We typically associate festivals with summer: outdoor drinking, retro sunglasses and muddy wellies. But some of the best festivals in the world combine snow sports and live music in the beautiful alpine settings of ski resorts. The venues crop up on mountains, in valleys, in igloos, and at laid-back aprés bars. We’ve got a list of the top upcoming events to get your fix of festival in 2018 without having to wait for summer…
When: 17th – 24th March
Cost: £125 for full access wristband
Snowboxx returns for another lively week in the French resort of Avoriaz. There’s aprés parties, outdoor stages, club nights, and competitions on the piste among avid skiers and boarders. There’s also an Igloo Stage nestled in the mountains with views of the pistes and setting winter sun below. This year’s headliners are Chase and Status, and Fatboy Slim. Other acts include: Mike Skinner; Loyle Carner; Artful Dodger; Snakehips; and many more. As well as the music, this year the festival will also put on two pop-up comedy gigs, in association with Altitude Comedy Festival and The Telegraph Ski & Snowboard.
Rock the Pistes
When: 18th – 24th March
Where: Portes du Soleil
Cost: Free with a special ski pass for the period
Rock the Pistes is a vast festival, covering both Switzerland and France in the Portes du Soleil area and welcoming nearly 30,000 people. All you need to for access to the gigs is a wristband for the ski area (special bands are sold during this period). There are open-air concerts on the mountains, as well as endless aprés-ski concerts in the resort towns and villages. With so many acts, it’s hard to keep up with who’s playing where – check out the programme thoroughly so you don’t miss anyone. 2018 acts include: Oscar and the Wolf; FFF; Lester; One Rusty Band; Alice Merton; The Hook; and Cecilia Pascal.
When: 1st – 8th April
Cost: Free to watch (£20 to enter each competition)
This week-long festival combines partying with competition. Thousands of skiers and snowboarders, beginners and veteran, come to this Swiss resort to try their hand competing in a range of different disciplines. There will be Freeski, Halfpipe, Slopestyle, and Big Air. The Brits hosts the annual British Snowboard and Freeski Championships in Laax, so you’ll get the chance to watch some of the best UK riders compete. Afterwards, there’s rowdy aprés parties, some live music, DJ’s, and the clubs and bars across the resort are at their most lively.
When: 9th – 14th April
Cost: Only package options available with accommodation starting from £299
Snowbombing is arguably the snow festival. It covers six mountain venues in the Mayrhofen resort in Austria, including igloos, mountain arenas, forests and clubs. The festival attracts top-class international performers and DJs. This year big names include: Liam Gallagher; DJ EZ; Craig David; Dizzee Rascal; Big Narstie; Pendulum; Jack Master; Eats Everything; My Nu Leng; MistaJam; Gorgon City… the list goes on and on. Snowbombing is famed year after year for hosting Austria’s largest fancy dress street party that looks incredible. The festival is so jam-packed you might even forget your there to ski too.
When: 19th – 21st April
Cost: 3 day pass for €117
Musilac festival is for lovers of rock and pop music. The festival spans three days, in the beautiful French resort of Chamonix and attracts thousands of visitors every night. There are options to just buy 1 day passes for the festival (€49) so you can catch your favourite acts without having to fork out a fortune. This year’s performers include: Rag’n’Bone Man; Texas; IAM; Ben Harper and Charlie MusselWhite; Orelsan; and Beth Ditto. Chamonix is just over an hour’s drive from Geneva airport – and the flights from the UK to Geneva are always cheap – making it an easy and affordable option to catch some music in the snowy mountains.
Of course, soaking up the winter sun in the mountains with a cold beer in hand requires some stylish eyewear. We’ve picked out our favourite styles for a ski and snowboard festival this year.
Havana Yellow frames by Smith.
White Blue oversized pilot frames by Carrera.
Collectors edition Frogskins in Matte Black Blue by Oakley.
Keyhole sunglasses in Havana by Moncler.
Which festival is catching your eye? Let us know in the comments below or Tweet us @B Sunglassesunglasses.