34 European festivals to make you love music more 
From dancing to sets played by your favourite DJs to discovering new indie bands, from partying in a fortress or on a beach to experiencing the surreal midnight sun, from amazing city festivals to artistic events in nature’s hotspots, this year Europe shows once again that it loves to party!
With the worlds hottest bands and top DJs on the line-up, loads of creative activities and performances, long weekends of culture sharing, gastronomic delights and sightseeing, Europe’s festival life offers something for everyone. Here’s a list of 34 music festivals that take place all over Europe, so you can plan ahead if you want to travel and party!
Have we missed anything? Drop a comment if so and we’ll update the list!
UPDATE: The first edition of the Un-hidden Street Art in Romania book is here to help you discover independent art in public spaces.
17 – 20 January
ESNS (Eurosonic Noorderslag) is the place to discover and access the very best emerging European music talents. The event has a proven track record of helping to break new acts on the international music scene, with now well-known names such as Aurora, Blossoms, Dua Lipa, Hozier, Mø, Lost Frequencies, Royal Blood, and the XX having played at ESNS as up and coming talents. The B2B side of the event attracts more than 4,000 entertainment industry professionals from all sections of the industry, including representatives of over 400 European festivals, managers, agents, publishers, labels, tech companies and event suppliers. Each year, ESNS stages more than 350 showcases all over the city of Groningen as well as offering a comprehensive and focused conference programme of around 150 panels and keynotes. The event also hosts multiple networking opportunities, annual meetings by music associations, pitch sessions, dinners, parties and dedicated areas featuring the very latest thinking and technical innovation in the music, media, interactive and production industries. At this year’s edition, Denmark will be the ESNS focus country.
Line-up: CHIMPO | DANNY BYRD | DIMENSION | DREAD MC | ETHERWOOD | FABIO & GROOVERIDER | HIGH CONTRAST | HOLY GOOF | J HUS | KEENO | LONDON ELEKTRICITY MY NU LENG | NU:LOGIC | SASASAS | SHY FX | THE PROTOTYPES
The brainchild of Hospitality and The Blast, Shockout’s debut edition is set to take place at The Bath & West Showground on 24th with some of the biggest names in bass music on the bill. The indoor festival, which will also include outdoor food areas, bars, and fairground rides, will play host to J Hus’ first headline festival appearance, while other talent includes Shy FX, High Contrast and London Elektricity.
3 May – 6 May
Line-up: ANNIE MAC | BICEP (DJ) | DIPLO | FOUR TET | HAAi | HOT SINCE 82 | JACKMASTER | JAMIE XX | J HUS | KÖLSCH | LAUREN LO SUNG | LOTTO BOYZZ | MABEL | MALL GRAB | PATRICK TOPPING | PEGGY GOU | THE BLACK MADONNA | THE MARTINEZ BROTHERS | TIGA
Set to return to the stunning Mediterranean island of Malta for its fourth edition, Annie Mac Presents Lost & Found will take place during the first UK bank holiday weekend of 2018 across 3-6 May. Kicking things off as the first festival of the summer season, Lost & Found will offer 4 days and 4 nights of unique parties held across pools, boats, castles and an incredible outdoor nighttime festival site, with headliners including Jamie XX, Diplo, Four Tet, J Hus and event curator Annie Mac. The varied bill will also bring together an eclectic mix of AMP’s close friends and family as well as a slew of exciting breakthrough artists, spanning across a wealth of genres from house and techno through to grime and bass.
Tickets here: http://bit.ly/Ticket2018
24 – 31 March
The ski resort Les Deux Alpes, located in the French Alpes hosts once a year Snow Fest, a Romanian music festival dedicated to winter sports lovers and music fans alike. The line-up features well-known Romanian artists and bands and there are all sorts of activities and workshops taking place on the slopes of the mountain. This year Coma, Golan, Grimus, Nopame, Subcarpaţi, Șuie Paparude, Jurjak, Firma and Mihai Popoviciu are some of the first artists announced for the line-up.
