It’s no secret that the coronavirus pandemic has seriously affected music festivals across the globe.
From Glastonbury in the fields of Somerset to Coachella in California’s Palm Springs, cancellations have been seen left, right and centre, much to the sadness of music lovers here, there and everywhere.
But, with the world slowly opening its doors again, there is hope that we could be seeing the return of music festivals in the not-too-distant future.
And, with that, long-haul international travel should be coming back too – finally, a chance to get away on that holiday we’ve all been longing for.
So, with this in mind, we thought we’d compile a genre-by-genre list of the best music festivals to look out for away from the UK and Europe, highlighting which ones we think are worth heading off to.
Burning Man, USA: Electronic
One of the United States of America’s best-loved festivals, Burning Man has been around for decades and is a festival which focuses on community, art and self-expression.
Famed for its electronic music and high-profile DJ sets, the Nevada-based festival takes place in the Black Rock Desert, creating an almost apocalyptic Mad Max-like setting in which to enjoy drinking and dancing the night away.
While it may not be for everyone, attending Burning Man is a great way to blow off some steam, featuring an inimitable post-modern, cyberpunk, druggy spirit.
When is it? Sun, 29 Aug 2021 – Mon, 6 Sept 2021
Fuji Rock, Japan: Rock
If you know your festival stories, the chances are you will have heard the one from Fuji Rock. You know, the one where Red Hot Chilli Peppers headlined during a full-on storm, while their frontman had a broken arm. Talk about rock and roll.
The weather isn’t always stormy at Japan’s best-known festival though – in fact, being based halfway up a mountain at the Naeba Ski Resort, it’s certainly one of the more unique festivals you can visit.
It also aims to be the cleanest festival in the world, is ideal for rock fans, and offers a number of accommodation options that are infinitely better than sleeping in a cold, wet tent in Somerset.
When is it? Fri, 20 August 2021 – Sun, 22 August 2021
South by Southwest, USA: Pop & Modern
Another of the USA’s best-loved festivals, South by Southwest – or SXSW – is unlike any music festival we see here in the UK.
For starters, it’s absolutely massive. From comedy to films to music, there’s stuff going on literally everywhere, with more things to go and see than there are minutes in the day.
OK, so we may be exaggerating there slightly, but attending SXSW is certainly an experience and you’re bound to end up seeing something you’ve never seen before.
Nowhere else, for example, would you be able to catch the premiere of a new Hollywood blockbuster movie before seeing a global superstar pop up on stage without any warning.
When is it? Early-to-mid March 2022
Pentaport Rock Festival, South Korea: Rock/Acoustic
While South Korea may not be the first country to spring to mind when you think of rock music, as the Pentaport Rock Festival proves, it should be.
Based in Incheon, Pentaport was formed to celebrate five key focuses: music, passion, the environment, a DIY attitude and friendship.
Featuring a mix of local and international bands, there’s always plenty to see and do here, and, if you’re into your ramen, it’s a must-visit – just make sure to bring a raincoat with you as the festival is held during the country’s rainy season.
When is it? Tue, 10 Aug 2021 – Thu, 12 Aug 2021
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