Looking for the best music festivals in the USA!? Well, you’ve come to the right place, because I’ve compiled the ultimate US festival bucket list to keep you plenty busy for many festival seasons to come!
In the last decade, the popularity of the festival industry and amount of new events hitting North America has been exponential, and every year they’ve just been getting bigger and better! From weekend-long camping adventures, dusk-til-dawn mega raves, and small boutique festivals – this list has got it covered!
While attending ALL of these would require a significantly large amount of money, time, and energy – it would certainly be the adventure of a lifetime (and something I’m personally trying to achieve)!
So without further ado, here’s what I think are…
1) Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival
When: June 11-14, 2020
Where: Great Stage Park, Manchester, Tennessee
www.bonnaroo.com | www.facebook.com/bonnaroo
The most positive place on this planet, and a once-in-a-lifetime experience, every time.
“Bonnaroo is…Thousands of happy campers. 700 acres of Tennessee nature. 150 epic performances. 10+ Stages of music. Dozens of comedians. 4 of the best days ever. An escape into Excitement. Music. Art. Discoveries. Trees. Fresh Air. Green Grass. A mini film fest. Friends (Old / New). Adventure. Overwhelming happiness. Hugging a stranger by accident. Sharing and Generosity. Funky Dancing. Hyperbolic verbiage. System overload. The perfect bite of ice cream. Sandals. Fallovers. Chirping Birds. Flashing Lights. Food and Drink. Variety. Singing. Laughing. Short shorts. High-Fives. Rocky IV in the cinema tent at 3am. Spicy Pie. Memories. Someone dressed up like Teen Wolf. Holy Cow(!) Moments. Interesting factoids. Egg sandwiches. More music. Adventure. Deep Breaths. Big smiles. This. That. The Other. Hellos and Goodbyes and reminders of all that we have to celebrate and look forward to next year and in the future.”
Bonnaroo features a diverse lineup of 150+ musicians and other performance artists every year. With 10+ stages and entertainment that goes ALL NIGHT LONG, you will NOT be bored. AND Camping at Bonnaroo is hardly “camping” by most definitions of the word – it’s a non-stop adventure of discovery and human connection with your fellow Bonnaroovians, and a key to the one-of-a-kind Bonnaroo experience.
Watch this incredible short film below for just a small glimpse about what Bonnaroo is all about!
2) Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
When: Fri, Apr 10, 2020 – Sun, Apr 19, 2020 (Two Weekends)
Where: Empire Polo Club, Indio, California
Coachella is arguably the most iconic and famous music & arts festival in the United States (and quite possibly the entire world). If you haven’t been, I can guarantee you it’ll certainly be an experience that you’ll never forget. While it may be notoriously expensive, I personally think it’s worth every penny. Each year Coachella provides an undeniably impressive line-up spanning nearly every music genre, epic stage production, world-class food & drink vendors and a fantastic festival atmosphere.
Being a favorite among the dozens of quality music festivals in California, tickets do sell-out almost instantly, so make sure your festival squad plan ahead and scoop up some tickets while you can! I’ve attended Coachella in 2014 & 2018, and I had the time of my life, and can’t wait to return to the magical Empire Polo Club for another round for Coachella 2020!
Check out this Coachella after movie below for some stunning footage!
3) Governor’s Ball
When: June 5-7, 2020
Where: Randall’s Island Park, New York City
For the east coast residents looking to enjoy an unbelievable festival with the iconic NYC skyline as a backdrop, make your way to Governor’s Ball. Widely recognized as one of the biggest and best festivals in New York, this definitely deserves a top spot on your bucket list! Located on the beautiful and well-maintained Randall’s Island Park, festival-goers are treated to three days of world-class music, phenomenal stages, and good vibes.
“We started all this 8 years ago because we were music lovers who lived in a city that needed – that deserved – a contemporary music festival. Music is always our primary focus, and with 60+ artists of all genres across 4 stages, there is something for everyone.”
4) Outside Lands Music Festival
When: August 7-9, 2020
Where: Golden Gate Park, San Fransisco, California
Outside Lands is Northern California’s premiere music festival, and I can personally say that it’s an absolute blast! It’s a local favorite among San Franciscans, and there really is a special and relaxing festival vibe for these three days in Golden Gate Park. While tickets, food, and drink costs are rather high (like everything in SF), it’s an incredible event that you should definitely check out at least once!
The line-ups are always super-diverse (and I always discover tons of new artists), the production is fantastic, and you’ll simply fall in love with the venue (located in the heart of San Francisco). While Outside Lands Music Festival finishes early (around 10 PM), the city is filled with afterparties and sideshows of the artists on the line-up, and it really is a great time to visit the city. If you don’t want to spend the money for the full 3-day general admission, just buy a one-day ticket for your preferred day of the line-up, and spend the rest of your time partying it up in San Francisco’s thriving nightlife scene
Read my festival reviews from 2017 & 2018:
Outside Lands Music Festival: The Ultimate Golden Gate Park Party
Outside Lands Festival 2018 | Top 10 Weekend Highlights
5) Austin City Limits
When: October 4 – Oct 13, 2019 (Two Weekends)
Where: Austin, Texas
2 Weekends, 8 Stages, and Over 130 bands
Since its first edition in 2002, Austin City Limits has grown to become one of the largest and most well-known festivals in the US! With its growth in popularity, it’s expanded to a two-weekend event that offers its attendees some of the best international artists spanning all genres, fine arts exhibits by local artists, and incredible Texas BBQ, as well dozens of other delicious food & drink vendors.
