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8 Austrian festivals you need to go to this summer

Julia Hjelm Jakobsson
Julia Hjelm Jakobsson - [email protected]
8 Austrian festivals you need to go to this summer
An overview shows thousands of people gathering for the 30th traditional summer-festival at the "Danube-island", organized by the Austrian Socialist party on June 22, 2013 in Vienna, Austria. AFP PHOTO/DIETER NAGL (Photo by DIETER NAGL / AFP)

Summer is approaching, and with it, many festivals of Austria's main festivals.

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The list of Austrian summer festivals is long, and it offers something for everyone. Whether you prefer classical music, reggae, pop, or rock, you will likely find what you are looking for. Here are some of this summer's most exciting festival offerings. 

Salzburg Festival

The Salzburg Festival is one of the world's most famous festivals for opera, classical music, and drama. It takes place from July 19th to August 31st at various venues in Salzburg.

The programme offers 172 performances with classical music, operas, and world-famous artists. The festival is especially famous for its opera performances by composers such as Mozart, Richard Strauss, and Giuseppe Verdi, which are held in Salzburg’s beautiful and historical buildings, such as the Salzburg Festival Hall.

Apart from the musical performances, the festival offers art exhibitions, literary readings, and lectures.

Tickets to the different performances can be booked online.

Salzburg Festival. AFP PHOTO / WILDBILD (Photo by Wildbild / AFP)

Bregenz Festival

The Bregenz Festival takes place from July 17th until August 18th in Bregenz, Vorarlberg. It is a famous performance arts festival that mainly focuses on opera productions. The festival is known worldwide for its operas performed on a floating stage set on the shores of Lake Constance.

Bregenz Festival presents both contemporary and classic operas. Earlier productions have focused on operas such as Giuseppe Verdi's "Aida," Georges Bizet's "Carmen," and Giacomo Puccini's "Turandot," along with modern adaptations of literary works and films.

In addition to opera, the festival also offers a cultural programme with concerts, theatre performances, and other cultural events in different locations throughout the city.

You can get your tickets to the different performances here.

READ ALSO: Ten unmissable events in Austria in 2024

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Danube Island Festival (Donauinselfest)

The largest free open-air festival in Europe is on the Danube Island in Vienna from the 21st to the 23rd of June.

The festival offers a diverse line-up of performances across all genres, including rock, pop, electronic, hip-hop, jazz, and folk music. Multiple stages are set up all over the island, where both well-known international artists and upcoming local ones share the stage.

During the festival, you can buy food, drinks, arts and crafts, and enjoy other events such as sports competitions and smaller exhibitions.

The festival is very popular and tends to be crowded, especially at the stages where the most famous artists perform. Last year, Bonnie Tyler was one of them.

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Vienna Festival Weeks

The Vienna Festival Weeks (Wiener Festwochen) is a five-week-long cultural event that takes over the city every summer. This time, it takes place from May 17th until June 23rd at various locations in Vienna.

The festival is famous for being an innovative and international event that includes dance, music, fine arts, workshops, theatre and different performances. New expressions of artistic activities are presented in the form of contemporary music, experimental dance, multimedia installations, and interdisciplinary collaborations, exposing the diversity and dynamism of the art scene.

Many events are accessible for free, such as the many open-air performances, while tickets are necessary for other events and can be bought online. The program for the different events can be found here.

Vienna Festival Weeks. APP PHOTO/DIETER NAGL (Photo by DIETER NAGL / AFP)

Nova Rock Festival

The Nova Rock Festival is one of Austria's largest and most popular music festivals, offering a perfect way for those who enjoy rock and heavy metal bands to spend the summer between the 13th and 16th of June. The festival takes place in Nickelsdorf, Burgenland, and provides a large camping area for festival visitors.

The line-up usually includes famous bands from all over the world, and this year, Green Day, Billy Talent, and Sisters of Mercy, among others, will take over the stages.

A daily pass costs €119, and a festival pass costs between €240 and €390, depending on your accommodation type and VIP access. Tickets can be reserved online.

READ ALSO: Train travel in Austria: The best day trips from Vienna

Frequency Festival

The Frequency Festival is another one of Austria's largest and most popular music festivals. It has a diverse line-up of international and local artists across various genres and takes place in St. Pölten from the 15th to the 17th of August.

This year's line-up includes bands and artists like The Offspring, Gigi D'Agostino, and Raf Camora. The festival stages are spread over a large area, with different stands selling food, drinks, merchandise, and other crafts.

A general festival pass costs €219 with a camping spot included, and a daily pass costs €109. Tickets can be booked here.

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Hill Vibes Reggae Festival

The Styrian reggae festival is a smaller event for reggae fans in Leutschach an der Weinstraße, Styria, from the 24th to the 27th of June.

The music festival focuses on various sub-genres of reggae, such as roots reggae, dub, dancehall, and more. It is known to be a relaxed and laid-back festival where visitors enjoy music, dance, and connect with like-minded individuals.

The line-up usually includes local and international artists and bands, and this year, artists such as Gentleman and Teacha Dee will perform on the stages.

In addition to the music, the festival also offers workshops, Caribbean food, and different crafts stalls.

A festival pass costs €126 and can be booked online.

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Carinthian Summer

The Carinthian Summer Festival holds classical music performances in various locations throughout Carinthia, including historic churches, castles, and scenic outdoor stages. It is one of Austria's leading classical music festivals and is famous for its high-quality performances and diverse programmes.

This year, the festival takes place from July 2nd to August 29th. It offers a wide range of classical music performances, such as orchestral concerts, chamber music recitals, opera productions, and solo performances by well-known musicians such as Ulrich Dreschler and Maya Gour.

You can book tickets to the different events here.

READ ALSO: 8 unmissable events taking place in Austria in March

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