The summer is made for festivals, and with the likes of Glastonbury, Wireless and V festivals selling out in record time, why not combine your love of travelling and music and hit the European festival scene. Not only are most of the European festivals cheaper than their UK counterparts, you’ll also discover a new country or city.
This is our guide to some of the best European festivals on offer, so start planning your trip now. You’ll find the same DJs and bands as you would in the UK, plus there is a better chance of that glowing yellow thing in the sky making an appearance and less chance of it being a washout or mud fest.
Optimus Primavera Sound 5th – 7th June, Porto, Portugal
This three-day festival is held in Porto Parque da Cidade on the Atlantic coast. It’s a smaller and more intimate event than its sister festival Primavera Sound, which is held in Barcelona. It is still packed full of phenomenal music with the likes of The National, Pixies, Kendrick Lamar and Caetano Veloso playing at this year’s event.
Sonar 12th – 14th July, Barcelona, Spain
Sonar Music Festival is a city festival that has two different sites to it, Sonar by Day, which is held in the city centre, and Sonar by Night held just out of town. Sonar has grown every year and is now established as one of Europe’s most well-known music festivals. The line-up this year includes Rudimental, Massive Attack and Skrillex.
FiberFib 17th – 20th July, Benicassim, Spain
Held in the small town of Benicassim between the cities of Valencia and Barcelona FiberFib (often referred to as ‘Benicassim festival’) is one of the few festivals where you can relax on the beach during the day and watch stunning sunsets over the Mediterranean Sea of an evening.
This four-day event is Spain’s largest festival with over 100 acts and four stages, it all starts at 5pm and continues until the next morning. Acts include Kasabian, Paul Weller, Jake Bugg, Example and Sub Focus.
Combine the FiberFib festival with a holiday in Costa Barcelona, where you can do as little or a much as you like. If you’re interested in arts and history there is plenty to grab your attention.
Art lovers should visit the Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art or the National Museum of Art Catalonia, whilst the history buffs among us should see the Palau de la Musica Catalana, Sagrada Familia and the architectural works of Gaudi.
If you prefer a relaxing beach holiday then head to either Santa Susanna or Malgrat de Mar. Malgrat de Mar has a long sandy beach with plenty of little hidden coves and bays where you can relax on the sand and soak up the sun. On an evening head to the Old Town where you will find bars and restaurants such as Konoba Cakula, Bacchus Vinoteka and Champions Bar.
INmusic Festival, 23rd – 25th June, Croatia
INmusic is Croatia’s largest open-air festival and enjoys the idyllic location on the Island of Youth at Zagreb’s Lake Jarun. Surrounded by green forests and a beautiful lake, it’s easy to see why this festival is gaining in popularity every year.
The festival has six stages featuring some of the biggest names in rock, pop, indie and metal. The campsite is just as entertaining with surfing, horse riding and skateboarding on offer along with some unusual workshops to enjoy. On the impressive line-up are The Black Keys, Pixies, MGMT, Bombay Bicycle Club and The Fratellies.
If you want to continue the fun when the festival ends Croatia is full of delightful coastal resorts such as Porec, Pula and Rovinj. Porec is a great place to holiday if you’re looking for a relaxing break or a cultural sightseeing trip. The resort has 15 blue flag beaches washed by the warm Adriatic Sea. Porec is extremely popular for water sports with many professional sports teams choosing to train here.
The nightlife doesn’t disappoint with the Tequila Beach Bar playing live music most nights, the bar is also a great chill-out venue during the day. If it’s a late night club you’re looking for then Club Plava is very popular and stays open until 4am.
Hideout festival, Zrce Beach, Rovinj, Croatia, 8th – 12th September
This amazing festival takes place around Zrce Beach with the main site having two outdoor stages, two outdoor swimming pools and one indoor pool. Due to the location of this festival the artists play intimate performances at various daily boat parties, beach parties and in unusual venues around the beach area. This year’s line-up includes Disclosure, London Grammar, Clean Bandit, Jamie XX and Rudimental.
My favourite festival would have to be Hideout, especially the boat parties. Have you booked to go to any festivals home or abroad this year? Tell us in the comments below!