When: July 30- August 2, 2020
Where: Grant Park, Chicago
“What started as a single-stage music showcase put together in 1991 by Perry Farrell, lead singer of Jane’s Addiction, has since evolved into a larger-than-life music experience like no other. Connecting with the city’s deep musical legacy, Lollapalooza set down roots and made Chicago its home in 2005—and it hasn’t looked back. Now a destination event, thousands of fans travel from around the world to experience the massive crowds, scenic lakefront setting, and incredible entertainment every summer.”
Lollapalooza is Chicago’s biggest (and longest) summer festival that brings together the biggest names in music every year! Located in the beautiful Grant Park with the Chicago skyline as a backdrop, it’s a four-day adventure that will surely be a highlight of your summer. Plus, you’ll be able to destroy those festival hangovers with some delicious deep-dish pizza!
7) Ultra Music Festival
When: March 20-22, 2020
For over 20 years, ULTRA Music Festival has invited guests to downtown Miami for a weekend of top-notch electronic music, and in recent years, has been producing events in nearly every corner of the globe. From Australia to Japan, Buenos Aires to Croatia – ULTRA has proven repeatedly it’s one of the best music festival productions in the world.
While in 2019, ULTRA was forced to move venues due to issues with the city of Miami, I’m stoked that ULTRA 2020 will be returning to its iconic venue of Bayfront Park in Downtown Miami, Florida. It’s always the main highlight of Miami Music Week, and is truly an experience that every EDM fan should experience at least once in their life. While ticket prices may be high for the average festival attendee, once you get a look at the star-studded line-up, it makes perfect sense!
“For EDM fans around the world, Ultra in Miami is a must-stop on the international circuit. While most of the United States is shivering in parkas waiting for the summer festival season, Ultra fans are dancing their asses off in sunny Miami. The show always delivers surprises – both in the musical acts and the fans that attend.”
8) Firefly Music Festival
When: June 2020
Where: The Woodlands, Dover, Delaware
“Taking place annually in the beautiful Woodlands of Dover, Delaware – Firelfy Music Festival is the East Coast’s largest music and camping festival! Featuring incredible live performances by genre-bending artists, unique food and drink vendors and a one-of-a-kind onsite camping experience, The Great Atlantic Campout, Firefly Music Festival has become a can’t miss summer event for legions of fans.”
“Firefly. This is like the new Glastonbury of America!” – Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons
9) Electric Daisy Carnival
When: May 15-17, 2020
Where: Las Vegas Boulevard, Las Vegas
All Are Welcome Under the Electric Sky | Dusk Til’ Dawn
Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC for short) Las Vegas is the largest electronic dance music festival in North America, but pretty much every EDM fan already knows that. What started in 1997 as a warehouse party in Los Angeles, has turned into one of the wildest, massive, and mesmerizing dance music festivals in the entire world, and simply should be at TOP at every raver’s bucket list!
Now I’ve personally attended EDC three different times now: the last edition that was hosted in Los Angeles (2011), the first year it was brought out to Las Vegas (2012), and once again in Vegas back in 2014. It truly is unlike any festival I’ve been to in the USA, and is one of the most impressive events in the world! I’ve gotta give it up to Pasquale Rotella and the team over Insomniac events because they go above & beyond to ensure the “headliners” (the attendees) all have a life-changing experience every year!!
“EDC is a unique multi-day festival pushing the boundaries of imagination and setting standards in the live entertainment industry. By incorporating carnival themes and attractions, cutting-edge stage production, world-class talent, and innovative art and technology, EDC is more than an electronic music festival – it is an unparalleled multi-sensory experience unlike any other. The brand has created a passionate community of accepting fans that have turned EDC into a way of life. The foundation upon which the phenomenon was built is one of unity, love, self expression, and respect for one another.”
10) Electric Forest
When: Late June 2020
Where: Rothbury, Michigan
“Have you ever felt anything like it? The beat of the bass charging the atmosphere with electrifying energy. Bolts of lightning streaking through the forest, arcing around the trees, and captivating the crowd into awe.A mind-melting experience of community, woodland, and rhythm bringing 45,000 people together every year in a musical-matrix of natural and electric vibrations…”
Out of all the US music festivals on this list, I’d argue that Electric Forest wins for having the best venue! Tucked deep in the woods of Michigan, once a year pops up a magical land filled magical lights & lasers shining through the massive trees, epic stages with performances from world-class artists, and top-notch vibes from the loving #ForestFamily. Make sure you snag tickets to this one early, because they are certainly hard to come by! It’s one of the most highly sought after music festivals in the country, and is guaranteed to be one of the highlights of your summer!
While I have yet to attend myself, I’m really hoping that Electric Forest 2020 will be my year! Everyone I know who has been says nothing buy incredible things, and that it’s simply a place you have to visit to fully understand it!
