The East of the West

Hungarian pop festivals: where to go?

I am – or I used to be – a keen festival goer, but I have to confess I have never visited the ongoing Volt Festival, which is in my neighborhood. Actually, it is a one-hour car ride from my house.

I do not know how it happened, or did not happen, but perhaps the reason is not too important, especially because there are not special reasons.

It is more important that this festival is generally considered to be the best one in Hungary, because it’s size is just perfect: big enough to invite international names, but small enough to feel home.

 Volt Festival (Photo:Bielik István)
Volt Festival (Photo:Bielik István)

The location is a small, historical town, Sopron, next to the Austrian border, which means not only it is comfortable to get there from western countries, but also means a good infrastructure and a “civilized” atmosphere.

This year about 100 thousand people are expected to visit the 5-day event, which is quite considerable, because only 60 thousand people live in the town.

Some of the headliners of this year: SNOW PATROL (UK) FAITH NO MORE (USA), KRILLEX (USA), RÖYKSOPP (N), IGGY & THE STOOGES (USA)

This post made me think it is perhaps not absolutely useless to make a list of some Hungarian pop festivals that might be interesting for foreigners.

Take a look at my selection.

Name: Sziget

Location: Budapest

Number of visitors: about 400,000

To Whom? Everybody, who likes standard giant festivals with hedonist side effects


Name:  Volt

Location:  Sopron (West Hungary)

Number of visitors: about 100,000

To Whom? Who likes standard, compact festivals at relatively low costs


Name:  Balaton Sound

Location:  Zamárdi  (at Lake Balaton)

Number of visitors:  80-90,000

To Whom? Who likes the mixture of sun, beach and dance floor


Name:  Hegyalja

Location:  Rakamaz-Tokaj (East Hungary)

Number of visitors: 80-90,000

To Whom? Who would like to jump into the deep water of Hungarian rock culture


Name:  Pannónia

Location:  Szántód (at Lake Balaton)

Number of visitors: about 10,000

To Whom? Who likes smaller festivals and want to know about Hungarian bands.


Name: Fishing on Orfű

Location:  Orfű (near Pécs, South Hungary)

Number of visitors:  5-6000

To Whom? Who would like to have a swim in the Hungarian alternative culture.