10 of the best European festivals to go to in 2024 - Features - Mixmag

10 of the best European festivals to go to in 2024

Festival season is well underway, so get those passports dusted off and plan your next getaway with our guide to the festivals you should check out in Europe this Summer festival season

  • Words: Mixmag Crew | Photos: credits shown below
  • 21 June 2024

Festival season 2024 is well underway, and the best part? There's still so much of it left to go. As festi fever takes hold across the Northern Hemisphere, we still have months of partying ahead of us, with some of the best festivals Europe has to offer just around the corner.

Read this next: Sustainable sesh: How clubs and festivals are boosting the green agenda

So worry not if you have missed incredible moments at Brussels' Horst, Lithuania's AUDRA and Barcelona's Sónar, cast away the FOMO, dust off those passports, load up Skyscanner and check out Mixmag's guide to the best European festivals still ahead of us in Summer 2024.

Butik —Tolmin, Slovenia

When: July 10-14

One for: Beautiful natural surroundings and a chilled-out, intimate atmosphere

The European festival calendar continues to be blessed with a whole host of unique, beautiful locations for curious electronic aficionados to discover, though as the popularity of destinations like Albania, Bulgaria, Portugal and more bring crowds in their thousands — it's a relief that small-scale, boutique festivals such as Slovenia's Butik remain under the radar so attendees can still experience its untouched, serene setting. Celebrating its fifth edition next month, Butik takes place by the side of the Soča River, famed for its turquoise waters that flow from the Italian Alps just across the border. The 2,500-capacity festival is spread across stages located beneath the nearby forest canopy and the river bank, perfect for dancers wanting to cool down from the balmy temperatures — that despite the elevated location averages at around 24c. Though we'd be amiss to discuss Butik without taking the time to highlight its stellar programming, typically combining the crème de la crème of underground club and experimental electronic. This year attendees will be able to catch sets from Mama Snake, Call Super, Verraco, Eris Drew b2b Octo Octa, Sedef Adasï and more.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: Butik

by:Larm — Oslo, Norway

When: September 12-14

One for: Discovering new artists and genres.

If you’re looking for emerging talent and new music in 2024, look no further than Oslo’s by:Larm Festival. This cross-city event takes place across multiple venues in the Norwegian capital, including clubs such as BLÅ and Kafe Hærverk. by:Larm operates as a showcase festival platforming new artists looking for their big break, and has previously hosted some of the earliest shows from the likes of Black Country, New Road and Billie Eilish before their breakouts. This intimate affair takes place again this year from September 12 - 14, with both a festival programme and conference throughout each day and night. This year’s line-up includes DJ Suzy, Ebbb, and Pen Gutt, and more emerging talent from the Nordics and beyond.

Tickets & Info: here | Photo: Jakob Kleppan

​Contre-temps Festival — Strasbourg, France

When: June 12-22

One for: Combining a culture break with world-class music.

Sometimes you want to go to a festival and let loose, sometimes you want a holiday in France steeped in red wine and cheese. But we raise you: why not both? Strasbourg’s Contre-temps Festival is the answer. Now in its 20th year, having launched in 2004, the festival is a 10-day affair which takes place across various venues in the city with a first-rate line-up of local and international talent. Among the names set to play this year are DJ royalty such as Detroit powerhouse Marcellus Pittman and Parisian selector Ivan Smagghe, with the likes of Habibi Funk, I:Cube, Move D, Roman Flügel and Tama Sumo also appearing. Venues range from the grand Embarcadère du Conservatoire concert hall on the banks of the River III and the stylish Le Maillon Theater, to the industrial club Les Studios du Rhin and la Péniche Mécanique (The Mechanical Barge), a floating bar with a converted musical hall interior. Tickets for the various events can be purchased separately, so you can pick and choose the music to get stuck into, while enjoying the other delights of Strasbourg and the Grand Est region of France in between.

Tickets & Info: here | Photo: Sabrina Schwartz

District X — County Kildare, Ireland

When: September 21

One for: Experiencing a once-in-a-lifetime festival location.

If we had our way, all stately homes would be taken over and redistributed to be party locations for the people. But in lieu of a full-scale raveolution, there’s a few festivals out there that offer the opportunity to have a right old knees-up in the grounds of a castle, such as Ireland’s District X. Taking place at Palmerstown House in County Kildare, a 900-acre estate not far from Dublin that boasts everything from a walled garden to amphitheatre acoustic values, the debut edition is billing itself as Ireland’s biggest one-day dance event and they’ve certainly pulled no punches with the line-up. Azyr and blk. will be slamming out techno for the hard and fast fanatics; house heads look set to be uplifted by Kerri Chandler, Chris Stussy and Ewan McVicar; with Vintage Culture, Hannah Laing and PAWSA representing the more groove-based side of the spectrum. Full party mode will no doubt be engaged with the likes of DJ Heartstring, Partiboi69, KETTAMA, Girls Don’t Sync, Marlon Hoffstadt and Malugi; there’s UKG and dubstep supplied by Sammy Virji and local hero EMA; SHERELLE’s on board with her typically rapid selections; there’s even a set from Skepta in his Más Tiempo DJ guise; and more besides. Not much has been revealed about the staging just yet, other than a promise of “world-class stage production”, but the location looks premium for it, and it’s a line-up that speaks for itself. Tickets sold out instantly back in April, suggesting an up-for-it crowd of 20,000 who’ll be going hammer and tongs for the full 12 hours on September 21.

