If you’re only attending music festivals in your home country, you’re missing out on some of the biggest and best music festivals in the world. A trip abroad could help you discover a new and unique festival experience with familiar and unfamiliar artists.
Plan a trip with friends or a solo trip to see what it’s like to experience music in different regions and cultures of the world. Even use the trip as an excuse to explore a new city or country and meet new people from the area.
Where Will You Travel?
Pick your travel destination and discover the top music festivals in the region.
Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
Location: Indio, California, U.S.
Coachella is one of the most famous music festivals in the world. The festival is held at the Empire Polo Club in Coachella Valley of the Colorado Desert.
This music event hosts international artists each year covering rock, pop, indie, hip hop, and electronic music genres. It hosts 250,000 people annually in two consecutive three-day weekends in April.
The festival offers more than just music. It is also home to many art installations and sculptures across the grounds. They are often interactive and serve as popular backgrounds for photos by attendees.
Visit the official website for Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival to learn more and purchase tickets.
Montreal International Jazz Festival
Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Jazz music fans must book a trip to Montreal for the Montreal International Jazz Festival. It is the world’s largest jazz festival featuring about 3,000 artists from 30 different countries each year.
Started in 1980, this 10-day event is held in late June and hosts over two million attendees every year. People flock from around the world to see the top jazz artists and meet other jazz enthusiasts in this Canadian city.
You can purchase tickets for the performances you want to see or attend one of the 450 free outdoor performances too.
Visit the Montreal International Jazz Festival website for this year’s lineup and more information about the festival.
Location: Black Rock City, Pershing County, Nevada, U.S. (40.787° N 119.206° W)
This famous electronic music festival started in 1986 is a music festival experience like no other. The week leading up to Labor Day, over 70,000 people gather in a temporary city called Black Rock City in the Black Rock Desert.
Burning Man is guided by 10 principles: radical, inclusion, gifting, decommodification, radical self-reliance, radical self-expression, communal effort, civic responsibility, leaving no trace, participation, and immediacy.
Participants are encouraged to design and build all the art, activities, and events during the festival. The festival culminates in the burning of a large wooden effigy, referred to as “The Man,” on the Saturday evening of the festival.
The mission of Burning Man is “to generate society that connects each individual to his or her creative powers,” according to its website. Tickets are $475 for the full week.
Estéreo Picnic Festival
Location: Bogotá, Colombia
The Estéreo Picnic Festival is Columbia’s biggest alternative music festival of the year. It was founded in 2010 with mostly Columbian artists and just a few thousand attendees. It later expanded with the inclusion of more international artists, and now sees about 63,000 attendees every year in April.
The event focuses on alternative rock, but also features punk rock, reggae, electronica, and hip-hop artists.
With tickets starting at about $84, you can see some of the biggest alternative rock bands as well as local Columbian artists.
See this year’s lineup at the official website of the Estéreo Picnic Festival.
Rock in Rio
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The Rock in Rio music festival is one of the largest music festivals in the world and brings some of the biggest international celebrities.
This music festival started in 1985 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. It has now spread to multiple locations around the world, including Portugal, Spain, and the U.S.
Over 700,000 people attend this festival each fall to listen to rock, pop, indie, and heavy metal music. With ticket prices starting at $857, this is a popular attraction for visitors to Rio to hear from both local and international artists.
Explore the Rock in Rio website to find out who is in the lineup to perform and book your trip to Rio de Janeiro.
Location: Santiago, Chile
Tourists visiting Chile can’t miss out on Lollapalooza Chile, the first edition of Lollapalooza to take place outside of the U.S. in 2011. This festival is held in late March each year. It sees attendance numbers of over 85,000 people each day, with tickets starting at $160.
The festival has hosted many international artists of alternative rock, heavy metal, hip hop, electronic, punk rock, and pop genres. Some of the biggest artists to perform at Lollapalooza Chile are The Killers, Jane’s Addiction, Kanye West, Deftones, Fatboy Slim, and Thirty Seconds to Mars.
However, the Chilean artists often draw the biggest crowds for the event. Tourists can discover many of the best Chilean artists at this festival.
Check out Lollapalooza Chile’s official website for more details.
Is this your first trip abroad? Use this 11-step guide to help you plan your international trip.
Danube Island Festival (Donauineselfest)
Location: Vienna, Austria
The Danube Island Festival holds the Guinness World Record for the largest attendance at a music festival with 3.3 million people in attendance. This is a festival any music lover will cherish.
The three-day event is held in Vienna on a manmade island in the Danube River. It features rock, pop, rap, hip hop, electronic music, swing, folk, and metal music. The festival features mostly local performers with a few international ones too.
One reason the attendance is so high is because attendance is free! It’s a perfect option for international travelers who want to experience great music, but don’t want to spend a lot of money.
Explore the Dunabe Island Festival website to learn about who will perform and other details about the event.
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Travel to Budapest, Hungary for the Sziget Festival, a seven-day festival held in the first week of August. This music festival was born in 1993 and features music styles including rock, alternative rock, psychedelic rock, punk rock, heavy metal, pop, synthpop, reggae, hip hop, indie, world, and electronic.
Some of the biggest names to perform at the Sziget Festival are Post Malone, Twenty One Pilots, James Blake, Macklemore, and Dua Lipa.
This popular international attraction draws 350,000 people to Budapest each year—about 50% of them from outside of Hungary.
Ticket prices for the event start at about $85. You can purchase tickets and learn more about future performers on the Sziget Festival website.
Location: Kostryz nad Odra, Poland
Poland’s Pol’and’Rock Festival is held in Kostryz nad Odra every summer. Founded in 1995, it originally shared the same name as the historic Woodstock festival, but was more recently changed to Pol’and’Rock Festival.
