From the Outback to the coast, NSW plays host to a huge range of festivals each year, celebrating everything from blues, rock and country to art, culture and poetry. Join thousands of Elvis fans, camp with the bands on the South Coast, learn to play an instrument or dance along to your favourite DJs across the State.
- February 13 - March 6, 2021
Lakefest is a celebration of Lake Macquarie's aquatic lifestyle and maritime history. Now in its 6th year, The festival features sailing events and water-based sporting and social activities including a Twilight Race, Paddlefest, and Junior Pirate Fun Race.
Banjo Paterson Australian Poetry Festival - 13-21 February, 2021
The eighth Banjo Paterson Australian Poetry Festival will be marked by the unveiling of a magnificent 3m tall bronze sculpture of Major Andrew Barton Paterson at Yeoval, where he lived as a young boy. The festival will feature a small COVID-19 safe program of events to celebrate the birth and life of Andrew Barton (Banjo) Paterson in the Orange region.
Inland Sea of Sound – 24-28 February 2021
This major arts, music and cultural festival is held on what local Wiradyuri Elders believe to be a traditional corroboree site on the summit of Wahluu – Mount Panorama near Bathurst. C.W. Stoneking and Kate Ceberano have been announced as the headline acts for 2021, alongside Mo’Ju and Hussy Hicks. The family-friendly festival will also have a kid’s space with workshops, performances and games.
Bluesfest – 1st -5th April 2021
Held over the Easter long weekend in the Byron Bay since 1990, Bluesfest is Australia’s most awarded music festival. This year sees Jimmy Barnes, The Teskey Brothers, Tash Sultana, Ziggy Alberts, Xavier Rudd and more take to the stage.
Splendour in the Grass – 23 -25 July
One of Australia's premier music festivals, featuring international rock, pop and indie stars at North Byron Bay Parklands. 2021 headliners are The Gorillaz and The Strokes and there are also dance and circus workshops, celebrations of Australia's Aboriginal heritage, artistic installations and a range of food and craft markets.
Broken Heel Festival - September 9th-13th 2021
Celebrating the theatrical anniversary of "Priscilla Queen of the Desert" at her spiritual home; Broken Hill, The Broken Heel Festival is a fabulous three day festival featuring the nation's best Showgirls, Bio Queens, Drag Queens, Drag Kings and DJ's representing every corner of Australia's diverse community.
Gundaroo Music Festival – 23 October, 2021
Gundaroo is a beautifully preserved colonial village in the Southern Tablelands – a delightful location for a music festival that raises money for Motor Neurone Disease. Guests can enjoy wine tasting from local wineries, a kids’ zone with jumping castle and face painting, evening fireworks and delicious food stalls while listing to blues, rock and alternative artists.
The Lakes Festival – 5-14 November, 2021
This 10-day festival features multiple events to enjoy in the Northern Lakes district on the NSW Central Coast. Featuring a program of sporting, family, cultural, educational, art and live music events on and surrounding the Coast waterways.
This That – November 2021
Along with a great roster of artists, Newcastle’s This That festival is all about creativity and creating unusual experiences. One stage features electronica, rock, hip hop and pop, and the other will focus on DJs and dance music.
Tamworth Country Music Festival – January 2022
The biggest music festival in Australia presents more than 2,800 free and ticketed events over 10 days in multiple pubs, clubs and hotels in Tamworth. The festival is a celebration of Australian country music. See the Tamworth Strongman competition, the presentation of the coveted Golden Guitar awards, and have a go at performing yourself at the Coca-Cola Country competition. 2020 will be the 50th Anniversary of the Festival.
Parkes Elvis Festival – 5-9 January 2022
The Parkes Elvis Festival is a must – a huge celebration of Elvis Presley’s iconic music and rockabilly culture in general. This year’s theme for costumes is the 1968 musical film Speedway. There are numerous competitions for dancing, costumes and performances, as well as dance lessons, ukulele workshops, 1950s hair and make-up workshops, and more.
Illawarra Folk Festival – 13-16 January 2022
This long-running folk festival is held at Bulli on the South Coast. Fans of folk, roots, bluegrass and Celtic music will love this festival, with more than 150 artists attending, as well as poetry, comedy and dance performances. Guests can camp on site or stay in accommodation nearby, and there will be international food stalls and a festival bar.