THE 10 BEST Annual Summer Events & Festivals in Ireland

As summer draws to a close and the nights get darker as each day passes, we known nature has heralded winter, and we bid adieu to our Birkenstock’s for yet another year.

Although it may be sad to see the season change – as well as realise our lack of thermals and waterproof footwear – one thing we can depend on is a sterling line-up of festivals in Ireland next summer.

As the list of awesome annual festivals seems to grow each year, Ireland is truly becoming an ultimate destination on the festival scene.

Put these top 10 on your radar – these are the ones not to be missed in 2019.

10. Cape Clear Storytelling Festival

This festival has been around since 1994 and celebrates the Irish tradition of storytelling.

Set in the mystical surroundings of Cape Clear Island in County Cork, this family-friendly festival, which takes place during the last week of August, is all about spinning yarns and winning hearts.

There are tonnes of activities for all ages, and this festival is bound to keep the kids talking all summer!

9. Groove Festival

This annual music festival usually takes place in July and is aimed at good ole’ fun for all the family.

In 2017 bands like the Fun Lovin’ Criminals, Mack Fleetwood and Heather Small headlined proving you don’t have to go to the biggest festivals to get top quality acts.

The festival has an entire “Little Groovers” section to keep your wee ones inspired and active throughout the event, too!

8. Vantastival

2018 marked the ten year anniversary of Vantastival proving this class-act festival is not going anywhere any time soon, much to our delight.

This is the most “van-friendly” festival in Ireland, but don’t feel excluded if van-life is not your jam; Vantastival also has a dedicated campsite, a kids’ camp and boutique camping too.

Vantastival has been locked down for 31st May – 2nd June 2019. Keep an eye out from 1st December 2018 when tickets go on sale!

7. Festival of Curiosity

This annual event hosted in Dublin is a festival of exploration, adventure and curiosity across the disciplines of science, art, design & technology.

An array of events from intriguing tours and immersive experiences to unusual events and “playful days” take place during this July festival, which has drawn over 45,000 visitors in past years.

6. Beatyard

Beatyard is a nautical adventure to uncover and celebrate all things music and art.

Hosted in Dún Laoghaire, a seaside town just South of Dublin city, this small-scale three-day music festival is perfect for those looking to dip their toe in the Irish music festival scene, without having to commit to a camping endeavour.

This festival will take place from the 2 – 4 August 2019.

5. West Cork Literary Festival

Taking place on the 12 – 19 July 2019, this annual literature and writers festival has become a firm favourite in the summer arts calendar.

Showcasing new talent, spoken word, poetry, workshops and talks, this is the ultimate, educational festival with also tonnes of things to do for the entire family.

4. All Together Now

This new Irish music festival sprung onto the scene in 2018 offering festival-goers an indie music event which is mid-scale (15,000 attendees) indie, artsy, chill.

And, from its debut year, we can say it succeeded tremendously, already being considered one of the better Irish music festivals out there.

Dates locked in for next year are 2 – 4 August 2019.

3. Galway Arts Festival

As a headquarter of culture (awarded the title of 2020 European Capital of Culture) where better to host one of Ireland’s best arts festivals?

This world-renowned arts festival will take place on 15-28 July 2019 with an array of performances, installations, launches, exhibits, experiences and events.

Simply put: this is not to be missed.

2. Body & Soul

This annual music and arts festival is dedicated to the celebration of the summer solstice. It is an indie-hippie-love-fest essentially and draws a chilled crowd of festival-goers who come to frolic in the magic of the Body & Soul woods.

Prepare to be amazed, to experience new things, to get lost and find yourself at this summer fest taking place on 21 – 23 June 2019 at Ballinlough Castle, County Westmeath.

1. Another Love Story

This super small-scale August music festival is the top “add to your agenda” this coming summer.

Set on the site of a stunning stately manor, this low-key festival has a great inclusive environment and is essentially a glorified summer fair for those looking to be immersed in arts, culture and music with like-minded people.