You’ve heard the hype about music festivals, but have you experienced any firsthand yet? If you’re looking for a cultural experience unlike any other, make 2020 the year to check out a music festival. 

They’re great for a few reasons: 

  1. You get to experience music you wouldn’t normally experience. It’s a package deal, which means you get to step outside of your comfort zone to see a new artist or an up-and-comer who you wouldn’t normally take a risk on. 
  2. You get to experience all of this with thousands of your closest friends. How often do you get to hang with so many people with shared interests? 
  3. They’re worth the ticket price because of their scale. Music festivals often feature at least a dozen artists per day (if not more) which is a steal by itself, but we think you’ll find that that the overall experience is simply priceless. 
  4. They can help plan your travel calendar. Music festivals are generally defined by their region, and you can really get to know the country (and the world) by attending them. So, why not start planning your calendar with the best music festivals of 2020?

Most of the festivals below haven’t announced their lineups just yet, but if they’re on this list that means they always have great lineups. And don’t worry—we’ll update you as these festivals make artist announcements. So, feel free to save the date and wait for more info, or if you’re feeling adventurous, go ahead and pull the trigger to join a few thousand of your friends for what’s sure to be a great time.


South by Southwest

Austin, Texas
March 13-22

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Austin essentially shuts down for a week in March for this massive festival, and there are hundreds of undiscovered artists who are looking to make it big. But, beyond the actual event, there are thousands of incredible shows from incredible artists in venues around Austin. If you’re looking to discover new music and get lost (in a good way) in an incredible city, this is the way to start the festival season.

Coachella Music Festival

Indio, California
April 10–12 & 17–19

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Coachella has become more than a music festival at this point. It’s a cultural phenomenon. Held in the middle of the desert in Indio, California tens of thousands descend for two weekends of the biggest names in music. If you’re looking for spectacle, then you’ve definitely come to the right place. This year’s lineup has been announced, and includes Travis Scott, Lana Del Rey, Thom Yorke, Rage Against the Machine, Charlie XCX, Frank Ocean and dozens more.

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New Orleans Jazz Fest

New Orleans, Louisiana
April 23–May 3

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Jazz Fest is a uniquely American music festival. It could not exist anywhere else. Started by music legends Duke Ellington and Mahalia Jackson, the event has come to reflect the beauty and indomitable spirit of The Big Easy. It’s expanded to so much more than jazz at this point, too, so it’s a safe bet for any music fan.

Hangout Fest

Gulf Shores, Alabama
May 15–17

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Hangout Fest is a party with a capital “P.” Held on the beautiful beaches of Gulf Shores, you can lounge in the ocean while hearing some of the biggest acts in music on the main stage. There’s really no experience like it. Speaking of main-stage artists, this year’s lineup features Billie Eilish, Post Malone, Lana Del Rey and Red Hot Chili Peppers, to name a few.

Governors Ball Music Festival

New York City, New York
June 5–7

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
According to the Consequence of Sound website, Tame Impala, Miley Cyrus, Vampire Weekend, Solange and Stevie Nicks have already confirmed to play this year’s festival. But, if that doesn’t sell you, just know that this singular event is about as “New York” as you can get, and you definitely don’t want to miss it.

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Hot 97 Summer Jam

East Rutherford, New Jersey
June 6

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Hot 97 and hip-hop go hand-in-hand, and their Summer Jam is a must-attend for anyone who loves a good live show. Past lineups have helped showcase not only the biggest in the game, but also helped establish some of the most respected names in the industry.

Bonnaroo Music Festival

Manchester, Tennessee
June 11–14

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Let’s go ahead and call Bonnaroo the new-age Woodstock. Held in Manchester, Tennessee, this festival is an outdoor-centric celebration of everything music. And with their 2020 lineup, they’re not messing around, either. Head down south for Tool, Lizzo, Miley Cyrus, Vampire Weekend, Lana Del Rey and many more.

Mountain Jam

Bethel, New York
June 13–16

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Mountain Jam’s rustic setting reflects their incredible lineups. This yearly festival is more rock and roots centered, held in the beautiful Hunter Mountains of Upstate New York. If you’re looking for a more low-key experience, this is a great bet.

Lollapalooza

Chicago, Illinois
July 30–August 2

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
While they have yet to announce the 2020 lineup, you can go ahead and put this legendary festival on your calendar—it’s going to be good. This four-day experience is deeply tied to the city of Chicago, and proves to be an unforgettable festival every year. Just check out our photo recap from 2019!

Newport Folk Festival

Newport, Rhode Island
July 31–August 2

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
What was once a small, regional folk festival is now one of the premiere musical experiences in the world. Newport is famous for making careers for many artists (i.e. Bob Dylan) and consistently does so every year. It’s a great place to see legends and up-and-comers in the same weekend.

Outside Lands

San Francisco, California
August 7–9

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
The setting for Outside Lands is worth the ticket price. Held in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, there’s no better place to hear some of the best artists in the world than with one of the world’s most iconic landmarks as the backdrop. If the 2019 lineup is any indicator, this is a must for 2020.

Moonrise Festival

Baltimore, Maryland
August 10–11

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
EDM fans, rejoice. Moonrise Festival is the perfect place to lose yourself in the beat with beautiful Baltimore as the backdrop. The Charm City is criminally underrated, and this may be the best weekend of the year to figure that out.

Made in America Festival

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
September 4–6

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
They bring out the big names for Made in American Festival, so head down to Philly for two days of incredible live music. The lineup generally leans more hip-hop, so be sure to stay tuned for what’s sure to be a killer lineup.

Austin City Limits

Austin, Texas
October 2–4 & 9–11

Why it’s worth the ticket price:
Why not cap off the end of your festival season with an iconic festival in the live music capital of the world? Austin City Limits is a two-weekend experience held in the middle of Texas’ capital. The lineup is top-notch. The vibes are uniquely Texan. It’s a ticket you’re going to want to buy.

featured photo: Attendee.com


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