Similar to Woodstock, this festival features musical performances from rock, punk rock, reggae, rapcore, folk, heavy metal, and electronic artists.
This free music festival sees about 400,000 attendees each year and is the perfect addition to your Poland trip itinerary.
Learn more about the Pol’and’Rock festival and plan your next trip to this European country.
Fuji Rock Festival
Location: Niigata Prefecture, Japan
The Fuji Rock Festival began in 1997 at the base of Mount Fuji. Two years later it moved to the Naeba Ski Resort that attendees must take a cable car up the mountain to reach.
It is the largest festival in Japan with about 130,000 attendees each year. Tickets start at about $174 per person.
This music festival features both rock and electronic music artists with the unique backdrop of mountains in Niigata Prefecture.
Get your tickets at the Fuji Rock Festival website when booking your Japan adventure.
Pentaport Rock Festival
Location: Incheon, South Korea
Pentaport’s predecessor was the 199 Tri-port Festival. This festival was cancelled due to extreme weather conditions but was revived in 2006 with its current name.
This rock festival features both South Korean and international artists with rock, alternative rock, indie rock, dance, world, punk rock, electronic, and folk music.
Incheon is just 18 miles west of downtown Seoul and is a great trip if you’re visiting South Korea. The music festival has an annual attendance of about 76,000 people with tickets starting at about $68.
PRO TIP! Make sure you bring a raincoat because the festival takes place during Korea’s rainy season in July.
Find out who will be performing at the next Pentaport Rock Festival from the Pentaport website.
Location: Seoul, South Korea
Fans of the Ultra music festival series can’t miss out on Ultra Korea. With Ultra music festivals held in 20 different countries, many consider this to be the best Ultra festival in the world.
Ultra Korea is an electronic music festival held every year in June in the Seoul Olympic Stadium. Founded in 2012, the festival sees over 100,000 attendees each year with ticket prices starting at just $120.
Are you an Ultra music festival fan? Take it further by traveling abroad to Seoul for Ultra Korea.
Is there always something you leave behind when attending a music festival? Use this festival packing list to help you stay organized.
Location: Rabat, Morocco
Mawazine is a music festival founded in 2001 in Rabat, Morocco. This festival is held every summer and sees 2.75 million people in attendance.
This Moroccan festival features big international artists like Marshmello, Bruno Mars, The Chainsmokers, The Weeknd, Demi Lovato, and Wiz Khalifa.
A music competition featuring young talent is one of the main features of this festival. The festival is often a springboard into the music industry for these unknown artists.
With ticket prices starting at just $27, you can see some of the biggest names and discover new artists too.
Visit the Mawazine website to see more details on the event and book your trip to Morocco.
Lake of Stars Festival
Location: Mangochi, Malawi
The Lake of Stars Festival is a unique festival held on the shores of Lake Malawi in Mangochi, Malawi. Started in 2004 by a British tourist named Will Jameson, the festival sees about 3,000 attendees each year. Tickets are priced at about $40.
In addition to musical performances from African and UK artists, the festival organizes volunteer opportunities for attendees as well as talks (similar to TED talks), theater, dance, and mixed martial arts.
It is a great opportunity for music and art appreciation, community, and service on the beaches in Malawi. The 2011 festival opened with the Malawian Ministry of Tourism skydiving onto the festival beach!
You can’t miss out on this unique festival in Malawi! Visit the Lake of Stars Festival website to learn more about it.
Cape Town International Jazz Festival
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Jazz fans and tourists to Cape Town, South Africa can plan their trip around the Cape Town International Jazz Festival in March and April.
This is the largest jazz festival in Africa with over 34,000 people attending each year. As well as jazz, the festival hosts funk, Afropop, fusion, soul, and R&B musicians.
The Cape Town International Jazz Festival serves as a springboard for up-and-coming artists and unites the jazz world in one place.
Golden Plains Festival
Location: Victoria, Australia
You can’t miss out on the Golden Plains Festival in Victoria, Australia (about 55 miles from Melbourne). This music festival was founded in 2007 and features artists of various music styles.
This outdoor festival is held at a private farm in the Australian bushland. Bands perform in a natural amphitheater, and most attendees sleep in tents or vans. There are no commercial sponsors or commercial signage at the site.
Though the space can hold 12,550 people, the festival is capped at 12,100 to allow for plenty of open space and a more comfortable environment. Tickets for this event are about $365 per person.
Add the Golden Plains Festival to your bucket list and learn more about it on the Golden Plains Festival website.
Splendour in the Grass
Location: Yelgun, Australia
The Splendour in the Grass music festival was originally created to cater to Australia’s winter season when there are fewer events like this. The festival began in Byron Bay and later moved to Woodford. It is now held in Yelgun and is the biggest music festival in Australia.
The festival showcases popular and established artists as well as emerging Australian artists. Music covers indie rock, hip hop, electronic, and alternative genres.
Splendour in the Grass sees over 42,000 people each year. Tickets start at $299 and usually sell out very quickly for the exclusive event. Look out for the ticket release so you can reserve your spot.
Explore the Splendour in the Grass website and learn what makes it the biggest music festival in Australia.
St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival
Location: Melbourne, Australia
If you want to know who the must-see artists of the year are, check out the St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival. This festival has been held in late January and early February since 2004 and features indie, indie pop, and rock artists.
The Australian festival started exclusively in Melbourne, but has since spread to Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Fremantle. Attendance has reached 80,000 people across all the locations.
Find out what artists the Laneway festival is bringing next, and visit the official Laneway Festival website.