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Australia’s Top Music Festivals of 2018

Category:  

Bucket List Worthy  

 

 

These are the must-attend festivals to rock your heart out.

 

The music reverberating through the air. The bass pounding below your feet. The stimulating energy from the crowd. There has to be no better place than at a music festival of your wildest dreams where you can let inhibitions go and become a free spirit. Here at Flight Network we also believe in the adrenaline pumping fun one can find at a music fest. The Australian festival scene is world-renowned for its epic sights and sounds where leading musicians and singers grace the stage to create a musical phenomenon.

Global music lovers and Australian locals converge upon cityscapes and countrysides to lose themselves to the beat of the best, heart-pounding music. From pop heaven and classical grooves to EDM dances and headbanging rock, there is a concert for every person to love. Need proof? Look below to find the top Australian music festivals of 2018 and find your list of must-sees.  Check out the article, pack your bag (yes, festival clothing is a must), and share this article with your friends on social media as music fests are enjoyed with the best company. 

 

Check out the list here:

 

Folk/Roots

 

1. April 7 — AutumnFest | 2. April 20-22 — Fairbridge Festival |

3. August 31- September 2 — Maleny Music Festival | 4September 14-16

— Nimbin Roots Festival | 5. October 26-28 — Tablelands Folk

Festival | 6. November 9-11 — Majors Creek Festival 

 

Rock

 

1. April 20-22 — Undara Outback Rock and Blues

 

Eclectic Mix

 

1. April 6-8 — WOW Festival | 2. April 21-22 — Wind on Water Festival  |

3. April 27-29 — The Gum Ball |4. April 29 — In the Pines | 5. May 4-6 — Wide

Open Space Festival | 6. June 1-3 — Happy Daze | 7June 22-23 — Kuranda Roots

Festival | 8. July 12-15 — Bello Winter Music | 9. September 28-30 — Wallaby

Creek Festival | 10. October Long Weekend — Yours and Owls Festival |

11. October 14 — The Grass Is Greener | 12. October 26-27 — Kyneton Music

Festival | 13. November 29- December 1 — Jungle Love Festival |

14. November 30- December 1 — Fairgrounds Festival | 15. December 1-3 —

Hopkins Creek | 16. December 9 — The Pleasure Garden  

 

Jazz

 

1. June 1-4 — Jazz by the Bay | 2. June 8-11 — Castlemaine Jazz Festival |

3. June 8-11 — Merimbula Jazz Festival | 4. July 26-29 — Devonport Jazz

 

Blues

 

1. December 31- January 1 — Bluestone Blues Festival

 

Fine/Classical

 

1. September 27-30 — Bellingen Fine Music Festival | 2. November 17-18,

November 21-25 — Huntington Estate Music Festival 

 

Ukulele

 

1. April 19-22 — Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival

 

Bluegrass

 

1. October 12-14  — Foggy Mountain Music Festival

 

Guitar

 

1. August 8-19  — Sydney Guitar Festival

 

 

 

Folk/Roots

 

1. AutumnFest

 

 

Dates: April 7

Entrance Price: AUD $55 adult, $40 concession/senior citizen, $25 child (7-16 years), Free child (0-6 years)

A celebration of the best local music, wine, beer, food, and craft in a world-class setting – AutumnFest definitely tops a list for best festivals in Australia. Mayfield, a stunning cool climate garden, plays host to a music fest which celebrates creativity and uniqueness in a setting that parallels these values. Attendees will be serenaded by an amazing mix of folk, country, and blues while the golden-hued trees create a beautiful autumnal scene. This festival is bound to create lasting memories you won’t soon forget.

 

2. Fairbridge Festival

 

 

Dates: April 20-22

Entrance Price: AUD $110

Perth lights up in a flurry of folk, world and roots music when the Fairbridge Festival comes to town. Fairbridge is hallmarked as a favourite family camping festival and a unique environment to celebrate the beat of the music and beautiful views of the Darling Escarpment. A family-friendly atmosphere, Fairbridge has all ages covered to thoroughly enjoy the best folk in the world.  

