Going to music festivals is a favourite pastime activity for many people, and even if you are not such a big music enthusiast, you should try this experience at least once in your life. This type of event takes place in almost every corner of the world, and can make the difference between doing something boring for this weekend and having a great time. Here are some of the biggest music festivals in the world, if you are not afraid of crowds.
1. Exit, Novi Sad
This music festival is held in Novi Sad, Serbia, at the Petrovaradin Fortress. It is considered one of the best major European festivals and 200,000 people attended the event in 2013. In 2014, the EU Festival Award proclaimed Exit the “Best Major European festival”. Music genres you can listen to at Exit include EDM, rock, metal, punk, drum and bass, and reggae. The festival takes place starting with the second Thursday of July and lasts for four days. The festival started in 2000 and has been awarded multiple titles since them, more or less officially: the best festival in the world (The Guardian, in 2006), the best tourist destination (The Guardian, in 2008), and one of the eight best festival destinations (The Sun, in 2012).
2. Latitude, Henham Park, UK
The first edition of Latitude was held in 2006 and the gathering is similar to continental European festivals, unlike other events in the UK. Latitude is organized by Festival Republic, known to run the Reading and Leeds festivals. The event takes place near the town of Southwold, on an idyllic lakeside. The festival’s trademark is represented by rainbow-dyed sheep, and indie rock lovers will definitely enjoy the music played here. Some of the names on the 2016 festival lineup were The Maccabees, The National, Chvrches, Sidestepper, Father John Misty, and The Lumineers.
3. Ultra Music Festival, Miami, Florida
Unlike most music festivals, which are scheduled in July, this EDM American festival takes place in March in Miami, Florida. The name of the festival comes from Depeche Mode’s album Ultra from 1997. The festival was founded in 1999 by Russell Faibisch and Alex Omes, and had a huge attendance of 330,000 in 2013. The same year, the festival lasted for two weekends, to come back to its original one-weekend format in 2014. Pre-sale tickets sold out in under five minutes in 2014, and the nineteenth edition of Ultra Music Festival is scheduled for 24-26 March 2017. General admission tickets are sold out since January 2017.
4. The Montreux Jazz Festival, Switzerland
The Montreux Jazz Festival is the second largest annual jazz festival after the Montreal International Jazz Festival in Canada. The festival currently has a two-weekend format and also includes blues, rock, and soul bands. It is a festival with a long history, as its first edition took place in 1967. The Montreux Jazz Festival is scheduled for the first fortnight of July and attracts an audience of more than 200,000 people. Three international competitions are organized every year at the Montreux Jazz Festival: Solo Piano, Guitar, and Voice. Some famous albums have been recorded live at the festivals, and artists who have done it include Alanis Morissette, Alice Cooper, Carlos Santana, Deep Purple, Ella Fitzgerald, Jamiroquai, Ray Charles, and Tori Amos.
5. Coachella, California, US
With an attendance of around 700,000, Coachella provides approximately 190 acts on 6 stages. The festival, on its full name Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival had its inaugural edition in October 1999, headlined by Beck, the Chemical Brothers, Tool, Morrissey, Jurassic 5, Underworld, and Rage Against the Machine. The festival was created with alternative and indie rock music lovers in mind and was also inspired by European music festivals. The title of “the anti-Woodstock” was earned due to favouring artistry instead of radio popularity. The latest editions featured appearances of artists like Madonna, Florence and the Machine, The Weeknd, Guns N’Roses, Sia, and Grimes. Coachella has earned the award for Major Music Festival of the Year for 11 times.
6. Donauinselfest, Vienna, Austria
This is a huge festival, with a maximum attendance of 3,2 million and 2,000 different acts per edition, held in Vienna, Austria. Although it lasts for only three days, it takes the crown for the biggest festival in the world. The crowds gather on a 6.5-kilometre stretch of the Danube Island since 1983, and some of the most memorable performances from Donauinselfest were those of Falco (1993), Bonnie Tyler, Shaggy, Zucchero, and Master Blaster. An issue with this festival is the danger of flooding, and many times the event was almost cancelled after thunderstorm warnings. Some concerts never took place because of the bad weather. In spite of these difficulties, Donauinselfest remains Europe’s biggest open-air event, organized with help from 1500 volunteers and police forces. There are 21 different areas or islands where musicians from a very wide music genre range perform.
These amazing events make you want to go to a music festival even if you are not a regular at music concerts and we’re sure you’ll have a great time no matter what destination you choose.