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The best European festivals in 2019

The biggest, best and boutique-est European music festivals this summer

Aron Klein
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European festivals offer the best of both worlds: international DJs and live acts, plus you get a holiday out of it too. You just need to make the right choice for your summer rave-cation. From sizzling boat parties in Croatia to live music in historical cities and ancient coastal towns, the options are properly overwhelming. To help you out, we’ve shortlisted some of the best summer events taking place in Europe this summer, breaking them down by country. Get booking and you could soon find yourself a long way from the usual muddy British fields.

RECOMMENDED: The best UK music festivals

BEST FESTIVALS IN CROATIA

Dimensions festival
Dan Medhurst

Dimensions

Electronic music in an evocative location

Set in the 200-year old abandoned fort for the last time this year, Dimensions festival provides revellers with four days of top-notch techno, soulful house and drum ’n’ bass. There’s so much to explore at this end-of-season fest, with beach, forest, boat and amphitheatre parties.

Line-up includes Anderson .Paak, Tony Allen & Jeff Mills (live), Objekt (live), Craig Richards, DāM-FunK (live), Gilles Peterson, Hessle Audio, Hunee, Peggy Gou.

Fort Punta Christo, Pula, Croatia. Aug 28-Sep 1. £120.

Outlook

Feel the bass on the Adriatic coast

It's the last time you'll be able to groove for four days and nights dedicated to all things bass at this festival in an abandoned fort in Croatia, with Outlook moving in 2020. Expect beach parties, boat parties and a massive rave-up in a 2,000-year-old Roman amphitheatre. The line-up is varied, and features stars of hip hop, underground dance, grime, drum ’n’ bass, and garage across ten stages. 

Line-up includes Andy C, Loyle Carner, Bugzy Malone, Goldie (live), Ghetts. 

Pula, Croatia. Sep 4-9. £135.

BEST FESTIVALS IN FRANCE

Rock en Seine

Paris’s answer to Glastonbury

With a stunning sixteenth-century park for a setting and a riverside backdrop, this three-day festival, usually billed as France’s answer to Glasto, is a pretty dreamy set-up. Its prestige is proved year-on-year by attracting a stellar set of acts to rival any line-up on this side of the Channel. Plus, the food is a festival’s answer to Le Cordon Bleu. 

Line-up includes The Cure, Major Lazer, Aphex Twin, Jorja Smith, Jungle, Foals, Royal Blood, Bring Me The Horizon, Johnny Marr.

The Domaine National de Saint-Cloud, Paris. Aug 23-25. €159 (three day), €115 (two day), €69 (day).

BEST FESTIVALS IN ITALY

Sunandbass
Thiago Lemos

Sun and Bass

Intimate drum ’n’ bass parties in Sardinia

Putting the breaks into, er, your summer break, this festival on the Italian island of Sardinia delivers eight whole days of drum ’n’ bass, in pleasingly small parties around the town of San Teodoro. And it’s not just raving: a chilled vibe, white sandy beaches, and brilliant Italian food and drink make it a relaxed holiday as much as a mad sesh.

Line-up includes TBC.

San Teodoro, Sardinia. Sep 7-14. £TBC 

BEST FESTIVALS IN MOROCCO

Oasis Festival

House and techno in a sun-dappled hideaway

All manner of fun awaits at this lush festival, with bars, spas, a pool, a hookah lounge and DJs galore.

Line-up includes Carista, Amelie Lens, Âme B2B Dixon, DMX Krew (live), Four Tet, Horse Meat Disco, Mall Grab.

Marrakech, Morocco. Sep 13-15. €220.

BEST FESTIVALS IN PORTUGAL

Nova Batida

A Portuguese offering from the Soundcrash crew

A converted factory in the old docks of Lisbon forms the labyrinthine backdrop for Nova Batida. Last year was its debut event and it's fair to say that it will live long in the memory. The people behind it are also responsible for Soundcrash events and Soundwave in Croatia, among other shindigs, so you’re in safe hands. The 2019 line-up is just as epic as last years, with Nubya Garcia, Ibibio Sound Machine and Floating Points all on the bill.

Line-up includes Four Tet, Friendly Fires, Jon Hopkins (DJ set), Octavian, Slowthai, Floating Points (solo live), Daniel Avery, Ibibio Sound Machine, Nubya Garcia, Theon Cross.

Lisbon, Portugal. Sep 13-15. £99.

Check out our full festival calendar

Ceremony Festival
© Marc Sethi
Music, Music festivals

Music festivals calendar

Live music, warm cider and anxious weather-watching: the summer music festival season has become a British tradition. To help you plan a fab summer we’ve rounded up this year’s biggest and best UK and London festivals in one handy calendar.

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