here that you’ll love too.

Being a house music and transformational festival fan, I have had the tendency to lean toward events that have a focus on house + techno, probably more mindful events like yoga and different workshops, and definitely a good focus on art. All of the complete festivals I’ve included will fit this bill, whereas most of the one-day events (of which there are also a surprising amount) do as well.

The festivals I have my eyes on are unique. A lot of these are during the day, and they all have a focus on good food, art, performances and/or activities, and obviously awesome music. One thing you will notice is that these all incorporate more than just a club-night music show… if you want to find club nights, you can easily check online.

When making my summer festival schedule, I thought it would be a good idea not to have more than one full 3-4 day festival a month (due to trying to maintain wellbeing, work, sleep, money, and all that boring slightly important stuff :P) but fill in the schedule with a surprising amount of incredible 1-day events/doofs in the Melbourne area with awesome lineups and unique aspects in and of themselves.

So, if you’re a Melbourne doofer, house + techno lover, or transformational festie fanatic, I’ve done the research for you and all you have to do is plan your schedule and most likely save up just a a liiiiiittle bit of money.

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Do like @peggygou_ & show us your best moves.

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Nov 2 Weekend

Chi Wow Wah Town: Nov 2-4

Where: “Out Friends Farm” near Melbourne

Lineup: Steve Bug, Andreas Henneberg, Bondi, Saand, Moontide, Doppel, Jamie Stevens, Sacred Summit many more

Time: 12pm Friday – 12pm Monday

Price: $180- $240

Notes: This is a 3 days camping, art, and house + techno gathering on a farm.

Nov 10th Weekend

Lake People Gathering: Nov 10

Where: Riva St Kilda

Lineup: Lee Burridge, Saand, Oona Dahl, Bondi

Time: 5pm-3am

Price: $60-$80 on the Door

Notes: The All Day I Dream Crew comes to an awesome venue in Aus for a night of incredible melodic house music and interesting performers! Be there.

Nov 15 Weekend

Strawberry Fields: Nov 15-18

Where: Bank of the Murray River, Tocumwal, NSW (Just over the border from Victoria)

Lineup: Andhim, Blond:ish, CC:Disco!, Heidi, Honey Dijon, Hiatus Coyote, Max Gref, Oona Dahl, Sasha, Willow, Township Rebellion

Time: 12pm Friday – Monday

Price: $280 – $340

Notes: Strawberry Fields is one of Australia’s premiere transformational festivals/doofs and has the lineup, activities, art, and production to show it. If there’s one festival you make it to out here, make it ‘Strawbs’ as it’;s affectionately called by those who attend. It’s on the banks of the Murray river, and you can compliment your dancing and art0admiring with swims in the river.

Website  + Read my Strawberry Fields Festival Review-Guide Here!

Nov 24 Weekend

Grapevine Gathering : Nov 24

Where: Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley

Lineup: The Wombats, The Jungle Giants, Tkay Maizda, Lovebirds, Dom Dolla, MK, Miami Horror

Time: 1pm – 10pm

Price: $86 – $117

Notes: Victoria’s music and wine pairing festival… what could be better?! Head out to an actual winery in the Yarra Valley to see an incredible mix of TripleJ-esque music and some nice boiuncy + melodic house. This is an event not to miss this season!

Website

Piknic Electronik #1: Nov 25 (+ Every Sunday Till Feb 24)

Where: Sidney Mywe Music Bowl Southside

Lineup: Mall Grab, Nite Leite, Lodos, Pelvis (week 1) Plus many other artists each week

Time: 2pm-9pm

Price: $20 – $35 / Season Pass $165

Notes: Piknic Electronik is an awesome event that takes place right on the banks of the Yarra River near the Botanical Gardens, twice a month on Sunday. Each week they have an awesome lineup with a backdrop of the city to spend a sunny Sunday with awesome electronic music.

