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The Ultimate Last Minute Guide to Festivals In Ireland

We've put together a comprehensive list of all music, arts and entertainment festivals in Ireland or at least the festivals we know about. Scroll around our map for the quick links.

Are we missing something? Let us know about your festival or event.

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Barndance Festival

  • When
    Good Friday Bank Holiday
  • Where
    Glendalough House, Co.Wicklow
  • Headliners & Highlights
    This year you’ll find Dax J, Huxley, Format B, Nightmares on Wax, Smash Hits on the bill.
  • Who it's for
    For those that like to stir together music, art, community and cuisine.
  • The Good
    Bring your own beer on a day where everyone else’s doors are closed!
  • The Bad
    A 90min travel time from Dublin city centre means getting there can take a while.

Kilkenny Rhythm and Roots

  • When
    May bank holiday weekend.
  • Where
    Over 40 Irish and international acts and with over 90 ticketed and free shows from early afternoon until late into the night in Kilkenny city centre.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    All forms of Americana are represented over the four days with over 30 acts from Ireland, USA, Canada, UK and Sweden.
  • Who it's for
    Audiences to wind their way through the medieval streets sampling the huge range of music in the 30 plus venues.
  • The Good
    There’s a mixture of old and new acts on the free pub gig trail and all styles will be catered for, from swing to bluegrass, rockabilly to cajun, folk and the blues.
  • The Bad
    If you don’t like Americana its best avoided.

Acoustic Yard Festival

  • When
    5th-7th May
  • Where
    Initially started up as a monthly event in Matt Molloy’s Yard Bar it’s become a full two-day festival with workshops, talks and gigs around Westport, County Mayo.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Well known Irish singer songwriters Nick Kelly and Duke Special.
  • Who it's for
    Anyone interested in the craft of song writing in both the contemporary and traditional form.
  • The Good
    A platform for singer/songwriters to perform their own songs and for audiences to listen to original music in a relaxed environment.
  • The Bad
    Catering to the needs of the working musician more than the average gig goer might find it too niche.

Life Festival

  • When
    26th -28th May
  • Where
    An open air festival to celebrate music and dance peacefully with international, multilingual, multicoloured people from dozens of countries in the world in the beautiful gardens of Belvedere House in county Westmeath.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Home-grown and International dance acts are the order of the day.
  • Who it's for
    Fans of electronic dance music can look forward to live performances and DJ sets.
  • The Good
    An innovative line-up blends live bands and alternative electronic acts promoting both national and international. They’ve come a long way from humble beginnings.
  • The Bad
    With the dance-heavy line up its best avoided if you are looking for a relaxing weekend.

AVA Festival

  • When
    2nd and 3rd June.
  • Where
    Electronic music and digital visual arts from Northern and Southern Ireland in an Audio Visual Arts Festival and Conference in Belfast.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Home-grown and International dance acts are the order of the day.
  • Who it's for
    Fans of electronic dance music can look forward to live performances and DJ sets.
  • The Good
    An innovative line-up blends live bands and alternative electronic acts promoting both national and international. They’ve come a long way from humble beginnings.
  • The Bad
    With the dance-heavy line up its best avoided if you are looking for a relaxing weekend.

Vantastival

  • When
    3rd - 4th June
  • Where
    A completely independent, family run festival that started in 2009 situated in Beaulieu House and Gardens, Drogheda, County Louth.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    The Riptide Movement, Kila and Overhead,The Albatross headline with other Irish musical talent.
  • Who it's for
    Mostly campervan enthusiasts, but there’s a bit of something for everyone.
  • The Good
    Affordable pricing and ‘Bring Your Own Booze’ policy make this a great value for money festival.
  • The Bad
    Transport to the event is tricky, and taxi-based, if you don’t drive.