11) Hangout Festival
When: May 15-17, 2020
Where: The Gulf Shores, Alabama
Hangout Music Festival is a massive 3-Day beach extravaganza complete with beach clubs, ocean swimming, sailing expeditions, roller discos, free yoga, beach volleyball, a puppy kissing booth, Ferris wheel views, beautiful art installations, and so much more! While Alabama might not be the first place you think of for a “destination festival”, Hangout Music Festival is produced by Goldenvoice (the same company behind Coachella), so you know it’s guaranteed to be an incredible beach and music festival vacation. Take a look through their previous line-ups, and you’ll understand the talent they bring out.
Join the Hangout Music Festival 2020 Facebook Event
12) South by South West (SXSW)
When: March 13-22, 2020
“It’s not that South by Southwest takes over Austin — downtown Austin becomes SXSW for nine days in March. Music, art, interactive, panels, comedy, and movies all vie for your attention span. Let’s put it this way. You could skip media for a year, come to Austin for the week, and still come out ahead on pop culture.
Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. The event, an essential destination for global professionals, features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, and a variety of networking opportunities. SXSW proves that the most unexpected discoveries happen when diverse topics and people come together.”
13) Electric Zoo
When: End of August 2020
Where: Randall’s Island Park
“Established in 2009 by Made Event, the internationally renowned Electric Zoo Festival is one of New York City’s largest music festivals and features the top names in electronic music, bringing a wide variety of acts from around the world and across the spectrum of electronic music’s various sub-genres. International editions of Electric Zoo have taken place in Mexico City, Tokyo, Shanghai, and São Paulo.
Electric Zoo celebrates the joy of electronic music every year by putting on one of the biggest, most immersive festival experiences in the world.”
It is said that change is not only a natural part of life but the only way to reveal true beauty. Just think about the metamorphosis that a caterpillar undergoes to become an exquisite butterfly. It’s pretty mind-blowing. Thus, we’ve taken such inspiration and tied it into this year’s theme, Electric Zoo: Evolved.
14) Kaaboo Del Mar Festival
When: September 18-20, 2020
Where: Petco Park
Southern California’s largest music, comedy, art and culinary festival!
“Forget what you know about music festivals, we’ve shifted the paradigm and built something new. KAABOO is the perfect weekend escape, described in a word that comes from whatever the hell we feel like yelling when we’re high on life and having fun. A curated three-day sound voyage that combines rock-n-roll music and tastemaking events in a modern wonderland on the warm shores of the pacific. Where every detail is designed for your enjoyment and clean, comfortable amenities inspire you to break from your busy life, let loose and enjoy the experience. Welcome to KAABOO, the place where all of your senses align.”
And exciting news, that beginning in September 2020, KAABOO Del Mar, will celebrate its sixth festival event with a move to America’s number one ballpark (Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres) and its surrounding venues, and will feature a variety of headlining music hitmakers and legends of varying genres, and offer an unrivaled level of entertainment throughout the weekend.
15) BUKU Music + Art Project
When: March 20-21, 2020
Where: New Orleans, Louisiana
Urban music+art festival meets epic warehouse party celebrating the progressive subculture of New Orleans.
“Buku is a New Orleans playground. The lines between fan and performer are blurred. Am I looking at art or sitting on it? Does it matter? Let go and immerse yourself in: BUKULTURE. Music & art feel different like this! We believe in those who strive to be dope. Originality, creativity, freedom, and community is our anthem. If you’re in the BUKREWE, you know! If not, come join us”
16) Lightning In A Bottle
When: May 20-25, 2020
Where: Buena Vista Lake, Kern County, California
Lightning in a Bottle, or more commonly referred to as “LIB”, is one of the largest transformational music festivals in the USA
While it always boasts an incredible electronic line-up, there is much to more to this spiritually awakening festival. Many friends of mine have called it their favorite festival they’ve ever attended, and it will easily be a life-changing festival experience. Go to some workshops, do some yoga, take a refreshing dip in the lake, watch the sunrise, and party like there’s no tomorrow!
Celebrating Art, Music, Performance, Sustainability & Life.
“The history of LIB spans more than a decade, and friends, family, and co-horts of The Do LaB are thrilled and astounded that it’s been more than ten years of making miracles and catching Lightning in a Bottle!”
17) Shaky Knees Music Festival
When: May 20-25, 2020
Where: Central Park, Atlanta, Georgia
“Drawing in nearly 40,000 attendees, Shaky Knees Festival brings a highly desired indie scene to the streets of downtown Atlanta, Georgia. In an era where most festival headliners feature a variation of EDM/DJ acts, Shaky Knees lives to show another side of modern-day music.
With more than 60 bands each year Shaky Knees is a rock lover’s dream. Since its inception in 2013, Shaky Knees has featured a diverse lineup ranging from world-renowned acts to up-and-coming artists.”
18) Made in America
When: August / September (Labor Day weekend)
“The Made in America music festival is a massive musical celebration that takes over the Benjamin Franklin Parkway each Labor Day weekend in Philadelphia. With dozens of top performers and multiple stages on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the two-day music festival curated by Jay-Z is one of the year’s can’t-miss events. Every year, Jay-Z hand-picks a lineup of both established and up-and-coming musicians to perform throughout the weekend — and sometimes, you can even find Jay-Z singing along in the crowd.”