Website

Hatch Laneway Fiesta: Nov 25

Where: Apparently, a Secret Location in Melbs

Lineup: Lonely C from Soul Clap, Minilogue/Son Kite (Marcus), Edd Fisher (Wax’o Paradiso), SQL + Child, Muska

Time: 2pm-12am

Price: $28 – $46

Notes: Hatch is a psychedelic Melbourne Events company running events in Bali and Melbs. Should always be a good vibe.

Tickets

Dec 2 Weekend

LUFT: Dec 2

Where: Central Pier, Docklands

Lineup: Andhim, Alex Stein, Victor Ruiz, Solee, Boogs, Amuze, Leigh Boy, many more

Time: 2pm- 10pm

Price: $63 – $105

Notes: LUFT is a first year house and techno event held in a diverse venue with both inside and outside elements, right on the water in docklands. Along with great sounds, they also focus on art and delicious culinary experiences as well.

Tickets

December 8th Weekend

Meredith Music Festival: Dec 7-9

Where: Meredith Supernatural Amphitheater (1.5hrs from CBD)

Lineup: Sampa the Great, the Presets, Dj Jnett, Clypso, Genesis Owusu, Billy Bragg, The Breeders, City of Ballarat Municipal Brass Band

Time: Dec 7-9

Price: $390

Notes: A bit more of an alternative/rock/basically everything possible festival, Meredith is known for being a little but of everything with a lot going on. It’s one of the most well-known festivals in Australia with an unfathomable amount of art, talent, performers, activities, and silliness. Oh, and did I mention it’s in its 28th year?! Yep.

It’s sold out for this year, so you’ll have to pull some strings for a ticket!

Website

The Pleasure Garden: Dec 8

Where: Catani Gardens, St Kilda

Lineup: The Temper Trap, Zavier Rudd, Sampa the Great, Spoonbill, Stickybuds, Nora En Pure, A.Skillz, Jamie Stevens, Alex Stein

Time: 10:30am-10pm

Price: $71 – $105

Notes: In a sunny field on the water in St Kilda you’ll find the awesome Pleasure Garden Festival. Along with a multi – genre lineup there will be handcrafted cockatils, awesome art installations and activities, and delicious food. There’s even yoga and workshops in the morning! Check, check, and check…. see ya there.

Website

 

Smalltown: Dec 9

Where: Catani Gardens St Kilda

Lineup: Steven Bodzin, Marcel Dettman, Dense & Pika, Made in Paris

Time: 1pm – 9pm

Price: $65 – $97

Notes: Novel has come out with their very first edition of Smalltown for this year, with a massive international lineup – as would be expected by big shots like them. This daytime shindig will take place in the grassy fields of Catani Gardens on the shores of St Kilda – a perfect setting for some incredible daytime house + techno.

Website

December 15 Weekend

Petting Zoo Festival: Dec 15

Where: Yarra Park, East Melbourne

Lineup: Denis Cruz, Latmun, Miguel Campbell, Max Chapman, Friend Within, Raffa FL, Dousk, Angelo Ferreri

Time: 12pm – 11pm

Price: $64.31 – $123.28

Notes: The Petting Zoo is where all the wild animals go to play on this (hopefully) sunny December afternoon in the park! Get your techno pants on and get ready for a nice of awesome music, rover artists, performers, and magicians, installations, and of course amazing food and drink.

Tickets

December 22 Weekend

Elrow Melbourne: Dec 22

Where: Melbourne Showgrounds, Ascot Vale

Lineup: John Digweed, Kevin Knapp,

Time: 1pm –

Price: $93 – $114

Notes: The world famous ELROW comes to Melbourne just before Christmas this year. If you don’t know what elrow is…. I’m tempted to convince you to buy a ticket without telling you what it is and have your mind TOTALLY BLOWN when you arrive. But really, Elrow is unlike any party on this earth. If you take wierdness and square it a million times, throw in costumed characters and stilt walkers acting and playing within the crowd, add a sh*tload fo confetti/streamers and busloads of inflatable pool toys in wierd shapes… you get elrow. Just go, that’s all I can say.