Forbidden Fruit

  • When
    3rd - 5th June.
  • Where
    A unique city centre festival that combines music, spoken word, art, fashion, food and simple good vibes on the grounds of the Irish Museum Of Modern Art, The Royal Hospital Kilmainham, Dublin.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Aphex Twin, Orbital and Bon Iver top each night respectively. An assortment of high quality Irish and international acts fill out the rest of the billing.
  • Who it's for
    Those wanting a wide selection of different styles of music, cutting-edge sound, comedy, art, good food, and festival fun.
  • The Good
    Beautiful venue grounds and convenient distance to the city centre for after-parties.
  • The Bad
    Gig goers are, by and large, aged 18-30, so don’t expect much by way of family friendliness.

Belsonic

  • When
    13th-20th June.
  • Where
    An outdoor music festival in August that takes place in the idyllic setting at Ormeau Park, Belfast. A host of international headliners play in the city centre of Belfast.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Stadium acts like Arcade Fire, The 1975 and Jess Glynne alongside more dance-based artists The Chainsmokers and Cream Classical Live.
  • Who it's for
    Those like thier festivals fun and in a convenient city centre location.
  • The Good
    a festival that has built a reputation for being Belfast’s biggest and is currently celebrating its 10th anniversary.
  • The Bad
    May literally be a bit too 'out there' for most UK festival goers.

Sea Sessions

  • When
    23rd - 25th June.
  • Where
    A surf music festival, on the coast of Donegal in Bundoran, winner of the IMRO Live Music Festival of the Year, that has become one Irelands most widely recognised small music festivals.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Primal Scream, Badly Drawn Boy & The Coronas. A mixture of established international acts and unsigned bands coupled with beach sports events.
  • Who it's for
    Anyone looking for great blend of well-known and unknown musical acts as well as those who like their festivals in scenic locations but with plenty of other activities to do too.
  • The Good
    Located along the Wild Atlantic Way and with a family-friendly environment. It’s on an actual beach! If you like music and surfing - look no further.
  • The Bad
    It could get unpleasant if stormy weather decides to show up.

Body and Soul

  • When
    23rd – 25th June
  • Where
    A music and arts festival hosted on the grounds of Ballinlough Castle, a Glastonbury ethos on a much smaller scale with a family friendly attitude.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Metronomy, Bonobo, Sleaford Mods & Late night forest area, kid safe area & camping!
  • Who it's for
    Anything from twentysomethings to much older. You'll see ravers, hippiesn and hipster parents with and without their kids!
  • The Good
    You can bring your cans into the venue and enjoy lots of sideshow attractions.
  • The Bad
    Can be a bit awkward to get to and you might spend an hour or so queuing for the carpark.

Folkfest Killarney

  • When
    7th - 9th July
  • Where
    A mixture of international artists, grass roots and rising stars in the surroundings of the Killarney, Co. Kerry.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Nigerian superstar Femi Kuti and The Bollywood Masala Orchestra will headline alongside Lisa Hannigan.
  • Who it's for
    Those with an eclectic selection of musical tastes.
  • The Good
    Acclaimed international and Irish acts in scenic surroundings along the Wild Atlantic Way.
  • The Bad
    The World music genre isn’t for everyone.

The Willie Clancy Summer School

  • When
    1st - 9th July
  • Where
    A major traditional Irish music, song and set dance event held annually in Miltown Malbay, County Clare.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    The cultural and intellectual side of traditional music with daily workshops on singing and the tradition, afternoon lectures and evening recitals.
  • Who it's for
    Students and Professionals of Irish Traditional music.
  • The Good
    Up to a hundred and fifty teachers, and hundreds of improving and competent musicians, dancers and singers drawing in thousands of listeners.
  • The Bad
    Might not appeal to those who prefer their music outside of the Irish Traditional genre.

Longitude

  • When
    14th- 16th July
  • Where
    Located in suburban Dublin within the grounds of Marlay Park, one of Ireland’s largest music festivals it boasts major international acts.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Stormzy, The Weeknd and Mumford & Sons headline each night of the 3 day line-up.
  • Who it's for
    Those who are based in Dublin and like their acts from the pop mainstream.
  • The Good
    It’s a relatively short distance from Dublin city centre and transport services run to and from the venue throughout the duration of the festival.
  • The Bad
    It’s a non-camping festival. Traffic congestion problems at the end each night have become a regular feature so allow for serious time delays on your way home.

