Get your passports ready and start filling the piggybank now - 2011 brings another bumper crop of amazing music festivals to the Planet Earth community.
If you love music and love traveling, combining those two interests is a great way to get more bang for your buck out of your next vacation (admit it – it's been a while). You not only deserve a vacation – you deserve to rock the hell out, release some steam and dance all night long with people who do not speak your language.
With every dinky one-off night of music calling itself a festival these days (as well as Ibiza listed as a "festival" from June through September), it is hard to know what the word even means.
Metrowize knows: a festival is an event usually staged by a local community and taking place over several days that celebrates a unique aspect of said community. It is that sense of togetherness in celebration and of being part of something greater than yourself that makes a festival truly memorable.
What are you waiting for, your next life? Start planning an amazing trip to one of these incredible festivals today.
Last Updated on 02/03/11
1. Sonar Festival
Description –This three-day event draws in people by the thousands with huge acts from a wide variety of new sounds. In 2010, Sónar took place in Barcelona with a satellite event in A Coruña in northern Spain; for 2011 watch for a stage curated by Mary Anne Hobbs, an experimental bass badass formerly of the BBC Radio1.
Location – Barcelona, Spain
Dates - June 16-18
Happening Since - 1993
2010 Headliners - Air, The Chemical Brothers, Hot Chip
2011 Headliners - Underworld, Magnetic Man, Steve Reich + bcn216 + Synergy Vocals, Salem, A-Trak, Atmosphere, Hype Williams, Little Dragon, Tyondai Braxton & Mary Anne Hobbs.
Official Website - http://2010.sonar.es/en/
Description - It's a snowboarding beat freak's dream come true: a weeklong music festival that combines winter sports with world class DJs and bands. Set in the resort town of Mayrhofen, Austria, Snowbombing is a crisp Alpine celebration complete with blue skies, sunshine, majestic peaks, hot tubs and award-winning terrain for skiers and snowboarders. Parties go off in the streets, igloo villages, forest clearings and remote farmsteads, and the entire festival has a humorous and fun atmosphere about it.
Location – Mayrhoten, Austria
Dates – April 4-9
Happening Since - 2000
2010 Headliners – Friendly Fires, Fatboy Slim, De La Soul, Plump DJs, Skream, Benga, James Zabiela, Brodinski, Stanton Warriors
2011 Headliners – Jamie Woon, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, John Digweed, Fake Blood, Henrik Schwarz, Dixon
Official Website - http://www.snowbombing.com/en/
3. INMusic Festival
Description – Croatia is one of the hottest new travel destinations around, and INMusic is the country's largest outdoor festival. Focused on rock music, this festival usually has six stages and over forty top notch performers. It all goes down in Zagreb, on a little island in Lake Jarun. Guests can camp or take the free festival buses back and forth from Zagreb.
Location – Lake Japan, Zagreb, Croatia
Dates – June 21-22
Happening Since - 2005
2010 Headliners – Massive Attack, Billy Idol, The Flaming Lips, Alice in Chains, LCD SoundSystem, Pendulum
2011 Headliners – Arcade Fire + more TBA
Official Website - http://www.t-mobileinmusicfestival.com/en/
4. Roskilde Festival
Description – Roskilde is one of the granddaddies of European music festivals and was dreamed up almost forty years ago by two high school students. Initially quite the hippie fest, Roskilde now appeals more to mainstreamers and draws around 100,000 participants each year. The campground is enormous, the music is quite diverse, and the nude run on Saturday is a blast.
Location – Roskilde, Denmark
Dates – June 30 – July 3
Happening Since – 1971
2010 Headliners – Prince, Gorillaz, Muse, The Prodigy, Patti Smith, Them Crooked Vultures, Jack Johnson
2011 Headliners – Iron Maiden, Kings of Leon, Afro Cubism, De Eneste To, How To Dress Well, The Tallest Man on Earth, Weekend, L.O.C., Autopsy
Official Website - http://www.roskilde-festival.dk/
5. Fuji Rock Festival
Description – This annual three-day festival celebrates the gods of rock and is the largest outdoor event in Japan. Though nowhere near Mount Fuji, this festival's seven stages are set in a stunning mountain location and accessed by short walks across crystal streams and forest trails. Party guests can also ride the world's longest gondola lift to the top of the mountain for a panoramic overlook of the festival site.
