If you’re in Europe on your overseas adventure or holiday, you definitely have the best choice of music festivals. As it’s so easy and cheap to travel to another European country, you can choose from heaps of festivals. We have listed the biggest and most interesting European music festivals for 2014.
No matter what kind of music you love. No matter which band you like. Each festival in Europe is packed with international (and local) artists. So where would you like to go? Take your pick from festivals in:
- Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Spain, and United Kingdom
- Baltic states: Latvia, Estonia, and Lithuania
- Central Europe: Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, and more
- …or check out the small, funky festivals in Europe
Belgium: Groezrock festival
The festival season in Europe is opened by Belgium festival Groezrock. This alternative festival started in 1992 and grew from an audience of 400 visitors to around 35,000 visitors each year.
- Dates: 2 & 3 May 2014
- Location: Meerhout (Belgium)
- In their own words: “Every last weekend in April, there’s a small earthquake in a small village called Meerhout (Kempen Area). It’s time for the annual GROEZROCK fest. During the past years this festival grew from a small venue (cap. 400 visitors) to an international punk/hc/emo/ska/rock festival with 32.000 visitors from Belgium, Netherlands, England, Germany, France, Spain, Austria, Switzerland, Russia, Italy,… “
- Line-up: NOFX, The Offspring, The Hives, Madball, Cro-Mags, Alkaline Trio, Everlast, The Devil Wears Prad, plus many more.
- On-site camping: yes, camping tickets will cost you €15 for all days.
- Tickets 2014: Groezrock 2014 tickets are now on sale for €70 (Friday tix), €80 (Saturday), or €110 (both days). Get you tickets from the official ticket outlet.
- Accommodation: Check out the rates at hostels in Antwerp (50 km from Groezrock festival).
Belgium: Rock Werchter festival
Rock Werchter is in the top 5 of biggest music festivals in Europe. Originally it was called Torhout-Werchter as it was spread across two sites, one in town called Torhout and the other in a town called Werchter. From 1999 they dropped the Torhout site and continued as Rock Werchter.
- Dates: 3 till 5 July 2014
- Location: Werchter (Belgium)
- In their own words: “Changing times, passion, desire and an overdose of luck. These are some of the elements that have turned Rock Werchter into one of the biggest festivals and – according to our foreign colleagues – very best festival in the world. The concise history of a festival between 1975 and 2011.“
- International crowd: the top 10 of nationalities on Rock Werchter 2012… Belgium, Netherlands, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Norway, Australia, Switzerlannd, Italy, and Iceland.
- What’s new in 2014? This year it’s the 40th edition of Rock Werchter, so expect a BIG party with heaps of awesome bands. Plus tickets might sell faster than previous years. In 2013 Rock Werchter was almost sold out!
- Line-up 2014: Metallica (By Request Show, YOU pick the set list), Artic Monkeys, Pearl Jam, Placebo, The Black Keys, Skrilles, Franz Ferdinand, Pixies, Triggerfinger, Kings of Leon, Imagine Dragons, Passenger, Dropkick Murphys, The Naked and the Famous, and many more.
- On-site camping: yes
- Tickets 2014: tickets are on sale now, from €83 (one day ticket) to €205 (combi ticket for all days). Purchase your tickets from the official ticket outlet.
- Accommodation: Book a room at Hotel Werchter or find cheap hostels close to Rock Werchter (in Mechelen, 20km from festival). For full list of hotels, motels, and B&Bs in the Werchter region.
France: Rock en Seine festival
A festival on the banks of the river Seine in Paris. What else is there to say? The line-up of course. Each year some major international acts perform at this unique French festival. We can’t wait to add more info…
- Dates: 22, 23, and 24 August 2014
- Location: Paris (France)
- In their own words: “Rock en Seine is proud to be distinguished as a environment-friendly festival by Yourope, the european festival association. Protecting our natural resources and communicating these efforts to sponsors and the audience are key to being green and clean. For instance, Rock en Seine says no to plastic and will only use solid and recyclable cups. Before being given your first drink, you will be asked for a deposit of 2 Euros. Each time you will order a drink, your glass will be replaced by a clean one. At the end of the day, when you return your glass, your deposit will be refunded. In 2013 around 118,000 people had a great time at Rock en Seine.”
- Line-up 2014: no news yet
- On-site camping: yes.
- Tickets 2014: On sale now at €99 (all days), this is a Christmas special as the normal price is €119. Buy your Rock en Seine tickets from the official online ticket shop.
- Accommodation: There’s heaps of choice in and near Paris when it comes to accommodation. Check out the full list of hostels in Paris or find affordable hotels in Paris.
