FIGURES suggest British music fans are increasingly opting for a festival abroad instead of one on home turf – and I can’t say I blame them.
The traditional British festival mud bath has never been my idea of fun and I’ve been snubbing them in recent years, instead opting for the likes of Barcelona’s Primavera Sound, which is located on a marina just minutes from the city centre, and easily the best festival location I’ve ever visited.
With the price of a British festival ticket soaring by more than 124 per cent in a decade, it’s not hard to know why so many others are now looking further afield, with bookings up by 30 per cent this year for events abroad.
British festivals may offer great line-ups, but if you’re after guaranteed sunshine it’s a better option to hop on a budget airline and combine music with a holiday.
Now, you’re thinking that sounds great but will probably cost a bomb. Not really. The average reveller forks out £700 for a UK festival weekend, which is enough to grab cheap flights, accommodation and tickets to one of a growing amount of top-notch foreign festivals.
A good option is Sonar, which takes place in Barcelona from June 13-15. Tickets are still available, and this year Kraftwerk, Pet Shop Boys and Skrillex headline, with hundreds of other acts filling up the bill.
Ibiza Rocks is worth a look, too. It kicks off this month and runs through to September – not continuously, mind – and this year’s line-up includes Jake Bugg, The Vaccines, Tinie Tempah and Beady Eye.
Then there’s INFestival in Zagreb, which boasts Arctic Monkeys, Bloc Party, Iggy And The Stooges and Editors among many others.
Last summer, a friend went to Optimus Alive in Lisbon and he’s been bragging about the experience ever since. This year, the Portuguese capital welcomes Green Day, Vampire Weekend and Depeche Mode.
Further afield, there’s Fuji Rock. Of course, if money’s tight, Japan isn’t an option. But if you want to make a holiday out of a festival with a great line-up, it’s hard to beat.
This year’s headliners are Nine Inch Nails, Bjork and The Cure.