Australia has a vibrant music festival scene, with a culmination of unique and varied events held right across the country. These festivals highlight Australia’s diverse musical landscape and the amazing experiences offered at the festivals. There are many to choose from, spanning from coast to coast! So we’d like to give you a guide to Australia’s most popular music festivals for you to start your musical festival journey.
Australia is well-known for its great music, and what’s better is there are loads of live music festivals to go to right across the country, especially over the summer period. All highlight emerging and established local and international artists, and guarantee an unforgettable time with your mates.
There are so many festivals to choose from, so it can be a little tricky to know which one is the one for you. The short answer is: Do as many as possible! Not only will you listen to some of Australia’s best and most loved artists, you’ll see more of Australia, whilst having the best time with your friends.
Festivals range from one day to four days, so you can literally choose your own adventure. Check out this list of the most popular music festivals and you can start buying tickets.
Splendour in the Grass
Splendour in the Grass would be regarded as the pinnacle of Australian Indie Rock and Alternative music festivals. It is held in North Byron Parklands in July, and has been one of the most popular music festivals for years. Since 2001 it has had huge international and local acts, with some of the biggest names in the industry performing here. Artists like Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys, Kanye West, Tame Impala and Lorde have played there. The production and overall vibe of Splendour is unmatched. The festival promotes positivity and a genuine love for live music. July falls in the middle of Australian winter, which means some Splendours have been colder, and wetter than others. But it never stops festival goers from having the best time on the hill.
Byron Bay Bluesfest
Another beloved festival in Byron Bay is the Byron Bay Bluesfest, known for its contemporary blues and roots music focus. It has been a staple in Australia’s music festival scene for years, and attracts country and blues music lovers. All the huge names in the industry have played here, there’s honestly too many to name! The festival is family-friendly and is all about including the local community. Overall, it’s a fun-loving and vibrant festival that has not only great live music, but great arts and food too. If you are a fan of rock and blues, then this is definitely the festival for you.
Listen Out is another Australian music festival staple. The festival travels to multiple cities, so wherever you are, you’ll be able to attend. Since the beginning in 2013 the festival had major artists like Flume, RÜFÜS, Disclosure and Skrillex headlining, and traditionally has a electronic and hip-hop genre focus. Although just the one day, it’s all you need as you’ll be non-stop dancing all day and into the night.
Laneway Festival started back in 2005 in Caledonian Lane in Melbourne. Since then, it has expanded beyond laneways, and across multiple cities across the country. Now, the production is on a huge scale for a one day festival that always showcases great talent. The festival has always remained unique with its distinct urban locations. It definitely has more of an intimate and close-knit vibe and has kept this reputation over time. Laneway has also kept its commitment to showcasing independent and emerging talent, ensuring new Australian artists are being offered a platform. We think it’s definitely one to visit and will no doubt be a great day out with friends.
Groovin the Moo
Groovin the Moo is one of Australia’s most loved regional festivals. The festival tours to six regional areas across the country and has been running since 2005. It’s another live music festival that has hosted major well-known artists, and also highlights the beauty of the country’s regional centres, bringing about tourism and good vibes. The festival has always worked hard with the local community and focuses on sustainability to maintain the area they are hosting. Not only is it a great live music event to experience, but it’ll also allow you to travel to parts of the country you may not have heard of! Make a weekend trip out of this one with your mates and you’ll be in for a treat.
To be continued…
Every music festival in Australia will offer you a different experience, and we encourage you to try to visit as many as you can. Along with this, is the guaranteed fun time you’ll have at any festival you attend. We’ve only mentioned a few of the several popular festivals. There are so many more to attend, especially over the New Year’s period, which are worth checking out! The cultural experience and sense of community that music festivals bring are unmatched. We think going to one whilst you’re studying abroad in Australia is a non-negotiable.
Want to read more? Check out our article about our favourite Australian music artists here.