Germany: Rock am Ring / Rock im Park festivals
Two names, two festivals, one line-up. That’s what describes these German music festivals best. So make sure you pick one of these festivals as the line-up is identical. But it definitely is a massive line-up full of rock and metal.
- Dates 2014: 7 till 9 June 2014 (Whitsun weekend)
- Location: Rock am Ring on Nürburgring racetrack (west part of Germany) and Rock im Park in Nuremberg (in the south of Germany)
- In their own words: “On the first weekend in June both venues – at the Nurburgring and in Nuremberg – will be home to more than 85 bands performing across 3 stages.”
- Line-up 2014: Metallica (By Request Show, YOU pick the set list), Iron Maiden, Nine Inch Nails, Queens of the Stone Age, Slayer, Alter Bridge, The Offspring, Linkin Park, Kings of Leon… More names will be announced soon!
- On-site camping: yes
- Tickets 2014: Rock am Ring tickets are €193.50 (44 days), while Rock im Park tix are €189.50.
- Accommodation: Find affordable accommodation in Nürburg for Rock am Ring or check out hostels in Nuremberg for Rock im Park (in Nuremberg).
Hungary: Sziget festival
Another top 5 major European music festival can be found in Hungary and is called Sziget. It grew from a relatively low-profile student event in 1993 to a massive rock and arts festival with 390,000 visitors in 2009. Sziget calls itself the island of freedom.
- Dates: 11 till 18 August 2014
- Location: Óbuda island in Budapest (Hungary)
- In their own words: “Sziget is many festivals in one, a week long non-stop event with approx. 60 program venues and around 200 programs daily. Performing bands range from the biggest names of the international pop/rock scene to stars of world and electronic music, but you will also find metal, folk, jazz, blues, alternative and even classical tunes, while you are wondering around the huge festival area. Sziget is not just about music, as it offers several other cultural programs, like theatre, circus, or exhibitions.”
- Line-up 2014: Queens of the Stone Age, Placebo, Calvin Harris, Imagine Dragons, Klaxons, Laidback Luke, Starlight Girls, and many more will be announced soon.
- On-site camping: yes
- Tickets 2014: The earlier you buy, the cheaper your Sziget tickets will be. Pre-sales is done in rounds. After each round the price will go up. Rounds end on 31 December 2013, 30 April 2014, and 31 July 2014. From then on its door prices. More info > At the moment (mid December 2013) tickets start at €50 (day ticket).
- Accommodation: Check out the rates of hostels in Budapest, Hungary or have a look at these amazing deals for hotels in Budapest.
Check out this video from Sziget 2013.
Netherlands: Pinkpop festival
The name Pinkpop comes from the Dutch word for Pentecost (“Pinksteren”), which is almost always the weekend that this festival is held. However there are exceptions, like 2008 when Pentecost was relative early in the year. This Dutch festival has a long tradition and is even listed in the Guinness Book Of Records.
- Dates: 7 till 9 June 2014
- Location: Landgraaf (the Netherlands)
- In their own words: “From 1990 Pinkpop is listed in the Guinness Book Of Records as longest running organised music festival in Europe. Although some say, it should be of the world.”
- Line-up 2014: Metallica (By Request Show, YOU pick the set list), Arcade Fire, and… More names will be announced soon!
- On-site camping: yes
- Tickets 2014: presale will start on 14 March 2014 through Ticketmaster NL
- Accommodation: Check availability of hotels in Landgraaf (closest to the festival) or Maastricht (more choice and only 30km from the Pinkpop festival).
This is Pinkpop (2013 video)
Netherlands: Lowlands festival
A Campingflight to Lowlands Paradise or simply Lowlands, offers a wide variety in music. You can basically find every music style at this festival: rock, pop, dance, hiphop etc. The line-up also includes arts like cinema, theatre, and stand-up comedy. Each year Lowlands tickets sell out before any band has been announced. Everyone just knows the line-up will be wicked.
- Dates: 15 till 17 August 2014
- Location: Biddinghuizen (the Netherlands)
- In their own words: “A Campingflight to Lowlands Paradise, also known as simply Lowlands, is a music festival, held annually in the Netherlands in August since 1993. Lowlands is attended by around 55,000 visitors, spread over 200 acts and more than ten stages every year which are named according to the NATO phonetic alphabet apart from the Grolsch stage (named after the beer brewer Grolsch who has been the main sponsor of the festival for the last few years).” (source: Wikipedia)
- Line-up 2014: Queen of the Stone Age, Skrillex, DJ James Holden, Mando Dia, Imagine Dragons, and many more will be announced soon
- On-site camping: yes
- Tickets 2014: no news yet
- Accommodation: There are a few hotels in Biddinghuizen (closest to the festival) but you can also stay in Amersfoort (50 km from festival).