 

3. Maleny Music Festival

 

 

Dates: August 31- September 2

Entrance Price: AUD $80

The Pockets, 3 Miles from Texas, Tin Star, Ironstone, and many other talented artists will take mainstage at the Maleny Music Festival and dazzle with their incredible talent. The Hinterland surroundings make for the perfect relaxed backdrop to the fun of festivities with amazing live music, a children’s festival, spoken word cabaret, and street theatre. As the birthplace of the original folk festival, Maleny gets everything right and you will too when you buy your ticket.

 

4. Nimbin Roots Festival

 

 

Dates: September 14-16

Entrance Price: AUD $80

As the last remaining hippie town in Australia, Nimbin is the perfect location to gather roots music loving individuals for the Nimbin Roots Festival. This is the only roots musical festival which embraces alternate culture, up and coming musical acts, and the rich lifestyle of peace and love. The ‘All You Need is Love’ Peace Rally is sure to cement itself in your memories as you march down Nimbin’s main street and cry out for love with other attendees.

 

5. Tablelands Folk Festival

 

 

Dates: October 26-28

Entrance Price: AUD $100

Folk lovers and free spirits unite in Yungaburra when the Tablelands Folk Festival comes to town. A vibrant and imaginative festival, Tablelands features incredible musicians, spanning genres from folk and world music to blues, flamenco, reggae, gypsy jazz, and rock. The uniqueness of the village itself is brought to life in a new way with a celebration of music, friendship, culture, and the arts.

 

6. Majors Creek Festival

 

 

Dates: November 9-11

Entrance Price: AUD $110, including camping

A festival designed with all attendees in mind, Majors Creek Festival mixes incredible musicians and charming surroundings with themed performances, craft stalls, and child-friendly activities. An eclectic mix of folk, bluegrass, Americana, and world music meld to create a vibrant musical atmosphere. Enjoy mouth-watering food vans while you check out dance displays, or learn something new in a workshop, and fill your days with the fun of a boutique-sized festival.

 

Rock

 

1. Undara Outback Rock and Blues

 

 

Dates: April 20-22

Entrance Price: AUD $170

The most iconic and stunning landscape will act as the backdrop for the Undara Outback Rock and Blues festival – the “biggest little festival” in Australia. Undara features the oldest volcanic lava tubes (190,000 years old, in fact) and some of the best natural surroundings you can imagine. We couldn’t think of a better place to enjoy easy rock and blues music while basking in the glories of nature.

 

 

Eclectic Mix

 

1. WOW Festival

 

 

Dates: April 6-8

Entrance Price: AUD $85

WOW at Festival 2018 had to make an appearance on this list of top festivals for its amazing mission – to bring together women from over 20 countries in the Commonwealth of Nations to celebrate their passions, learn about their cultures, and talk about the social issues affecting them. WOW gathers an amazing variety of artists and thought leaders who serious reflection on hard-hitting issues affecting females while also cultivating a call to leadership, wellbeing, inspiration, artistic creativity, and laughter.

 

2. Wind on Water Festival

 

 

Dates: April 21-22

Entrance Price: AUD $25

With a lineup including the Veronicas and San Cisco for its 2018 schedule, Wind on Water Festival is a must-attend when its next festival season comes around. This festival highlights an exhilarating environment of creative artists and fun water sports, beach busking, large-scale kite flying, and much more. WoW is a family-friendly environment with every year getting better and better.

 

3. The Gum Ball

 

 

Dates: April 27-29

Entrance Price: AUD $165 adult, $140 senior, $80 teenager, $45 child, $20 6 and under

Escape to the countryside with friends and family and enter a music lover’s paradise with The Gum Ball festival. Australian and international musicians gather to create the perfect mainstage while attendees further enjoy delectable food, top beers and wines, free morning yoga, children’s entertainment, and so much more. Venture into the middle of Hunter Valley the next time this festival comes around and experience paradise for yourself.

