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Outside Lands Festival Guide

Two young women wearing colored sunglasses dance and smile at a music festival. Music Festivals

Get ready with these tips for the 2023 Outside Lands, the world’s largest independently owned music festival. With our Outside Lands festival guide, you’ll be set to enjoy performances from artists like Kendrick Lamar, The 1975, Lil Yachty and more.

What is Outside Lands?

Outside Lands is an annual, three-day music festival that takes place in San Francisco, Calif. For more than 14 years, music artists from genres like pop, rock, hip-hop and EDM perform in Golden Gate Park for massive crowds. Produced by Another Planet Entertainment, Starr Hills Presents and Superfly Presents, the first Outside Lands festival took place in 2008. The headlining acts included The Black Keys, Cold War Kids, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, and Beck. Radiohead, another headliner in 2008, became the first music group to perform in Golden Gate Park at night. 

Along with the musicians performing on its stages, Outside Lands also features plenty of food, art and wine attractions for guests to enjoy. Stop by the sports lounge, arcade, bars and vendors to get art and other trinkets. As you read on, you’ll find more information with this Outside Lands festival guide. The Outside Lands festival organizers have done their best to make this high-attendance event as eco-friendly as possible with solar-powered stages, recycling and waste diversion programs and refillable water stations throughout the festival grounds. 

When is Outside Lands?

Outside Lands typically takes place in August. The only deviation from this scheduling took place in 2021 when the festival was pushed to Halloween weekend. In 2023, Outside Lands was scheduled for Aug. 11–13 with festival gates opening at 11 a.m.  and music sets beginning at noon on all three days. The music is scheduled to stop at 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, while on Sunday, the music winds down at 9:40 p.m. 

2023 Outside Lands Lineup & Schedule

The organizers for Outside Lands will release schedule details closer to the dates of the festival. Some big names that have been included in past Outside Lands lineups were the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jack Harlow, Melanie Martinez, Childish Gambino and Illenium.

The 2023 Outside Lands music festival will include headliners like Kendrick Lamar, Megan Thee Stallion and Odesza as well as the Foo Fighters, Lana Del Rey, Father John Misty and more. Check out the full 2023 Outside Lands lineup below. 

Outside Lands Festival graphic showing lineup.

How Many People Attend Outside Lands?

At the 2008 Outside Lands festival, between 40,000 and 60,000 people gathered for the weekend event. More recently, it has drawn in crowds of around 200,000 people each year. In 2019, Outside Lands became one of the world’s highest-grossing music festivals with more than $30 million in revenue. 

Is Outside Lands All Ages?

Outside Lands is an all-ages event, with free entry for children ages two and under. There will be plenty of fun activities to keep everyone entertained. 

Can You Camp at Outside Lands?

Nope, Outside Lands is a non-camping music festival. Once the festival gates close down each night, guests must leave Golden Gate Park – so no sleeping in your vehicle or the park itself. 

If you haven’t found a place to stay yet while attending the festival, check out these exclusive San Francisco travel deals from HotelPlanner. Festivalgoers can find hotels and other lodgings close to the festival grounds. 

A young woman dances with a group at a music festival.

Preparation – Before the Festival

Before getting your 2023 Outside Lands tickets, you should do some research on the festival and how to get there. First, it’s important to calculate a budget, whether you’ll be going to the festival solo or with a group. Next, plan how you will be getting to San Francisco (plane, car, etc.) and where you’ll be staying. 

After you get your tickets and travel details sorted, focus on what you’ll be bringing with you and what to wear to Outside Lands. While the festival takes place in August, the weather in San Francisco at that time of the year will be the city’s foggiest, especially in the mornings and evenings. 

Unlike the desert heat at festivals like Coachella, the weather at Outside Lands runs a bit cooler. With that in mind, try to dress in layers or grab a jacket so you can stay comfortable at the festival as the weather shifts. Since you’ll also be on your feet all day, it is key to wear comfortable clothing and footwear and to stay hydrated. Free hydration stations will be in designated areas on the festival grounds. 

There is no re-entry to Outside Lands, so once you’re outside the gates, you can’t get back in. With that in mind, below are some suggestions of what to bring to Outside Lands. 

For Your Daypack: 

  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Water Bottle
  • Hydration Pack Under 2.5 Liters
  • Portable Phone Charger
  • Battery-Powered Misting Fan 

For the Best Outside Lands Experience:

  • Wear comfy shoes
  • Avoid the crowds
  • Plan out must-see shows and consider resting during ones that aren’t a high priority
  • Make sure you have cash, credit cards and transit cards
  • Bring a fanny pack or clear drawstring bag
  • Bring items to keep you warm, dry, or cool depending on the weather
    • Rain poncho 
    • Windbreaker

Bag Policy & Prohibited Items

The following bags are allowed: 

  • Backpacks and bags larger than 6” x 8” x 3” made of clear plastic, clear vinyl, or clear PVC 
  • Small bags, fanny-packs, purses up to 6” X 8” X 3” (do not have to be clear) 
  • Empty dedicated hydration packs with a bladder capacity of under 2.5L/150 in. and no more than one additional pocket. 

Prohibited Items Include: 

  • Standard size backpacks with hydration bladders 
  • Drawstring bags 
  • Large backpacks 
  • Weapons of any kind (including pocket knives) 
  • Outside food or drinks 
  • Strollers, wagons, etc. 
  • Fireworks and explosives 
  • Umbrellas 
  • Pets (Service animals are exempt from this) 
  • Personal transport (bikes, scooters, skateboards, etc.)

Additional safety tips for Outside Lands  can be found here.

Transportation to Outside Lands

If you plan on driving with your own vehicle, try to arrive early to find good parking spots. There will be free parking and on-street parking options available, however, details have not yet been released. 

If you don’t want to take your own vehicle, alternate transportation options to get to Golden Gate Park include:

  • Taxis
  • Rideshare (Uber or Lyft)
  • Shuttles
  • Buses 

Can You Bring Food to Outside Lands?

No, you cannot bring food to Outside Lands, but there are plenty of options within the festival grounds. If you start to get hungry, plan break times to check out the food trucks and vendors. As Outside Lands partners with the best of the local restaurant and food trucks in the Bay Area, a full list of food vendors will be published before the festival begins. There will even be food vendors available for people that may have any dietary restrictions, with vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options available.  

Get 2023 Outside Lands Tickets Today

Now that you have all of these tips for Outside Lands, go out and have a great time! If you are a hard-core festival aficionado, check out these other music festival tickets available through TicketSmarter. There are even tickets to new 2023 music festivals that will be making their debut.