17 top European summer festivals in September
When it comes to partying, Europe is where it’s at. From music fests and carnivals to medieval fairs, we help you find your favourite European summer festival this September.
Experience European culture at its best and party your way through the numerous gastronomic feasts, music fests and cultural events for every age and taste.
Want to know which European events and festivals you should be at this September? We have found all the best ones: the one with the major headliners, the quirky one, the cultural one, even one with cows. What’s more, we are hooking you up to the best ways to score tickets.
What are you waiting for? Keep reading!
Top 8 music festivals in Europe in September
1. Bestival | 7-10 September 2017
This four-day open air festival serves up more than music on the Isle of Wight. This fan favourite has festival goers worldwide dressing up according to the yearly theme, watching wrestling, jumping on bouncy castles and more.
While some activities are permanent fixtures, Bestival keeps it fresh with new features every year. If you are looking for a music festival with equally tempting side activities, Bestival is your best bet.
Buy Bestival tickets
2. Pacha | TBA
Party it up to dance and electronic music with the stunning Amsterdam skyline as your backdrop when you head to the Pacha Festival.
The 2016 lineup saw pioneers and rising talent such as Martin Solveig, ANOTR and Benny Rodrigues playing live sets in the Ibiza-like atmosphere. The stages are elaborate and the chill-out areas are massive. Oh, and be sure to check out the popular hippie market for unique fashion and accessories.
Buy tickets to Pacha
3. Lollapalooza | 9-10 September 2017
It’s been 26 years and Lollapalooza shows no sign of slowing down when it comes to delivering world-class lineups of the best in rock, pop, indie and electronic music.
The 2016 edition welcomed over 70,000 punters daily and the 2017 edition is shaping up to be even better. It's moving address to Rennbahn Hoppegarten in Berlin and has already secured Foo Fighters, Mumford and Sons, the XX and Hardwell to its lineup.
There is also a dedicated art market, kids’ zone and some of the best local eats around.
Lollapalooza is all about spreading the good vibes so the festival connects you with charities and organisations that improve and save lives.
Buy tickets to Lollapalooza
4. Outlook Festival | 7-10 September 2017
Every year, a former navy fort in Croatia transforms into an open-air arena with festival stages and outdoor dance floors with laser-projected graffiti art. Dubbed as one of Croatia’s biggest summer parties of its kind, revellers soak up their favourite electronic, techno, house, rap and dubstep tunes with artists from the UK, Jamaica and beyond.
For something a little different, book a ticket on the boat parties and take the partying out to open waters. It’s the perfect way to get up-close and personal with artists like Dizzee Rascal, DJ Shadow and Wiley while soaking up the beautiful Croatian sights.
Buy tickets to Outlook Festival
5. Into the Woods Festival | TBA
If you are looking to escape the bustle of daily life and lose yourself to a weekend of electronic and techno music, get yourself to Into the Woods. It’s an electronic music festival held in the Dutch woodlands.
With the concept of “anything goes”, you will fall in love with this energetic two-day weekend in a unique setting.
Browse flights to Amsterdam
6. Electric Picnic | 1-3 September 2017
Tickets to Electric Picnic sell out every year as people can’t get enough of this eclectic arts and music festival. Set in the rolling Ireland lawns, this festival delivers big names (Lana Del Rey, LCD Soundsystem and The Chemical Brothers for 2016. Artists for this year will be released on 20 March), a dedicated space for funky art installations, live storytelling and the best in Irish comedy.
Electric Picnic is a treat for all the senses, be it through music, art or the narrative. Go for your favourites but don’t be surprised if you just discover something new.
Buy tickets to Electric Picnic
8. Festival No. 6 | 7-10 September 2017
If you are tired of commercialised and mainstream festivals and have a taste for something quirky, consider Festival No. 6. This boutique festival embraces the world of music, art, theatre, food and more. It’s a little quirky, a little whimsical and all-out experimental. You can expect enthusiastic musicians on the pop-up stages, art installations and the strong love for storytelling but also the unexpected, with activities like the torchlight parade.
The festival is relatively new, but with its building reputation as well as rave reviews from artist Beck of last year's event Festival No. 6 is fast becoming one of the UK’s most popular boutique festivals. Go before the crowds settle in.