 

Jump to any festival here:

 

Folk/Roots

 

1. April 7 — AutumnFest | 2. April 20-22 — Fairbridge Festival |

3. August 31- September 2 — Maleny Music Festival | 4September 14-16

— Nimbin Roots Festival | 5. October 26-28 — Tablelands Folk

Festival | 6. November 9-11 — Majors Creek Festival 

 

Rock

 

1. April 20-22 — Undara Outback Rock and Blues

 

Eclectic Mix

 

1. April 6-8 — WOW Festival | 2. April 21-22 — Wind on Water Festival  |

3. April 27-29 — The Gum Ball |4. April 29 — In the Pines | 5. May 4-6 — Wide

Open Space Festival | 6. June 1-3 — Happy Daze | 7June 22-23 — Kuranda Roots

Festival | 8. July 12-15 — Bello Winter Music | 9. September 28-30 — Wallaby

Creek Festival | 10. October Long Weekend — Yours and Owls Festival |

11. October 14 — The Grass Is Greener | 12. October 26-27 — Kyneton Music

Festival | 13. November 29- December 1 — Jungle Love Festival |

14. November 30- December 1 — Fairgrounds Festival | 15. December 1-3 —

Hopkins Creek | 16. December 9 — The Pleasure Garden  

 

Jazz

 

1. June 1-4 — Jazz by the Bay | 2. June 8-11 — Castlemaine Jazz Festival |

3. June 8-11 — Merimbula Jazz Festival | 4. July 26-29 — Devonport Jazz

 

Blues

 

1. December 31- January 1 — Bluestone Blues Festival

 

Fine/Classical

 

1. September 27-30 — Bellingen Fine Music Festival | 2. November 17-18,

November 21-25 — Huntington Estate Music Festival 

 

Ukulele

 

1. April 19-22 — Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival

 

Bluegrass

 

1. October 12-14  — Foggy Mountain Music Festival

 

Guitar

 

1. August 8-19  — Sydney Guitar Festival

 

 

4. In the Pines

 

 

Dates: April 29

Entrance Price: AUD $40

In the Pines has been called one of Perth’s best local musical festivals, and this is a title it wears proudly. This year, they featured over 20 incredible bands who filled the atmosphere with head-banging rock and dancing pop music for over 10 hours. Thousands of attendees found themselves swaying to the beat or hanging around the gorgeous banks of the Swan River to enjoy picnics and experience a true cultural must.

 

5. Wide Open Space Festival

 

 

Dates: May 4-6

Entrance Price: AUD $180

Wide Open Space Festival is hallmarked as Australia and New Zealand’s most out there festival. This musical 3-day event finds attendees enjoying a diverse array of musical talent, creative workshops, desert culture and lifestyle, and energetic performance. The festival is nestled on the East MacDonnell Ranges and creates a sensorial backdrop to enjoy stunning music and the best of creativity and amusement.

 

6. Happy Daze

 

 

Dates: June 1-3

Entrance Price: AUD $120 and 150 (Presale); $180 (On the Gate)

The Happy Daze Festival will have you in the happiest daze of all with its eclectic musical genres, electrifying acts, and vibrant atmosphere. This festival calls for individuals to bring their uniqueness with them and connect with other attendees over music, food, dance, and other activities. Mackay and the Whitsundays come to life in a new way while drums and bass fill the air and everyone walks in a happy daze.

 

7. Kuranda Roots Festival

 

 

Dates: June 22-23

Entrance Price: AUD $60

Kuranda Roots Festival is an experience which celebrates vibrant music, creative cultures, and energetic passions as the connecting force which brings together communities. The Billabong plays home to this fest, a stunning ranch with sprawling campgrounds and surrounding forest. The serene atmosphere, the incredible bands and DJs, and the market village and workshops will blossom your imagination and shape you into a creative being. Local Bama, Djabugay and Bulwai people will share their culture to add even more incredible elements and make you say yes to going.

 

8. Bello Winter Music

 

 

“Great food everywhere, a beautiful historic setting, workshops and seminars, free entertainment in the streets and parks, great people and great music… Bello could just be our new favourite festival.” (Marty Jones, RHYTHMS MAGAZINE)

 

Dates: July 12-15

Entrance Price: AUD $50-75

Bello Winter Music festival is sure to dazzle your music-loving nature with a lineup showcasing Australian and international musicians. Come to hear Caiti Baker, Z Star Trinity, the Tangents, William Crighton, and so many more grace the stage with their awe-inspiring voices and heart-pounding beats. The picturesque town of Bellingen will steal your heart as street theatre, marketplaces, and a New Orleans style street parade will color your world in festival wonder. With something for everyone, Bello Winter Music is a must attend.

