It may only be February but festival fever should already be beginning to creep in. With a whole host of festivals having already released line ups and some having even sold out for general admission (Wireless we see you) we’re here to help. As things are so hectic and you might need a few pointers on what’s going on we’ve got you covered from May through to the end of August.
Words by Shannon Graham (@shanldn)
Lost & Found Festival (Malta) 30th April – 3rd May
Probably my favourite festival abroad as you can’t beat this location. Pool parties, boat parties and castle raves in the Maltese sun is something I can never get bored of. Along with this the line-up is always strong. Young T & Bugsey, Ms Banks and Slowthai are just a few of the artists touching down in Malta this year. Tickets available here.
The Great Escape 13th-16th May
This is more of a showcase than a festival but after going last year I’d definitely recommend. If you’re someone who likes discovering new artists and sounds then this is the one for you. This year sees Aitch, Jay 1 and Master Peace on the line up as well as 400 up and coming artists from all over the world. Tickets available here.
The Ends Festival 29th-31st May
Last year was a madness. Didn’t know what to expect as it was the first year but everything came together so well. The weather and vibes were perfect. From watching NSG perform ‘Options’ for the first time to Dave jumping on stage with Burna Boy to perform ‘Location’, there were too many lit moments. The line-up for this year is yet to be announced but we can only expect more top tier acts. Tickets available here.
Berlin Carnival 29 May – 1st June
This will always be worth the trip abroad. Imagine Notting Hill Carnival but more intimate and with more parties. There’s a full-blown Dancehall scene in Berlin and you will definitely feel that when you’re there. Vibes on vibes. Tickets available here.
Junction 2 5th-6th June
This is a stand out festival for me. It’s still quite new and fresh so it’s not your typical festival crowd. With music from the likes of Honey Dijon and Dixon, this West London festival is coming into its own transitioning from a 1-day to 2-day festival. Besides the music, the crowd has always had the best energy and I’ve always left Junction 2 wishing it was longer. Tickets available here.
Lovebox 12th-14th June
So this year Lovebox makes the transition into a 3-day festival and the line up’s looking mad. After moving from East to West London, I didn’t know if Lovebox would be the same vibe but last year at Gunnersbury Park was such good vibes. Little Simz, Khalid, Tyler The Creator are hitting the stages this year. Grab tickets here.
Parklife 13th-14th June
If you don’t mind a little bit of rain then Parklife should be on your radar. The stage production is crazy and the line-up is strong every year. UK music is taking over the world right now and Parklife definitely represents that with their line-up. D Block Europe, Aitch and Skepta are just a few of the UK greats on the bill. Get your tickets here.
Sonar Festival 18th-20th June
This ones perfect if you feel like doing a festival abroad. Barcelona is only a couple of hours away but the vibe is one that you definitely won’t get from a UK festival. As well as having Sonar Festival, there are loads off ‘OFF Sonar’ parties running at the same time in destinations around Barcelona. Tickets here.
Strawberries & Creem 20th June
I say this every year but this is hands down the best UK 1-day festival. I’ve watched it get bigger and bigger since it started and this year’s line-up just proves that’s not stopping anytime soon. Koffee, Sean Paul and Nafe Smallz are just a few of the artists heading up to Cambridge in June. Tickets here.
Garage Nation 27th June
For me, this is a must as there’s no other festival that caters to old school garage, grime and funky house ravers. I went last year thinking it was strictly garage but ended spending most of my time in a funky house tent. For the old school ravers, this is definitely one to hit up. Tickets here.
Wireless 3rd-5th July
Wireless always secure the strongest line-up’s and this year’s no different. D Block Europe, M Huncho, Digdat, Aitch, Burna Boy and Koffee are just some of the names performing this year. Tickets for Wireless sell out faster every year so get involved now on VIP tickets if you don’t want to miss out. Get yours here.
Afro Nation (Portugal) 17th-19th July
I’ve never felt FOMO like I did when I was watching everyone’s Insta stories at Afro Nation last year. It seemed like the ultimate vibe. I haven’t come across one person that went last year that isn’t going again this year. This is definitely one that gets booked up super quick so get in there fast if you’re looking to go. Chronixx, Wizkid, Tion Wayne and so many more on the line up for this year. Get tickets here.
Boomtown 12th-16th August
I hit up Boomtown last year and was actually shocked at how sick this festival was. The production is a madness and the line-up is even better. It’s 4-5 days long as well so if you want a proper festival experience then this is definitely worth considering. This year sees Kano, Akala and Shy FX on the line up just to name a few. Grab tickets here.
SW4 29th-30th August
I’ve only heard good things about this festival but the fact that Krept & Konan are headlining a festival in South London is enough of a reason to go. I can only imagine the surprises we’re gonna get from that performance. Stefflon Don, Kano and so many others are also on the bill. Tickets here.