Our Top 10 Film and Music Festivals

Take flight with these top film and music festivals from around the globe. There’s something for every film and music type from the sleepy-town adventurer (see Telluride Film Festival) to the eclectic music enthusiast (check out the Mysteryland in The Netherlands). Wherever you want to go in the coming months, there are amazing places to see and explore.


Film Festivals

1. Los Angeles, California

Hollywood Film Festival
From the land of movie magic, there’s a plethora of film festivals throughout the year. The Hollywood Film Festival, October 16-19, 2014, showcases independent, socially conscious filmmakers. Connect with the filmmakers who are using their work to help change lives. Last year the film Autumn Blood directed by Markus Blunder won Best Narrative Feature and went on to win three more awards. This year is bound to showcase even more talent than last year. See where to stay in Los Angeles.

2. Venice, Italy

Venice Film Festival
August 27 – September 6, 2014 find yourself in scenic Venice, Italy at the Venice International Film Festival. In its 71st year, the festival spans across four theaters in Venice Lido (take a boat there if you like). The films in this competition come from some of the rising stars in the international film industry. In 2013, actress Elena Cotta won the Pasinetti Award for Best Actress for her role in Via Castellana Bandiera and was also nominated for a Golden Globe. See who will top the lists internationally at this year’s festival. Find a home in Venice.


3. Chicago, Illinois

Chicago International Film Festival
Many are familiar with the New York and Toronto Film Festivals, however, the Chicago International Film Festival, October 9-23, 2014, is a festival to be noted. This rising film festival in the heart of the Midwest is celebrating its 50th anniversary. In 2013, there were over 140 filmmakers presenting, including director Jerome Bonnell of the award-winning film “Just a Sigh”. Go meet the filmmakers and watch hundreds of full and short-length films while enjoying the diverse sites of Chicago. Stay in Chicago.


4. London, England

London Film Festival
One of the biggest film festivals is the British Film Institute’s London Film Festival taking place October 8-19, 2014. Line up to see the stars and filmmakers make their grand entrance on the red carpet and then be the first to see amazing movies (like last year’s big winner Ilo Ilo written and directed by Anthony Chen which went on to receive 20 more awards and 10 nominations). With over 300 films from around the world, you’re bound to discover new filmmakers and actors as well as see some of your favorites. Check out where to stay in London.


5. Telluride, Colorado

The Telluride Film Festival, August 29-September 1, 2014, is in its 37th year and gives you the opportunity to relax and enjoy the show. Held in the beautiful mountain town of Telluride, Colorado, you will feel at home. Some folks have even remarked it felt like summer camp for cinephiles. This year Guest Directors, Guy Maddin and Kim Morgan, will be selecting a series of films to present at the festival. Find a home in Telluride.


Music Festivals

6. Pula, Croatia

Outlook Festival
For those of you who are big EDM fans, Outlook Festival in Pula, Croatia is a must! From September 3-7, 2014, check out the latest music and shows with over 300 artists, 12 stages in a 2,000 year old amphitheatre. There are even over 40 boat parties. This year’s star-studded line up includes Ms. Lauryn Hill, Busta Rymes, Dub FX and Barrington Levy. Find yourself at home in Pula.


7. Amsterdam, Netherlands

Experiencing music is the theme at Mysteryland the electronic music cultural and arts festival in Haarlemmermeer. It’s happening August 23 for only 11 intense hours. On the main stage, you’ll see Hardwell, Steve Aoki, Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike and Nervo (plus many more on other stages). Meet open-minded travelers and explore music in a wide variety of shows, stages and life-altering, musical experiences. Only 30 minutes from Amsterdam, you’ll be sure to find a great place to stay. Stay in Amsterdam.


8. Monterey, California

Monterey Jazz Festival
Relax by the ocean in Monterey and attend the Monterey Jazz Festival. From September 19-21, 2014 explore the breadth and depth of this American style of music. After 57 years, this festival has it all with over 500 artists performing nonstop on 8 stages as well as amazing food. See Herbie Hancock, Robert Glasper Experiment, Booker T. Jones and Cecile McLorin Salvant at the Arena. There’s even more brilliant talent throughout this event. This is hands down one of the best jazz festivals. Find a home in Monterey.

