Sziget Festival is one of the biggest European music festivals with hundreds of thousands of visitors every year.
If you have set your sights on Budapest, chances are you’ve heard of Sziget Festival, one of the most prominent music festivals of all of Europe which attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors from across the globe every year. Nevertheless, let’s recap on the most important stuff to make sure you’ve got all the info you need.
Having begun its journey as a low-key student event in 1993, the “Island of Freedom” – a term strongly associated with Sziget Festival for years – has become a major musical and cultural sensation over the past 27 years. One of the main reasons for its success is great timing: the first Sziget was organized when a new sense of freedom was overcoming the people who had recently been freed of Soviet occupation.
Sziget Festival is held every year on Óbudai-sziget, a large island located in the northern region of Budapest (hence the name – ‘island’ translates to ‘sziget’ in Hungarian), providing festival-goers with an abundance of trees and grassy areas to make them feel close to nature. The island itself is easily accessible from the city center by a number of public transportation services, including a suburban train (H5) that runs frequently for the whole duration of the festival, even at night, which is a huge plus for locals or tourists who don’t feel like camping. For those who dislike bumping around on public transportation after partying hard, an insane number of taxis line up at the entrance of the festival day and night to pick up passengers wanting to leave the venue.
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Sziget evolved from being a low-profile student event to a world-renowned festival very fast, in fact, they already hosted bands from abroad in the second year. This soon led to global recognition for the festival, and since the number of visitors started growing exponentially, the line-up became more and more impressing year by year. In 2011, Independent ranked Sziget Festival one of the 5 best festivals in Europe, which was a proper recognition of the festival’s continuous and unstoppable growth.
In addition to hosting over 1000 performances ranging from the most popular musical artists of the world to up-and-coming local bands, Sziget Festival also puts a huge emphasis on culture and arts every year to favor those who come for more than seeing their favorites live. The 7–day festival is home to art exhibitions, lectures, handicraft stations and insane installments, all surrounded with a vibrant and sexy visual experience. The endless number of performances and things to do ensure that no Szitizen (as they call it) is left bored, whether it’s day or night.
If you wish to take a look at the line-up Sziget from the past years, check out their collection of line-up posters.
Considering its size and popularity, it’s no wonder that Sziget takes social responsibility very seriously. Sziget Festival takes part in a number of programs that promote environmental protection (Green Sziget) and social equality (Love Revolution) actively.
Examples of the festival’s environmentally-friendly efforts include reusable cups, recycling points, the witty “Don’t Suck” campaign against plastic straws and more. As for social equality, Sziget has partnered with Superar to teach music to children from underprivileged backgrounds, openly stood by Coca-Cola’s “Love is love” ad campaign advocating the tolerance of same-sex couples, and made an inspiring story of a determined Foo Fighters fan who found his way on top of the crowd to the main stage and got to smash Dave Grohl’s guitar – in a wheelchair.
What is a line-up for 2024?
The first bookings are available at the beginning of the new year, but have a try and check it out here – you can even make a wish…
- What is Sziget Festival?
- Sziget Festival is one of the most prominent music festivals of Europe which draws hundreds of thousands of visitors from all around the world to Budapest every year.
- Where is Sziget Festival located?
- Sziget Festival takes place every year on Óbudai-sziget, a large island located in the northern region of Budapest.
- How can I get to Sziget Festival?
- Sziget Festival is easily approachable by public transportation, as suburban railway line H5 runs 24/7 during the whole duration of the festival. Another popular way of transportation to and from the Sziget is by taxi.
- How long is Sziget Festival?
- Although the number of days of the festival changed a lot in the past, Sziget Festival is generally a week long.