Music gathers people, and that is one of the main reasons we love festivals. Festivals are a great place to meet up with like-minded individuals from around the country and the world. There are many festivals of all kinds, sizes and music and lifestyle directions in Australia year-round, so there will always be something to suit you.
This isn’t your normal “Top Ten” list with the best festivals held in Australia, simply because there are too many festivals in too many places. So we have ordered them into categories.
If you are looking for a lot of young people, beer, sun and current popular artists, it won’t be hard to find a festival that suits you.
Some festivals in Australia are held in different places at the same time, such as the Big Day Out and Stereosonic, which are good examples of this kind of national festival.
Big Day Out is held in January simultaneously in Sydney, the Gold Coast, Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth. The line-up features some of Australia’s best live rock bands as well as top international artists. The headline acts for 2014 are Snoop Dogg and Major Lazer.
Stereosonic focuses on House and Techno sounds and is held in December in Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney and Perth. Here you’ll find some of the biggest DJ’s from all around the world, especially from Great Britain and The Netherlands, like Armin van Buren and Calvin Harris. Talking about Dutch music, one of the biggest festivals in The Netherlands has also come to Australia since 2009. Defqon 1, founded by the Dutch powerhouse Q-Dance is one of the biggest festivals of its kind featuring House and Hardstyle music and it grows in size every year.
Some other festivals of popular current music that are worth considering are:
- Field Day – Sydney Festival (January)
- Homebake (December)
- Bass in the Grass, Darwin (May)
- Soundwave in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth (February).
Jazz, Blues and Classical
If those hard bass sounds aren’t really your thing, try one of the Jazz and/or Blues festivals. Combine some of the best nature in Australia with delightful music and enjoy a day out with a music adventure. Probably the best known of its kind is the Melbourne International Jazz Festival in June. With more than 300 Australian and international musicians and a rich program with club gigs, film screenings, master classes and evening sound walks, this is a festival for families, youth and even seniors.
The Byron Bay Bluefest is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. That means 2014’s Eastern Weekend will be very special this year at Tyagarah Tee Tree Farm with over 200 performances on 7 stages. The Bluefest welcomes international artists like Jack Johnson, John Mayer, Passenger and Dave Matthews Band.
For Opera you should definitely visit ‘Opera in the Paddock’ and ‘Opera in the Vineyards’. These festivals are organised respectively in March and October and bring the best of opera to stunning outdoor locations so you can bask in world class music while enjoying some great scenery.
Folk and Country
Experience country music like it should be. With a number of festivals organised year round in Australia we’re quite sure you’ll find what you’re looking for.
The Gympie Muster is held over 4 action-packed days and nights in Queensland’s most beautiful and normally peaceful National State Parks: Amamoor Creek State. Here you’ll find the true spirit of Country in Australia during the end of August each year.
This year the Tamworth Country Music Festival will be opened by two of Australian superstars in Country Music, namely Adam Harvey and Troy Cassar-Daley, that and lots of other performances makes the 42nd Toyota Country Music Festival Tamworth in January 2014 one that absolutely cannot be missed.
A great festival for the whole family is National Folk Festival in Canberra, hundreds of the world’s best musicians are showing their best music tracks during this five-day festival in March and April.
WOMADelaide is the Worldof Music, Arts and Dance, founded by musician Peter Gabriel in 1982. Over the last two decades it has grown into one of the biggest outdoor festivals in Australia and is held over four days in Adelaide. Participants can experience world class music performances as well as workshops, cooking programs and dancers.
A popular way to enjoy festivals is in a motorhome. Most festivals offer powered sites and a camper with your own bed, kitchen facilities and even shower and toilet are a very comfortable way to enjoy a stay at a festival campground. But do make sure you book early, because we get a lot of people booking well in advance to secure their campervan for a festival.
Still haven’t found what you’re looking for? Try the Australia Tourism website.