America might have founded the first events back in the 1960s, but fast forward to the present day and Europe has a firm grip on the festival baton. The UK alone hosts approximately 500 festivals each year, and the incredible roster of European events continues to evolve every summer. Attending a classic festival or boutique weekender has long been a rite of passage, wherever you hail from on the continent. From hip hop legends in Holland to cutting edge electro in Belgium, there’s a festival for everyone. Here’s the best of what’s coming up in 2017.
Electro in Belgium: Tomorrowland: 21 – 23 July 2017, 28 – 30 July 2017
Trance, house, techno, breakbeat; you name it, the Belgians will rave to it. Imagine every room at a killer warehouse rave, shaken and stirred – and there you have Tomorrowland. As far as festivals go, this one is the international player, with sister events in Brazil and the USA – but the Belgian instalment is the largest and most notable. Held in the town of Boom, the two-part party will run across two consecutive weeks in July 2017. Electro fans can look forward to sets by some of the genre’s most iconic DJs: Axwell / Ingrosso, Alesso, David Guetta, Deadmau5 and Afrojack. An enviable line-up as any electro fan would attest.
Ready to dance to the world’s greatest DJs at Tomorrowland? Take a P&O ferry from Hull to Zeebrugge and drive the easy 1 hour and 15 minutes to Boom.
Hip Hop in Holland: Appelsap: 12 August 2017
Holland’s cult hit one day event Appelsap (that’s Apple Juice in English) is billed as a ‘fresh music festival’ that brings hip hop, R&B and drum and bass to the fore. As well showcasing unbelievable beats by world-class names, Appelsap also prides itself on giving a platform to emerging talent – all in the glorious fresh air of Amsterdam’s Flevopark. While you are firmly encouraged to put on your most comfortable dancing trainers, organisers advise leaving the picnic basket at home so you can indulge in the festival’s amazing international street food feast. This year, lyrical legend Lil Wayne and the NYC breakthrough rapper Young M.A., known for her unforgiving flow, will entice the crowds.
Fancy a day of rap music and street food at Appelsap? Take a P&O ferry from Hull to Rotterdam and you’ll find Flevopark just a 1 hour 15 minute drive away.
Rock in France: Rock En Seine: 25 – 27 August 2017
One of Europe’s festival giants, Rock En Seine is perched, unsurprisingly, on the banks of the famous French river. Situated at Château de Saint-Cloud park, about 5km from Paris, the festival is likened to Glastonbury in terms of vibe and scale, with 100,000 people attending every year. All styles of rock are represented across the four stages, from punk to metal and everything in between. A seemingly endless series of achingly cool bands and artists including Mac Demarco, The XX, Flume, At the Drive-In, The Jesus and Mary Chain, Slowdive and Sleaford Mods will come together in 2017 to put this festival in a league of its own.
Want to get your rocks off with the biggest international bands at Rock En Seine? It takes 3 hours and 15 minutes to reach Château de Saint-Cloud park from the port at Calais.
Take a look at our Adventure page for more inspiration.