Tickets

Day Doof: Dec 23

Where: Greenfields Albert Park

Lineup: Sebastian Leger, Davi, Khen

Time: 2pm – 11pm

Price: $40 – $50

Notes: After orignally being held iunsude a venue, this year Day Doof will be in a beautiful aprk overlooking Albert Lake. Expect performers, installations, activations, yoga + lifestyle, and food trucks alongside your incredible melodic house/techno lineup. Like honestly, these three dj’s together is  dream… I hope I’m in town.

Tickets

 

New Years Weekend/Day

Beyond the Valley Dec 28 – Jan 1

Where: Lardner Park, Victoria

Lineup: The Kooks, Fisher, Tash Sultana, Duke Dumont, Pnau, Yotto, Boo Seeka, Sonny Fodera, Peggy Gou, Safia, Vera Blue, Boogs, Foals, CAssian, Richy Ahmed, Mall Grab

Time: Thurs 28 Dec – Leave Jan 1st

Price: About $465

Notes: Beyond the Valley is an absolutely stacked festival taking place over New Years in Victoria. The lineup is unbeatable, and its shaping up to be an epic weekend with lots of different camping options, workshops, yoga, colorful art all over the place, and an equally stacked lineup of food and drinks. If there’s an easy pick for New Years… it’s this. And hey, iif you’re a bit crazy, you can still make it to some NYD events afterwards! 😛

Website

Falls Festival Lorne: Dec 28 Dec – 31 Jan

Where: Lorne

Lineup: Anderson.Paak, Catfish + the Bottlemen, Vance Joy, Chvrches, Dizzee Rascal, Toto, Flight Facilities, Golden Features, Tkay Maizda

Time: Friday-Sunday

Price: $350+ For 4-day

Notes: Falls is a classic traveling festival that takes place in most Aussie states on/around New Years.

Website

Let Them Eat Cake: Jan 1

Where: Werribee Park Mansion Grounds

Lineup: Ama Lou, CC; Disco!, Opiou, Peggy Gou, DJ Tennis, Moxie, Flava D, Nightmares on Wax

Time: 11am – 10:30pm

Price: $130 – $160

Notes: Let Them Eat Cake is the quintessential and trendy Melbourne New Year’s Day event – anyone who is anyone should be there. Taking place in a beautiful park outside the Werribee mansion, the venue will set it up to be another incredible year of house music and good times to start out the new year. If I’m still alive after my New Years festival, I’ll be there 😛

Website

 

Jan 19 Weekend

Electric Gardens: Jan 18 (Friday)

Where: Shed 14, Docklands

Lineup: Erick Morillo, Eats Everything, Set Mo, Bag Raiders, Underworld

Time: 6pm -1am

Price: $85- $128

Notes: Electric Gardens comes for another edition this year just outside the CBD inside a shed in Docklands… perfect for the deep warehouse vibes that will be going on inside it. This begins in the daytime and continues into night, with special VIP experiences available.

Tickets

Jan 25 Weekend

Rainbow Serpent Festival: Jan 25 -28

Where: Lexton, Victoria

Lineup: Altruism, Christopher Lawrence,Pollyfonkia, Clozee, Oliver Koletzki, G.M.S., Nanoplex, Patrick Topping, Way Out West, The Funk Hunters, Super Flu

Time:Jan 25th morning to 28th Afternoon

Price: $330 – $400

Notes: The quintessential Australian bush doof, Rainbow Serpent is a haven for music, arts, and all types of creativity. There’s a little bit of everythiing at this incredible and colorful summer gathering, which is surely the one doof to attend if you had to choose. There are millions of workshops, permaculture, kids areas, cinema, ceremonies, live art, installations, performances, and more at Rainbow, as well as an absolutely killer lineup. You’ll be absolutely spoilt for choice when deciding what to do, but that’s the beauty of it!

Feb 2 Weekend

Let Go Fest: Feb 2

Where: Mornington Racecourse

Lineup: Gang of Youths, Safia, Boogs, Allday, Bag Raiders, Remi

Time: 12pm – 9pm

Price: $80 – $175

Notes: Let Go Fest has just released their 2019 lineup, and it looks like it’s going to be a great one. Located on the sunny fields of the Mornington Racecourse, there will be great beats, good food, and an epic time.

