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It's festival season! Here's our countdown of the best music festivals in the world

Whether you want to hear indie rock anthems, EDM beats, pop icons or the smoothest jazz you've ever heard, these are the music festivals you need to visit this summer...

Is your idea of a good time belting out Wonderwall in a muddy field? Or would you rather leave the wellies at home? Either way, we think the perfect festival is out there for any music lover. Here's where we think you should be heading this summer if you're after the best music festival in the world, from opera houses to boggy fields.

PS – making this list was harder than getting Glastonbury tickets, so don't be too mad if your favourite didn't make the cut!

9. Sziget | Hungary

Sziget Festival in Hungary

With 1,000 shows across 60 stages for 6 days straight, Sziget is guaranteed to have something for any music lover. Its Óbuda Island setting flanked either side by the Danube River couldn't be more perfect – Budapest's best sights aren't too far away, so you can combine a bucket list city break with an icon of the European festival circuit.

Whatever genre you're into, Sziget's got it, and the 2024 lineup is no different. Fred Again…, Kylie, Liam Gallagher, Sam Smith, Skrillex, and Stormzy to name a few are gracing the island this summer, so you can go from belting out I Should Be So Lucky to Wonderwall to Bangarang in a jiffy.

8. Arena di Verona Festival | Italy

Arena di Verona Festival in Italy

Music festivals aren't all about drinking cans and headbanging in some rich person's farm. How about a night at the opera in an ancient Roman amphitheatre?

It couldn't get more Italian at the Arena di Verona Festival, which welcomes the very best in opera every year from June to September to play in one of the world's most beautiful venues. Verona Arena is right in the heart of the old town, which is arguably the most romantic place in the world thanks to its connections with Romeo and Juliet. Fingers crossed your festival experience doesn't end quite as tragically as their fabled romance.

Our guide to Italy

With bustling cities and stunning coastline you'll be hard pressed to choose just one place to visit in Italy.

Italy Travel Guide

7. Rock in Rio | Brazil

Rock in Rio Festival in Brazil

Rock in Rio is undoubtedly one of the biggest festival brands in the world. The first one in 1985 welcomed over one million revellers and saw Queen headline, and since then it's been held all over the world in Lisbon, Madrid and Las Vegas.

2024 is the tenth time Rock in Rio is rocking out in its homeland and promises to be as big as ever. The headliners this time are Travis Scott, Imagine Dragons, Avenged Sevenfold, Ed Sheeran, Katy Perry and Shawn Mendes, so everything from glitzy pop to heavy metal is more than covered.

6. Fuji Rock | Japan

Fuji Rock Festival in Japan

Given the name you'd expect there to be plenty of rock at Japan's largest festival. And there is, don't worry. But it's actually called that because the first festival in 1997 was held at the bottom of a very large rock – Mount Fuji, that is.

Nowadays Fuji Rock wows music lovers at Naeba Ski Resort, meaning it must be one of the only major festivals that requires a cable car to reach it. Needless to say, the mountainous views high up in the resort are incredible, as is the lineup they're able to draw year after year. This time it's the turn of The Killers, Kraftwerk, and Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds to headline – it might just be the highest those birds have ever flown.

5. Lollapalooza | USA

Lollapalooza Festival in the USA

Chicago sure knows how to do summer. Come July the Windy City is alive with lakeside dining, rooftop bars, baseball, beaches, live music and festivals. But summer peaks when Lollapalooza arrives. Nestled between the Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan, Grant Park provides the perfect playground for festival goers to party through the day then keep it going in the city's lively clubs by night. If that doesn't sound too exhausting, anyway.

Lollapalooza's young crowd brings all the energy you'd expect from a festival, and the headliners never disappoint. Megan Thee Stallion, SZA and Blink-182 are among the acts pumping up the crowd in 2024.

Our guide to the USA

Famous for all things big, the USA is jam-packed full of things to see and do.

USA Travel Guide

4. Montreaux Jazz Festival | Switzerland

Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland

Montreaux Jazz Festival set on the glorious Lake Geneva is about as swanky as music festivals get. It's got plenty to keep jazz boffins happy, but nowadays the lineup features a much broader selection of musicians. The Smashing Pumpkins, Alice Cooper, Paolo Nutini and Janelle Monáe are just some of the eclectic cast heading to the lake in 2024.

Fun fact – Deep Purple's signature song Smoke on the Water was named after a fire at this very festival in 1971, when someone in the audience listening to Frank Zappa fired a flare gun up at the ceiling of the old casino where the festival used to take place. Deep Purple are heading to Montreaux Jazz Festival for the 9th time this year, and it might just be the best place to hear the song you were probably forced to learn at school.

Our guide to Switzerland

Whether you're heading here for the festival or not, Switzerland guarantees a good trip.

Switzerland Travel Guide

3. Tomorrowland | Belgium

Tomorrowland Festival in Belgium

Tomorrowland is held in the Belgian town of Boom, which says everything you need to know about this EDM behemoth of a music festival. Ravers heading here can expect the biggest DJs in the world to be dropping the biggest beats they've ever heard, plus some of the most outrageous stage designs you'll find anywhere. If you love electronic dance music, this is the place to be every summer.

There are too many huge artists to name, but big acts to look out for this year include David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia, Armin van Buuren and Tïesto.

2. Glastonbury | UK

Glastonbury Festival in the UK

Good luck getting a ticket to Glastonbury. When it comes to UK festivals this is the big one – over 200,000 people head there every year, and tickets took less than an hour to sell out when they were first released for 2024. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't try – it's popular for a reason.

There's more to Glastonbury than just the music. This performing arts festival hosts the best in dance, comedy, theatre, circus and cabaret, but the music lineup is undoubtedly the biggest draw. This year Dua Lipa, Coldplay and SZA are headlining the famous Pyramid Stage, while Shania Twain is in the Sunday Legends slot.

UK Short Breaks

Book a money-saving package with tickets to the best UK attractions and a hotel stay.

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1. Coachella | USA

Coachella Festival in the USA

This Californian celebrity hot spot might just be the mother of all music festivals. It's certainly hard to argue it's not the best festival for anyone that loves pop music – 2024 saw Lana Del Rey, Tyler, the Creator, and Doja Cat headline, and big names gracing the stage in recent years include Harry Styles, Billie Eilish, Ariana Grande, and Beyoncé.

If you're after viral Instagram selfies, gorgeous Californian sunshine, and the most popular musicians around, this is the place for you. Or, grab your wellies and head to a boggy field in Somerset for Glastonbury. That sounds much better, right?

Coachella's been and gone for 2024, so it's time to get planning for April 2025. We don't know the lineup yet, but it'll no doubt be iconic.