Galway International Arts Festival

  • When
    11th – 24th July
  • Where
    World premiere theatre, major art exhibitions and a stellar music line-up, and their 40th year promises a festival is full with extraordinary experiences around Galway city.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Music highlights Brain Wilson presents Pet Sounds, Ladysmith Black Mambazo and A night at the proms with RTE concert orchestra.
  • Who it's for
    Fans of music, theatre and visual art are in for a treat at one of Europe's leading international arts festivals.
  • The Good
    You can bring your cans into the venue and enjoy lots of sideshow attractions.
  • The Bad

Vodafone Comedy Festival

  • When
    27th - 30th July
  • Where
    Over 80 comedians who will perform in five fully seated indoor venues in the unique and stunning surroundings of The Iveagh Gardens, in the heart of Dublin.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Tommy Tiernan, Jason Byrne, Deirdre O'Kane and Dara O'Briain.
  • Who it's for
    Comedy fans are in for a treat with major international and Irish stand-ups performing over four days.
  • The Good
    The Iveagh Gardens are situated in Dublin city centre so there will be easy accessibility and a picturesque environment.
  • The Bad
    The sheer amount of events can mean your favourite performers shows might clash with each other.

The Beatyard

  • When
    5th - 6th August
  • Where
    Dun Laoghaire Harbour, Dublin.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    AIR, Mark Ronson and Bananarama headline with dedicated games, panel discussions, talks and kiddie areas.
  • Who it's for
    Those who like their festivals with a bit of everything situated on a picturesque sea harbour.
  • The Good
    A quick train ride from Dublin city centre with a fun, nautical theme to dress up to. Tasty street-food markets. Kids go free too.
  • The Bad
    Outdoor festivals like this can suffer from bad weather.

Ballyshannon Folk & Traditional Music Festival

  • When
    3th – 6th August
  • Where
    A folk festival on the August Bank Holiday weekend in Ballyshannon, county Donegal.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Kila, Ultan, Paddy Casey and Mundy.
  • Who it's for
    Those who like a mix of traditional and contemporary folk artists.
  • The Good
    Back in 2017 for its 40th anniversary and continues today to offer itself as a vital platform for emerging folk and traditional music talent.
  • The Bad
    Caters to a more mature crowd.

Indiependance

  • When
    4th - 6th August
  • Where
    Multiple Stages across a wonderful tree lined 52 acre site overlooked by the Galtee Mountains in Cork.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Manic Street Preachers, Wild Beasts, The Coronas and Tom Odell.
  • Who it's for
    Indie and Rock music fans mostly with a mixture of UK and Irish acts.
  • The Good
    You can upgrade to VIP for an extra €50.
  • The Bad
    There’s limited parking and it sells out quick so you’ll need to book early.

Twin Freaks

  • When
    12th August
  • Where
    A David Lynch-themed festival held in Ballyhook Hill, Co. Wicklow.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Music by Katie Kim, Patrick Kelleher, Brian Coniffe, Cobra Truth and more, as well as various artworks, performances and film screenings.
  • Who it's for
    David Lynchians and fans of his surreal TV show Twin Peaks.
  • The Good
    Performances from specially handpicked acts, artist exhibitions, and Twin Peaksy music. It’s an event you didn't know you needed in your life until now.
  • The Bad
    If you don’t like David Lynch obviously. It’s also about 90 minutes drive from Dublin city centre.

Carrickmacross Arts Festival

  • When
    10th – 13th August
  • Where
    An annual four-day multi-disciplinary festival that showcases the very best artistic talents from the Monaghan, Cavan, Louth and Meath areas.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    The Magic Numbers, We Cut Corners and comedian David McSavage.
  • Who it's for
    Fans and supporters of Visual arts, original music, comedy, dance, poetry, drama, cinema and arts education.
  • The Good
    Affectionately known as Ireland’s ‘Biggest Small Festival’ and it provides a platform for emerging artists and inspires an appreciation of the arts.
  • The Bad
    Due to its location might appeal to locals more that those outside the catchment area.

