By Charlotte Winokur / Humber PR student / Music, fashion, beauty and coffee lover
If you’re anything like me, choosing what music festivals to attend is more of a burden than excitement. You know you can’t afford them all, so you try to pick one. You’re organizing it with all of your friends, and then as per usual, another festival lineup is announced that you just can’t miss. Before you (and me) know it, you have a list of festivals you want to go to but you might only have enough money for one.
To help you make the right decision, I’ve compiled a list (in no particular order) of the most beloved Canadian music festivals happening this summer.
- WayHome Music & Arts Festival (Oro-Medonte, Ontario) July 22 to 24, 2016
WayHome proved to be a success after having its first debut in July of 2015 with over 35,000 in attendance. With help from the organizers of the massive Tennessee festival Bonnaroo, WayHome gained instant credibility. This three-day festival has four stages and multiple genres. Past headliners include Sam Smith, Kendrick Lamar, and Alt-J. WayHome provides different accommodation options including anything from camping to hotel packages. If you want the full festival experience and the chance to enjoy all your favourite genres, WayHome Music & Arts might be the one for you.
*Total cost estimate: $350 to $450
- Osheaga (Montreal, Quebec) July 29 to 31, 2016
Osheaga is one of Montreal’s biggest and longest running festivals of its kind. With over 10 years in the game, Osheaga has rightfully gained a loyal fanbase of music lovers who keep coming back (myself included). Osheaga offers a “mini-Coachella” experience with its six stages, interactive art displays and wide variety of genres. Past headliners include Arctic Monkeys, Weezer, Florence + The Machine, Skrillex, Outkast, The Black Keys, and many more. While there isn’t a camping option, Osheaga offers accommodation packages for those of you wanting an easy option as well as a chance to meet other festival-goers. Hotels can be pricey, so Airbnb is your best bet for saving some cash if you are unable to book through Osheaga. Combining worldwide talent with the culture of Montreal makes Osheaga a good option for music lovers of any kind.
*Total cost estimate: $500 to $700
- Digital Dreams (Toronto, Ontario) July 2 to 3, 2016
Many of us are questioning if Digital Dreams can make a comeback after last year’s weather situation, which resulted in the cancellation of day one. However, this year’s lineup seems to be just as anticipated as ever. This two-day electronic dance music festival occupies the vacant Ontario Place grounds, with three stages (or four if we’re extra lucky), each with their own sound. Digital Dreams is a promising festival for those who want hours of dance music of all kinds. Past headliners include Zedd, Martin Garrix, Justice, Flux Pavillion, Porter Robinson, Deep Dish, Armin Van Buren and more. Accommodation options are offered, however Toronto is filled with many great options.
*Total cost estimate: $275 to $450
- ÎleSoniq (Montreal, Quebec) August 5 to 6, 2016
If you were wishing Osheaga had more EDM, ÎleSoniq could be your go-to festival. Same venue, even some of the same organizers on board, but ÎleSoniq brings three stages of electronic music of all kinds. Past lineups include favourites such as Above & Beyond, Deadmau5, Odesza, Tiesto, Steve Angello and more. ÎleSoniq offers similar accommodations as Osheaga to make planning the trip a little easier. Nature, a friendly crowd and several genres—this two-day festival has it all if you want a weekend of dancing in an amazing city.
*Total cost estimate: $350 to $500
- Bestival (Toronto, Ontario) June 10 to 11, 2016
One of the UK’s most loved festivals, Bestival, made its debut on Toronto Island this past summer and proved why it’s done so well overseas. In 2015, this two-day multi-genre festival brought some major talent to some of the most visually intricate stages Toronto has ever seen, making it a unique and new experience for all attendees. Costume parties, flash mobs, body painting, cocktail buses and parades add to the magic to create a festival experience that isn’t all about music. Past headliners include Florence + The Machine, NAS, Flume, Caribou and more. If you want a well-rounded weekend of music and fun, check out Bestival this June.
*Total cost estimate: $200 to $400
With new festival announcements popping up every day, it can be difficult to narrow it down. This list may just be a fraction of the music festivals happening this summer, but we have high hopes that the list can make your decision even a little bit easier.
*Total cost estimate is listed in $CAD and is based on typical admission and accommodation costs.