 

9. Wallaby Creek Festival

 

 

Dates: September 28-30

Entrance Price: AUD $150

Be moved by lively rhythms and sway to beautiful beats at the Wallaby Creek Festival, a 3-day celebration of music and the arts. A lush tropical rainforest is home to this festival where you can swim, become enraptured by live dances and circus shows, take part in healing spaces and workshops, and so much more. A family-friendly event, the Wallaby Creek Festival is as unique as it sounds and a must for any music lover.

 

10. Yours and Owls Festival

 

 

Dates: October Long Weekend

Entrance Price: AUD $100

Yours and Owls Festival knows how to capture the attention of thousands of festival-goers – with incredible live music from local bands, national acts, and international stages featured next to the stunning Australian coastline. The beach plays backdrop to an eclectic festival with a lineup and programming to appeal to any audience. The 18+ and Under Ages events also make this festival accessible to all ages.

 

11. The Grass Is Greener

 

 

Dates: October 14

Entrance Price: AUD $79

The Grass Is Greener is top in its new and exciting aspects which compose this musical fest. Top artists and the best production quality combine with interesting decor and electrifying mindsets to create a praise-worthy festival. It welcomes musicians from a variety of genres to fill the stage with heart-pounding beats and attendees from all walks of life to fill the experience with wonder and passion.

 

12. Kyneton Music Festival

 

 

Dates: October 26-27

Entrance Price: AUD $30-80

Kyneton Music Festival is known as a party in the park for a reason: Australia’s best bands and local acts create a symphony upon the stage while the intimate relaxed country surroundings are the prime location to spend a picturesque afternoon. Kyneton is the best festival for those searching for amazing music, friendly festival-goers, and endless countryside days of celebration.

 

13. Jungle Love Festival

 

 

Dates: November 29- December 1

Entrance Price: AUD $199 (First Release GA)

Jungle Love Festival attracts attendees from around the world not only from its incredible, quality music lineup but also for its fairytale-like settings. All set along the Yabba Creek, Jungle Love will dazzle with an artful assortment of stages, live murals, performance art, and even a relaxation tent. Jungle Love is an intimate “celebration of all art and life” and is begging to be explored by you. Grab your rainbow bicycles and camping equipment and get your ticket today.

 

Jump to any festival here:

 

Folk/Roots

 

1. April 7 — AutumnFest | 2. April 20-22 — Fairbridge Festival |

3. August 31- September 2 — Maleny Music Festival | 4September 14-16

— Nimbin Roots Festival | 5. October 26-28 — Tablelands Folk

Festival | 6. November 9-11 — Majors Creek Festival 

 

Rock

 

1. April 20-22 — Undara Outback Rock and Blues

 

Eclectic Mix

 

1. April 6-8 — WOW Festival | 2. April 21-22 — Wind on Water Festival  |

3. April 27-29 — The Gum Ball |4. April 29 — In the Pines | 5. May 4-6 — Wide

Open Space Festival | 6. June 1-3 — Happy Daze | 7June 22-23 — Kuranda Roots

Festival | 8. July 12-15 — Bello Winter Music | 9. September 28-30 — Wallaby

Creek Festival | 10. October Long Weekend — Yours and Owls Festival |

11. October 14 — The Grass Is Greener | 12. October 26-27 — Kyneton Music

Festival | 13. November 29- December 1 — Jungle Love Festival |

14. November 30- December 1 — Fairgrounds Festival | 15. December 1-3 —

Hopkins Creek | 16. December 9 — The Pleasure Garden  

 

Jazz

 

1. June 1-4 — Jazz by the Bay | 2. June 8-11 — Castlemaine Jazz Festival |

3. June 8-11 — Merimbula Jazz Festival | 4. July 26-29 — Devonport Jazz

 

Blues

 

1. December 31- January 1 — Bluestone Blues Festival

 

Fine/Classical

 

1. September 27-30 — Bellingen Fine Music Festival | 2. November 17-18,

November 21-25 — Huntington Estate Music Festival 

 

