Festival The World: The Best Festivals in California [2023]
By / January 27, 2023

Photo Credit: Andrew Jorgenson for Stagecoach
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Are your ready for anything? Sunny California is a top festival destination for visitors from around the world, with such a variety of venues and types of festivals that you may just spend the summer on the west coast. Anchored by festival royalty like Coachella and Outside Lands, the festival season also boast camping festivals tucked away in the Redwoods of northern California, warm-weather electronic fests in So-Cal, and roots and reggae in the mountains. Let’s take a look at some of the best fests in Cali:

Beachlife Festival 2023

May 5-7, 2023

Redondo Beach, CA


Dip your toes into the sand and enjoy that Beachlife! This festival in Redondo Beach, California, puts out a chill festival vibe with classic rock, reggae, and Americana artists.


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BeachLife Festival 2023


Bottlerock Napa Valley 2023

May 26-28, 2023

Napa, CA


Wine meets music when artists from around the world descend on Napa Valley just north of San Francisco. The internationally renown wine region lets it all hang out during this Memorial Day Weekend Festival, putting out one of the best West Coast lineups of the season.


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Coachella Music Festival 2023

April 14-23, 2023

Indio, CA


Astronaut at a festival

Like a barometer always reading a temperature of awesome, the traditional kickoff to the summer festival season is dominated by Coachella. The glitz and glamour of Los Angeles migrates east to the Indio desert for back to back weekends of the biggest names in music. What started as a small electronic festival in the desert has transformed into a cultural touchstone for the festival season.


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Photo Credit: Mike Ivankay for Coachella


Stagecoach Country Music Festival 2023

April 28-30, 2023

Indio, CA


Curated for country music enthusiasts, Stagecoach Festival brings a little country flair to California. With attendances of up to 75,000 fans, Stagecoach is easily one of the largest country music festivals in the world. The breadth of seasoned pros and up-and-coming artists showcased in the festival's lineup brings attendees of all ages to the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California.


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Photo Credit: Andrew Jorgenson for Stagecoach


Lightning in a Bottle 2023

May 24-29, 2023

Bakersfield, CA


The dedicated fans of this transformational festival have kept LiB at the top of its game for over ten years. It has changed venues more than a few times, but the incredible art, enthusiastic attendees, and top notch lineup at this boutique fest is a steady constant.


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Photo Credit: Watchara Phomicinda


California Roots 2023

May 25-28, 2023

Monterey, CA


One of the largest reggae festivals in the country, Calforinia Roots delivers a cosmic blend of good vibes, true happiness, family, peace, love and joy to all who enter. The three-day festival takes place at the Monterey County Fairgrounds, where Jimi Hendrix famously lit his guitar on fire in 1967.


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Photo Credit: Stage Media


Beyond Wonderland 2023

March 24-25, 2023

San Bernardino, CA


It's time to journey back down the rabbit hole for this Alice in Wonderland themed fest. Insomniac's springtime EDM festival in southern California, the sister festival of Nocturnal Wonderland, features everything from house to trance to dubstep to drum and bass. We'll see you at the Mad Hatter's Castle.


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Photo Credit: Jake West


Outside Lands 2023

August 11-13, 2023

San Francisco, CA


Outside Lands 2009 festival stage

A bike valet, wine tasting tent, and local organic food vendors are just a couple of signs that you’re in San Francisco at Outside Lands. The quirky and wonderful Golden Gate Park hosts a wide range of acts and has quickly grown into a highlight of the San Fran summer. Be sure to check out Grass Lands, one of the largest curated cannabis experiences ever held at a music festival.


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Sol Blume 2023

August 19-20, 2023

Sacramento, CA


Sol Blume is a two day, outdoor, all ages, alt R&B, music festival, held in the heart of downtown Sacramento.


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Desert Hearts Festival 2023

May 6-7, 2023

Los Angeles, CA


The DIY Desert Hearts Festival boasts a dedicated community of underground electronic music fans who worship at the alter of house, techno, and love. The intimate gatherings are beloved by fans, who are inspired by the small capacity experience focused on art, music, and community.


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Photo Credit: Desert Hearts


The Untz Festival 2023

May 12-14, 2023

Browns Valley, CA


Adding to the myriad of festivals taking place in California each summer, The Untz Festival brings a weekend of dance music to the Mairposa Fairgrounds. Founded in 2009, Untz has devoted their event to bringing to light some of the best underground electronic artists making an impact on the industry.


Photo Credit: Joseph Runge


High Sierra Music Festival 2023

June 29-July 2, 2023

Quincy, CA


Situated in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, High Sierra Music Festival boasts a family friendly atmosphere packed with artists traversing all musical genres. The eclectic lineup at the festival is backed by a picturesque venue surrounded by a mountainous landscape and national forests. More than just music is offered at the High Sierra with yoga areas, audience-participation parades, children’s areas and more.


