(Editor’s note: For a more extensive list of the biggest music festivals in Europe this summer, check out Dispatches’ list of 2023 music festivals.)
Portugal is probably the best place in Europe for music festivals at the moment. And I am not saying that from a place of bias, but so many of my friends from the UK, Germany, France and Italy come especially for summer music festivals in Portugal.
Ticket prices are usually the most affordable in Europe for the big names which perform at those festivals.
Last year, the Portuguese festivals hosted The Strokes and Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds. This year we are expecting Arctic Monkeys and David Guetta among many others.
In addition, music festivals in Portugal offer a big combo of a beach holiday, a city get away, great food, along with world class artists on a budget.
Here are the Top-5 music festivals in Portugal to keep an eye on this year:
No. 5 Nos Primavera Sound
7 thru 10 June in Porto
If you feel like enjoying a bit of cooler weather, farther north is where you need to be this summer. Nos Primavera is just the perfect festival for you. In the city of Porto, wine tours and unique architecture will not be the only things to enjoy. This festival has one of the most consistently outstanding lineups in Portugal. The festival started out in Barcelona, yet its Portuguese editions seem to attract more and more people each year.
This year’s lineup presents big names such as Kendrick Lamar, Rosalia, and Blur.
Tickets start at 140 euro for the entire festival and you can get them here
No. 4 Secret Project Music Festival
7 thru 10 June, Portimão
If you fancy going to the very south of Portugal for warmer water and a fun beach town vibe, then I totally recommend Secret Project Music Festival which takes place in the beautiful Portimão beach in the Algarve. This festival is known for its electronic, techno and house music. Tickets are not yet available. But keep an eye on the official ticket website here.
No. 3 Meo Sudoest Festival
9 thru 12 August, Zambuieira do Mar
The coast of Zambujeira do Mar in the Alentejo region hosts one of Portugal’s biggest summer festivals. Meo Sudoest usually has it all: DJs, pop, reggae, rap, and Indie. Having held its first edition in 1997, this music festival has established a solid reputation as a “must-go-to” music festival.
Ticket prices begin at 50 euros and the lineup includes David Guetta, who’s crazy hot after “I’m Good (Blue)” with Bebe Rexha, and Metro Boomin among many others.
No. 2 Super Bock Super Rock Festival
13 thru 16 July, Herdade do Cabeço da Flauta
Almost as cool as No. 1 Nos Alive is Super Bock Super Rock (which carries the name of one of the two major beer brands in Portugal, which sponsors the festival). This huge festival also takes place near Lisbon and always presents impressive lineups, not only from the world of rock, but also from pop, EDM and hip-hop.
This year, the lineup includes The Offspring, The 1975 and Steve Lacy. Americans won’t want to miss a a chance to see hip-hop legends Wu-Tang Clan in Europe while most of them are still alive. A three-day ticket, with a camping option included, costs 115 euros. Not going to get a deal like that in Croatia or the Netherlands.
No. 1 Nos Alive Festival
6 thru 8 July in Lisbon
Nos Alive is the most popular music festival in Lisbon. In the lineup this year are Red Hot Chili Peppers, the Black Keys (Pat Carney and Dan Auerbach), Arctic Monkeys and Sam Smith. This festival is known for attracting some of the best Indie and Rock artists from all over the world, so any artist you find on a Nos Alive stage will be a really cool one.
Tickets start at 74 euros per day For all three days, tickets start at 179 euros and you can get them here.
Whether you are aiming for June, July or August, and regardless of the music genre you are looking for, Portugal will have something for you this summer.
Let us know if you have been to any of those festivals before (or others) and if you are planning on going to one or more of them this year.