13 Countries with the Best, Biggest, and Most Famous Raves
The world is beginning to open up after the pandemic shut down large gatherings for the past year, so ravers will be able to return to their favorite concerts and festivals soon. After a year of social distancing, the best and most popular EDM festivals will start hosting raves once again. They are sure to be large, blow-out affairs.
Some of the most popular raves are in the United Kingdom, Belgium, Spain, Australia, the United States, and Sweden. If you are looking to travel to countries with underrated rave scenes, then you should check out India, Singapore, the Netherlands, South Africa, South Korea, and Serbia.
These countries have unique events that bring ravers from all over the world to celebrate creativity and music. You will want to check out the events and countries that have kept the rave spirit alive for 30 years among counterculture partiers. Read on to learn all about the scene in the 12 countries with the best raves.
Which Countries Have the Best Raves
Raves are popular all over the globe, so you can find festivals and events just about anywhere your heart desires. When it comes to the best raves, these countries have some of the most popular events that also feature local artists. Some of the most popular countries with raves are:
- The United Kingdom
- The United States
If you are looking for other amazing raves in places that might not be so obvious, then this guide can show you which countries are not as well known for their rave scenes. Some countries with underrated but fantastic rave scenes you should check out are:
- The Netherlands
- South Africa
- South Korea
If you are looking for some of the most popular and most underrated rave events in the world, then these countries are the best place to begin. You can have a great experience wherever you go because all of these countries have something unique and incredible to offer to ravers around the world.
Raves in the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom was a major place where raves grew in popularity in the 1990s, so it is no surprise that you can attend some great raves within its many famous cities. Visiting different festivals is a great way to get outside of London and explore the many other great cities the UK has to offer.
The Parklife Festival is a popular weekend event in Manchester, and it is one of the most famous raves in the country. Not only is this festival in the heart of the music and party scene of Manchester, but historically, Manchester has been a big place in which rave culture grew. This festival is great for celebrating the past and present of raves.
If you are looking for a rave in London, there are several big festivals:
- Field Day focuses on the local DJ scene
- Beautiful People includes soul and R&B artists along with EDM
- The Southbound Festival is a new party coming to the south side of the city.
Boundary Brighton is a coastal festival in the city of Brighton. Here, you can party with people away from the tourists of the city. In Leeds, you can attend the MiNT Festival, which offers DJs playing more than just house and techno.
Rave Culture in the UK
Raves have their origin in the United States in the 1980s, but by the 1990s, the popularity of house music and raves spread throughout the world. The UK was where young people cultivated the genre because it was so popular. Although the rave scene began in the US, the UK quickly created its own rave style.
Raves were held in warehouses and abandoned buildings, and they often had illegal activities going on along with the trespassing. The police would break up and shut down raves, but the music persevered.
During this time, and throughout its popularity in Europe, house music evolved to focus mostly on instrumentals. Lyrics became less of a focus for the genre, and house music eventually evolved into what is now known as modern electronic dance music, or EDM.
Raves in Belgium
Belgium is a great country to hit up for raves because of the number of festivals you can attend. Summers in Belgium have incredibly popular festivals, like:
- Ostend Beach Festival
- Cirque Magique
The Ostend Beach Festival is great for dancing in the sand, watching the ocean, and looking at the view of the city. This festival gives you a touch of vacation and Belgian life while you rave. Because it is in a natural setting, eco-friendliness is a key pillar of the festival. The festival is committed to keeping the beautiful beach clean and usable.
The Tomorrowland festival is considered one of the greatest raves in the world. Not only do you get the lights, sounds, and crowds that you expect of the perfect rave, but this festival brings people from all around the world, making up the international Dreamville village and shopping center.
Cirque Magique has an incredible display of electronic music artists and often features underground DJs. Not only does the music drive the raves, but the festival also has rides and circus-themed entertainment, making it a magical experience.
This list is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the big music scene the small country has. The summers are packed with tons of great concerts and raves, so it is a great stop on your rave tour.
