Five Alternatives to Ibiza for this Summer

Five Alternatives to Ibiza for this Summer


will always hold a special place in our hearts but this year we’ve
been on the hunt for some alternative hedonistic holiday
destinations. Stepping up to steal
crown are these lesser-known but just as sun-drenched
European destinations where top DJs pump beats in historic squares,
atop formidable fortresses and in secret
coves. Tune in to the who’s-who of electronic beats
and live out endless days of summer in these under-the-radar dance



The Basque country capital is renowned for gastronomy with
narrow winding alleys revealing Michelin-starred restaurants and
hole-in-the-wall pinxto joints. Yet aside from washing down plate
after plate of Spanish tortillas with kalimotxo (red wine and
Coca-Cola) there’s an edgy music scene and mountaintop festival
geared up for those who remember Ibiza in its heyday. Headlined by
Noel Gallagher, Grammy-nominated Childish Gambino and previewing
Hot Chip’s new megamix DJ show, BBK
offers an eclectic mix of acts set atop the towering
Kobetamendi Mountain. After warming up at the festival head to
Guggenheim Art After Dark, as the
contemporary art gallery fills with thumping bass and dirty beats,
then for the hardcode ravers finish off with Seth Troxler’s 7AM set
at Sala Sonora.



Ibiza parties for four months a year pale in comparison to the
Serbian capital of Belgrade’s yearlong offering. Floating river
barges (splavs) are anchored to the riverbank and form the basis
for hot summer nights, paired with a barrage of parties that pop-up
in unusual places throughout the week. Authentic in its underground
offerings Barutana, translating to mean
gunpowder storage, is set inside the walls of Belgrade Fortress,
while Opservatorjiam is a white-walled
gallery favoured by an alternative demographic. Taking over the
upper floor of an old shopping mall is WATS, with glass panels running the length of the
groovy bar overlooking the city. Belgrade’s most famous joint is
undoubtedly Klub 20/44, affectionately known as
“The Boat”. The first independent bar in the whole of Serbia and
associated with kick-starting Belgrade’s late-night legacy, it has
no opening hours, no outside sponsors, no promoters, surprise sets
from sought-after DJs and parties that often play out until



This one is for in-the-know ravers who party globally and are
always in charge of the house-party Spotify playlist. Little
is known about
late-night offering, making it that little bit more
appealing. Despite being home to some of the Mediterranean’s most
pristine and unadulterated beaches, the shores remain relatively
undiscovered. Debuting its first ever festival, Kala takes
place on the meeting point of the Adriatic and Ionian seas.
Soundscape yoga sessions, interactive art installations and an
array of hiking trails mixed with an impressive dance line up
promise an intimate party in an unexpected location. Extend your
stay to enjoy the rocky beaches of Dhërmi and neighbouring
Drymades, who join forces after-dark for an all-night edition of
wild parties centring around the open-air Havana Club.



Between Annie Mac’s Lost and Found festival and
entertainment giant MTV hosting their annual Isle of
music week to over 5000 revellers,
‘s place on the European party scene is firmly secured.
Annie Mac takes her tribe of shufflers to the hills of Malta where
Patrick Topping and DJ Haus will storm the pink castle walls over
May bank holiday weekend. Situated on the doorstep of Valletta, MTV
transforms the historic Il-Fosos Square for an intense night of EDM
with headliners Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike. Big festival names
aside, throughout the summer the open-air mega-complex Gianpula hosts a roster of events across four venues,
ranging from the stylish, foliage-filled Marrakech to the hub of
Malta’s underground music scene Groove Gardens.



Each summer, several of the Dalmatian Islands transform into a
hotbed of beach bars and all-night soirées, but
heady mix of sun-drenched buildings, pine forests and a
promenade framed by super yachts is a hub for hedonistic sun
seekers. With its strong celebrity fan club (including those of
Royal pedigree) Carpe Diem is reservation-only all summer. Avoid
disappointment and catch a water taxi to its sister venue Carpe Diem Beach, which occupies the whole island of
Styipanska. Nurse your hangover under fringed umbrellas at Hula
Hula bar
, one of the few spots in town where you’ll see the sun
set fully into the Adriatic Sea, accompanied by a soothing
soundtrack of chilled house. A favourite among in-the-know locals,
Cocktail Bar Bolero is less crowded, but still remains lively due
to its expansive views across Hvar’s waterfront.