Doolin Folk Festival

  • When
    16th-18th August
  • Where
    The fifth annual Doolin Folk Festival takes place in county Clare.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Lisa Hannigan, The Stunning, Altan, John Spillane, Heathers and Mundy.
  • Who it's for
    An intimate setting that ensures that audiences and musicians can feel at one and just enjoy the communal spirit.
  • The Good
    Taking inspiration from the great festivals of the 70’s and 80’s such as Lisdoonvarna down the road and from the deep musical roots of the county.
  • The Bad
    The folk based nature of the festival won’t appeal to those outside of niche interest.

Another Love Story

  • When
    18th - 20th August
  • Where
    A bespoke weekender of music, art, whimsy & fun, nestled in the quaint surroundings of Killyon Manor in county Meath.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Irish acts such as Katie Kim , Overhead The Albatross and Bantum.
  • Who it's for
    Twenty to forty something’s looking a fun and friendly festival atmosphere.
  • The Good
    Surrounded by the woods of a beautiful country manor you can take it easy or just dance the night away.
  • The Bad
    Tickets tend to sell out quickly so book early.

Groove Festival

  • When
    19th - 20th August
  • Where
    A family friendly, two-day summer festival situated in Bray's Killruddery House.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    From David Gray and Paloma Faith to Irish favourites Damien Dempsey and Delorentos.
  • Who it's for
    Those who desire a chilled out atmosphere coupled with a friendly and fully independent festival experience.
  • The Good
    A good blend of music, food, and fun activities to create a feel good festival for the whole family.
  • The Bad
    A big focus on family friendly might not be your thing if you prefer more of an adult festival.

Vital

  • When
    23rd and 26th August
  • Where
    The annual festival in Belfast’s Boucher Road Playing Fields.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Muse with support from Biffy Clyro on the first night, and on the next, Tiësto will be joined by special guests Clean Bandit.
  • Who it's for
    Fans of stadium rock and world renowned DJ’s.
  • The Good
    Why not make the day of it and enjoy what the city of Belfast has to offer.
  • The Bad
    The line-up caters mostly to mainstream music acts.

Harvest

  • When
    26th & 27th August
  • Where
    A dedicated country music festival taking place over 2 days in Westport House and Enniskillen Airport.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Miranda Lambert and Nathan Carter headline with home-grown talent that includes Una Healy and Donna Taggart.
  • Who it's for
    Those of a Stetson wearing inclination can go to either venue and enjoy the same performing artists since they will be alternating each night’s line-up.
  • The Good
    There are over 40 acts playing over the 2 days coupled with a wide range of camping options, a food village and dedicated dancing sessions.
  • The Bad
    It’s only in its first year so teething problems could be an issue.

Punchestown Music Festival

  • When
    29th - 30th August
  • Where
    Two-day lineup of classic pop bands from the 70’s to present day held at Punchestown Racecourse in Dublin.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Tom Jones will headline with other acts Deacon Blue, The Lightning Seeds, The Village People and All Saints.
  • Who it's for
    Fans of stadium rock and world renowned DJ’s.
  • The Good
    Those with a preference for past pop classics performed by the original bands themselves.
  • The Bad
    Best avoided if nostalgia acts are not your thing.

Electric Picnic

  • When
    1st - 3rd September
  • Where
    An annual arts-and-music festival which has been staged since 2004 at Stradbally Hall in Stradbally, County Laois, Ireland.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    The xx, A Tribe Called Quest and closing out the festival is Duran Duran
  • Who it's for
    The festival offers everything from music to comedy, theatre to interactive art and holistic health to world cuisine.
  • The Good
    A wide range of mainstream and undrground acts make this Irelands most high-profile event in the festival calendar. It's also family friendly.
  • The Bad
    The high amount of gig goers and vast array of arenas and tents make it overwhelming to navigate and see everything. Always sells out early too so you need to watch for the early bird releases.