Tickets

Feb 9 Weekend

Laneway: Feb 9

Where: Footscray Park + Gardens

Lineup: Gang of Youths, Courtney Barnett, Mansionair, Cosmo’s Midnight, What So Not, Crooked Colours, Masego, Skeggs, Rex Orange County

Time: 11:30am- 10:30pm

Price: $175

Notes: Laneway is another popular Aussie summer festival, this one a one-dayer that travels through different main cities with a similar lineup. You’ll find Aussie-loved acts from quite a few different genres along with some great food and drink.

Website

St Kilda Festival Feb 10

Where: St Kilda Foreshore

Lineup: announced January – local talent

Time: 10am – 10pm

Price: FREE.99 BABY!

Notes: St Kilda Festival is a classic celebration of summer on the beach in St Kilda. It’s totally free and a perfect summer activity!

 

Feb 16 Weekend

Babylon Festival: 14-17 Feb

Where: Carapooee West, Central Victoria

Lineup: Amelia Lens, Damian Lazarus, Behrouz, Stimming, Solardo, Bliss, Butch, Undercat, Woo York, Guy J, Electric Universe

Time: Thursday Eve- Monday Morning

Price: $260 – $330

Notes: Babylon is another incredible music, arts, and culture festival taking place deep in the Victorian bush. The top lineup is only a small part of this festival, however. Babylon also lends a great focus to all different forms of art and performance, psychedelic stage design, workshops and installations, and more.

Website

For the Love 16 Feb

Where: Riva St Kilda

Lineup: Rufus Du Sol, Motez, KLLO

Time: 2pm – 10pm

Price: $90 – $130

Notes:  For the Love is a festival that taken place at scenic venues in three different beachside countries, and boasts a great vibe and fun lineup.

Tickets

Smalltown 2: Feb 16

Where: Caufield Racecourse

Lineup: TBA

Time: 2pm – 10pm

Price: $40 – $80

Notes: Smalltown comes back for another amazing event after its incredible December edition. These events are put 0n by Novel – who put on Pitch Music + Arts, Let them Eat Cake, and Days Like This – and they’ve yet to put on a bad show.

Event

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Pitch 2019 feat. @duskymusic

A post shared by Pitch Music & Arts (@pitchmusicandarts) on

 

Pitch Music + Arts: March 8-11

Where: Moyston, Victoria

Lineup: Charlotte de Witte, David August, Dixon b2b Ame, 16 Bit Lolitas, Daniel Avery, Disky, Four Tet, Horse Meat Disco, Monolink, Perc, Retiree, Job Jobse, Oliver Huntemann, Recondite, Tourist

Time: 12pm March 8 – March 12 morning exit

Price: $340 – $360 (4-day)

Notes: Pitch is now in its 3rd year and has quickly taken hold as one of the top transformational festivals in Australia. Pitch Music + Arts focuses on exactly that – music and arts – and large quantities of each. Pitch goes above and beyond a normal festival and elopes its festivalgoers into a wonderland full of creativity, knowledge, and relentless beats. It also has one of the best lineups out there!

Website

Days Like This March 9

Where: Victoria Park, Melbourne

Lineup: Dusky, Dixon, CC:Disco!, Cassette, Kali, Sven Vath, Denis Sulta, David August, Kali, Tourist, Oliver Huntemann, DJ Harvey, Charlotte De Witte

Time: 12om – 10pm

Price: $130 – $150

Notes: Days Like This is put on by the same stellar company as Pitch, but more for the people who can’t quite swing a 4-day camping festival but still want to check out some of the all-star international acts it’s bringing in.

Tickets

 

 

How many of these amazing events will y0u be going to? Which ones should be added? Let me know in the comments below!

 

 

Thanks so many of these events for hosting me; I can’t wait to share the magic of the Melbourne scene with the world!

November 10, 2018