When: June 24- July 5, 2020
Where: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
“Summerfest presented by American Family Insurance is the World’s Largest Music Festival and Milwaukee’s cornerstone summer celebration that attracts the music industry’s hottest stars, emerging talent and local favorites.”
Lasting for over 11 days across 11 different stages, and 800 performances – Summerfest is attended by a staggering 800,000 people! So check it out for one day, or all 11, but just make sure you add it to your US festival bucket list!
Join the Summerfest 2020 Facebook Event
20) Lost Lands
When: September 27-29, 2019
Where: Thornville, Ohio
Genre: EDM, Bass, Dubstep
ESCAPE THE CONFINES OF THE WORLD OUTSIDE AND FIND YOURSELF IN AN IMMERSIVE ENVIRONMENT SURROUNDED BY DINOSAURS, BEATS, AND BASS. LOST LANDS MANIFESTS A FORWARD-THINKING VISION TO DELIVER AN UNFORGETTABLE FESTIVAL EXPERIENCE AND UNITE HEADBANGERS TOGETHER AS ONE TRIBE.
“Experience Lost Lands, presented by Excision, at the beautiful Legend Valley in Thornville, OH this September! See the land before time in all its glory — dinosaurs included. The insane Lost Lands lineup is curated by Excision himself, & it’s sure to rattle the fields right down to their core. Grab your tickets and catch the top artists from the past 65 million years and join us for the filthiest 3 days of bass you have ever experienced!”
21) Movement Electronic
When: Memorial Day Weekend 2020
“Each year on Memorial Day weekend, thousands of people from across the globe gather in the birthplace of Techno to celebrate the heritage of Detroit and its musical influence over countless generations, new and old. Movement Music Festival is one of the longest-running dance music events in the world, committed to showcasing authentic electronic music and providing an experience unlike any other. The festival takes place in Hart Plaza – Detroit’s legendary riverfront destination. ”
22) Groove Cruise
When: January 9-13, 2020
OFFICIAL GROOVE CRUISE WEBSITE
Groove Cruise is the OG music festival cruise, and will without-a-doubt be one of the best experiences of your life! I’ve personally attended three different Groove Cruise voyages, and it’s truly the most loving atmosphere I’ve ever encountered in the music festival industry. There’s something unexplainably magical that occurs when the #GCFAM gets together, and they always deliver stacked line-ups with a mix of EDM, House, Trance, and Techno, as well provide a deliver a wide variety of unique activities onboard the cruise. Plus, they sail to beautiful locations in the Caribbean and Meixico, so it’s the perfect music vacation for music festival lovers!
Check out my Groove Cruise festival reviews for a bit more information, and I hope to see you on board!
23) Life is Beautiful
When: September 2020
Where: Downtown Las Vegas
“Life is Beautiful takes over Downtown Las Vegas for a three-day weekend each year, promising festival-goers a host of surprises in four key areas: Art, Music, Food and Learning – truly providing something for everyone. The lineup mixes popular acts such as Imagine Dragons, Kendrick Lamar, Major Lazer, Brandon Flowers and Hozier with classic icons such as Duran Duran and Stevie Wonder.
Street art, huge murals, installations and a multi-sensory Art Motel entice art-lovers, and a VIP area – complete with celebrity chef cooking demos, real grass to lounge on and free lemonade – helps you forget the desert heat.”
24) Imagine Music Festival
When: September 2020
Where: Atlanta Motor Speedway, Atlanta
We look forward to bringing your imagination to life! Welcome to the Imagine Music Festival.
When it comes to the best EDM festivals in America, this is the ONE I’m personally dying to check out myself! Everyone I know who has attended has expressed how amazing it is, and every year the Imagine Festival crew wow their attendees with stacked line-ups, impressive stage designs, and unbeatable rave community vibes!
It’s no surprise it’s recently been voted as one of “Top 20 Festivals in the World” by Fest300, as well as in the “Top Ten Emerging Music Festivals by USA Today”!
“When Imagine Music Festival arrives, the event will transport festival-goers to an immersive aquatic fairytale featuring multiple magnificent stages with world-class sound and lighting production. Wander through fantastic atmospheres filled with mind-bending circus performers, mermaids, sea creatures, art installations, vendors, CAMPING and more, creating an unforgettable 360-degree experience.”
25) HARD Summer Music Festival
When: August 2020
Where: The Speedway in Fontana, San Bernadino, California
This annual two-day mega-festival has been a Southern California favorite for over a decade, and always manages to put together an unbelievably stacked line-up, incredible stage production, and overall stellar festival experience.
The team over at HARD Events has been a key player in the growth of the EDM scene in the United States, and fun fact, my first massive rave in the USA was HARD Haunted Mansion back in 2009! From producing events like HARD Day of the Dead, Holy Ship, and HARD Red Rocks: attending one of their events will always impress!
26) Paradiso Festival
When: June 2020
Where: The Gorge Amphitheatre, Washington
“Each year we come together on a pilgrimage to find a balance between a modern digital world and the natural environment surrounding us. Experience three stages with world-class visuals & audio production, thrilling rides & attractions, some of the biggest names in electronic dance music, a stunning natural backdrop you have to see to believe, and the best part of all, the Paradiso family.