Raves in Spain
Spain is a popular place for raves because of how rave culture grew across Europe. If you are looking for great festivals on the mainland, then Barcelona needs to be a stop on your map. Barcelona is home to the following famous and avant-garde festivals:
- Primavera Sound
These will bring you incredible music by the city and the sea.
Festival Internacional de Benicàssim is a must-stop place on the international rave circuit. Benicàssim is one of the biggest events in the city, and you can see the beaches and mountains from the rave. On the north side of the country, Bilbao BBK Live is a great mix of indie artists to enjoy while you party.
In Madrid, you can find incredible festivals like A Summer Story and Download Festival. These raves feature electronic and rock artists, which is fitting for the Ciudad del Rock. Madrid has a great party scene for you to explore outside of the festival, and you will want to hit up some of the most famous beaches in the world.
Raves in Ibiza
Ibiza is famous for its club and rave scene, so it is a spot in Spain that should be at the top of your bucket list. You do not have to rely on festivals to go to incredible raves in Ibiza, and some of the most famous clubs are:
These clubs are ones you cannot miss while in Ibiza. Amnesia has two of the most popular spaces in Ibiza; Pacha is Ibiza’s original club; and Privilege boasts being the biggest club in the world.
You do not have to wait for a specific weekend for a festival to hit Ibiza. The parties in the clubs are year-round, and the events are sprinkled throughout the summer to add extra music and lights to the incredible island.
Raves in Australia
Australia’s warm climate and unique attractions make it a popular place for raves. You can see major festival tours and famous artists in some of the most popular hotspots in the country.
In Sydney, you can go to the Ultra Music Festival, which is one of the largest festival brands in the world, Harbourlife, which is known for its dance music, or Field Day, which rings in the new year.
Festival X Australia takes place in three different cities over three different weekends. It is a great rave to chase while exploring the country in between shows. The three stops of the festival include:
These are the largest and most fascinating cities in Australia.
If music and art are important to you, then the Adelaide Fringe is a great place to stop. This festival has been running for nearly 60 years in Adelaide. Here, you can experience the creativity of the eclectic people who love this huge event.
Raves in the United States
If you are familiar with festival and EDM culture, then you have certainly heard of Electric Daisy Carnival (EDC). This festival is considered to be the Tomorrowland of North America, attracting thousands of people to Las Vegas where the event is held. This festival is immersive, so it is one you cannot miss if you are interested in the rave scene or culture.
On the other side of the country, Miami Music Week is six days of partying and music on the gorgeous beaches of Miami. In the last decade, this festival has become one of the most popular rave events in the nation. The event has over 1,000 artists in 85 venues across the city.
In the north, Electric Zoo is a festival in the heart of East Manhattan. This festival brings together the best of EDM, pyrotechnics, and New York City. Also in the north, you can party at Electric Forest in Rothbury, Michigan. There you are surrounded by lights and trees that immerse you in the incredible fairytale experience.
No matter what kind of festival experience you are craving, you can find it in the US.
- Beach raves in the warm sand and ocean air
- Chic raves in the warehouses of the big city
- Dreamy raves in open fields and forests
The United States is a great place to tour during the festival season because the country is packed with great music and raves. You can find a famous rave in any part of the country, making it a great place to tour during the festival season.
The Birthplace of Raves
In the early 1980s, DJs evolved popular disco trends into house music by using electronic sounds and rhythms. This music became extremely popular with the black and gay communities in Chicago, and they held the first raves in underground places to enjoy the music, break the law, and avoid getting caught.
Music fans have these early ravers to thank for the EDM music so many enjoy today. While raves used to be illegal parties, as the music grew in popularity, the parties became more regulated and legal.
Because raves originated in Chicago’s gay and black communities, they have always been known as places where outsiders are welcome. You can thank the people in Chicago who fought to keep this art alive and diverse for the festivals, clubs, and artists celebrated in the music world today.
