1 | Glastonbury Festival (UK) – Firmly rooted in the hippie period, Glastonbury also enjoys the nickname of the "English Woodstock". And this ethos still plays a large role at this famous music (and performing arts) festival: with a wide musical spectrum (from rock to folk, world music and jazz to hip-hop and drum and bass), Glastonbury plays host not only to the superstars, but also to newcomers and alternative acts. The festival is also renowned for its annual donations – amounting to millions of pounds – to local and international charities.
Getting there by train: You can get to the festival by train using the Castle Cary or Bristol Temple Meads stations, where you'll find regular buses to take you to the festival site. Book your trip to London >
2 | Tomorrowland (Belgium) – Generally sold out in minutes, the electronic music festival takes place over two weekends in July. If you're among the lucky festival-goers to get tickets, an ever-changing conglomeration of stages and areas and, of course, the best line-up the international DJ scene has to offer awaits.
Getting there by train: Shuttle buses are on hand to take you directly to the Tomorrowland site from several Belgian stations: the quickest route is from the nearby Boom (change at Antwerp Central) or Brussels North, for example. Book your trip >
3 | Rock am Ring (Germany) – A classic among open-air festivals! The peak of the rock and metal scene has been held at the Nürburgring in the Eifel mountains for more than 30 years. Pop bands have since joined the party, but seeing Rammstein, System of a Down or Metallica live here is well worth the (train) trip!
4 | Salzburger Festspiele (Austria) – Lovers of classical music have been meeting here in Mozart's birthplace for almost a hundred years to enjoy the annual Salzburg Festival. Nowadays, the festival offers a programme with over 200 high-class events including opera, plays and concerts over six weeks in July and August, so there's something for everyone!
Getting there by train: Take the Austrian trains (ÖBB) directly into the centre of Salzburg, where your festival ticket will allow you free use of the public transport network. Book your trip >
5 | Roskilde Festival (Denmark) – Having been held every year since 1971, Roskilde has over the years developed into the largest festival in northern Europe (and one of the most famous in Europe). Roskilde plays host to a wide range of bands, from Scandinavian discoveries to international superstars such as the Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Rolling Stones and Coldplay. The festival is organised by a charitable foundation, which donates the millions in profit each year to Danish and international charities.
Getting there by train: Copenhagen Central Station and Nørreport offer train connections to Roskilde. From there you can take regular shuttle buses to the festival site. Book your trip >
6 | Hellfest (France) – Clisson, a small town near Nantes, transforms into a pilgrimage for heavy metal fans each year during the Hellfest Open Air festival. Eight different stages allow you to experience a thunderous mixture of hard rock, black, doom and death metal and punk hardcore. It's not for the faint-hearted, but with 350,000 visitors over four days, Hellfest has become one of the most important festivals in France.
Getting there by train: The festival can be reached by taking the train to Clisson (change in Nantes). Regular shuttle buses will then take you to the festival site, which lies just outside the town. Book your trip >