Festivals In Belgium
Belgium might not be the first country that you think of when it comes to music festivals, being more readily associated with great food, beer, chocolate and beautiful architecture. But there are actually a large number of festivals in Belgium to choose from all round the country – and the 4 listed here are easy accessible from our ports in IJmuiden and Dunkirk.
Rock Werchter takes place near Leuven and around 20 miles from Brussels. In 2016, the festival actually turns 40 years old, so it’ll be a cause for extra celebration! There are 3 stages in all and last year over 150,000 festival-goers attended the event, which takes place around the start of July. Despite the name, the festival has artists from a broad range of genres performing, including pop singer-songwriters as well as alternative rock bands.
Bruges’ Minnewaterpark acts as the beautiful setting for the Cactus Festival that runs in early July, where top acts from indie, rock and alternative scenes will be performing. The festival is international in nature, and also has a range of international artists on its stage, including reggae, roots, rap and R&B acts. Recently crowds have been as large as 28,000, and the festival only has 1 stage, which makes it easy for you to see all of the acts that you enjoy!
Brussels Summer Festival
You’ll find a very different kind of festival altogether at the Brussels Summer Festival that runs for 10 days at the start of August. It takes place against the beautiful backdrop of the city’s Roya Quarter and includes performances in 3 separate venues from nearly 50 artists including rock, pop and acts from other genres.
Grozerock is considered by many to be the opening act of festival season in Belgium, taking place in early April. It is a rock, ska and punk festival which usually stays true to its original roots with 5 stages of all of the best acts from these genres performing. The festival is in Meerhout and regularly attracts around 40,000 visitors each year.
Sfinks Mixed is a free festival (although they charge for camping) that is family-friendly and takes place in late July in Boechut. As well as music and DJs, it also has markets, workshops and storytelling for children too. Meanwhile, Colouer Café is a Brussels music festival which sees reggae, dubstep and hip hop acts perform in front of a colourful backdrop at the start of July.
Best festivals to combine with a holiday
WeCanDance takes place on Zeebrugge beach in early August, and is the best festival in Belgium to combine with a beach holiday. It’s primarily a house and techno festival, with a range of DJs and artists performing across 2 nights, plus food, fashion and more. For a more comfortable festival holiday experience, check out Extrema Festival, which allows you to stay in chalets and comfortable accommodation, rather than camping out, while listening to house and techno in the sun!
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