Location – Naeba, Japan
Dates – TBA
Happening Since – 1997
2010 Headliners – Muse, Massive Attack, Roxy Music, John Fogerty, Atoms for Peace, Them Crooked Vultures, MGMT, !!!, Belle and Sebastian
2011 Headliners – TBA
Official Website - http://www.fujirockfestival.com/
6. Melt Festival
Description – Pop music and bold beats come together in this festival that rocks the socks off of Ferropolis, Germany. Melt has a truly unique location and is held in a huge industrial open-air museum of 20th century machines. This three-day event is spread through six floors and features dance music, pop and indie rock, hip hop and even some ambient beats. Tickets are on sale now.
Location – Kerropolis, Germany
Dates – July 15-17
Happening Since – 1997
2010 Headliners – Modeselektor, Massive Attack, The XX, Jónsi, Broken Bells, Groove Armada, Booka Shade, The Wombats, Foals, Blood Red Shoes
2011 Headliners – Pulp, Robyn, Paul Kalkbrenner, The Streets, Boys Noize, Atari Teenage Riot, Cut Copy, Monarchy, Ellen Allien, Superpitcher, Gui Boratto, Loco Dice, Modeselektor
Official Website - http://www.meltfestival.de/en
7. Festival au Désert
Description – Located two hours from Timbuktu, this world music festival promotes peace and is as far "out of the box" as they come. The celebration originates in the traditional community gatherings of the nomadic Touareg people of the region that have been going on for centuries. In addition to a wide variety of music from all over the world, this festival also showcases ritual sword fighting, poetry, camel rides and traditional dances.
Location – Essakane, Mali
Dates – January 6-8
Happening Since – 2001
2010 Headliners – Cheick Tidiane, Amadou & Mariam, Oumou Sangare, Afel Bocoum, Tartit, Harper Simon
2011 Headliners – Najma Akhtar, Matilde Politi, Jeconte & The Mali All Stars, Afrocubism, Leni Stern, Saiko Nata, Mpumi Sizani
Official Website - http://www.festival-au-desert.org/
8. Independence Rock
Description – This rock festival takes place during the Indian independence celebration and is heaven for guitar lovers. One of the oldest and biggest music festivals in the country, Independence Rock (or I-Rock) is known as the "Woodstock of India" – but this version happens every year. A rite of passage for any Indian rock band worth its salt, this massive event usually features one day of up-and-comers and one day of the pros.
Location – Mumbai, India
Dates – TBA
Happening Since – 1986
2010 Headliners – Indus Creed, Demonic Resurrection, Scribe, Axetortion, Ehsaan Noorani, Vinay Lobo, Warren Mendonsa
2011 Headliners – TBA
Official Website - http://www.independencerock.in/
9. Glastonbury Festival
Description – Glastonbury is legendary. The largest open-air and green grass music festival in the world, Glastonbury has been rocking out to the best in contemporary music since the 70's. Although the focus is mainstream rock and pop music, guests will also find heaps of cabaret performers, circus acts, comedians and theatrical events as well. Although tickets for 2011 have already sold out, a few more will be released this spring when cancelled tickets are resold.
Location – Pilton, England
Dates – June 22-26
Happening Since – 1970
2010 Headliners – Stevie Wonder, Gorillaz, Muse, Thom Yorke, The Dead
2011 Headliners – TBA
Official Website - http://www.glastonburyfestivals.co.uk/
10. Big Day Out
Description – Big Day out is a roving festival that hits cities in Australia and New Zealand during the summer down under. This massive event has seven or eight stages and is focused on rock music, electronica and pop from both local and international acts. A big, wild raucous affair, Big Day Out is a must for music lovers from the bottom of the world.
Location – Auckland, New Zealand + Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth Australia
Dates – January 21 – February 6
Happening Since – 1992
2010 Headliners – Muse, The Mars Volta, Groove Armada, Lily Allen, Powderfinger, Dizzee Rascal, Midnight Juggernauts
2011 Headliners – Tool, Rammstein, Iggy and The Stooges, M.I.A., John Butler Trio, Lupe Fiasco, Bloody Beatroots, Booka Shade, LCD Soundsystem
Official Website - http://www.bigdayout.com/
11. Lollapalooza Chile
Description – Lollapalooza Music Festival finally goes abroad with the first international event to take place in Santiago, Chile! This inaugural event promises to be a big one, with over 50 artists booked to play five stages over two days this spring. This premier "alternative" music festival takes place in O'Higgins Park, a lovely green space in the middle of a bustling city, and the lineup promises to deliver a diverse offering of rock, indie pop, electronic music, hip hop and more.
Location – Santiago, Chile
Dates – April 2-3
Happening Since – 2011
2011 Headliners – The Killers, Jane's Addiction, Kanye West, 30 Seconds to Mars, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Deftones, Flaming Lips, Cypress Hill, Empire of the Sun & more
Official Website - http://www.lollapalooza.cl/en/
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