Rocking Out in Belgium: Top Spring and Summer Music Festivals

Rocking Out in Belgium: Top Spring and Summer Music Festivals


As the cold winter months give way to the warmth of spring and summer, Brussels and Wallonia, French-speaking Belgium, come alive with the sounds of jazz, rock and classical music with a number of festivals celebrating global music trends. With so many music-filled events to choose from, we’ve narrowed down the list and highlighted some of our favorites:

Botanique Nights Festival (Brussels, May 13-22, 2011)

The sounds of Reggae, rock, electronic and French songs are interwoven throughout the festival, held at the Botanique, the Cultural Center of the French speaking community. ( Concerts: Patrick Wolf – Rowdy Superst*r, ZAZ – Alfa Rococo,Peter Bjorn and John + Special Guest : Sarah Blasko, The Bees, Danakil – Joshua Alo

Brussels Jazz Marathon (Brussels, May 27-29, 2011)

The Brussels Jazz Marathon makes the capital of Europe swing for one weekend, with over 450 musicians performing on the Grand Place, Place du Sablon, Place Ste-Catherine and other public squares as well as in 50 indoor venues. Most performances are free to the public. (

Fête de la Musique (Brussels & Wallonia, June 17-21, 2011)

Belgium’s French-speaking community holds this annual music celebration with more than 500 concerts in Brussels and Wallonia. The event marks the start of the summer and the launch of the festival season. (

Couleur Café (Brussels, June 25-27, 2011)

This colorful music festival is an explosion of exotic, throbbing rythms from the Caribbean, Africa and Latin America. In between concerts visitors can browse ornaments and handicraft products from all over the world and sample delicious cocktails and international dishes. ( Artists include: Monáe • Suarez • Puggy • Wyclef Jean • Patrice • Sergent Garcia • Dub Inc • Ojos de Brujo • Band of Gypsies 2 • Congotronics VS. Rockers • Tiken Jah Fakoly • Gloria & BRZVLL • Antwerp Gipsy Ska Orchestra • Sayon Bamba • Los Callejeros • Merdan Taplak (live) • Buenas Ondas • Jammin’ Troopers • Wild Boar & Bull Brass Band • Yael Naim • & many others!

Verdur Rock Festival (Namur, June 25, 2011)

The 27th edition of the annual international festival for contemporary music is free of charge and takes place in the magnificent setting of the nature theater at the Citadel of Namur. (

Dour Music Festival (Dour, July 14-17, 2011)

This alternative music festival electrifies this picturesque Belgian town during 4 days of music with an immense camp site, 7 stages, 240 DJs and music groups. This year the festival is excited to welcome Cypress Hill and House of Pain! (

Les Francofolies (Spa, July 20-24, 2011)

For over a decade, the biggest names in French music rock the Francofolies stage in the beautiful city of Spa. In previous years, the Francofolies of Spa have attracted over 170,000 visitors. Come check out all the excitement for yourself! (

Esperanzah! (Floreffe, August 5-7, 2011)

Esperanzah!, a festival dedicated to nomadic and varied music styles, invites you to discover new voices, different sounds and foreign and inventive rhythms. The international program includes 20 concerts from famous and up-and-coming artists. (

Story by: Katie Papadopoulos/Tourist Office, Brussels-Wallonia