9. Rio De Janeiro, Brazil

Rock In Rio
A socially conscious music festival, Rock in Rio is celebrating 29 years as a leader in changing how we interact with music from September 12-14. It’s easy to get swept away in the hundreds of thousands of event goers as well as get entranced by big name performers, like Beyoncé, David Guietta and Ivete Sangalo, that all descend onto beautiful Rio. Get a great place to stay in Rio.

22 Comments on “Our Top 10 Film and Music Festivals

  1. Top 10’s are fun & particularly if one can make oneself at home for events as listed herein. While the choices are obviously intended to provide somewhat diverse represesntation geographically, I must admit I am puzzled that the Telluride Film Fest would be listed over Sundance Film Festival in Park City, UT, a much more internationally reknown event & for good reason.
    That said, keep the Top 10’s going !


  2. Music is my first love……………………….
    In Whitefish /Montana ther is since 2007 (?) a wonderful/interesting/beautiful Classical Music Festival : Het Amadeus Festival, in July/Aug. Great young Artists!
    If I get the chance (not this year, helas) we visit them!!!
    What’s to do in Vancouver/WA this August?

    Thanks for this new item of Homeexchange

    Yamilé in The Netherlands

  3. You’re missing one of the greatest exterior music festivals “festival d’été de Québec” in Quebec City , Canada from July 3 rd till July 13 th every summer. This year: Lady Gaga, Snoop Dog, Billy Joel, Brian Adams and many many more musicians. We’ve had Paul McCartney, Elton John, Metallica,Black Eyed Peas, Bon Jovi…a great city to visit also.

  4. Did I miss TIFF on your list or was the second best film festival on the planet ( after Cannes ) overlooked for your list ?
    C Kelley

  5. Hi .. thanks for the article on Film Festivals, however, how could you miss Palm Springs Film Festival, one of the largest, and fabulous….

  6. Why didnt the Aspen Music Festival make your list?

    Best classical music in the world in the prettiest environment! See a concert and then go fly fishing, mountain biking, hiking and finish with dinner at a five star restaurant.

  7. Looking around for the right music festival home exchange to coincide with our 75th Annual Sturgis Bike Rally and Races August 4-11, 2015.

  8. I would of thought that :
    1. the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage music festival &
    2. Byron Bay Blues Festival
    would be worthy inclusions. Check the music line ups, both world class. Both great places to visit

  9. I think this is a very big music festival as well – once a year – begining of july


  10. In your list of festivals you should also include the Woodford Music Festival held each year in Queensland between 26th of December to 2nd of January

  11. Thanks for the list. I was surprised not to see the Montreal Jazz Festival. Also, I only see 9 items on your list.

  12. You only listed nine, so I am assuming that you meant to enter the acclaimed Savannah Music Festival in Georgia as the tenth. This outstanding “must do” just celebrated twenty-five years of excellence and I am amazed it was not on. Your list!

  13. I think you should send this listing of festival earlier in spring when people are planning their summer vacations. I think you should add next year to your listing the Quebec city music summer festival in Canada. The whole city leaves at the beat of music from July 3 to July 13, some great artist are performing this year such as Lady Gaga, Journey, Snoop Dogg, Deadmaus, Billy Joel, Brian Adams.

  14. Don’t forget the Sundance Festival…under the direction of Robert Redford, in Sundance Utah. We have a Swiss Chalet home that sleeps 12…we would be happy to swap something in the program. Go to “Sundance Festival” for details.

  15. How about South by Southwest SXSW in Austin or Austin City Limits ACL? Both are fabulous and well known

  16. What about Locarno? Only Cannes and Venice have been around longer. Gorgeous real estate options – although hard to come by.

  17. The New Orleans Jazz Fest has been going on for 39 years It has 11 stages over 500 groups over 7 days.It is not only jazz but everything in music. This years groups included Eric Clapton,Santana,Bruce Springstein,Chacakan,Christina Aguliera to name a few.

  18. Once again, you forgot the Basque Country…
    What about the Donostia-San Sebastián´s film festival?

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