Raves in Sweden
Some of the world’s top EDM musicians come from Sweden, and their home country is a great place to explore for festivals and raves. It is no surprise that some of the most popular raves are in Sweden, the country that gave us artists like:
- Swedish House Mafia
Brännbollsyran is one of the top music festivals in Sweden, combining sports and the top artists in the world. The festival is in Umeå, and it takes place the same weekend as the Brännbol championship. Once it is too dark to play this beloved amateur sport, the tournament ends and the festival begins.
If you want an intimate festival experience, then the Gagnef festival is perfect for you. This festival originated as a birthday party, and over the last 15 years, it has evolved into a boutique music festival in the woods of Gagnef, Sweden. This event is exclusive, with only 3,000 people allowed inside, so you have to get a ticket before they sell out.
In addition to the classic raves in Sweden, the Way Out West festival offers a unique experience to get inspired while enjoying music. The festival premiers music, movies, and stage discussions. The festival is committed to being environmentally friendly through these events, and it only offers vegetarian food.
Raves in India
India’s popular Sunburn festival is the largest music festival in Asia. People have been partying in Goa for Sunburn since 2007, and in 2011, the festival began to draw some of the biggest DJs in the world.
If you want more Indian culture in your festival experience, then Magnetic Fields is the event for you. This festival features cultural programming and some of India’s top EDM stars. This is a perfect place if you want to rave in a more underground place with people in India’s largest state.
The Enchanted Valley Carnival is another festival that pulls major EDM DJs from around the world. You can camp in the Enchanted Village, which was the first campsite at a festival in Asia. This event not only has a variety of music genres, but it also provides other incredible experiences like adventure sports.
Raves in Singapore
Singapore is an underrated country when it comes to raves, but the events that do happen in the country are incredible. While you are exploring the gorgeous country, you can hit up incredible and lesser-known festivals.
Zouk is a top nightclub in Singapore, so it is a great place to party on your trip there. Once a year, the club hosts ZoukOut, which is the only sunrise beach EDM festival in Asia. This event is one of the best raves in the region, but you will definitely want to make a trip to Zouk any day of the year.
The Ship Festival in Singapore is one of the most incredible raves in the world because it takes place on a cruise ship. You have everything you need on the cruise ship:
- Food and drinks
These features make it an unimaginable experience. You are truly immersed in the party because you are living and sailing the event.
Raves in the Netherlands
Amsterdam is a great place to hit for raves. The city’s relaxed rules already make it an infamous spot to indulge in the party scene, making it an attractive place to visit. The festivals in Amsterdam make it even better for partying your heart out.
Some of the most popular festivals in Amsterdam include the following:
- Don’t Let Daddy Know
- The Amsterdam Music Festival
These events are intense and amplify the party energy of the entire city.
You can experience raves on any night in Amsterdam. The club scene is popular among locals and tourists, and in the Red Light District, you can find Avante-Garde performances and taboo opportunities that are prevalent and permissible only in this city.
The Netherlands is an essential country for ravers because the experiences, especially in Amsterdam, are so cohesive with rave culture.
Raves in South Africa
Rave culture is so popular in North America and Europe that you might not expect South Africa to be such a great and underrated country to visit for raves.
The Cape Town International Jazz Festival is one of the largest EDM events on the continent. You can experience the incredible two-day event on five different stages. In Tankwa Karoo, AfrikaBurn is an escape from the rest of the world. This festival not only has great music and parties, but it also hosts art performances and workshops.
If you are a younger raver looking to explore festivals around the world, then Vortex Trance Adventures is the event for you. This event happens twice a year and is popular among younger ravers. This will be a great musical experience in an underrated country for EDM music.
Raves in Brazil
While Brazil is an underrated spot for rave-goers to travel to, it is actually the host of some of the best festivals and EDM events on the continent. Brazil is tropical and gorgeous, so you will want to explore the unique country while partying in some of the most incredible events.