24 – 27 May
After an electric premiere edition, Sea Star festival is set to return to beautiful Stella Maris laguna in Umag on May 25th and 26th, while the opening day will take place on May 24th and the after party on Sunday, May 27th. Put together by the team behind EXIT Festival, the first Sea Star festival closed with rapturous applause, firmly proving that it is worthy of the nomination for “Best European New Festival” at the prestigious European Festival Awards. Stunning location, 6+ stages, more than 70 world-renowned artists and outstanding productions make this festival a must see. Umag is a beautiful Istrian town, rich in Mediterranean spirit, historical baroque and renaissance buildings and narrow streets that lead to numerous authentic restaurants making it the perfect place to chill out after dancing all night.
25 – 27 May
Line-up (so far): ANDY C | CARL COX | DJ EZ | ERIC PRYDZ | GORGON CITY | JAMIE JONES | MARCO CAROLA | MK | PENDULUM (DJ SET) | SIGMA | SUB FOCUS | AMELIE LENS | ARMAND VAN HELDEN | BEN KLOCK | BICEP (DJ SET) | BIG SHAQ | BUGZY MALONE | CAMELPHAT | CHARLIE SLOTH | DANNY TENAGLIA | DENIS SULTA | HEIDI | JACKMASTER | JOSEPH CAPRIATI LOCO DICE | NOT3S | RICHY AHMED | SETH TROXLER | SHY FX | YXNG BANE
Winner of Best New Festival, Best Medium Sized Festival and Best International Festival, We Are FSTVL returns once more this summer after another record-breaking sell-out success in 2017. For one huge weekend in May our beloved Airfield Of Dreams at Damyn’s Hall, Upminster, combines some of the world’s biggest names in electronic dance music with some of the world’s leading club brands and labels for 60,000 FSTVL fans. Taking place on Friday 25, Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May, We Are FSTVL features over 225 artists across 20 stages. Not content with hosting our best ever line-up to date, our biggest and most elaborate production to date, We Are FSTVL 2018 will go up another level with a brand new set of stylised arenas and structures. Your summer starts right here!
After the huge success of Diynamic Festival 2017 and of course the most recent ADE Showcase, the Diynamic family returns to Amsterdam for the 6th Diynamic Festival in 2018. On Friday, May 25th we’re back at the Amsterdamse Bos, a beautiful forest where last year’s unforgettable edition also took place.
30 May – 3 June
For more than sixteen years now Primavera Sound has been consistently offering successful musical events and has become a model reference for urban festivals internationally. Considered as an unmissable musical event, it featured artists like Queens of the Stone Age, Nine Inch Nails, Sonic Youth, Portishead, Radiohead, LCD Soundsystem, The Cure, Wu-Tang Clan, Tame Impala and many many others.
9th June 2018
Having hosted their London debut last year with a storm of acts including Kerri Chandler, DJ Jazzy Jeff and Roger Sanchez, much-loved event brand Southport Weekender returns to the iconic Finsbury Park on Saturday 9th June, symbolising a celebration of funk, soul, disco and house. Known as the ‘world’s friendliest party’ and one of the UK’s most musically diverse, festival goers can expect a line-up produced with love, care and attention to detail for a massive one-day extravaganza.
9 – 10 June
Manchester’s leading music festival Parklife will celebrate its eighth edition in 2018 on Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th June at Heaton Park. A festival that truly embodies the impassioned spirit of Manchester, each edition has sold out year on year and boasts an impressive total of 16 arenas spread across two days of music as well as a VIP arena that offers exclusive attractions and special guest DJs.
14 – 16 June
A pioneering European festival started in 1994, Sónar will celebrate its 25th edition in June 2018 with three days and two nights of music in Barcelona, Spain. Positioned at the cutting edge of the electronic music landscape and its interactions with digital culture, Sónar is able to unite established artists with emerging talent, in all areas of musical and audiovisual production.
21 – 24 June
Celebrating their fifth anniversary, 2018 promises to be Secret Solstice’s biggest edition yet! Taking place in Reykjavik from 21-24 June during the surreal summer solstice (meaning the sun never sets), the festival has firmly established itself on the bucket list for every true festival-geek wanting to be a part of this truly unique experience. Secret Solstice is Iceland’s premiere music festival, each year welcoming an eclectic lineup to the naturally breathtaking country for main stage sets, glacier raves, midnight sun boat parties and secret lagoon blowouts. By combining a high calibre of music talent alongside side events that showcase the incredible Icelandic landscape, Secret Solstice has created a not-to-be-missed festival experience in one of the most breathtaking corners of the world.