In the distance, do you hear it? A warm whisper calling out to those spirits yearning for wanderlust that vows to lead those who follow to a paradise where nature and technology seamlessly coexist. This promise is for those who don’t seek to stand still, but instead jump headfirst into the motion in the hopes of discovering adventures hidden just over the horizon. Will you be one of those who answer the call?
27) ROLLING LOUD
When: December 14-15, 2019 September & October 2020
Where: Miami, Flordia | Oakland, California | Queens, NY
“Rolling Loud Festival is a 3-day music event that started in Miami, FL and is now the largest Hip-Hop festival in the world. We now also hosts festivals in Northern California and Southern California, with plans to expand internationally to Japan, China and Europe in the near future. Some of the biggest names that have performed on the Rolling Loud stage includes the likes of Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole, Future, Lil Wayne, A$AP Rocky, Travis Scott, Young Thug, Post Malone, Migos, Kodak Black, Lil Uzi Vert, 21 Savage, Lil Yachty, Lil B, and many more.”
For the hip-hop festival fans out there, this should definitely be on your dream festivals!
28) Pitchfork Music Festival
When: July 2020
Where: Union Park, Chicago
Genre: Alternative Rock / Indie / Electronic / Hip Hop
“Celebrating its 14th year in 2019, the internationally recognized Pitchfork Music Festival presents 40+ acts over the course of three days each summer in Chicago’s Union Park. The festival highlights the best in new and emerging music. Since 2006, this independently run festival has consistently proven to be one of the most welcoming, comfortable, reasonably priced, and rewarding weekends of music around.
Hosting 60,000 attendees of all ages from 45 states and 26 countries, Pitchfork Music Festival offers a wide array of activities beyond the music. With 50 individual vendors, as well as specialty record and craft fairs, the festival works to support local businesses while promoting the Chicago arts and food communities as a whole. We maintain a commitment to keeping ticket prices low, providing new and useful amenities, and working with the city’s best local vendors each year. Stay tuned for more festival feature updates.”
29) New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
When: April 23- May 3, 2020
Where: Union Park, Chicago
For all the jazz fans out there, if the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival isn’t on your bucket list yet, then you’re not a true jazz fan! It’s one of the longest-running and largest jazz festivals in the USA, and is the perfect time to visit the great city of New Orleans!
“Started in 1970, “Jazz Fest” continues to showcase the most important names in music both locally and nationally. Celebrating 49 years of musical and cultural memories, Jazz Fest stands alone in presenting the highest caliber artists in such varied genres as gospel, blues, traditional and contemporary jazz, rock, R&B, Cajun, country, zydeco and much more.”
30) Louder Than Life Rock Festival
The Largest Rock Festival in America
When: September 2020
Where: Highland Festival Grounds, Louisville, Kentucky
Complete with dozens of the biggest names in rock & roll, massive stages, and unique bars – the annual Louder Than Life festival is an adventure every rocker needs to experience for themselves. The 2019 line-up included headling sets from Guns N Roses, Slipknot, Rob Zombie, Marlilyn Manson, and tons more! There aretons of delicious food & drink options spread around the epic festival grounds and lots of unique festival experiences for attendees to check out during these three-days of incredible rock music!
When: January 6-10, 2020
2018 was the inaugural sold-out cruise for the brand new festival cruise, “FRIENDSHIP”. With a star-studded line-up with names like Boys Noize, Dixon, and Rufus Du Sol – it looked like an epic time! I had some friends who went (who even got engaged during one of Destructo’s legendary sets), and they had nothing but great things to say about it. It’s one of the new music festival cruises in the scene, but I’ve got a feeling the Friendship will be around for many years to come!
Friendship is returning for their 2nd voyage from January 6-10, departing from Miami and sailing to the iconic CocoCay island in the Bahamas! With a jam-packed line-up, awesome activities, and incredible vibes – it’s going to be a top-notch experience for all those who are lucky enough to book a room on board!
“Get ready to cruise out with some of the best international music acts aboard a glamorous ship to sea. It’s the perfect setting to make new friends and gather with old ones. States DESTRUCTO, “There is a place where my friends and I go and we do fun things—the kind of fun things that build everlasting memories that I could never put a price on and I absolutely never could because these times are priceless and irreplaceable. At the end when I look back and reminisce about these times I had and the experiences that molded me and watered me enough to grow, I’ll think about all the friends I’ve made along the way and how I am a part of their story and they are more than all my friends. They are all my family. That is FRIENDSHIP.”
32) iHeart Radio Music Festival
When: September 2020
Where: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas
“Since 2011, iHeartRadio Music Festival has taken place each year in Las Vegas, in September. It boasts a myriad of world-class musical acts, and has quickly become a fixture on the festival scene. For the first several years, the festival was held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. However, as of last year, the main festival stage was moved to the T-Mobile Arena. But that’s not the only place to see great music: the festival also features the iHeartRadio Daytime Village, a second venue that features additional up and coming acts.