The Rio Music Carnival is an incredible and over-the-top music event that embraces the look and feel of Brazilian carnivals. This event takes place in Rio de Janeiro, and it has some of the most popular DJs from Brazil and around the world. This event has spectacular costumes and sights that you will not want to miss.
You can experience the tropical climate and incredible music at the Universo Paralello festival in São Paulo. This huge EDM event is on the beautiful beaches, surrounding you with palm trees, water, and music.
XXXperience is one of the largest festivals in Brazil, but it has its roots in being a small rave. It takes place in Belo Horizonte, which is already a popular party spot. Brazil’s underrated rave scene has some of the best festivals and parties that you will want to visit, all with the gorgeous backdrop of South America.
Raves in South Korea
South Korea is famous for its pop artists, but the nightlife in Seoul provides the perfect places for underrated raves. The clubs in Seoul are a great way to rave and hear great EDM artists without the crowds of a festival.
One of the most popular clubs in Seoul is Boombar, which is a unique luxurious setting that is popular among tourists and artists. This place is great for clubbing to hip hop and EDM artists from around the world, and it is an underrated spot, meaning the crowds are much smaller than festivals in other countries.
If you want to party with South Korea’s elite, then hopping over to Club Arena in the Gangnam district is a great way to see Korean celebrities and dance to EDM. The floors in this club have different music genres playing, and they offer private VIP booths in each area. A night out in Club Arena is a high-octane experience in Seoul.
The Octagon Club in Seoul is one of the most popular clubs in the world, and it has a unique octagonal design, among other over-the-top features.
- Dancing in this club is incredible with the club’s light and stage shows.
- There is an elevator in the center that takes you to different floors.
- Each floor has a different theme and music style to make the experience unique to you.
Seoul’s nightlife is perfect for ravers to explore, and it has underrated club scenes that you will not find at other festivals.
Raves in Serbia
Serbia’s Exit Festival is an underrated event that has its roots in activism, making it a perfect place for the rebellious spirit of raves. This festival is held in the Petrovaradin Fortress, and it was founded as a student movement in 2000. Serbian students were fighting for democracy in the country, and it is now one of the best raves globally.
Because this festival was founded on rebellion and humanitarianism, these values are still key elements to Exit. The festival celebrates raves and promotes the following ideals through music and collaboration:
- Environmental sustainability
- Social change
Serbia’s Exit Festival is meaningful and encompasses the spirit of rave culture. This festival is great for gathering with other creative people, and you get to listen to incredible music inside of a medieval fortress.
What Makes a Rave the Best?
As mentioned above, rave culture emerged in the 1980s and was centered in Chicago’s gay community. The house music played at parties derived from disco music and DJs to have an electronic beat. Many parties were illegal, so they were underground and held in discreet, private, and abandoned places.
House music and raves spread worldwide in the 1990s, and the music genre and accompanying parties were extremely popular in the UK. As the music grew more popular, it became more mainstream, and raves were held in legal and formal music settings, leading to the rise of music festivals.
In the last decade, house music has evolved into EDM or electronic dance music, and raves are most often held in festivals where people gather to enjoy and celebrate the music and subculture. Raves are popular all over the world, so you will be able to dance on just about every continent.
What makes a rave great depends on what sort of experience you are looking for. Whether it is the biggest event of the year with the most popular artists or smaller and more intimate festivals with undiscovered DJs, you can find what you are looking for. These top 13 countries have everything to offer, making them great for the rave scene.
You can find raves just about anywhere you go in the world. While not every country is known for its rave scene, there are few countries that do not have a rave crowd. These 13 countries have some of the best, most popular, and most well-known events, but you will be able to find the rebellious spirit of ravers everywhere.
Nearly every continent has incredible parties in interesting cities. These raves will take you to different corners of the world to experience music, art, and culture together. Whether you are looking for the most popular raves or the most underrated, these countries will be perfect for finding events with people like you.