Asia has always been known for its rich cultures, vibrant food and diverse history. However, there’s also another side to Asia that you may not be aware of: it’s jam-packed with music festivals! From Japan to Vietnam and everywhere between, there are tons of unique festivals that showcase the best music from across Asia. So if you’re looking for an exciting weekend away with great music, here are some of our favorite picks:
Jisan Valley Rock Festival
If you’re looking for a festival in Asia with a little more edge, Jisan Valley Rock Festival is the one for you. The three-day event takes place in South Korea from May 23-25 and will feature Muse, Lorde and Arctic Monkeys as headliners.
The festival has been around since 2004 and has grown into one of the biggest events on South Korea’s music scene — attracting hundreds of thousands of fans every year with its lineup of international rock bands as well as local acts.
Busan International Rock Festival
The annual Busan International Rock Festival is one of South Korea’s most popular music festivals, drawing thousands of attendees each year. This year’s event will take place from July 1st through 4th at the Haeundae Beach in Busan city.
The lineup includes more than 30 acts including American rock band Incubus and British pop singer Charli XCX, who will perform alongside many other artists from around Asia and beyond. Highlights include performances by Japanese rock band One Ok Rock at 2pm on July 2nd; Hong Kong indie band Nadja at 5:15pm on July 1st; Taiwanese folk singer A-Lin at 3:30pm June 30th; Thai indie rockers Carabao at 11pm June 30th; Taiwanese rapper Lin Yu Chun at 6:30pm June 30th; Singaporean musician Eason Chan (who recently released an album featuring covers of classic Cantonese tunes) at 10pm June 30th; Korean boy group Monsta X performing their hit single “Shoot Out” along with other hits like “Fighter”, “Beautiful” & “Jealousy” for their performance starting 8pm on July 4th…
Summer Sonic Festival
Summer Sonic Festival is one of Japan’s largest music festivals and has been going on since 2000. It features an eclectic lineup, with artists ranging from pop to rock and everything in between.
Summer Sonic takes place in Chiba prefecture, just outside Tokyo and Yokohama. The festival takes place over 2 days: August 18th-19th (2019) at Makuhari Messe Convention Center & Makuhari Beach Park. Tickets go on sale March 1st at 10am JST; you can purchase them here!
Strawberry Music Festival
The Strawberry Music Festival may not be as well-known outside of Japan, but it’s a festival worth checking out if you’re looking for an alternative to the more popular Fuji Rock and Summer Sonic. The event takes place at Zepp Tokyo, a venue which offers excellent acoustics and seating arrangements that are perfect for enjoying an evening of live music. The festival’s mascot is strawberry–you’ll see plenty of them on stage during performances as well as in food stalls throughout the venue (the festival is known for its strawberry themed food).
The lineup this year includes some big names like Babymetal, Gotch & The Good New Times; however there are also smaller acts like Tokyo Jihen who have been around since 2001 but only recently gained international recognition due to their lead singer Ringo Shiina being diagnosed with cancer earlier this year (she has since recovered). This means there’s something here for everyone: whether you’re into J-Pop or alternative rock/metal then there will definitely be someone performing at this year’s Strawberry Music Festival who fits your taste!
The Great Escape Festival
The Great Escape Festival is held in Brighton, England and is one of the biggest music festivals in Europe. It runs for three days and has a strong focus on new music. The festival sells out every year so make sure you get your tickets early!
The Great Escape showcases over 500 bands from around the world at various venues throughout Brighton, including The Haunt (formerly Prince Albert), Concorde 2, Komedia and Brighton Dome. In addition to its live acts it also hosts parties, conferences and exhibitions throughout its duration – which takes place between May 18th-21st 2019 this year – with some events taking place at other locations across England’s south coast region such as Worthing Pier Pavilion or even London’s O2 Arena if you’re feeling brave enough!
If you’re looking for the biggest music festival in Slovakia, look no further than Pohoda Festival.
The annual event takes place in Trenčín, which is located about 100 kilometers from Bratislava. It’s been running since 2003 and has grown to become one of the largest music festivals in Central Europe. In addition to hosting some of the world’s best bands on its main stage (such as The National and Sigur Rós), Pohoda also offers plenty of other activities such as art installations and sports competitions like cycling races or soccer matches between local teams.
Snowbombing Hong Kong
Snowbombing is a music festival held every year in Austria, but it has branched out to other locations. The Hong Kong edition of Snowbombing will be held at the same time as the main event in Mayrhofen: April 12-15, 2019.
The lineup features a wide variety of artists from different genres including pop and rock bands like Fatboy Slim and Kasabian; electronic acts like Gramatik and Richie Hawtin; hip-hop performers like 2 Chainz (who has recently played at Coachella); jazz legends Herbie Hancock and Chick Corea; even classical pianist Lang Lang! If you’re not sure who you want to see just yet, check out this video compilation featuring highlights from past years’ festivals:
When planning your trip make sure you book accommodation well ahead of time–many hotels fill up quickly during this busy period. You could also try staying with locals through Airbnb or Couchsurfing if there aren’t any rooms available locally (in which case I highly recommend booking early).
Beyond Wonderland, Philippines
Beyond Wonderland, Philippines
When: March 15th-17th 2019
Where: Clark Freeport Zone in Angeles City, Pampanga province of Luzon Island in the Philippines
Line-up: TBA (but it’s always a good idea to stay tuned for updates)
Ticket Prices: TBA
Other Info: This is Beyond Wonderland’s first year in Asia. It will be held at Clark Freeport Zone which is about 30 minutes away from Manila by car and has been described as “a mini Las Vegas”.
Asia has a lot of amazing music festivals.
Asia has a lot of amazing music festivals. Music festivals are a great way to experience the culture of the region and meet new people. They’re also an excellent opportunity to get out of your comfort zone, which can be especially valuable if you’re new in town or traveling alone.
I’ve been attending Asia’s biggest music festivals since I was 18 years old, when I attended my first one: Ultra Korea (formerly known as Ultra Korea). At that time, I didn’t know much about Korean culture other than kimchi and Gangnam Style–but after attending this festival for three days straight without leaving its perimeter fence line (which was quite small), I felt like an expert on both subjects!
After spending so much time studying these things up close and personal over those few days’ span, I realized how easy it is for foreigners who have never traveled overseas before due to financial reasons or lack thereof access opportunities etc., etc., ad infinitum…
Asia is a continent with an incredible musical culture and history. It’s no surprise that there are so many festivals taking place in this region every year. The diversity of sounds and genres is a testament to the fact that Asia has something for everyone, no matter what kind of music they prefer or where they’re from in the world. Whether you’re looking for rock concerts or EDM parties, there’s something here for everyone!