Arts & Culture

Best 2011 Summer Festivals in the U.K. and Europe

The summer festival scene in the United Kingdom and Europe is the apex for international musical talent. 2011 looks like a banner year too, from Glasto to Sziget.

Glastonbury 2007 – Photo credit

Sonar
Where: Barcelona/A Coruña, Spain
When: June 16-18

The lineup of acts at Sonar 2011 includes M.I.A., Dizzee Rascal, James Murphy and Janelle Monáe.

Barcelona City Guide

Southside Festival
Where: Neuhausen ob Eck, Germany
When: June 17-19

Southside will rock the Bodensee/Lake Constance region this June with acts like Foo Fighters, Arcade Fire, Gogol Bordello and Warpaint.

Friedrichshafen City Guide

Hurricane Festival
Where: Scheeßel, Germany
When: June 17-19

Hurricane runs concurrent to Southside, in the Lower Saxony municipality of Scheeßel, some 55 km from the city of Bremen.

Bremen City Guide

INMusic Festival
Where: Zagreb, Croatia
When: June 21-22

Croatia’s top international music festival takes Zagreb by storm in late June. Acts on the bill include Arcade Fire (who seem to be everywhere this summer), Jamiroquai and Nick Cave’s alt-rock band, Grinderman.

Zagreb City Guide

Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts
Where: Worthy Farm, Pilton, England
When: June 22-26

The summer festival par excellence, the 2011 version of Glasto boasts a truly sick parade of acts, from U2 to Wu-Tang Clan, Coldplay to Beyoncé, Lee “Scratch” Perry to Cee Lo Green. Do not expect to catch a wink of sleep if you find yourself at Worthy Farm this year.

London City Guide

Hove Festival
Where: Tromøy, Norway
When: June 28 – July 1

Get your festival on, Nordic style, at Hovefestivalen. Kasabian, DJ Quik, Linkin Park and The Strokes, among others.

Oslo City Guide

Roskilde Festival
Where: Roskilde, Denmark
When: June 30 – July 3

Roskilde Festival is a major summer staple and sports a solid lineup this year, with acts as diverse as Portishead, My Chemical Romance and Daniel Norgren.

Copenhagen City Guide

Open’er Festival
Where: Gdnynia, Poland
When: June 30 – July 3

Poland gets some significant summer festival love, with the likes of Coldplay, The National, M.I.A. and Big Boi in attendance at Open’er.

Gdansk City Guide

Rock Werchter
Where: Werchter, Belgium
When: June 30 – July 3

Rock Werchter indeed. One of Belgium’s best festivals features Robyn, Portishead, Kaiser Chiefs and the ageless Iron Maiden.

Antwerp City Guide

Eurockéennes de Belfort
Where: Lac de Malsaucy, Territoire de Belfort, Franche-Comté, France
When: July 1-3

A veritable Grand Slam event in the Euro summer festival scene, Eurockéennes de Belfort lures top acts like Arcade Fire, Arctic Monkeys, Queens of the Stone Age and Raphael Saadiq.

Belfort City Guide

Main Square Festival
Where: Arras, France
When: July 1-3

Main Square Festival will take over the Arras citadel in July with headliners like Kasabian, Warpaint, Moby and, yes, Arcade Fire.

Arras City Guide

Montreux Jazz Festival
Where: Montreux, Switzerland
When: July 1-16

The iconic, incomparable Montreux Jazz Festival has the kind of cred that draws artists like B.B. King, Bootsy Collins, Herbie Hancock, Paul Simon and Wayne Shorter.

Montreux City Guide

EXIT
Where: Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia
When: July 7-10

Few summer festival backdrops have the chops to compete with Novi Sad’s Petrovaradin Fortress. Main stage acts in 2011 include Arcade Fire, Santigold, M.I.A., Pulp and Beirut.

Belgrade City Guide

Oxegen
Where: Punchestown, County Kildare, Ireland
When: July 7-10

Europe’s self-proclaimed “Greatest Music Festival” is a pop music smorgasbord, with the likes of Coldplay, Beyoncé, The Black Eyed Peas and Weezer.

County Kildare City Guide

Ruisrock Festival
Where: Turku, Finland
When: July 8-10

The 2011 lineup at the always solid Ruisrock Festival features The Prodigy, The National and Fleet Foxes.

Turku City Guide

T in the Park
Where: Balado, County of Kinross, Scotland
When: July 8-10

T in the Park’s litany of bands looks eerily similar to other summer festivals in 2011, with usual suspects like Coldplay, Arctic Monkeys, Foo Fighters, The Strokes and My Chemical Romance.

Edinburgh City Guide

Festival Internacional de Benicàssim (FIB)
Where: Benicàssim, Spain
When: July 14-17

FIB will draw tens of thousands to the Costa del Azahar with the likes of Arcade Fire, Arctic Monkeys, Portishead and The Streets.

Melt! Festival
Where: Ferropolis, Gräfenhainichen, Germany
When: July 15-17

Melt! promises to fire up Saxony-Anhalt with Pulp, Robyn, Cut Copy, Crystal Fighters et al.

Leipzig City Guide

Sziget
Where: Budapest, Hungary
When: August 10-15

Massive Sziget is a pinnacle bash on the summer calendar and proves it once more with a lineup that includes Rise Against, Dizzee Rascal, Gogol Bordello and, believe it or not, Amy Winehouse.

Budapest City Guide

Way Out West
Where: Göteborg, Sweden
When: August 11-13

Way Out West’s array of acts is notable, from Kanye West to Prince, Janelle Monáe to Santigold. Potential for a memorable live collabo!

Gothenburg City Guide

Electric Picnic
Where: Stradbally Hall, County Laois, Ireland
When: September 2-4

Arcade Fire winds down one of the most ambitious summer festival tours on record at Electric Picnic, along with Pulp, Jimmy Cliff, PJ Harvey, Public Enemy and a host of others.

Dublin City Guide

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