You may be a seasoned festival enthusiast: able to pitch a tent with your eyes closed, part a crowd like Moses, and find the magical source of energy required to get yourself home after dancing for a week straight. You may even have a slight dependency going on (don’t worry; we’re not here to judge). Either way, you’re after a unique festival for 2020: something bigger, something weirder, something niche-r than ever before. Call us enablers, but the travel specialists at Kenwood Travel have put together a nifty list of events to hit in 2020 around the world:

For the big kid: Wet & wild regression session

Songkran Water Festival, Thailand

Songkran refers to the traditional New Year’s festival celebrated annually between April 13th and 15th in multiple locations across China, India and Southeast Asia. Whilst often Songkran is a subdued affair, involving symbolic cleansing rituals and offerings at Buddhist temples, Thailand’s celebrations are a little less restrained, shall we say. If you’re keen to splash out and witness a wet and wild cultural spectacle, make a beeline to Chiang Mai for what might be the world’s largest water fight. Join throngs of New Year revellers armed with a super soaker, enjoy a range of captivating performances, tuck into delectable street food, and catch a Buddha street procession. This festival is practically dripping with fun.


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For the adventurous: Fun in the midnight sun

Secret Solstice, Iceland

2020 will mark the seventh year of the Icelandic music festival, Secret Solstice, which promises not only an eclectic line-up, but some unbelievable nature-inspired side events. Last year, Solstice-goers enjoyed the world’s only rave in a glacier cave (can you believe there’s only one?), plus a party in the depths of a 5200 year old magma chamber. This year celebrate the return of summer to the sounds of Cypress Hill, Primal Scream, and TLC to name a few, and take your best moves to the hot springs, glaciers and volcanoes of Iceland’s surreal landscape. Being so close to the Arctic Circle, the summer also signals the return of ‘Midnight Sun’, meaning enchanting, colour-streaked skies to dance under 24 hours a day.


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For the forward thinker: The World’s Greatest Show

EXPO 2020, Dubai

A definite hot ticket for this year, and the largest event ever to be hosted in Arabia, EXPO 2020 had to make our festival to do list. EXPO 2020 aims to provide visitors a diverse range of exciting offerings spanning 190 participating countries. Bringing together jaw-dropping innovation, life-changing performances, and rich cultural exchange, the event is sure to make a lasting impression. Enjoy dishes from across the globe, tap into new artistic perspectives, be wowed by modern technology, or simply sit back and allow yourself to be entertained (digital theatre, acrobatics, comedy, or music?). With themes of Opportunity, Mobility, and Sustainability running through this jam-packed program, you’re bound to feel motivated, inspired, and part of something really significant. Buy your tickets here.


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For the trailblazer: New festival for 2020

Primavera Sound Los Angeles

Regular European festival fanatic won’t need introducing to the Primavera Sound brand. Primavera has built up quite the fan base with longstanding outposts in Barcelona and Porto, but 2020 will be the first year the festival heads across the pond to the US. Making its American debut from September 19th-20th at Los Angeles State Historic Park, the two-day event is widely-anticipated despite the line-up being as of yet unannounced.  With the European flagship hosting huge names, such as Arctic Monkeys, the White Stripes, Patti Smith, Radiohead, and Wu-Tang Clan, it’s safe to say attendees will be in for a treat. This year also happens to be the 20th anniversary of Primavera Sound, so we’re expecting an especially bedazzling offering.


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For the water baby: Under the sea sounds

Underwater Music Festival, Florida

If you haven’t guessed already, the Underwater Music Festival, based in the Florida Keys, is a celebration of all things musical beneath the waves. A local radio station sponsors the event each year, pumping out sea-themed music through waterproof speakers so that snorkelers and scuba divers can take part in this sonic experience whilst they enjoy the marine life at Looe Key Reef. Since sound travels 4.3 times faster in water than in air, the sound is especially bizarre. It’s all relative, though! You’re more likely to be gawping at the assortment of wavy costumes and underwater ‘air guitar’ performances…or is it water guitar? Altogether weird and wonderful with a great sense of humour and an important message about conservation, this is not to be missed in 2020.


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About The Author

Resident foodie and festival-obsessive, Georgia is always looking for her next big adventure. Between writing and researching for Kenwood, she can usually be found thinking about her next meal or exciting getaway (sometimes both at the same time). While frequenting obscure gigs and discovering local delicacies are major hobbies, she also gets a thrill from correcting our wayward grammar and spelling.

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