Raves are certainly seeing their heyday – in the past decade or so, they’ve gone from being a somewhat underground movement to the next “big thing.” The mainstream-ification of Electronic Dance Music (EDM) has caused its legions of followers to grow exponentially — these days, the biggest raves in the world bring in hundreds of thousands of attendees. So where in the world are the best raves?
Ultra Music Festival
The Ultra Music Festival is, as it’s name would suggest, one of the biggest raves in the U.S. It’s also one of the oldest: it’s been around for over 15 years. As such, it has a devoted following, and boasts some of the biggest names in the business. Avicii often performs at the Ultra Music Festival, as do superstars like Calvin Harris, Tiesto, and Bassnectar. Another plus? It’s located in beautiful beachside Miami! So when you’re not busy packing on the body glitter and beads, you can relax on white sand beaches.
Global Gathering has the distinction of praise from top EDM performer Armin van Buuren: he called it “one of the essential festivals in the world.” Well, he would know, wouldn’t he? And aside from all of its accoutrements as a music festival, Global Gathering also has the distinction of having no home base — every year, it takes place in a different location! Upcoming raves are set to appear in South Korea, the UK, Belarus, and Ukraine.
Who doesn’t want to go to Tomorrowland? It’s home of Space Mountain, after all! Jokes aside, Tomorrowland is one of the largest raves in Europe. Based in the aptly named Boom, Belgium (about ten miles outside of Antwerp) this rave is preceded by it’s reputation: tickets reportedly sell out in a matter of seconds. They have recently showcased top of the line performers such as David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia, Skrillex and Afrojack. Plus, the most recent festival had a whopping 185,000 attendants! In addition to boasting some of the biggest crowds (not to mention the biggest names), it also really delivers everything a rave fan could want.
Sunburn Festival (reportedly the 9th best festival in the world, according to CNN) is an annual rave that takes place each year in Goa, India. What better locale for a rave — what could possibly beat dancing to electronic music under the scorching Indian sun? It’s an experience, that’s for sure. It features both international stars, like Gareth Emery and Pleasure Kraft, and more local Indian EDM stars.
Electric Daisy Carnival
Doesn’t the very name pique your interest? This electronic dance music festival lives up to its fun-loving, sugar-coated name. And as with our other favorite raves, it featured some of the biggest names in the business, such as Armin van Buuren, David Guetta, Avicii, and Swedish House Mafia. Originally based in Southern California, this international festival has recently appeared in London, Las Vegas, and Chicago. Another fun attribute? It features tons of whimsically colorful carnival rides!
On every continent (with the exception of perhaps, Antarctica), you are sure to find a wide array of EDM festivals: choose wisely or make an adventure out of it and hit up as many as of these festivals as you can and have fun listening and dancing to the best electronic dance music!