As an attendee at this amazing festival, you are treated to performance after performance, both indoors and outdoors, all weekend long. Prepare for music overload, in the best way possible! This is truly the experience of a lifetime for music lovers of all ages. As you’ll see in a moment as we divulge this year’s lineup, it’s really no surprise that this festival has established itself as one of the most well-known and well-regarded music experiences in such a short time.”
33) Stagecoach Music Festival
When: April 26-28, 2019
Where: Indio, California
“The five-day transformation from the massive Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival into Stagecoach: California’s Country Music Festival by the Los Angeles-based Goldenvoice company is always shocking to people who go to both events.
Instead of surreal and sometimes psychedelic installation art of Coachella, there are giant cowboy boots and a bronze bucking horse. The attire morphs from flower crowns and H&M branded fashions to red, white and blue everything – including shirts, pants, bandannas and long flowing sashes bearing the U.S. flag. Held at Indio’s Empire Polo Club, this festival celebrates new and established country music artists.”
34) Camp Bisco
When: July 2020
Where: Montage Mountain, Scranton, Pennsylvania
“Camp Bisco is an outdoor music festival held at the picturesque Montage Mountain, a world-class concert venue & waterpark located in Scranton, PA. Camp Bisco is a 3-day, rain-or-shine event with camping. Camp Bisco will feature 3 days and nights of music on 3 stages. Anyone who has been before can tell you, Camp Bisco is the best event of its kind and we’re so excited to see you all again! Join us at Montage Mountain for our 17th installment of this amazing weekend for the ultimate escape to your reality.”
35) Wanderlust Festival
When: July 2020 Dates TBA
Where: Various Locations
Wanderlust is different than your standard music festival, as it’s more of a retreat/ getaway/ vacation with a big emphasis on music and community! The few friends I know who have attended told me it’s truly special, and they can’t wait to them for many years to come!
They also host events ALL around the world, so definitely worth checking out their website and keeping up-to-date with their calendar if you’re into this type of transformational event!
“This Way to True North.
For 10 years, Wanderlust has gathered teachers, experts, musicians, and creators at stunning resorts for transformational experiences—each unique unto itself. Over the last decade, yogis have grown their practice, connected with community, and made life-altering discoveries. To celebrate our tenth year, we’re making our festivals accessible to all.
From mountain resorts to majestic city parks, 4-day retreats to 2-day urban escapes, the festival experience is now within your grasp. Step into what’s beyond: new ideas, new friends, new foods, new moves. And at the end of all this blissed-out exploring you’ll find you’ve come home—to yourself.
Music is the heartbeat of Wanderlust festivals. You’ll feel the pulse in the subtle spinning of a brilliant DJ, in the sweet rhythms of our acoustic meditations, and classes accompanied by perfectly paired beats will leave your body awash in energy. Whatever your taste, the musical discoveries that await at Wanderlust will leave you with new favorites for practice and party alike.”
36) Dirtybird Campout
You’re never too old to go to summer camp! Dust off your camping gear and calibrate your compasses, Dirtybird Campout is coming…
When: October 2020
Where: Modesto Reservoir Campgrounds, California
“What remains most special about Dirtybird Campout is its ability to craft an intimate space for guests to let their inner children out to play and create unforgettable memories, soundtracked by top selectors in house, techno, and bass. Campers are invited to immerse themselves in a wide variety of activities just steps away from camp and the stages—from tug-of-war to archery, to kickball—often alongside DIRTYBIRD ‘Camp Counselors’ themselves. It’s this open and fun atmosphere that keeps its ranks filled year after year.
So I’ve been a HUGE fan of the Dirtybird Record label for a long time, and Dirtybird Campout is the annual event that’s an unforgettable adult summer camp/music festival experience. It started in 2015, and has grown bigger, better, and wilder every year! Definitely add this one to your list!
Read my Dirtybird Campout 2016 Festival Review to get a better understanding!
“Whether you went to summer camp back in the day, or found yourself at Campout over the last four years, those memories of sun-drenched hours full of outdoor activities, hazy summer afternoons, and sleepless nights under the stars, have fostered an unmatched sense of belonging and an unparalleled community for many. It is this family feel that has made Dirtybird Campout one of North America’s most celebrated and unique festival weekends.”
37) Decadence Arizona
Arizona’s Biggest New Year’s Eve Celebration Music Festival
When: December 30-31, 2019
“Decadence is a 2-day New Year’s Eve experience that features a diverse lineup of artists that is sure to please all… If you live on the West-coast, love music, and yearn for adventure… you will want to gather your friends and make the journey to DECADENCE where you can say your final goodbyes to 2019 and kick off 2020 with a BANG.”
38) Lucidity Festival
When: April 10-12, 2020
Where: Live Oak Campground, Santa Barbara, California
Sound baths, acro yoga, dance workshops, fire breathers, circus performers, food vendors, fashion stalls, blacklight tea parties, cacao ceremonies, art galleries, epic DJ’s, live bands, crazy costumes, and an incredible amount of Oxytocin filled hugging. I had an unbelievably magical experience at Lucidity Festival, and think the world would be a better place if everyone attended it once in their life.
It’s truly one of the most unique, colorful, and intimate community-oriented camping festivals I’ve ever attended!