25 – 30 June
Bringing the biggest names in electronic music together across five packed festival days, Hideout has proven unrivalled over seven sell-out years. Sitting along Croatia’s stunning Zrce Beach, five open-air venues host the weeklong party, with heavy-hitting sets in the day rolling through to the early hours of the morning. All of this, plus our infamous boat parties and newly launched secret beach party, mean Hideout will claim some of the biggest nights of your life, especially when the likes of Chase & Status, Andy C and Jackmaster are in control of the soundtrack.
30 June – 7 July
Roskilde Festival is the largest North European culture and music festival and has existed since 1971. All profits are donated to charity and volunteers make everything happen. The first artists announced for this year are Bruno Mars, David Byrne, Gorillaz, Mogwai, Vince Staples, Chelsea Wolfe and many others that participate in artistic events that are related to the festival.
30 June – 1 July
Awakenings Festival is one of the most well-known electronic events in Europe and the largest outdoor techno festival in the world. With more than 80.000 visitors in a weekend, Awakenings Festival is the highlight of Europe’s techno music calendar. This year the festival will take place for the 18th time, it will offer 8 areas designed for music and dancing and 100 artists will be in charge of the sound. Techno pioneers such as Carl Cox, Adam Beyer, Nina Kraviz, Loco Dice, Ben Klock, Len Faki, Jamie Jones, Joris Voorn, Joseph Capriati and Sven Väth, are playing records alongside newcomers like Honey Dijon, Peggy Gou, I hate models, Konstantin, Silent Servent and Palmbomen II (live).
4 – 8 July
Line-up (so far): DAVID GUETTA | DIMITRI VEGAS & LIKE MIKE | DJ SNAKE | JONAS BLUE | MARTIN GARRIX | NERVO | THE CHAINSMOKERS | TIMMY TRUMPET | TY DOLLA $IGN | W & W
The 5-day non-stop beach themed music festival situated on the stunning Lake Balaton and sister of Sziget festival in Hungary is set to be the beach party destination for dance music lovers with a stellar billing set confirmed from the likes of Martin Garrix, The Chainsmokers, DJ Snake and Jonas Blue for Balaton Sound 2018.
Tickets here: http://bit.ly/
5 – 8 July
Line-up (so far): DIZZEE RASCAL | RUN DMC | ANDY C | SIGMA (D&B DJ SET)
The UK’s only action sports and music festival, NASS Festival will bring it’s unique concept to the Bath and West Showground on 5th-8th July. Showcasing a diverse selection of acts across 7 stages, as well as international skate & BMX competitions within the park, vert and dirt disciplines, 20,000 music and action sports fans will gather together for one jam-packed weekend which is set to be unmissable.
Ticket here: http://bit.ly/2A0W3EP
18. EXIT (Serbia)
12 – 15 July
Just a short ride away from the Serbian capital Belgrade, the magical Petrovaradin Fortress set high on the banks of the river Danube in Novi Sad provides the perfect setting for the EXIT Festival. Started as a student protest in 2000 fighting for political change and freedom, EXIT continues to spread positive vibes, promoting change and positive education, supporting many communities and humanitarian missions, while throwing a damn good party. The award-winning festival has something for music lovers of all genres with a diverse mix of artists performing on numerous stages connected by cobbled streets, ramparts and tunnels. EXIT. Where hedonism meets activism.
12th – 16th July 2018
2018 sees Drum & Bass powerhouse, Hospitality, debut their acclaimed festival brand overseas at the picturesque location of The Garden Resort, Tisno in Croatia with the launch of Hospitality On The Beach next 12-16th July.
After an accomplished year with the second edition of Hospitality In The Park and scooping ‘Best Club Night’ award at the 2017 Drum&BassArena Awards, the team look ahead to 2018 for the ultimate Drum & Bass holiday where they will welcome a variety of artists to the sun-soaked Adriatic beaches for a five-day celebration of the genre.