Tickets & Info: here | Photo: Brian Lenehan / Carlton House Hotel.

Draaimolen — Tilburg, Netherlands

When: September 6-7

One for: That "rave in the woods" feeling

While the nearby Amsterdam may have a jam-packed festival calendar, playing host to the likes of Awakenings, DGTL, Dekmantel, Lentekabinet and ADE — Draaimolen's breathtaking forest setting and expertly curated line-ups of some of the most in-demand names in underground dance music is transforming the sleepy town of Tilburg into a must-visit for electronic music fans. The eclectic line-up would be enough to have you rushing to book flights to Eindhoven — which this year features live sets Underground Resistance and Jlin, as well as Manchester house legend DJ Paulette, Venezuelan raptor house pioneer DJ Babatr, Bay Area breaks star Bored Lord and more — but if you ask, anyone who has danced within the MOB Complex will surely mention Draaimolen's stages with equal regard. While some, such as the colossal Main Stage and multi-level The Pit, are set within large clearings — much of Draaimolen's action takes place below the tree canopy, helping to create an atmosphere that is as close to a free party in the woods as possible within the realms of licensed parties. One not to miss.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: Angelina Nikolayeva

​Flow — Helsinki, Finland

When: August 9-11

One for: Sustainable dancing

In the historic Suvilahti power plant area of Helsinki, Finland, Flow Festival makes its annual return with a stacked line-up spanning experimental stages to decked-out, intimate club spaces. This year marks the 20th anniversary of Flow - a boutique, eco-conscious festival which remains one of the most sustainable events in Europe featuring mesmerising stage design, family areas, and a fully-flushed art programme. In its 20 years in operation, Flow has sharpened its eco-friendly practices, guaranteeing “environmental, social, and economic responsibility” each year. 90,000 people are set to descend upon Flow from August 9 - 11 in 2024, with a line-up featuring the likes of Fred again.., AMAARAE, and Overmono across three days.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: Konstantin Kondrukhov

Komorebi Festival — Anaklia, Georgia

When: August 2-5

One for: A private island of music

While the rugged coastlines of Croatia and the crystal clear waters of the Albanian Riviera have become synonymous with European beach-meets-festival events, partygoers from across the globe are continuing to flock to their shores for a slice of sun-drenched, dancefloor bliss. However, if you're in the market for something a little more unique, Georgia's Komorebi Festival might just fit the bill. Located on its own private island "Morimar" in the seaside resort town of Anaklia on the Black Sea coast — Komorebi describes itself as a "harmony of sea, forest, music, and relationships." The line-up features a slew of respected international names, including DJ Stingray 313, Simo Cell, Roman Flügel and a special b2b between Berlin's Black Loops and Harrison BDP — while the festival has brought in a heady range of local talent, including Georgian vocalist DEENA, Bassiani resident Kvanchi, Tbilisii techno stalwart Zitto and more. All set across two stages, crowds can enjoy yoga classes, a choreography showcase as well as "hip hop hours" in the evenings and "ambient afternoons." Go on then.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: Komorebi

UNTOLD — Cluj-Napoca, Romania

When: August 8-11

One for: Experiencing one of the world's biggest music festivals

It doesn't get much bigger than Romania's UNTOLD, a yearly festival that welcomes an eye-watering 420,000-strong crowd to the Transylvanian capital of Cluj-Napoca. With over 250 acts performing across four days in August, UNTOLD manages to strike a balance between superstar headliners and a stellar dance music offering, celebrating both international and local talent — ensuring that regardless of your music taste, there's something for everyone. This year marks the ninth edition of UNTOLD, with pop heavyweights such as Sam Smith, Louis Tomlinson and Lenny Kravitz all locked in for the Main Stage — alongside sets from electronic stars Swedish House Mafia, Timmy Trumpet, Martin Garrix and Dmitri Vegas and Like Mike. Beyond the main arena action, dance music fans can catch a hybrid live set from Carl Cox, FISHER, Solomun, Andy C, Purple Disco Machine and many, many more.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: RK Armin

Unsound — Kraków, Poland

When: September 29 - October 6

One for: Cutting edge sounds

While the final days of September through to early October may be at the very tail end of "festival season," Kraków's Unsound festival deserves a place on this list due to its long-held role of introducing Europe's dancing masses to a whole host of cutting edge sounds — providing the space for newfangled experimental artists to blow our collective minds, alongside a solid offering of some of the most exciting names in electronic, both from Poland and further afield. This year's theme centres around NOISE, which the festival labels as "unwanted sounds" and the act of "disturbance," picked due to its ability to provide commentary on technological advancements, war, social media and more. This year's line-up is typically eclectic, with ML Buch, DJ Anderson Do Paraíso, Crystallmess, TAYHANA and Kode9 heading up a special Hyberdub 20 showcase, to mark Unsound's 22nd edition. Of course, it wouldn't be Unsound without an eye-watering array of b2bs, which this year will see Actress B2B Skee Mask, Surusinghe B2B TSVI, upsammy & Valentina Magaletti, and Aïsha Devi & Slikback. Never been to Unsound before? Maybe 2024 is your year.

Tickets + Info: here | Photo: mmurawski

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