Ukulele

 

1. April 19-22 — Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival

 

Bluegrass

 

1. October 12-14  — Foggy Mountain Music Festival

 

Guitar

 

1. August 8-19  — Sydney Guitar Festival

 

 

14. Fairgrounds Festival

 

 

Dates: November 30- December 1

Entrance Price: AUD $160

With a name like “fairgrounds,” you absolutely know that Fairgrounds Festival will perfectly combine amazing music, a fun carnival atmosphere, and laid back summer vibes. Fairgrounds is a great way to start the summer and discover international and local artists while you enjoy mouth-watering food, art workshops, and artist talks. The rural setting in Berry only furthers the call for relaxed enjoyment of music with family and friends, escaping the busy world to discover oneself amongst the music.

 

15. Hopkins Creek

 

 

Dates: December 1-3

Entrance Price: AUD $180 (no single day tickets)

Hopkins Creek stays strong to its mission to create a diverse group of artists who use the unique setting of this music festival for self-exploration and expression. Attendees truly feel the power of the carefully curated artist programming as they are led on a 3-day celebration of music and mate-ship. An extinct volcano crater only heightens the experience of this festival and calls upon our inner explorer as we become surrounded by the inspirational beats.

 

16. The Pleasure Garden

 

 

Dates: December 9

Entrance Price: AUD $60-99

The Pleasure Garden festival is a totally immersive and sensorial experience you will be hard to find anywhere else. The organizers remain true to their desires of creating a music festival which turns magic into real delight and imagination into tangible wonders. A variety of musicians grace the stage while theatrical performances, art installations, carnival rides, and delectable food enrapture your every second.

 

Jazz

 

1. Jazz by the Bay

 

 

Dates: June 1-4

Entrance Price: AUD $0-150, depending on the event

Australian and international jazz players unite at the Jazz by the Bay festival to delight audiences in the smoothest sounds and most immersive atmospheres. Jazz, soul, and funk music fills the air of wineries, caves, green spaces, and lively streets. You will feel like a cool local when you arrive at this festival.

 

2. Castlemaine Jazz Festival

 

Dates: June 8-11

Entrance Price: AUD $95

Castlemaine Jazz Festival keeps the love of jazz performance alive and thriving with its 4-day festival, bringing talented musicians to Victoria to perform, collaborate, and further improve their skills. Attendees will travel between 6 stunning and historic venues dated from the gold rush to sit in utter peace as they listen to the smooth jazz which nips at your very soul.  

 

3. Merimbula Jazz Festival

 

Dates: June 8-11

Entrance Price: AUD $30 half day pass, $50 day pass, $90 weekend pass

The Merimbula Jazz Festival has been convening in Australia for 38 consecutive years and knows a thing or two (or many) about how to throw the best jazz fest around. Hundreds of bands and musicians gather to show their best talent and dazzle the audience with the coolest of sounds. The Saturday Jazz Street Parade and Concert and the Saturday Night Jazz Quest add additional layers of musical exhilaration and will have the attendees partying until the sunrises.

 

4. Devonport Jazz

 

 

Dates: July 26-29

Entrance Price: AUD $0-80

16 years of past successful jazz festivals mean that Devonport Jazz’s 17th year will only be better with the smoothest jazz, social ambiance, and delicious food and wine. The cosy venue combines with the light jazz and blues to be the ultimate comforting vibe to fully relax and enjoy. Attendees are welcomed to come party with others and really experience the beat of the music.

 

Blues

 

1. Bluestone Blues Festival

 

Dates: December 31- January 1

Entrance Price: AUD $110

Bluestone Blues Festival knows how to gather top blues musicians along with local talent or enthusiasts to an intimate setting in Geelong in order to celebrate musical creativity and passion. The festival is proud to be large enough to welcome international blues musicians yet small enough so that all attendees engage with one another. Who knows, you may just set up your tent next to a renowned blues player and finesse your talent even more.

