The 8 Best Music Festivals in Indonesia

Music lovers enjoying a festival
Music lovers enjoying a festival | © gbarkz / Unsplash

Indonesia’s festival scene is one of the most buzzing in Southeast Asia, summoning thousands of music and party lovers every year. Make sure to keep an eye on these events.

We The Fest

Born in 2014, We The Fest has become the pioneer on the southeast Asian music festival scene. By mixing the pleasures of art, music, fashion and food, it’s a must-go event for festival lovers. In 2017 it took place over three days for the first time, with more than 50,000 participants. The lineup is usually jaw-dropping. Glorious names like The Kooks, Phoenix, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, the Temper Trap, Purity Ring, Hot Chip and Flight Facilities have played on We The Fest stage. The organization is smooth, the vibes are happy and it’s one of the best music festivals in Indonesia.

Festival lovers | Abigail Lynn © / Unsplash

Sunny Side Up Tropical Festival

Put together by the same organizers of We The Fest, Ismaya Live, Sunny Side Up is what we call an epic tropical fest. Can you imagine a stage set up on the edge of an infinity pool overlooking the dreamy Balinese beach? Best thing is you can jump in the pool while listening to your favorite music. The two-day festival gathers international musicians and cutting-edge DJs from different backgrounds and genres. Pretty darn cool.

Potato Head Beach Club, the venue of Sunny Sideup Fest | Lavinia Elysia © / Flickr

LaLaLa International Forest Festival

Already the name makes most people want to sing. LaLaLa Festival is a hidden gem in Bandung, Java. It’s the first International Forest Festival in Indonesia. Set in the Orchid Forest Cikole woodland, the annual event sees music, art and nature collide in an idyllic and non-conventional location. Local and international artists enchant the festival lovers and accompany them during their wildlife journey. They also have a food court in the woods. Must-go.

LaLaLa Festival 2018 in the Orchid Forest Cikole in Bandung, Indonesia | LaLaLa Festival ©

Air Festival

Gili Air is a peaceful island out of Lombok and two hours by boat from Bali. White-sand beaches, crystal clear waters, no cars and scooters, make it a perfect location for a relaxing holiday. Every year though, usually at the end of March, the little island summons epic deep house, minimal techno and experimental electronic DJs from around the globe for Air Festival. The tropical setting is colorful and psychedelic. One edition featured an air balloon waving over the main stage, a tree house and a “sunrise” DJ deck perched in between palm trees. The plastic-free festival also includes a second stage in the jungle, with campfires and a more spiritual vibe. The party goes on for three days and past lineups have featured Mimi Love, Rampa, ATA and many others.

Beach Festival | Jason Blackeye © / Unsplash

DWP – DJakarta Warehouse Project

DJakarta Warehouse Project is the biggest EDM festival in southeast Asia, since 2014. When it was born, it wasn’t a festival, but a warehouse party organized by clubs in Jakarta. The event usually takes place in December. Past editions featured world-class DJs, including Carl Cox, Claptone, Cashmere Cat, Rudimental, Jamie Jones, What So Not, Flume, Robin Schulz and many others. Before going, make sure to pack your dancing shoes and get ready for a good stomp.

Close up to DJ deck | Marcela Laskoski © / Unsplash

Java Jazz Festival

Feeling inspired for some jazz music? BNI Java Jazz Festival history goes back 13 years ago: they are the pioneers of music festivals in Indonesia and will hold their 14th edition in 2018. They organize many other awesome music projects around the country. This one is unmissable.

Saxophones | Jens Thekkeveettil © / Unsplash

Music Gallery

Music Gallery is the number one festival to go to discover the country’s best indie bands, including SORE, Danilla, The SIGIT, White Shoes and Couples Company, Jason Ranti, Mondo Gascaro, PMR Orchestra and more. The event is yearly organized by the BSO band and the Faculty of Economics and Business (FEB) of the Universitas Indonesia. The vibes are young, hipster and underground. A new but must-go festival.

A:M Festival

Last but for sure not least is A:M (Absence of Mute) Festival. 2018 has been its first edition, held in Kuningan City Ballroom with a lineup filled with awesome local names. Their mission is to help new musicians enter the industry. Shoutout for that and looking forward to the next year.