Worldwide icon-chevron-right North America icon-chevron-right United States icon-chevron-right California icon-chevron-right Los Angeles icon-chevron-right Music festivals within driving distance of L.A.

Music festivals within driving distance of L.A.

Hit up these hometown music festivals, as well as ones within driving distance of L.A., from Las Vegas to San Francisco

Coachella 2016 weekend 1; day 2
Photograph: Jakob N. Layman
Advertising

Whether a day trip or a Metro ride away, there’s no shortage of music festivals near Los Angeles. We’re not just talking about summer music festivals either—thanks to Southern California’s persistently pleasant climate, we can enjoy outdoor fests nearly year-round. So lace up a comfortable pair of shoes for these music festivals within driving distance of L.A., from free concerts to camping excursions.

Upcoming music festivals

Stagecoach 2015
Photograph: Kate Wertheimer
Music

Stagecoach Festival

icon-location-pin Empire Polo Club, Indio
icon-calendar

Strap on your cowboy hat and make the pilgrimage to country music’s biggest jamboree, taking up residence at Coachella’s digs, the Empire Polo Club. Stagecoach is coming back for a three-day fest, and headlining the event this year are stars like Luke Bryan, Sam Hunt and Jason Aldean. Expect the usual mix of contemporary and classic country.

Back to the Beach Festival
Photograph: Courtesy Back to the Beach Festival/DRONEGEAR/KAPture Digital Media
Music, Punk and metal

Back to the Beach Festival

icon-location-pin Huntington Beach, Orange County
icon-calendar

Southern California seems to have found its concert calling with the rise of oceanfront festivals. The latest: Back to the Beach, a ska-heavy ’90s and early aughts throwback from Blink 182’s Travis Barker and Goldfinger’s Feldy. The 2019 lineup includes blink-182, Goldfinger, the Used, Reel Big Fish, the Story So Far, Streetlight Manifesto, the Aquabats and more.

Advertising
Phoenix
Photograph: Rozette Rago
Music, Music festivals

Just Like Heaven

icon-location-pin Queen Mary, Long Beach
icon-calendar

If you’ve noticed a lack of aughts indie favorites among this year’s music fest lineups, it’s probably because they’re all playing Just Like Heaven. Seriously, all of them. The inaugural fest features a lineup that’s straight out of an era when you stored music on an iPod: Phoenix, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, MGMT and Beach House top the fest.

Redondo Beach Pier
Photograph: Courtesy Redondo Pier Association
Music, Music festivals

Beachlife Festival

icon-location-pin Seaside Lagoon, Redondo Beach
icon-calendar

This inaugural surf-inflected music fest will take over the Redondo Beach coastline for three days, with a laid-back lineup that includes the likes of Bob Weir, Brian Wilson, Violent Femmes, Willie Nelson, Best Coast, Ziggy Marley, Grace Potter and more, plus a preview night performance from X.

Advertising
Lightning in a Bottle
Photograph: Courtesy Lightning in a Bottle
Music, Music festivals

Lightning in a Bottle

icon-location-pin Location T.B.A., Los Angeles
icon-calendar

After years on the Central Coast, the annual event has made a move significantly closer to L.A., at Bakersfield’s Buena Vista Aquatic Recreational Area. Sure, it’s still a bit of a trek, but where else can you find a sustainable, vegetarian festival dedicated to equal parts music, food, art, yoga and wellness? Lightning in a Bottle has stepped up its musical lineup in recent years, with Disclosure, Big Gigantic, Flying Lotus and Santigold topping the 2019 bill. Expect to do some serious soul-searching during this six-day retreat, all while immersing yourself in everything from a speaker series at the Lucent Temple of Consciousness to the old timey Grand Artique trading post.

Joshua Tree Music Festival
Photograph: Courtesy Foster Snell
Music, Music festivals

Joshua Tree Music Festival

icon-location-pin Joshua Tree Lake Campground, Beyond L.A.
icon-calendar

Make your way to the desert for the Joshua Tree Music Festival, a gathering of like-minded indie musicians who will be rocking out to a dance-world-electro-funk’n groove. The biannual festival is a four-day party with over 30 bands in a unique lineup of artists who aren’t necessarily household names. There’s free water to all patrons, minimal service charges on tickets and yoga classes aplenty.

Advertising
EDC Las Vegas 2015
Photograph: Jakob N. Layman
Music, Music festivals

Electric Daisy Carnival

icon-location-pin Las Vegas Motor Speedway,
icon-calendar

On the outskirts of town at the Motor Speedway, Electric Daisy Carnival is pure, condensed Vegas. There is a VIP Ferris wheel. Helicopters shuttle in high rollers. The 135,000-strong crowd is soaked in ecstasy and spray tan. Every millionaire DJ that plays the laser-riddled nightclubs on the Strip is here. EDC introduced EDM as a Day-Glo spectacle for the masses in America, and its lineups in recent years have certainly lived up to the hype: Diplo, Martin Garrix, Alison Wonderland, Deadmau5 and more are all set to perform this year. Once you let the neon and bass wash over you, it is the time of your life.

Stoned and Dusted
Photograph: Courtesy Stoned and Dusted
Music, Music festivals

Stoned and Dusted

icon-location-pin Multiple venues
icon-calendar

As a throwback to the gasoline genrator-fueled desert parties in the early ’90s, this on-the-down-low offshoot of Desert Generator is celebrating stoner rock and the desert music scene with a two-day campout. The event kicks off at Pappy & Harriet’s with sets from Melvins, Fu Manchu and Brant Bjork, co-founder of seminal stoner rock band Kyuss. Then the action moves into the Mojave for a show with Black Mountain, Acid King, Mark Lanegan and more. Details are hush-hush; we just know it’s somewhere near Joshua Tree.

Advertising
Splash House
Photograph: Courtesy Nikki Jahanforouz
Clubs

SPLASH HOUSE Palm Springs Pool + Music Weekend

icon-location-pin Various locations in L.A., Los Angeles
icon-calendar

Say goodbye to dusty thoroughfares and violent porta-potties: Splash House takes the music festival concept off of sweltering desert land and places it poolside. Movers and shakers at this multi-location getdown are shuttled between the Renaissance, the Riviera Resort and the Saguaro to lap up big-name dance acts and DJ sets.

Lykke Li at the Apollo Theater
Photograph: Michael J. Chen
Music, Music festivals

Yola Fest

icon-location-pin Los Angeles State Historic Park, Downtown
icon-calendar

For the inaugural fest, Swedish singer-songwriter Lykke Li has assembled an all-female lineup of musicians that ranks among this summer’s best festival lineups. In addition to Lykke Li, Charli XCX, Courtney Love and the Chateau Band, Cat Power, CupcakKe, Megan Thee Stallion and Ambar Lucid have all been tapped to play the single-day fest at Los Angeles State Historic Park.

Show more

Looking for free concerts?

Movie screenings, live concerts, comedy and more happen here at the Santa Monica Pier.
Photograph: Courtesy Twilight Concerts
Music

Free concerts in L.A.

Looking for free concerts in L.A.? Well, you’re in luck—music (aside from film, possibly) is the city’s most abundant form of entertainment.

More to explore

Advertising