18 – 25 July
Line-up (so far): KERRI CHANDLER | MOTOR CITY DRUM ENSEMBLE | JEREMY UNDERGROUND JOEY NEGRO | OSUNLADE | JAYDA G | PURPLE DISCO MACHINE | MR SCRUFF | ROGER SANCHEZ LOUIE VEGA | ANANE VEGA | RED GREG | NATASHA DIGGS (NYC) | CHRISTIAN MANTINI | MATT “JAM” LAMONT | NORRIS “DA BOSS” WINDROSS | MASTERSTEPZ
One of the most diverse and friendliest festivals in the European calendar, SuncéBeat Festival will return to the beautiful setting of The Garden, Tisno in Croatia next 18th-25th July for an all-encompassing week-long gathering of house, disco, techno, soul, R&B and funk. With confirmed artists including Kerri Chandler, Mr Scruff, Motor City Drum Ensemble, Jayda G and Osunlade, SuncéBeat is curated by the same team behind the much loved Southport Weekender event series and is built on a huge wealth of musical knowledge – creating an unrivalled sense of family amongst its partygoers as well as its DJ offering.
Tickets here: suncebeat.com/
20 – 22 July
Taking place in the picturesque coastal town of Salacgriva in Latvia, Positivus is the largest music and arts festival in the Baltic States, transporting chart-topping headliners, underground emerging talent and exciting art and dance stages to their unspoiled atmospheric coastal setting amid stunning woodland. Festival-goers can dip their toes in the Baltic sea or take in the atmosphere in a hammock beneath the trees while enjoying a rich diversity of international chart toppers and underground emerging talents in this idyllic holiday location. Positivus also offers art and dance stages, a variety of activities and stalls selling locally made designer clothing and accessories, giving festival goers plenty to see and do during the 3-day event. Positivus was also recognised in the 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017 European Festival Awards being a finalist in the “Best Medium Sized Festival” category and also for “Best Festival Line Up” in 2013.
28 – 29 July
Milkshake festival is a dance festival that has been created from the thought ‘nothing should be a must, anything is possible’. Milkshake festival shows that entertainment, taste in music, choice of clothing and status has nothing to do with sexuality. Life is just a party thanks to the great diversity of skin colours, religions, sexual preferences and male and female forms. Milkshake wants to celebrate the city’s initiatives and is an impetus to bring courtesy and friendly manners back into society. Thick, thin, small, large, gay, straight, trans, black or white: people are the salt of the earth and this is what we celebrate!
Here is what some of our favourite artists have to say about Milkshake festival:
“Well, I can only feel humble at such a festival, as I am only a white heterosexual person. But as a woman and artist, we definitely had a few fights in common […]” – feeder insider w/ Miss Kittin
“First of all, it was great to be part of this Festival that celebrates diversity.” – feeder insider w/ Erwin Olaf
Love Family Park takes place in Mainz, Germany and the line-up will feature world-renowned artists. The festival is set in the countryside and offers several stages dedicated to techno music. Last year the likes of Sven Väth, Carl Cox, Solomun, Joseph Capriati, Ricardo Villalobos and Marco Carola rocked the soundsystems.
1 – 5 August
At this time pre-registering is opened for the 2018 edition and more info will be soon available.
3 – 5 August
A truly unique boutique music festival, OFF Festival takes place in “Three Lake Valley”, Katowice – a beautiful green oasis in the heart of industrial Silesia, Poland. OFF is a way of life, one that flies in the face of current trends and stays true to itself, and the ethos of organiser Artur Rojek is firmly aimed at supporting art and music with the festival bringing many acts to Poland for the first time. OFF Festival’s reputation is growing year on year driven by the festivals forward-thinking, eclectic music policy and it’s bold and eclectic lineups. From the greatest alternative music stars from around the world to the increasingly strong Polish scene, OFF festival has inspiring music in abundance and the organisers and crowd have one serious finger on the pulse when it comes to music.
8 – 15 August
Sziget is more than just a festival: it’s a place to meet new people, a place to make friends and fall in love! The festival takes place on “The Island of Freedom” on the Danube River in Budapest, Hungary and offers more than 10 big music stages, a lot of creative workshops and artistic events for all ages. The line-up is huge and diverse and top world artists come to this festival and deliver memorable performances.
9 – 12 August
This established electronic music festival in Spain returns this year with a consistent line-up ready to deliver once more. Amelie Lens, Andy C, DJ Hype b2b DJ Hazard, Hardwell, Jamie Jones, KSHMR, Maceo Plex and Tale of Us are just some the first artists announced for the 2018 edition, so be prepared for a strong final line-up.