 

Fine/Classical

 

1. Bellingen Fine Music Festival

 

Dates: September 27-30

Entrance Price: AUD $TBA

With a lineup including classical guitarist Karin Schaupp, world famous saxophone ensemble the Sandy Evans Trio, and the Taikoz Quartet, the Bellingen Fine Music Festival 2018 is a must-see for all those who crave a unique mix of classical and fine music styles. Bellingen champions local artist talent throughout the festival, promoting young musicians and setting the stage for talent to flourish.

 

2. Huntington Estate Music Festival

 

“One of the best chamber music festivals in the world… and it just keeps getting better.” (ABC Classic FM, 2012)

 

Dates: November 17-18, November 21-25

Entrance Price: AUD $335

Held in the architecturally stunning Barrel Room of the winery, the Huntington Estate Music Festival features some of the finest musicians with some of the best acoustics in the world. Australian and international acts take to the stage to fill the winery with stunning music while attendees experience the best of refreshments, gourmet meals, Huntington wines, and immersive sounds.

 

Ukulele

 

1. Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival

 

Dates: April 19-22

Entrance Price: AUD $30

The Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival proudly gathers together ukulele lovers and aficionados to Queensland to enjoy a fiesta meant to cherish this musical instrument. Attendees come to listen to incredible musicians, learn new skills, try out the drums, and just maybe finesse their dancing all while reveling in the company of others.

 

Bluegrass

 

1. Foggy Mountain Music Festival

 

Dates: October 12-14

Entrance Price: AUD $40

Australian and international acts flock to the stages of Foggy Mountain Music Festival to bring to life a unique and culturally rich musical experience in the stunning Kinglake Ranges. Bluegrass is the main genre highlighted, yet this festival has music and other activities for every attendee to enjoy. A relaxed atmosphere begs for laid-back days spent swaying to the music while the low cost, family oriented fest makes it a must visit for all.

 

Guitar

 

1. Sydney Guitar Festival

 

 

Dates: August 8-19

Entrance Price: AUD $0-99

The Sydney Guitar Festival welcomes top guitarists from around the globe to Sydney to partake in 11 days of musical talent and inspiration. With an already bounteous lineup set to take mainstage, guitar lovers will be awe-struck by the wonder of carefully curated shows and special spectacles meant to highlight the musical achievements of all.

 

Jump to any festival  here:

 

Folk/Roots

 

1. April 7 — AutumnFest | 2. April 20-22 — Fairbridge Festival |

3. August 31- September 2 — Maleny Music Festival | 4September 14-16

— Nimbin Roots Festival | 5. October 26-28 — Tablelands Folk

Festival | 6. November 9-11 — Majors Creek Festival 

 

Rock

 

1. April 20-22 — Undara Outback Rock and Blues

 

Eclectic Mix

 

1. April 6-8 — WOW Festival | 2. April 21-22 — Wind on Water Festival  |

3. April 27-29 — The Gum Ball |4. April 29 — In the Pines | 5. May 4-6 — Wide

Open Space Festival | 6. June 1-3 — Happy Daze | 7June 22-23 — Kuranda Roots

Festival | 8. July 12-15 — Bello Winter Music | 9. September 28-30 — Wallaby

Creek Festival | 10. October Long Weekend — Yours and Owls Festival |

11. October 14 — The Grass Is Greener | 12. October 26-27 — Kyneton Music

Festival | 13. November 29- December 1 — Jungle Love Festival |

14. November 30- December 1 — Fairgrounds Festival | 15. December 1-3 —

Hopkins Creek | 16. December 9 — The Pleasure Garden  

 

Jazz

 

1. June 1-4 — Jazz by the Bay | 2. June 8-11 — Castlemaine Jazz Festival |

3. June 8-11 — Merimbula Jazz Festival | 4. July 26-29 — Devonport Jazz

 

Blues

 

1. December 31- January 1 — Bluestone Blues Festival

 

Fine/Classical

 

1. September 27-30 — Bellingen Fine Music Festival | 2. November 17-18,

November 21-25 — Huntington Estate Music Festival 

 

Ukulele

 

1. April 19-22 — Sunshine Coast Ukulele Festival

 

Bluegrass

 

1. October 12-14  — Foggy Mountain Music Festival

 

Guitar

 

1. August 8-19  — Sydney Guitar Festival

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