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Over the years, India’s music scene has progressed in leaps and bounds for independent artists as well as international acts. While you have regular fare such as NH7 Weekender, the festivals listed below take it a notch further, with experiences designed for all your senses; plus they make for brilliant getaways.

Go on, plan your travels around these festivals:

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1. Hornbill Festival

A gem from the Northeast, this one takes places in Nagaland over the course of a week.

It’s your chance to gain a better understanding of the culture of Nagaland – one that is deep, intricate and rich.

Experience a multitude of bands, primarily from the Northeast dabbling in genres like rock and blues, plus traditional forms of music, food, dance and costume.

2. Magnetic Fields

A weekend roadtrip, with royalty on the side? Sign up for Magnetic Fields.

A three-day extravaganza hosted in a palace smack dab in the middle of the desert, this electronica festival promises world-class acts, great people and plenty of ‘you-won’t-believe-this’ stories.

It’s a touch pricey so start saving, pronto.

3. Ziro Music Festival

One of India’s most exciting festivals, you’ll find this one on every music lover’s bucket list.

Nestled in the Northeast (Arunachal, to be precise), it is four days of music featuring bands from India’s thriving independent scene, across genres.

Of course, the regional food and culture isn’t to be missed either.

4. SulaFest

Nasik-based SulaFest is three days of dining, wining (literally), music and a dope flea market.

They have an eclectic mix of genres to experience, which changes every year since they try to bring different artists: both Indian and international.

Rent out scooters, camp in the outdoors, and lose yourself in the music.

5. Kasauli Rhythm & Blues

Ain’t nothing like getting away to the hills for some fresh air, peace and quiet. Throw in a couple of India’s prime independent artists across genres, and you have the recipe for a perfect weekend.

The festival also donates part of its proceeds to charity organisations so you’ll have a ball and you’ll be supporting a good cause!

6. World Mouth Harp Fest

A platform for mouth harp players and other musicians from across the globe, this fest features a unique format that’s based on participation.

Whether you’re playing, organising, or simply attending, the idea is to eliminate costly entry fees and build a space for creative rejuvenation. Plus it’s in Goa, which is always a party.

7. World Sufi Spirit

Sufi music can be a revelation, and with the World Sufi Spirit in Jodhpur, it most likely will be.

Set in the gorgeous Mehrangarh Fort, three days of music, dance and pure poetry is just what the doctor ordered! You’ll experience quite a few breathtaking acts, trust us.

Note: All of the festivals listed above are annual occurrences. Click on the links to find out when and where the next editions will be held.

Image Credit: MagneticFields

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