17 – 19 August
Get ready for A Campingflight to Lowlands Paradise 2018. Taking place next to the Walib Fairgrounds, Biddinghuizen Lowlands features some of the biggest headliners, impressive installations including the new iconic armadillo food and drink area, plus unique covers for every stage so you can enjoy all the music rain or shine. Just over an hours drive from Amsterdam, you can easily mix your festival trip with a few days city break. Besides all the amazing artists, Lowlands has so many others things to do from enjoying a soak in the hot tubs, to taking part in science experiments! The festival has also been shortlisted for several awards in the European Festival Awards including “Best Major Festival” and “Best Line Up”. Tickets include festival entry, camping + shuttle bus from/to railway station or Dronten Lelystad. Save the date now!
19 – 23 August
Almost 70 artists will play in the 3 clubs at the Croatian shores of Pag Island. From an all-night open-air proper dance party to watching the sunrise and swimming in crystal clear waters, the festival has steadily gained a name for itself, by offering a lot of activities besides the killer line-ups. The first artist rooster will be announced at the end of January. Expect the best!
26th August 2018
Celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2018, Mysteryland is Amsterdam’s biggest music festival and is renowned for its creativity and jaw-dropping production. Taking place across the bank holiday weekend on 24th-27th August, the Mysteryland line-up is yet to be announced but festival-goers can expect an unrivalled bill of superstar acts and forward-thinking DJs from across the globe. With a range of camping packages available, pre and after parties, as well as a diverse food and entertainment program, Mysteryland promises a 3-day spectacle of music, revelry and mystery rooted between the beautiful fields, forests and lakes of the Floriade Terrain in Haarlemmermeer!
25th – 26th August 2018
Line-up (so far): CHASE & STATUS (LIVE) | MARSHMELLO | CRAIG DAVID PRESENTS TS5 | DIZZEE RASCAL | STEFFLON DON | ANDY C | JONAS BLUE
Set to return to London’s Clapham Common this Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th August, South West Four will celebrate their 15th anniversary this summer with a huge selection of the biggest names in the industry including the likes of Chase & Status, Marshmello, Dizzee Rascal and Craig David Presents TS5. Standing tall as the capital’s longest running electronic music festival, the weekender will pull out all the stops for this special milestone with a series of exclusive performances, chart-topping artists, forward-thinking DJs and brand showcases in tow.
8 – 9 September
Lollapalooza Berlin is undoubtedly one of the most popular and established festival brands worldwide. The “World of Lolla” spans from several music stages to street theatres and art-related programs, installations and eclectic live performances. Artists like Radiohead, Muse, Paul Kalkbrenner, Major Lazer, Foo Fighters, Fatboy Slim and Run the Jewels have been on the line-up in the past, showcasing amazing live acts and Dj sets. The line-up for this year will be announced soon and expect only the best in the world.
17 – 21 October
Amsterdam’s thriving club and nightlife scene is well documented and for 5 days a year, the city becomes the centre of the electronic music world as over 395,000 visitors flock to the city for the Amsterdam Dance Event. The ultimate music festival for fans of electronic music features more than 2,500 international artists performing in more than 100 of Amsterdam’s most celebrated venues including Melkweg, Gashouder, Claire, Shelter, Paradiso, the NDSM Docklands and De School. In addition to the extensive line-up of the ADE Festival, the ADE Conference also offers music enthusiasts and artists a large and varied day program featuring a wealth of dance music-related seminars, artist Q&A’s exhibitions, films, documentaries, DJ showcases and gear master classes, taking place across Amsterdam’s five main districts, utilising historical locations and unique venues across the city.
Award-winning Sea Dance Festival gathers party people from all over the world to dance together on the beautiful beach in Budva, Montenegro. Voted “Best European Medium-Sized Festival”, Sea Dance has proven much within just three short years. With a stunning beach location and an impressive line-up of more than 100 international music stars, Sea Dance is one of Europe’s hottest summer destinations. Recently listed by Skyscanner as the number 1 cheapest holiday destination, Montenegro is well worth checking out. The country has towering mountains perfect for hiking and mountain biking as well as some of the world’s best-unspoiled beaches on the Adriatic Sea.
Perhaps, by now you’re wondering why there are no Romanian festivals on this list, which seem to be more and more popular. It’s because we have prepared a full list of them, doubling as a poll, with no less than 80 festivals for you to choose from.
So… where will you
to this year?
Words by AndreiB, Liberty Spinks
Photo credits @ the authors