Summer Art Festivals and City Cultural Breaks

The festival season is just around the corner, you can sense spring and summer itching to get started. And as everyone knows, summer brings about the annual festival season.

When it comes to choosing where to holiday this summer there is a huge range of destinations to choose. A particular city or country can appeal for a host of reasons, arts, culture and cuisine. Well, you can add festivals to this list, as more and more people look to explore offbeat and interesting destinations.

It’s never been easier to get away for the weekend and take in a festival, if you’re flying from Manchester, you can leave your car with Manchester airport parking.

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Here is a breakdown of a few of Europe’s lesser known yet culturally banging festivals.

The Reykjavik Arts Festival is Iceland’s premier arts festival. With a line-up including Afrobeats, modern dance from China and local composers and musicians; the festival is an eclectic mix of genres.  The festival takes place in Reykjavik over three days, from 19-22 May.

The international Jazz Festival is a year-long celebration of music and takes place in Slovakia’s second city and 2013 capital of culture, Kosice.  As well as this festival celebrating its seventeenth birthday, the city will showcase a range of traditional Slovakian folk music in June and a classical concerts from May to November.

Way Out West is a music festival held in Sweden’s second city, Göteborg. Neil Young, Alabama Shakes and Of Monsters and Men are just some of the acts lined up. The main stage is in Slottsskogen Park – but the city also holds parallel programme of concerts and DJ nights in bars and clubs.

Distortion has the distinction of operating somewhere between an underground rave, flash mob and a festival. This five-day party in Copenhagen has been described as a tsunami and only possibly somewhere as cool as the Danish capital. 90,000 odd people flood the streets for daytime street parties and night-time raves. Social media is the orchestrator, check their feeds for details.

Blues Now is a year-long event held in Basel, Switzerland with the aim of bringing the best international blues acts to the city. The festival promises exciting and contemporary blues, soul and roots music, creating a modern showcase with just one priority the quality of the music. The next artist due to play in the city is the Karen Lovely Band in April. Check out their website for more bands and musicians.