Events and Festivals in Indonesia: Our guide to the best music festivals to visit around the archipelago

January 4, 2016 Thalia Yanuar

After the culmination of the internationally renown Ultra Beach Bali and massive Djakarta Warehouse Project, the second half of last year really put Indonesia on the map as an international travel destination when it comes to music. After all, music festival season spans all year long here with perfect weather conditions. No matter what genre you like, festival organizers are getting finally the memo that it is totally worth putting on a great show for fans. Below are just some of the amazing music festivals happening in our archipelago – give us a shout out in the comment section if we’ve missed your favourite.

Jakarta International Java Jazz Festival, Jakarta (March)

The Java Jazz Festival is one of the biggest jazz festivals in Asia, spanning over three days of various musical acts. Featuring an eclectic range of homegrown and international artists, admittedly this festival doesn’t always stick to its moniker as past acts have also included pop star Jessie J. That doesn’t make the party any less enjoyable – over 45,000 visitors went to the fest in the past year.
Jakarta International Java Jazz Festival. Follow @javafestpro on Instagram. 

Jazz Gunung. Photo: Courtesy of Jazz Gunung
Jazz Gunung. Photo: Courtesy of Jazz Gunung

Jazz Gunung, Surabaya (June)

Camping festivals haven’t caught on here as much as their Western counterparts, but Jazz Gunung is a gem of a festival that is the only camping event on this list. Set within the exquisite backdrop of Mount Bromo, this intimate two-day festival attracts curious travelers from all around each year. Don’t expect any big-names here, local up-and-coming musicians set the stage with a pleasant and easy-going atmosphere that should be experienced at least once.
Jazz Gunung. Follow @jazzgunung on Instagram.  

Dreamfields, Bali (August)

Dreamfields is proof that location is everything when putting on a memorable event. This extravagant EDM-heavy dance festival is set within the picturesque outdoors park of GWK. Fest-goers get to dance the night away underneath the stars between stages that are situated between awe-inspiring limestone canyons. Past headliners include international DJs Dash Berlin, Ummet Ozcan, and Sidney Samson.
Dreamfields. Follow @dreamfields_asia on Instagram. 

Echosmith at We The Fest 2015. Photo: Courtesy of We The Fest
Echosmith at We The Fest 2015. Photo: Courtesy of We The Fest

We The Fest, Jakarta (August)

Billed as a summer festival of music, fashion, arts, and food, We the Fest is probably one of the most eclectic and diverse events to happen in the Big Durian. While past line-ups include those of Ellie Goulding, Passion Pit, and Banks, music isn’t the only main draw here. In fact, even celebrity chef George Calombaris of Masterchef Australia was a special guest at last year’s event.
We The Fest. Follow @we.the.fest on Instagram.

Sunny Side Up, Bali (August)

Probably our favourite homegrown music festivals, Sunny Side Up is annually held on the grounds of the idyllic Potato Head Beach Club in Bali. A tropical festival of dreams, last year’s ordeal saw the sublime sounds of Cyril Hahn and Jessie Ware enticing the crowd from day to night. Too bad this one’s only a day long!
Sunny Side Up. Follow @sunnysideupfest on Instagram. 

Kygo at Ultra Beach Bali. Photo: Courtesy of Ultra Bali
Kygo at Ultra Beach Bali. Photo: Courtesy of Ultra Bali

Ultra Beach, Bali (September)

Globe conquering dance-festival juggernaut Ultra finally made its way over to our sunny shores of Bali, and it was the one of the biggest news to hit the Asian dance scene. While its inaugural year line-up was excrutiatingly underwhelming, the two-day beach party was goodtimes nonetheless. Fest-goers were thrilled to be able to see trop-house DJ Kygo play at sunset, while Skrillex threw it down with his signature bass-heavy set at nightfall. If the fest returns this year here’s to hoping they’ll step up their game.
Ultra Beach Bali. Follow @ultrabali on Instagram.

Djakarta Warehouse Project, Jakarta (December)

Arguably Indonesia’s most anticipated event of the season, Djakarta Warehouse Project had a massive year in 2015. Everything from the superstar headliners to mainstage production levels that were OTT in the most amazing way blew visitors expectations when it came to Indonesian music festivals. The party just keeps getting bigger and better each year – we’re already on the countdown to DWP16.
Djakarta Warehouse Project. Follow @djakartawarehouseproject on Instagram.


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