Written By Franki Calabrese
Away from the city but in the heart of its history, Osheaga Music and Arts Festival takes place in Montreal, Québec and features EDM to hip-hop artists and everything in between. The biggest of its kind in Canada, it is set at Île Notre Dame, which is an island bordering the vast St. Laurence River. Less than ten minutes from the city’s core, the Osheaga grounds offer everything you could ask for in a festival, including but not limited to: hidden ponds and waterfalls, extensive food and drink options, communal art projects, historical monuments, and of course, an impressive and all-encompassing selection of music acts from around the world. The island is accessible by metro or car – you can even bike or take a scenic walk across a bridge to get there (the perfect way to pre-drink with your friends, if you ask me).
During the day, rock bands and indie artists alternate between the two main stages so you’re never waiting for the next act to start – Crowd-loving people, this is your area. If you take a moment to chill on the hill facing the main stages, you look onto the sea of people, the backdrop revealing the city’s skyline as well as the sunset from across the water – the perfect photo spot. Meanwhile, the relentless Piknic Électronic stage features EDM acts throughout the festival with memorable light shows and lots of bass. If you take a five-minute walk up some bleachers and through the trees, you’ll find two more stages with a VIP lounge to the left and copious amounts of general seating to the right. This is where most of the hip-hop and R&B artists play.
There are numerous bars and casse-croutes, i.e.: food stands where you can get poutine and smoked meat, surrounding the stages (because that’s all we eat here). If you decide that’s not your thing, there’s an exceptional selection of local food trucks circled around picnic benches. Here, you can look out onto the water and eat anything from fresh corn on the cob to lobster rolls and pulled pork.
Single day or 3-day passes are available with shows beginning just after noon and ending at midnight, because in this city, we know how important after-parties and boozy brunches are. Gold & Platinum passes are also available, offering guests private seating areas, bathrooms, meet & greets and exclusive food and beverage terraces.
Now on its 11th edition, Osheaga has had Coldplay, RHCP, the Black Keys and The Flaming Lips as headliners in the past. This year, they will have The Weeknd, Muse, and Lorde, among many other exciting acts. So if you like your live music in a classic festival setting with great vibes and artistic charm, then this is definitely for you; but if you’re also looking to experience a new culture and explore what this vibrant city has to offer, then there’s no doubt you should make the move and get your butt up to Montreal this August 4-6th.
Grab Your Tickets Here!