Check out my review article about my experience here: Ludicity Festival – Rising Dawn | Top 12 Festival Highlights! I, unfortunately, I couldn’t make it back for the 2019 edition since I was traveling through Spain, but I’m really hoping to make a return for 2020!!
39) Voodoo Festival
When: October 25-27, 2019
Where: City Park, New Orleans, Lousisiana
“Voodoo is a musical gumbo stirring together music, art, community, cuisine and all the mystery and adventure that Halloween weekend in New Orleans conjures up. With more than 65 bands over three days, Voodoo is more than just a Festival – it is an experience. There’s plenty to do in between sets. Across the Festival Grounds of City Park, Voodoo hosts interactive and immersive large-scale art installations, the Brew Dat Beer Hall and the House of Blues Voodoo, a handcrafted shopping experience at the Market Place, and more”
40) Okeechobee Music Festival
When: March 5-8, 2020
“Okeechobee Music & Arts Festival is a 4-day surreal experience, filled with multi-genre music, immersive art and transformative events, deep in the heart of Florida’s wild wilderness. A gathering of all walks of life where the common ground is music, magic and mystery from dusk til dawn.”
“Okeechobee Music & Arts Festival burst onto the Florida scene in 2016 and immediately become a fan favorite. Taking place in early March, Okeechobee is now the first major music festival of the US festival season and provides a glimpse of touring summertime artists. The festival’s home at Sunshine Grove is a treat for campers with lush grassy fields, a sandy beach, and a majestic grove.”
The Okeechobee Music + Arts Festival is back this year for a full weekend of music, camping, art, and unique transformational experiences! The festival will take place amongst 800 acres of lush grasslands, lakes, woods, and jungle in Sunshine Grove, Florida, with nature-filled and lakeside camping options.
In addition to OMF’s three main stages, dance music lovers will gravitate towards Jungle 51, a dusk till dawn dance party nestled in the heart of the jungle that has hosted some of the biggest names in house and techno in recent years. From dawn till dusk, OMF attendees will again be able to experience Aquachobee Beach, situated in the scenic background where Sunshine Grove’s jungle meets the white sand beach, that will give Okeechobeeings the chance to catch daytime live music sets while swimming and sunbathing.
Camp OMF 2020 will kick-off on Thursday, March 5 with a nighttime pre-party, and each day, Chobeewobee Village will feature an eclectic mix of immersive art, food & beverage offerings, performances, yoga classes, life-enhancing workshops, speakers, as well as its signature artisan vendors in a bazaar-style experience. Also on site, a 24-hour general store, 24-hour food options, showers, free portalets, and local and craft food and beverage options complete the experience. Featuring an array of comfortable accommodations varying from tent camping to deluxe preset RV and glamping, all Okeechobee 2020 ticket and camping options can be explored.
41) Bumbershoot Festival
When: Labor Day Weekend, September 2020
Where: Seattle, Washington
“Now approaching half a century, Bumbershoot is one of Seattle’s largest cultural touchstones. Each year, thousands of people from across the country flock to Seattle Center to attend this acclaimed festival, which has become one of the biggest and most-loved contemporary festivals in North America, while having maintained its Northwest spirit and innovative roots.”
42) Arise Music Festival
When: August 2020
Where: Sunrise Ranch, Loveland
“The ARISE Music Festival is much more than a music festival…it’s a movement. Held on an organic ranch in a picturesque Colorado Rocky Mountain valley oasis just 60 minutes north of Denver. 3 days and nights of camping, music, art, workshops, films, yoga and so much more!
At the core of the ARISE mission is a firm belief that creating a festival experience which inspires positivity, joy and active engagement in issues of social justice is a call to celebrate the beauty and wonder of this precious life.”
ARISE plants 1 tree for every ticket sold.
43) Afropunk Festival
When: August 2020
Where: Atlanta & Brooklyn
AFROPUNK is an influential community of young, gifted people of all backgrounds who speak through music, art, film, comedy, fashion and more. AFROPUNK is a voice for the unwritten, unwelcome and unheard.
Afro: as in, born of African spirit and heritage; see also black (not always), see also rhythm and color, see also other, see also underdog.
Punk: as in, rebel, opposing the simple route, imbued with a DIY ethic, looking forward with simplicity, rawness and open curiosity; see also other, see also underdog.
AFROPUNK is defining culture by the collective creative actions of the individual and the group. It is a safe place, a blank space to freak out in, to construct a new reality, to live your life as you see fit, while making sense of the world around you.
“The AFROPUNK festival is not only a diverse multicultural music fest that has an international influence and platform, but also a growing movement of non-conforming, forward-looking creatives and individuals who live fearlessly and authentically within their unique truth.” – VOX ATL
44) Watershed Festival
When: July 31- August 2nd, 2020
Where: The Gorge Amphitheater, Washington
Watershed Country Music Festival will return to the Gorge for a wild weekend of twangin’ goodness. Put on your “Shedder gear” (trucker hats?) and get ready for three whole days of down-home studs.
Watershed Music Festival is the largest country music festival in the Pacific Northwest and is a must-attend for country fans all over the U.S (and the entire world). Located at the beautiful Gorge Amphitheater, you’ll enjoy sets by the biggest names in country music with an unbeatable backdrop!
