The stacked Aussie calendar of enthralling events in spectacular outdoor playgrounds reaches all corners of the huge island continent in a party that never stops. Set to a soundtrack of musical mayhem all year round, it beckons those seeking adventure and a heaving dance floor in the land down under.
AUSTRALIA – Bush doof fun in the Aussie sun!
Spawned in an era of cultural transformation and musical exploration, our vibrant Australian scene was built on foundations laid by a dedicated group of trailblazers with a vision of hosting sonic adventures in the great outdoors. With no blueprint to dictate their path, the collective contributions of these early instigators paved the way for all which followed. For over two decades, this tradition of musical mischief in nature has garnered a cult-like following of freedom seekers and experience explorers.
As our starting point we head to where it all begun, the south eastern state of Victoria, the artistic hub of Australia and home to some of the most internationally recognised electronic music festivals. As the birthplace of the original Aussie bush doof, earthcore, the creative spirit is as alive today as it was in the very beginning some 23 years ago. November’s earthcore festival is globally renowned for pushing the envelope each year, having hosted the biggest names in music and blowing minds with mesmerising experiences. With whispers of extending their events outside of Victoria and into NSW & WA, this space is one to watch. Strawberry Fields Festival, also held in November, offers a smaller boutique alternative with a more minimal musical program and a focus on imagination set amongst the forest in the north of the state. The long running Rainbow Serpent Festival held in January each year is the other key player with a long-standing reputation built on culture, community and creativity. There are also many dedicated smaller crews who keep the vibe alive such as Yemaya Festival, Zero db, Forgotten Kingdom, WTTJ and many others. Victoria simply cannot be ignored from the end of October till late April.
NSW & ACT
Towards the North of Victoria you’ll find New South Wales & ACT, home to long running clubs, parties and festivals. These centres and their surrounding outdoor havens have carved out a reputation as party hot-spots, serving the punters’ every need with tantalising menus packed with auditory treats. Commendable mentions for this region are Omega Festival, Dragon Dreaming, Subsonic, Rabbits Eat Lettuce, Psyfari, Regrowth, Confest, Spring Equinox, Lucid Labyrinth (aka Lucy) and Psycle, fill the calendar with outdoor options.
As far as picturesque playgrounds go, not many can compare to Queensland which sits on the north east coast. The scene here is as vibrant and beautiful as the surroundings. A drawcard for travellers from near and far is the exquisite array of hidden & exotic outdoor gems with year-round sublime weather to match. From tropical rainforest to beach, from country to outback, the gatherings roll on all year round with the largest being Earth Frequency Festival. Others include Manifest, Collaborations, Mushroom Valley, Tropical Bloom, Wittika, Rabbits Eat Lettuce, Bushweek. These events draw in the big guns of the psychedelic realm with beautiful backdrops for blissful journeys and fun times with friends.
The lush southern island of Tasmania is led by Fractangular Gathering which regularly attracts touring internationals to play alongside the talented locals which entices travellers from the mainland and further afield to experience a piece of the magic.
Mainland state South Australia has a long history in the electronic music scene due to its globally recognised spot in techno and rave history. With a merry band of musical mischief-makers and devoted party-goers, River Dreaming is a must whilst crews like Astral Lotus and Psy-ence Fiction are leading a new resurgence of energetic enthusiasm.
Western Australia’s electronic music pedigree is on the rise with plenty of opportunities to head into the great outdoors and be bathed in aural inspiration by Kinetic Dreaming, Red Sand, Back-2-Bassics and earthcore. Whilst burdened with geographical isolation, the tight-knit scene has survived and thrived with a determined drive. Key touring companies are sending their acts west for important legs of their tours and it’s developing into quite the hot spot.
A united tribe of doofers, dreamers and determined dance floor destroyers continue to support an ever growing list of party purveyors who push through the challenges and deliver incredible experiences. A number of large events hold their place on the yearly calendar whilst other smaller events are happening all over the country, every single weekend. With a strong culture based around acceptance, equalism and inspiration, Australia should be on every festival fan’s bucket list.So pack your bags, flip flops, hats, sunscreen and that outfit your mother told you never to wear to discover one the greatest outdoor playgrounds this planet has to offer!
Travel / Accommodation portals: airbnb.com, tripadvisor.com
Best travel time: October – April
Flight time from Europe or America: 24 hours
Visa: Required, organise in advance before departure.
Domestic Airlines: Virgin Australia, Qantas, Jetstar, Tiger Airways
Captial Cities: Melbourne (VIC), Sydney (NSW), Brisbane (QLD), Hobart (TAS), Adelaide (SA), Perth (WA), Darwin (NT), Canberra (ACT)
Area: 7.692 million km²
Currency: $AUD 1 = 0.65 Euro = $USD 0.72
Timezones: GMT +8 to +11
Vaccinations/inoculation: Required to enter the country
Dialing code: +61
Population: 23.13 million
SOS call number: 000
Text: Simon Murphy & Billy Lockyer
This article appeared first in our printed edition.