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Top 6 Summer Festivals in Europe

So, next summer arrives and work and studying are paused for a few months. The sun is out, only good vibes around, what better plan to do with your friends than attend a music festival? In the following piece, we offer a guide to 6 of the best music festivals in Europe during summer. We know there are many, many festivals, but here are our top 6.

1. Primavera Sound Barcelona

Find the perfect time to visit one of the most wonderful places on earth to stay during summer when the sun is shining its brightest… Beautiful and sunlit Barcelona during the beginning of June. A place that beholds almost everything, from amazing food to nightclubs and even the ocean. Primavera Sound could be the highlight of your summertime vacation, a three-day festival located in Port Forum, a massive public park like a small citadel created to host magnum cultural events. And the headliners that show up to Primavera Sound are names like Arcade Fire, Frank Ocean, The XX and Bon Iver last year. A year before that, they had Radiohead, LCD Soundsystem, and Tame Impala. A year before, The Strokes, Caribou, ALT-J, and The Black Keys. So expect huge things from Primavera Sound next year.

Other things to do in Barcelona:

  • Check out some of the amazing architecture in buildings designed by Antoni Gaudi.
  • Go out to Razzmatazz, a club with different salons where to find different music, from indie to electronic.
  • Go to Electronic Picnic Sundays, a rave that starts during the day and is a favorite for underground enthusiasts.
  • Visit the ocean, have lunch in an open terrace out on the streets.


2. Paredes de Coura Festival

Paredes de Coura is an indie music festival in the north of Portugal that takes place during August.The first edition was held in 1993 and the festival has gained a lot of recognition throughout. In 2005, the Spanish edition of Rolling Stone named it as one of the five best summer festivals in Europe. Bands like The Pixies, Morissey, The Kills, Coldplay and The Sex Pistols have performed there, and every year they never fail to impress with their headliners.

3. NOS Alive

NOS Alive is a music and arts festival that takes place during July somewhere in Lisbon, Portugal. The festival has gained a lot of recognition throughout the ten years it’s been happening and was titled top 12 European festivals in 2009 by NME magazine as well as getting rated 10 out of 10 in 2012 by the same journal. The 2017 festival featured acts with a top hierarchy like The Weeknd, Foo Fighters, Depeche Mode, Phoenix and Imagine Dragons. There were also more underground bands such as Glass Animals, Floating Points, Cage the Elephant and Fleet Foxes. So there is a scene for everyone to enjoy the festival. Top choice, highly recommended.

Other things to do in Lisbon:

  • Visit LX Factory in the Alcantara neighborhood of Lisbon to find alternative and hipster style shops, restaurants and cafes. The place used to be a collection of factories and warehouses and was renovated to become an underground sort of district.
  • Check out The Dorm hotel in LX Factory. The place has a nice range of bars and restaurants in its lobby.
  • Find a cool rooftop or terrace where to have lunch around Porta de Sol.
  • During the night you can go find bars around Bairro Alto.


4. Glastonbury Festival, England

It’s very likely you’ve already heard about Glastonbury. Who hasn’t’? The story says tickets for this five-day event are sold out on the internet in a matter of minutes. But we couldn’t mention this massive party because of its history and transcendence. Glastonbury is the largest open park festival in the world, its last attendance record reached 175,000 people. Going to Glastonbury is a once in a lifetime experience. It is every hipster and music fanatic’s dream. For instance, let me tell you that in 1971 David Bowie was the headliner. Or that in 1984 it was The Smiths. 1986, The Cure. In 1993, Red Hot Chili Peppers. 1995, Oasis. 1997, Radiohead. 2007, Arctic Monkeys and The Killers.

5. Flow Festival, Finland

You probably haven’t heard of this one. Flow Festival is a music event held in Helsinki, Finland. But aside from holding top-notch concerts, this festival is characterized by presenting vivid urban spaces and lots of visual arts, with small food shops on the side. What distinguishes this festival from the rest is that it is located surrounding an obsolete power plant industry. Sounds sick, doesn’t it? Last year the lineup was headlined by Lana del Rey, Young Thug, The XX, Flume, Moderat and Frank Ocean. The festival has been running since 2004 and runs during the second week of August. The line-up for 2018 is yet to be announced. 

 6. Into the Valley Festival

Probably the most innovative festival on the list in terms of location and infrastructure. But also a festival with different characteristics, as we shift away from the indie and alternative rock into house music and strong techno. So if you are a modern raver and a house music enthusiast, this is the place to be right now during the summer. Last year’s edition happened in a sunken prison somewhere in Estonia. Just imagine, this is the perfect place to get completely lost and experience something different along with your friends or someone special and dance steadily for hours and sleepless nights. What differentiates Into the Valley festival from all the rest is that it will always happen in a mystical, majestic, random venue somewhere on earth. For example, past editions were once in an abandoned factory in Sweden and in a 400-year-old fortress in Cape Town, South Africa.

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