45) Elements Lakewood Music & Arts Music Festival
When: May 22-25, 2020
Where: Lakewood, Pennsylvania
“Anticipate hidden forests, beachfront parties, wellness workshops, outdoor activities, interactive performers, and captivating experiences of all kinds. This is Elements Lakewood. We can’t wait to be back in the woods dancing, laughing, and inhibiting our own world together. Your energy and smiling faces inspire us to outdo ourselves each year.
We’ve been dreaming all year of creating new forest escapes, treehouses, and nique experiences to surprise you with. 2019 brings more immersive spaces to become a part of, unique art cars to climb on, large sculptures to explore, secret paths to uncover, exhibits to question, and alternate realities to enter.”
46) Snowglobe Music Festival
California’s Ultimate New Year’s Eve Festival
When: December 29 – January 1, 2019
Where: South Lake Tahoe, California
“Literally And Figuratively The Chillest Festival Ever.”
This 3-Day EDM Festival is the New Years Eve event of your winter dreams! Spend your days snowboarding in the beautiful Lake Tahoe mountains, and then party all night to some of the world’s biggest electronic DJ’s!
47) The Common Ground Music Festival
When: June 2020
“The Common Ground Music Festival is a multiple-day music festival entering its 19th year. The festival has highlighted more than 400 artists including 38 Grammy award winners and 22 Rock-and-Roll Hall of Fame inductees. Each July, more than 40,000 people come to Lansing, Michigan to enjoy the best in music, entertainment food, and beverage. This annual celebration features an outstanding lineup of musical acts, focusing on top-level, national and regional music performers of many genres including contemporary and classic rock, pop, alternative, country, hip hop, rhythm & blues, soul and more.”
48) Sonic Bloom Festival
When: June 18-21, 2020
Where: Spanish Peaks Country
“SONIC BLOOM is a 4-day camping festival that brings electronic music, dance, art and human performance together in an atmosphere that inspires open channels of co-creativity for everyone involved.”
Out of all the music festivals in Colorado, this is the one I’m DYING to go to. It looks like such an amazing festival, and I know many friends who have gone and said how amazing it is. The line-ups are always awesome, but the reason people go to is the VIBE. If you’re looking for a good Colorado festival, then this should be your top priority (in my opinion).
49) Wet Electric Festival
When: April 2020
Where: Phoenix / Tempe
“Experience all the fun of a rowdy pool party with a banging electronic dance music festival at Wet Electric in Tempe, Arizona! The festival takes over an entire waterpark for two days filled with world-renowned DJs and electronic musicians, extravagant cabanas, wave pools, waterslides, several bars and more. Past performers include artists such as Paul Oakenfold, Lil Jon, The Crystal Method, Swanky Tunes, Robbie Rivera, Darude, Dash Berlin and many others.”
50) Boston Calling
When: May 2020
Where: Allston, Massachusetts
“Across the street from Harvard Business School, a renowned music festival shakes up the scholarly vibes of nearby Cambridge, Massachusetts, once a year. While most music festivals tend to focus on a few genres, Boston Calling doesn’t discriminate between all the sounds you love; this is the kind of festival you attend when you’re a fan of music, through and through. If you’re the type of person who can go from dancing to lively electronic beats to headbanging to gnarly guitar riffs without delay, consider Boston Calling your music mecca.”
Best New Festival Coming to the US in 2020
Primavera Sound Los Angeles
Earlier this year European festival juggernaut Primavera Sound announced they’d be premiering in the US in 2020 to celebrate its 20th anniversary! How exciting is that!? After living in Barcelona for two different summer, I know Primavera Sound means serious business, and I can’t wait to see what type of line-up they create in my home-state of California.
When: September 19-20, 2020
Where: LA Historic State Park
Bonus Special Event* Burning Man
When: August 30 – September 7, 2020
Where: Black Rock City, Nevada (Two Hours Away from Reno)
Last, I couldn’t complete this article discussing the best parties and events in the US without mentioning Burning Man. BUT – it’s NOT A MUSIC FESTIVAL, which is why I’ve added it as a bonus special event.
After attending Burning Man for the past two years though, I can say it’s one of the most magical and life-changing experiences! It’s a temporary city filled with countless themed camps, LED lights, dust storms, techno sunrise dances, amazing people, and unbeatable burner vibes.
While it’s definitely the most challenging event on this list to prepare for, it’s by far the most rewarding and memorable. If you’re interested in attending Burning Man, feel free to reach out to me with any questions! I’m happy to discuss the 10 principles, best preparation methods, how to find a camp, and tips for getting tickets!
You can read through my articles on Burner Accessories & Burner Goggles though to help with the shopping list!
What USA Music Festivals do you think deserve a spot on this list…?
This list took me quite some time to put together, and I hope you’ve enjoyed reading it and finding some new events around the US! But I’d love to hear from you to see if I missed any specific event! There are thousands of festivals every year in the US (it’s a pretty massive country), so I couldn’t include all of them, but I do think I did a pretty great job at compiling the best US festivals in 2020!
Looking for more music festivals in the USA?
My travel blog is filled with articles just like this that will help you find some of the most fun, magical, and awesome music festivals and parties around the United States. Check out a few of my favorite below, and feel free to reach out to me and let me know about any that I’m missing!