Hot Ticket: Europe's Best Summer Music Festivals

Image of people's shadows at night at a European festival.

18 May 2017

Posted in:  Going on Holidays and Loans

We definitely know how to put on a good music festival in Ireland. But unfortunately, our climate doesn’t always cooperate. Sick of sitting in a rain-sodden tent every summer? Throw the wellies away and pack your bags for a festival where the sun is guaranteed to shine. Read on for our list of Europe’s hottest music festivals.

Roskilde, Denmark

If size matters when you’re picking a festival, they don’t get much bigger than Roskilde. This famous fest has been rocking Denmark since 1971 and currently attracts around 130,000 revellers each year. It also has the biggest festival tent in the world – holding up to 17,000 music-mad punters. Even better, Roskilde is totally non-profit so you can be sure your hard-earned ticket money is going to a worthy cause. Roskilde has traditionally been a guitar-heavy event and that’s reflected in a line-up that includes Foo Fighters, Arcade Fire, and Future Islands, but there’s pretty much something for everyone in 2017 – other must-see acts include Solange, Lorde and Icona Pop.

Bestival, England

colourful festival attendees

It always pays to dress to impress when you’re in festival mode, but Bestival takes summer chic to new heights. This English musical extravaganza is renowned for its themed fancy dress days (usually held on the Saturday of the festival) and even set a world record when 55,000 costumed revellers attended one day of the 2010 edition. Bestival was one of the first “boutique” festivals and still retains a uniquely cosy and friendly feel despite its steadily increasing capacity (this year it moved from its traditional base on the Isle of Wight to Lulworth Estate in Dorset). The 2017 headliners include The XX, A Tribe Called Quest and Dizzee Rascal, but this is one festival where the attendees are the real stars. Start working on that costume now.

Sziget, Hungary

crowd with phones at festival

Fancy an island getaway with a difference? Situated on a 108-hectate site in the middle of the river Danube, Sziget bills itself as an “Island of Freedom” and for seven days every August attendees take that motto to heart. If you decide to camp on the island, you’ll be issued an authentic festival “passport” which allows you earn stamps for visiting different areas of the festival and completing various challenges. Just don’t try and use it to board your flight home! If you manage to explore everything the festival has to offer, Sziget has the added attraction of taking place in one of Europe’s coolest cities with the vibrant nightlife, culture and food of Budapest just a boat ride away. Stradbally this is not. Topping the bill at Sziget this year are pop superstars The Chainsmokers, funtime rap duo Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, as wells as Kasabian, Pink, Major Lazer and our own Two Door Cinema Club.

Love International, Croatia


If you want to inspire some serious Insta-envy, it’s hard to beat Love International. Set in the beautiful town of Tisno on Croatia’s Adriatic coast, this festival combines a cutting edge electronic line-up (Axel Boman, Ben UFO, Craig Richards) with a beach resort vibe. I mean how many festivals can boast their own private bay for parties? Accommodation includes luxurious onsite apartments (all with their own balconies or terraces) as well as a range of unusual options including vintage Airstream trailers or even your own personal yacht. Yeah, you read that right. Think Fyre Festival, but not a complete disaster.

Benicassim, Spain

the beach at Benicassim

Benicassim has become a firm favourite with Irish attendees, and it’s easy to see why. Situated on the eastern coast of Spain between Alicante and Barcelona, the festival offers all the fun of a traditional camping festival but with easy beach access and pretty much guaranteed sunshine. It’s basically Electric Picnic with a suntan. Headlined this year by Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Weeknd and DeadMau5, Benicassim offers four days of music and up to a week of camping for especially dedicated attendees.

Planning the Perfect Summer Festival Trip?

If you need some extra funds to make it your best summer ever, a Personal Loan from AIB can help. AIB offer loans from €1,000 with a loan decision through AIB Internet Banking, the AIB Mobile App. You can also book a branch appointment or phone 0818 724 725 if you’d like to speak to someone in person.

Use our handy loan calculator to find out how much you can borrow today.

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