Australians are renowned for their love of great live music and throughout the year festivals showcase the hottest live acts from around the globe. Lovers of indie music from rock, punk, metal to electronica can party at unique outdoor festival events. These thrilling festivals gather musical acts from around the globe. Why not bring in the new year in the heart of the Sydney CBD with Parklife. Travel north to Byron Bay to revel in the stunning bushland setting of Splendour in the Grass, or get your groove on at Groovin’ the Moo touring regional cities. Enjoy stunning Marion Bay in Tasmania for the Falls Festival or its sister event in Lorne along Victoria’s picturesque Great Ocean Road.
The Big Day Out is the name of a series of huge outdoor music rock concerts held in Sydney, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth during the height of the Australian summer in January. The line-up features some of Australia’s best live rock bands plus emerging artists. Venues include some of Australia’s biggest, including the Sydney and Adelaide Showgrounds; Flemington Racecourse; Claremont Showgrounds; and Gold Coast Parklands. Big Day Out is only suitable for adults over 15 years of age.
February - March
Sound wave is an annual music festival held at the RNA Showgrounds in Brisbane; Sydney’s Olympic Park; Flemington Racecourse; Adelaide’s Bonython Park and Perth’s Claremont Showground. These one-day rock concerts feature some of Australia’s best up and coming bands plus international rock bands. Soundwave is only suitable for adults over 15 years of age. Tickets are often sold out well in advance.
Apollo Bay Music Festival
Apollo Bay, Victoria
The Apollo Bay Music Festival, held near the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, has established itself as a highly regarded festival throughout Australia and on the international circuit. More than seventy acts across eleven venues are presented over the three day event, including large marquee stages along the foreshore. The program includes national and international performers in a variety of genres including jazz, blues, roots, classical, pop, rock and country. Although music is the focus, there are also performances of theatre, literature, film, comedy and dance. The festival attracts people of all ages from families to couples through to retirees.
Groovin’ the Moo is an alternative music event and the only major regional touring festival of its type in Australia. Emerging local and international artists keep the outdoor stages rocking in Australian towns such as Bendigo in Victoria, Bunbury and Townsville in Queensland; Maitland in New South Wales; and Australia’s national capital, Canberra. Previous events have featured the latest acts from the USA, UK, Germany and Canada. The events are often a national sell out.
Darwin, Northern Territory
The BASS IN THE GRASS Music Festival is a one-day youth music festival. Presented by the Northern Territory Government, and held at the Darwin Amphitheatre it stages an enormous line-up of Australia’s hottest artists. Part of the festival is the annual Battle of the School Bands competition, giving Northern Territory school students the opportunity to compete for their place on the festival stage.
Sydney, New South Wales
Sydney city’s historic Domain in the Royal Botanic Gardens comes alive for a party in the park at the annual Homebake Festival. There is music, film and laughter as more than fifty artists, musicians and comedy acts perform. Alongside the music is the Homebake Cinema Pavilion, featuring award winning short films by emerging Australian and New Zealand producers and directors. The Homebake Comedy Stage, presented by the Sydney Comedy Festival, features some of Australia’s best-known comedians in a showcase of world-class comedy. There is also international cuisine, markets and roving performers. Homebake is an event for adults over 18 years-old.
Marion Bay, Tasmania; Lorne, Victoria
The Falls Music and Arts Festival is one of the finest, longest running, boutique music events in Australia. Over the New Year holidays, two events are staged in some of Australia’s most beautiful natural settings in Tasmania and Victoria. The Tasmanian Festival is held over three nights on a farm in Tasmania overlooking stunning Marion Bay, Maria Island, and the Tasman Sea. Acts include a diverse range of top bands, DJs and comedians. The sister event takes place at the same time near the town of Lorne along Victoria’s Great Ocean Road. Campsite accommodation is available at both events.