Europe is where reggae is happening – here are 6 Reggae festivals to attend this summer!

Festival season is finally here! For the past 30+ years, Europe has been a strong supporter of traditional roots reggae, dancehall, dub and ska music, and is where some of the biggest reggae festivals are found. Here are 6 top festivals in Europe. Don’t miss out on any of these musical gems!


1. JUNE - Reggae Fever - Netherlands

Getting into the summer mood? Reggae Fever festival is held in the Netherlands and in two locations -  Oosterpoort,Groningen and Tivoli Vredenburg, Utrecht. The weekend event takes place at the end of June (25th June – 26th June 2016) and is a great start into the European summer. Headline acts such as Protoje, Anthony B, Tanya Stephens and Collie Buddz make this a promising weekend. And at only € 35,- at the door and kids under 12 free, this festival is an absolute bargain!




Groningen, Netherlands @ De Oosterpoort
Credit - Foto © Knelis

2. July - Summerjam - Germany

Summerjam still takes the crown for one of Europe’s biggest reggae festivals, with some 30,000 people attending. It takes place annually in July (the first weekend in July 1st- 3rd of July 2016) and is held in Germany, on an island in the city of Cologne by the Frühlinger See. Two stages and two tents are located on the island, with the camping area surrounding the lake. The German reggae scene is actually one of the biggest outside of Jamaica, and the festival has been going on for 31 years.  Reggae heavy weights such as Alborosie, Collie Buddz, Sean Paul and Morgan Heritage will headline this year’s three day event alongside rising star Chronixx, Fuse ODG and international sound systems. If you are looking for a long weekend of good vibes, great acts and night long dancing, look no further, this is an event not to be missed. Three day tickets cost €117. Just make sure you arrive early to catch a good camping spot. The lake area is a bit hilly and you would like to avoid putting your tent in an awkward position that doesn’t allow you to get at least a little bit of a rest (speaking here from personal experience).

Cologne, Germany
Credit - Summerjam

3. July - Garance Festival – France

Pulling together another A-list programme of reggae, rocksteady and dub for its 25th staging, Garance is back in Bagnols-sur-Cèze and ready for four more days of deluxe musical entertainment. The festival has established itself at the top table of worldwide reggae festivals, hosting international names such as Capleton, Beenie Man, King Yellowman, Sanchez, Lutan Fyah and Mikey General, as well as sound system groups that bring Jamaican culture to life in this picturesque corner of Southern France. With attendance exceeding 60,000, this festival guarantees a big party. Tickets start from € 35 day pass to €139 four day pass. If you are still looking for somewhere to go this summer and want to see lots of live music and alternative performances, this event might be just the right for you.

Garance, Venelles, France
Credit - Jennyfer

4. August - Rototom - Spain

Planning to travel to Spain this summer? Then this festival is a no-brainer. The yearly festival is held in Benecassim, the coastal Spanish town near Valencia. It starts from the 13th- 20th August and lasts 8 days, spanning a full week, but festival goers can choose to go for fewer days as well. Its seaside location makes this festival stand out, with buses that go from the camping to the beach. Rototom is more than a festival and offers a wide range of activities such as their social forum, Reggae University and cultural areas providing access to conferences, debates, workshops, craft, children games and much more. On the beach, you will find sound systems where you can party from dusk till dawn and dance to dub, reggae and dancehall. Headliners this year are Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley, Morgan Heritage, Tarrus Riley and Beres Hammond alongside soundsystems from Jamaica, Spain, Italy, Germany and France. A one day pass starts at €33; however, prices vary depending on camping.

Benicàssim, Spain
Credit - unknown

5. August - Ostróda Reggae Festival - Poland

You have probably never put the words ‘reggae’ and ‘Poland’ in the same sentence, but the Ostroda Reggae Festival in Ostroda, Poland is one of Eastern Europe’s largest concerts for reggae music lovers. Competing in August with festival heavy-weights such Rototom, Poland is offering an attractive alternative to every reggae/dancehall enthusiast. Taking place in the Masurian Lake District, with Masuria being a district of Poland called “the land of 1000 lakes”, Ostróda has it all. Camping by the lake, educational activities such as the Reggae University, a meeting place with authorities of reggae music and movie screenings, this event aims to offer more than live music entertainment. Dancehall workshops and African drumming classes are other activity options alongside the creative children zone in the festival area. The festival is from August 11-14. Prices start at €31 and offers four days of great reggae music where you not only get to see international acts, but also get to know some of the finest local reggae music Poland has to offer. The message of this festival is simple: promote respect, tolerance and peaceful coexistence of all nations, nationalities and colors of the skin.

Ostroda, Poland
Credit - Sebastian Klebanuik

6. August - Reggae Sun Ska Caravan - France

Thinking of a holiday by the beach?  Reggae Sun Ska Caravan on the Aquitaine coast in Vendée and Var is one of the top 10 biggest reggae festivals in France. Established in 1995 and gathering a large music lovers audience, the three day festival is held from the 5th to the 7th of August, and  welcomes acts like Inner Circle, Sister Nancy, Dub Inc., Damian “Jr Gong” Marley, Tarrus Riley and Alaine. At €89 for three days of fun by the south-west Atlantic corner of France, with a summer atmosphere and great live music, it’s an absolute bargain. You don’t want to miss out on this.

Bordeaux, France
Credit - Reggae FR

I was scrolling down to see if this festival has been added hehe. YES !! Reggae Sun Ska is a VERY GOOD festival, I can tell :)

on 25/6/16
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