Festival The World: Best Music Festivals in California [2020]

Photo Credit: Andrew Jorgenson for Stagecoach

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.

Coachella Music Festival 2020

October 9-18, 2020

Indio, CA


Photo Credit: Mike Ivankay

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Mike Ivankay for Coachella


KAABOO 2020

September 18-20, 2020

San Diego, CA


KAABOO, the latest entry in the southern California festival scene, spends the weekend at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, just north of San Diego. Mixing it up from other festivals, KAABOO is geared towards an older crowd with a wide range of popular artists from across the decades. There's also a strong emphasis on delicious food and intriguing cocktails along with contemporary art and late night dance parties.



Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: ALive Coverage


Beyond Wonderland 2020

June 19-20, 2020

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Jake West


Bottlerock Napa Valley 2020

October 2-4, 2020

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here


Lightning in a Bottle 2020

Cancelled

Bakersfield, CA


The dedicated fans of this transformational festival have kept LiB at the top of its game for over ten years. It’s 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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Watchara Phomicinda


The Untz Festival 2020

May 29-31, 2020

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


Stagecoach Country Music Festival 2020

October 23-25, 2020

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Andrew Jorgenson for Stagecoach


High Sierra Music Festival 2020

July 2-5, 2020

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: High Sierra Music Festival


California Roots 2020

October 9-11, 2020

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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Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Stage Media


CRSSD Festival Spring 2020

March 7-8, 2020

San Diego, CA


CRSSD Festival returns to Waterfront Park in downtown San Deigo with this now annual springtime event. The electronic heavy festival has introduced indie rock into the lineup over the last few editions as well as some incredible underground DJs. Leave the hula hoops, LED gloves, and totems at home -- they're prohibted at CRSSD.


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Tickets: Buy tickets here


Desert Hearts Festival 2020

October 22-26, 2020

Warner Springs, 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.


Photo Credit: Desert Hearts


Outside Lands 2020

August 7-9, 2020

San Francisco, CA


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. Bring a hoodie with you. Just because it’s August doesn’t mean that the fog won’t join the party.



Tickets: Buy tickets here


Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2020

October 2-4, 2020

San Francisco, CA


An annually held and 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.



Wanderlust Squaw Valley 2020

July 16-19, 2020

Squaw Valley, CA


'Wanderlust is a one-of-a-kind festival bringing together the world's leading yoga teachers, top musical acts and DJs, renowned speakers, top chefs and winemakers, and much, much more -- all in a setting of breathtaking natural beauty. We're talking about fun in the sun and dancing under the stars. Hiking on peaceful trails and gettin'your down dog on at the top of the mountain. Sipping poolside cocktails with your friends, and then enjoying a tasty farm-to-table dinner with views of the surrounding mountain peaks. Early morning meditations and all-night chakra spinning musical performances -- it's an all-out ecstatic celebration in the most awe-inspiring locations in the world.'



Hard Summer 2020

August 1-2, 2020

Fontana, CA


Founded by Gary Richards, also known as the electronic artist Destructo, Hard Summer thrives each year on the root of its founder’s fame – electronic. Taking place in diverse locations within the Los Angeles city limits since its inaugural year in 2007, the festival has finally found a home at Fontana Speedway where it will be returning each year.



Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: HARD Events


Aftershock Festival 2020

October 9-11, 2020

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.


Featured Artists:


Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Aftershock


Snowglobe 2020

December 29-31, 2020

South Lake Tahoe, CA


The annual SnowGlobe in Lake Tahoe has made good on their promise to bring a top-notch EDM festival to a ski town. SnowGlobe is loud. It’s flashy. Music shakes your chest. Fireworks explode. Imagine a club filled with thousands of EDM fans dancing and screaming and losing their minds. And it’s outside. In the middle of the winter.



Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Vito Valentinetti


Dirtybird Campout 2020

October 2-4, 2020

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.



Tickets: Buy tickets here

Photo Credit: Aaron Glassman


Northern Nights 2020

July 17-19, 2020

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.



Tickets: Buy tickets here


Desert Daze 2020

October 2-4, 2020

Riverside, 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.



Tickets: Buy tickets here


Camp Flog Gnaw Carnival 2020

November 7-8, 2020

Los Angeles, CA


Multi-talented Tyler, the Creator presents this Los Angeles weekend festival which goes down at Dodger Stadium. In between the stacked hip-hop lineup, festival goers can participate in a number of carnival games and rides -- all curated by Tyler himself.



Tickets: Buy tickets here


Noise Pop 2020

February 24-March 1, 2020

San Francisco, CA


The annual Noise Pop Festival takes place every February across San Francisco. The indie loving showcase fest also dabbles in art and film along with some of the very best in upcoming musical artists. If you're planning a winter-time trip, this is a unique way to experience the bars, clubs, and hipster joints of the city.


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Tickets: Buy tickets here


Written By

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.