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10 of the World's Best Beach Festivals

Interest August 2, 2017 By Hugo

In recent years the summer months have become increasingly synonymous with music festivals, with new ones popping up every year.

And that's hardly surprising because in an industry where streaming and CD royalties are dwindling, touring is now an artist's primary source of income and festivals play a significant role in that. More mainstream, traditional festivals are even willing to pay artists upwards of $1m for a single set.

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However, it isn't only festivals in mud-strewn fields and scorching hot deserts that get punters through the doors. There's also a great selection of beach festivals that are just as good (if not better), so we decided to take a look at ten of the best.

1. Barcelona Beach Festival- Barcelona, Spain

A celebration of all things EDM, Barcelona Beach Festival's day and night extravaganza takes place on Platja del Forùm's dazzling coastline, with the glowing waters of the Mediterranean serving as a beautiful backdrop as the hottest DJs take to the stage.

Held in mid-July, this year's headliner saw Dutch wunderkind Martin Garrix wow the 100,000 strong crowd in the early hours of Sunday morning, while other notable names such as Kygo and Hardwell also performed.

2. Electrobeach Music Festival- Le Barcarès, France

Located near the Spanish border, for three days the quaint and sequestered seaside town of Le Barcarès turns into an EDM lover's playground, as the likes of David Guetta, Martin Garrix, Calvin Harris and deadmau5 work their magic on the decks.

Usually taking place on the same weekend as BBF, we recommend this festival more as it spans three days as opposed to one and offers you the chance to take in some culture and explore an idyllic part of France.

3. Gnaoua Festival- Essaouira, Morocco

A port city in North-Eastern Morocco, Essaouira is rich in sun-dappled beaches, one of which plays host to this terrific festival, proving that not all beach festivals are home to EDM hotheads.

Instead, crowds at Morocco's Gnaoua Festival can expect a more local choice of music as genres such as the local Gnaoua are performed. Ritual poetry is also presented, as well as soulful African beats, jazz reggae, rhythmic drum sets and a select range of contemporary music.

4. Dimensions/Outlook Festivals- Croatia

While Dimensions and Outlooks festivals cater to electronic music, the genre tends to lean towards a more drum and bass sound, with DJs like Alex Perez and Theo Parrish, regular performers.

Certainly catering to a more acquired taste, these terrific festivals can be found in the Croatian coastal towns of Pula and Punta Christo, with the latter also hosting many UK grime artists.

5. Soul Beach Music Festival- Aruba

For those with a lot of cash, then a trip to Aruba is well worth your time regardless of what music you're into, but if you like soul then that's even better as there's a music festival in the other-worldly Carribean island that celebrates the genre and all its sub-forms.

Lasting five days and nights, this sexy, uber-trendy beach festival isn't for everyone, but if you can keep up with the locals then you won't be disappointed

6. Boardmasters- Cornwall, England

Yeah, yeah, yeah, we know what you're thinking: A beach festival in England must suck. But if the weather is on your side then you're guaranteed a weekend of banging tunes and fun-filled activities.

Decorating a prime piece of Cornish coastline, Boardmasters takes in a plethora of skate and surf events as well as hosting bands as coveted as Two Door Cinema Club, more than making up for the absence of a 40-degree sun and those all-elusive Mediteratinan waters.

7. Ultra Europe- Split, Croatia

After taking their event around the world in places afar as Sao Paulo and Seoul, Ultra Europe's next stop sees it set up shop in Split with a host of A-list DJs lined up to entertain crowds in the city's main stadium.

What's more, Ultra Europe's emphasis lies not only in the music but also the after parties thanks to a vast selection of public beaches and party boats.

8. Hangout Festival- Gulf Shores, Alabama, USA 

Unless you're from Alabama or a nearby state, you probably aren't aware of the amazing coastline the small city of Gulf Shores boasts, though that's beginning to change thanks to the growing popularity of the Hangout Festival.

Taking place on Gulf Shore's caramel sands, the event is the only American festival held on a beach, with 2017's lineup seeing the British indie-folk band Mumford & Sons taking to the main stage. 

There's also a selection of other stages and tents brimming with activities, though out of everything, a trip to the puppy kissing booth is a must.

9. Primavera Sound- Barcelona, Spain and Porto, Portugal

Coming back to Barcelona, Primavera Sound celebrates all things rock, with this year's headliners including the chart-topping bands The Black Keys and Queens of the Stone Age.

Held in a magnificent waterfront complex called Parc del Fòrum, the event attracts rock fans from all over the world, while its sister site is found in Portugal's second city, Porto.

10. Annie Mac Presents: Lost & Found Festival- Malta

If you''re a fan of sun-drenched beaches and British music then you've got to check out Annie Mac's brilliant Lost & Found Festival. Located in the small island hideaway of Malta, the British flavoured lineup sees various grime artists take top billing but drum and bass DJs are also prominent. 

Taking place across multiple venues, the festival originated in 2015, with the more relaxed vibes proving a welcome alternative to those suffering from one too many EDM raves.

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