Buy tickets to Festival No. 6
9. Electric Fields Festival | 1-2 September 2017
If you are looking to escape the city and relax in open spaces, head to Electric Fields. Set on the stunning grounds of the majestic Drumlanrig Castle in Scotland, the festival promises a weekend of good music, new experiences and good fun for the whole family.
The 2017 main stage will see the likes of Primal Scream and The Charlatans. But beyond enjoying rock, indie, house and electro sounds, make sure to explore the various culinary delights, ale sampling, fairground activities and a dedicated lineup of activities for the little ones.
Browse flights to Glasgow
Top 8 arts and culture festivals in Europe in September
1. Oktoberfest | 16 September to 3 October 2017
The famous beer fest in Munich needs no introduction. Held annually, this 16-day folk festival will have amusement park rides, dancing, live concerts, traditional foods and of course, beer. Get yourself a beer glass and dive into the many beer tents for a time of drinking, eating and partying to live brass bands. 2016 saw 7.2 million guests and over 6.9 million litres of beer.
Some not-to-be-missed highlights include beer barrel tapping – where the first barrel of beer is opened and the traditional costume and riflemen's parade.
Book an Oktoberfest tour
2. Braemar Gathering / The Scottish Highland Games | 2 September 2017
The first official games were held in 1832 at The Princess Royal and Duke of Fife Memorial Park in Braemar. It is traditionally attended by the British royal family. Game day typically starts at 9:30am and ends by 5pm. There are many family-friendly events, including a children’s sack race.
Book a tour of Braemar / The Scottish Highland Games
3. Regata Storica | 3 September 2017
The first historical boat race was recorded in the mid-13th century and is now Venice’s most important boating event. It wouldn’t be complete without the gondolini regatta, which is where two costumed gondoliers race against their competitors. Cheer on your favourites along the Grand Canal or merely bask in the atmosphere.
The opening event of gondoliers in full period costume and concerts along the Grand Canal should not be missed.
Browse flights to Venice
4. Festes de la Merce | TBA
La Merce is the highlight of Barcelona’s festival calendar. This non-stop four day street party includes free concerts, spectacular processions and unique activities unlike any other. Some highlights include a fire run, a fire-breathing dragon, human towers and the Giants Parade, where papier-mâché characters of kings, queens and nobles march the streets.
So bring your camera, be prepared to not sleep (much) and be part of a festival that is a reflection of both tradition and modern art and culture.
Browse flights to Barcelona
5. Galway International Oyster Festival | 22-24 September 2017
It’s more than just eating oysters and having one too many beers at the oldest oyster festival in the world (though that does happen). This three-day event celebrates the mollusk and other bounties of the sea but also features culinary demonstrations, cook-offs and most importantly, the famed oyster shucking championships.
Bring your appetite – the Galway Oyster Festival isn’t for the faint-hearted.
Book Galway food tours
6. London Design Festival | 16-24 September 2017
The London Design Festival is made up of over 400 events spanning dozens of locations, from small local museums to tourist hotspots. This annual celebration of craft and design brings together the country's greatest thinkers, practitioners, retailers and educators.
Attend talks, workshops and navigate the many design areas and districts using the Festival app. The London Design Festival installations are a feast for the senses. While some art is static, there are audio displays, some of which you can try your hand at making.
Browse flights to London
7. Branchage Short Film Festival | TBA
This annual film festival celebrates the best of film, music, visual art, theatre and poetry from all over the world. This event is adventurous and creative, taking advantage of the scenic backdrops of the Channel Island of Jersey for exclusive performances and collaborations.
Festival goers can expect screenings, live performances, parties and live soundtrack events. This also includes foreign films, language, live events, comedy and spoken word events. The Branchage is a festival for all sorts of unique and unexpected fun.
Browse flights to Jersey
8. Cows’ Ball | TBA
This 50 year old Slovenian festival celebrates the homecoming of cattle to the alpine area after a summer in green pastures.
Cows are decorated with colourful wreaths and shown off in a parade accompanied by herdsmen, milkmaids and joyful music. Yup, this festival makes for great family fun. Have a go folk dancing or shop for local crafts at the market. Try local specialties and cheeses as you take in the unique culture and beautiful backdrop of farming villages.
Browse flights to Ljubljana
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