Dublin Fringe Festival

  • When
    9th - 24th September
  • Where
    A multi-disciplinary festival that curates, facilitates and offers support to artists across a range of art forms.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Dublin Fringe Festival draws more than 30,000 spectators for 16 days and nights each September to new and exciting art.
  • Who it's for
    Anyone interested in being part of the development of the Irish independent acts sector.
  • The Good
    For first timers and long time fans this is Ireland’s premier platform for emerging Irish arts companies and a showcase for the finest International contemporary performing arts.
  • The Bad
    The sheer number acts to see due to its busy program means you will probably have to miss some shows in favour of others.

Sanhain

  • When
    28th – 29th October
  • Where
    An aircraft hangar just 20 mins outside Dublin in Westin airport.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Annie Mac on the Saturday and Liam Gallagher on the Sunday. Support from The Strypes and 2manydj's (DJ Set)
  • Who it's for
    With day and night fancy dress codes and with a theme of Mexican Day of the Dead lots of fun for ages 21 and upwards.
  • The Good
    A dedicated shuttle service from the city centre should make the airport easy to get to and from. The indoor setting will mean no need for wellies too.
  • The Bad
    Teething problems and upscaling of the festival from a few years ago mean that it is no longer BYOB. The entire site is 100% concrete so no camping for those who might like to stay for the two days.

Metropolis

  • When
    28th – 29th October
  • Where
    Music, Performance, Conversation and Installation in the industrial array of warehouses and venues within the RDS complex.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    TLC, Leftfield – performing Leftism and Death In Vegas.
  • Who it's for
    Twenty to forty somethings looking for a visually impressive festival in October.
  • The Good
    An award winning music and performance festival in only its 3rd year looks set to become one of the must-see festivals on the Irish circuit.
  • The Bad
    Its growth in popularity has seen tickets sell out quick and unfortunately there’s no option on one day tickets either.

Sligo Live

  • When
    25th - 30th October
  • Where
    Now in its 14th year, Sligo Live celebrates folk roots and indie music on the last weekend in October.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Vintage acts Paul Brady and The Saw Doctors alongside more the recent Little Green Cars, Rodrigo y Gabriela and King Kong Company.
  • Who it's for
    A folk, roots and indie festival on the wonderful Wild Atlantic Coast.
  • The Good
    Each year, almost 20,000 people from Ireland and overseas experience 100 gigs in warm, intimate and atmospheric indoors venues.
  • The Bad
    It will be difficult avoid a trad session, in any pub you visit, in case that’s not your thing.

Cork Jazz Festival

  • When
    28th - 31st October
  • Where
    Europe's biggest jazz party celebrates its 40th year across Cork city centre.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Multi Grammy winner Kenny Garrett.
  • Who it's for
    Those who want to see world-class jazz presented in venues across the city.
  • The Good
    Over 1,000 musicians in hundreds of music sessions citywide, it is considered one of the jewels in the crown of Irish festivals.
  • The Bad
    If Jazz isn’t your thing. With it being so late in the year weather could be issue too.

Cork Folk Festival

  • When
    28th September – 1st October
  • Where
    An annual folk and traditional music event that takes place in Cork city.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Donovan and Andy Irvine.
  • Who it's for
    Traditional and folk concert goers are treated to several venues.
  • The Good
    Fans of Rory Gallagher will be treated to a concert with his onetime favourite fiddle player Joe O’ Donnell.
  • The Bad
    Not for the younger music fan.

Other Voices

  • When
    Month of December.
  • Where
    70 artists performing free gigs across Dingle in County Kerry. This seminal music TV series is recorded each December in this small fishing town at the edge of Europe.
  • Headliners & Highlights
    Wild beasts, Lisa Hannigan and King Creosote. Past performances include Ellie Goulding, Amy Winehouse, Elbow, The National, Damien Rice, Snowpatrol, Ryan Adams and many others.
  • Who it's for
    Those who want to discover a diverse range of artists, with a few special surprises along the way.
  • The Good
    A beautiful, magical, special place, a respite from the harried sell-sell of Christmas, a chance to enjoy a hot whiskey, an impromptu session and roaring turf fires.
  • The Bad
    The line-up caters mostly to mainstream music acts.

headquarters

The List, Dame House, 24 - 26 Dame Street, Dublin D02 C861, Republic of Ireland.