Every year, more and more music festivals seem to pop up all over Europe, catering to diverse fan bases and based in some truly stunning locations. During the same time period, Croatia has become one of the continent’s top tourism destinations, with a reputation for being friendly, with some unbelievable scenery, and costing relatively little for travellers.
So, what festivals should you be checking out this year?
Touting itself as the biggest open-air music festival in Croatia, with 60,000 visitors, and nominated for a European Festival Award, this Zagreb-based festival is known for its laid-back attitude and a huge range of popular artists. Lovingly called “the Woodstock of the 21st century,” past headliners have included MGMT, the Pixies, and the Black Keys. No wonder National Geographic has called INmusic on of the top three world festivals to chill out, dance, and soak up the friendly vibe. Plus, what makes this festival truly worth a look is its location on two islands, surrounded by the gorgeous blue waters of Lake Jarun.
Who doesn’t want to feel cooler than everyone else, jetting to a secret Dalmatian Coast cove for an under-the-radar independent music festival in the sunshine? Soundwave is the home of beach stages, boat parties, and a very cool crowd of just 3000 lucky ticket holders—you’ll need to be quick to snap these up, but if you manage it, you’ll be rocking out under the stars at one of the world’s most exclusive and desirable concert venues.
This bass and dubstep shindig is a beloved annual gathering—past performers include Jay Electronica and Shy FX. Enjoy Croatia’s warm, laid-back attitude as you party in Fort Punta Christo, near the town of Pula. The location is almost as good as the acts, with plenty of accommodations nearby, and the building itself is a 19th-century (literal) fort, with stages such as “The Clearing” and “The Dungeon” taking advantage of the fabulous, vast space. Only in Croatia could you enjoy a historic site like this in modern style; the site hasn’t been hidden away as a national treasure under a pile of red tape. However, increasing tourism may mean that won’t last, which is all the reason you should need to get to Outlook soon!
Aptly named, Hideout is the place to be for serious partiers—the festival is housed on Pag, one of Croatia’s sunny, unspoiled Adriatic islands halfway along the coast. As with Soundwave, you’ll get the opportunity to join in wild boat parties, which is as fun as it is practical, as it keeps some of the driving noise away from quieter islands and the settled coastline. A summertime party with no noise complaints, plus artists such as DJ Disclosure, Loco Dice, and Marco Corola? Yes, please!
You’ll want to get in on Croatia’s growing scene now, because the energy is vibrant and the music seriously fun. There’s nowhere else in Europe where you’ll be able to enjoy historic venues, sun-drenched islands, and some of the most kickin’ parties anywhere—all off the Euro. So don’t wait, because tickets for 2015’s hottest shows are already going, and you definitely don’t want to miss out!