The Best Music Festivals in Europe
If you believe sunscreen should take priority over wellies when it comes to festival season, it might be wise to go European. Here, we round up the best music festivals in Europe for 2022, from a French wine and music festival in a chateau to a star-studded extravaganza on a Hungarian island.
Best Music Festivals in Europe 2022
Way Out West
One of Sweden’s most celebrated festivals, Way Out West takes place in a secluded woodland setting in Gothenberg. Some of the world’s biggest artists have performed there since it began in 2007, from Kanye West to Stormzy and Florence + The Machine – and the 2022 line-up does not disappoint. Music spans a range of genres, from hip-hop to rock and indie, with headliners including Dave, Tame Impala and Burna Boy. Outside of the music, you can expect great vegetarian food – plus it’s big on sustainability, holding an ISO 20121 certification.
When? 11 – 13 August 2022
Where? Gothenburg, Sweden
Founded in 2004 as a small jazz and soul event, Flow Festival has grown into a key player on the European music festival scene. Florence + The Machine, Gorillaz and Nick Cave + The Bad Seeds are all performing this summer, alongside a cultural programme of talks and art. Flow has impressive eco-credits too, being one of the world’s first carbon-neutral festivals – which you can read more about here.
When? 12 – 14 August 2022
Where? Helsinki, Finland
You’ll need some stamina for Sziget, the six-day festival extravaganza set on a Óbuda-Island in Budapest. A whopping 60 stages are spread across the site – nicknamed the ‘Island of Freedom’ – with endless music, art, theatre, installations and talks to explore. The 2022 line-up is music line-up is unparalleled, with Justin Bieber, Arctic Monkeys, Calvin Harris, Lewis Capaldi and Dua Lipa all set to perform. It’s also surrounded by the Danube, which means you get the benefit of a beach, with boat parties taking place throughout the festival.
When? 10 – 15 August 2022
Where? Budapest, Hungary
Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year is the Greek Sani Festival. What started as a small jazz festival has transformed into one of the country’s foremost cultural institutions. Making the most of warm summer nights, Sani Festival is this year headlined by Andrea Bocelli – who will close the festival on 20 August – and promises a lineup of the greats, as well as incorporating rock and pop into the itinerary for the first time. Chucho Valdés, Paquito D’Rivera, Al Di Meola, Jack Savoretti, and Bob Geldof will all perform, as well as a plethora of Greek legends. The festival is as kind on the eyes as it is the ears: situated on Sani Hill, where the sea, sky and greenery all meet against the dramatic backdrop of the ruined Byzantine tower and the Aegean Sea.
When? 9 July – 20 August 2022
Where? Sani Hill, Kassandra, Greece
Located at Bela Vista Park, one of Lisbon’s biggest urban parks in the city, MEO Kalorama is no less exciting with its later date in the season. Lisbon offers a stunning city break, and MEO Kalorama is all the more enjoyable as the weather cools off. Expect iconic names such as The Chemical Brothers and Arctic Monkeys, with a mixture of 80s and modern electronic music sitting side-by-side in the form of Disclosure and Kraftwerk.
When? 1 – 3 September
Where? Bela Vista Park, Lisbon, Portugal
Music Festivals in Europe to Look Forward to in 2023
Balaton Sound Festival
Each year over 150,000 music lovers flock to Zamárdi in Hungary for Balaton Sound, an open-air dance music festival located on Lake Balaton. It’s known for hosting some of the greatest artists and DJs in the pop and electronic world, with the 2022 line-up featuring Becky Hill, Martin Garrix, Marshmello, Alesso and more. Relax on the beach during the day before partying into the night – the beach parties are particularly fun.
When? TBC, but usually the end of June/early July
Where? Zamárdi, Hungary
As festival backdrops go, the 15th-century Bánffy Castle in Transylvania is a pretty special one. It’s the setting for Electric Castle, an immersive festival which offers a unique day-to-night experience, with round the clock music and entertainment. There’s music to suit all tastes, with highlights this year including Twenty One Pilots, Gorillaz and Disclosure, plus stand-up comedy, artistic performances and an eclectic array of food and drink vendors.
When? TBC, but usually mid July
Where? Banffy Castle, Transylvania
In short: French food, French wine, chart-topping music performers, all within the grounds of a Chateau complete with its own luxury pop-up hotel. The 2022 line-up is yet to be released, but last year’s might give you a flavour of what to expect – French pop band L’Impératrice, and singer songwriters Victor Solf and Theo Lawrence. There will also be food and wine pairing workshops, Burgundy tasting seminars and guided cycling tours around the ancient vineyards.
When? Usually early to mid June
Where? Pommard, France
Primavera Sound has been a staple on the European music festival circuit since its first one in 2001. It celebrated its belated 20th anniversary this June by expanding to a two weekend event, with a music line-up boasting names such as Tame Impala, The Strokes, The National and Jorja Smith. The 2023 line-up – to be announced soon – will surely promise equally incredible performers. Held in the city’s Parc del Fòrum beside the backdrop of the Mediterranean sea, it’s always a hit.
When? 1 – 3 June 2023
Where? Barcelona, Spain
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