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Photo Credit: High Sierra Music Festival


Northern Nights 2023

July 14-16, 2023

Piercy, CA


Connecting music and nature, Northern Nights Music Festival is one of the most sought after events held at Cook’s Valley Campground in Northern California. Promoted as a music and arts, camping, yoga and cannabis retreat, the festival features a varied lineup of primarily electronic artists. Still a small festival by industry standards, Northern Lights tops out at 6,000 attendees. The selective attendee limit and festival grounds play a large role in Northern Nights success. The campgrounds are home to swimming holes and the largest Redwood grove in the nation where camping is allowed.


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Same Same But Different 2023

September 21-24, 2023

Perris, CA


SSBD caters to those that embrace unique and diverse music spanning multiple genres over a multi-day experience. Late night electronic, funky day-time beach parties, early morning acoustic, secret jam spots and lots more.


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Photo Credit: Same Same But Different


Monterey Jazz Festival 2023

September 22-24, 2023

Monterey, CA


Home to an area holding some of the biggest names in festival history, Monterey Jazz Festival was founded in 1958 by jazz DJ icon, Jimmy Lyons. The festival features dozens of acclaimed acts, well known jazz musicians and other rising stars in the industry to the Monterey County Fairgrounds. With over 60 years of bringing some of the best jazz to Monterey every year, festival attendees are sure to hear some of the best in classic jazz and witness the evolution of jazz music in today’s modern music culture scene.



Aftershock Festival 2023

October 5-8, 2023

Sacramento, CA


California's biggest rock festival storms into Sacramento with a powerful lineup of rock and metal favorites. With alumni like Megadeth, Korn, Ozzy Osbourne, Nine Inch Nails, Godsmack, Alice in Chains, and System of a Down, this is the place to see genre legends in the western United States along with up-and-comers to the scene.


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Photo Credit: Aftershock


Nocturnal Wonderland 2023

September 16-17, 2023

San Bernardino, CA


Presented by electronic stronghold Insomniac, Nocturnal Wonderland plays host to a roster of top notch electronic DJs in San Bernardino, California. With colorful luminescent art installations throughout the festival, the atmosphere of Nocturnal Wonderland is a playground for electronic fans of all genres. Spanning over a weekend, this two day festival includes more than 50 artists across three separate stages.


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Photo Credit: Jake West for Insomniac


Splash House 2023

June 9-11, 2023

Palm Springs, CA


Splash House is a summer festival series held in southern California and your ticket to a house and disco escape with great people and great fun. Held over two weekends in sunny Palm Springs, the party takes place across three hotel resorts.


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Dirtybird Campout 2023

Cancelled

Waterford, CA


It's summer camp for adults at the annual Dirtybird Campout! Hosted by the folks at the Dirtybird label, this electronic-themed campout is all about non-stop entertainment. Wood carving, knot tying, tug-of-war, dodgeball, talent shows, and of course, tons of music. This southern California experience has even been adapted for a spring-time east coast version.


Photo Credit: Aaron Glassman


Desert Daze 2023

Cancelled

Pioneertown, CA


Desert Daze continues to impress with one of the best lineups in the world. With Lake Perris in southern California as its backdrop, Desert Daze aims to be epic yet intimate, esoteric yet accessible, catering to weirdos, but embracing to all, and to facilitate the ever expanding growth of the human spirit.



Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2023

September 29-October 1, 2023

San Francisco, CA


An annual free to the public festival, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass boasts its non-commercial roots in the heart of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park. Challenging the assumptions of what defines American music, the festival features an eclectic lineup of country, soul, folk and more. Artists perform nonstop across six outdoor stages spanning the length of a three day spirited weekend of fun.


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Ohana Festival 2023

September 29-October 1, 2023

Dana Point, CA


Taking place at Dana Point, California, Ohana Festival thrives off pairing good music with good vibes. Half of the proceeds earned at Ohana each year benefit a local non-profit that aims to preserve and maintain the magic of California’s coastal parks. Keeping in tune with Ohana’s premise, the lineup showcases the best of indie, surfer rock, and alternative music.


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Hard Summer 2023

August 5-6, 2023

Los Angeles, CA


Hard Summer takes place in downtown Los Angeles at a combination of venues with various stages spread throughout the campuses of the historic LA Memorial Coliseum, Exposition Park, and BMO Stadium. This 2-day festival has been exploding with electronic music since its debut in 2008 and has become a staple of the Southern California electronic festival scene.


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Born during a backstage Bonnaroo downpour, Vito's mission in life is to dance, write, and travel to all the great festivals that this wide world has to offer.