Summer Vanlife Festivals: Dates, Tips & More (USA)

Summer vanlife festivals

Summer Vanlife Festivals: Dates, Tips & More (USA)

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Buy or Sell Campers

11 August 2023

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In the realm of exciting summer adventures, few experiences can match the allure of embarking on a vanlife journey and immersing yourself in the captivating world of vanlife festivals. These festivals offer a unique blend of freedom, community, and exploration, making them a must-attend event for both vanlife enthusiasts and those seeking an unconventional and thrilling summer escapade.


🪅 Exploring the Vanlife Festival Culture

The vanlife movement has gained immense popularity over the years, as individuals and families choose to embrace a more nomadic lifestyle on wheels. Vanlife festivals have emerged as epicenters of this vibrant subculture, where van dwellers from around the world gather to celebrate the spirit of adventure, creativity, and camaraderie.


Dates and Destinations: Where to Find the Best Summer Vanlife Festivals


😎 Vanlife Festivals: August 2023

August often brings with it a harmonious balance of warmth and comfort. The weather is generally more predictable, allowing you to enjoy outdoor activities and explore the festival grounds without the worry of unexpected rain or extreme temperatures.

This pleasant climate sets the stage for a comfortable and enjoyable experience, making it the perfect time to connect with fellow van enthusiasts and share stories under the clear, open sky at vanlife festivals.


Dates at a Glance:

Campnation Expos Vanlife Festivals

August 10 – 13: CampNation Expo Vanlife Festival / Hollister, CA


The Camp Nation Expo stands as a captivating testament to the spirit of outdoor adventure and community. This festival is a haven for vanlife enthusiasts, outdoor explorers, and nomadic souls seeking to connect with like-minded individuals and immerse themselves in a world of inspiration. The Expo offers a comprehensive experience, combining informative workshops on van conversions and sustainable living with exhilarating outdoor activities that embrace the surrounding natural beauty.

Whether you’re looking to fine-tune your vanlife setup, engage in captivating discussions about life on the road, or simply revel in the camaraderie of fellow adventurers, the Camp Nation Expo promises a dynamic platform to fuel your passion for vanlife and outdoor exploration.

August 13: Vans & Coffee Vanlife Festival / Boulder, CO


The Vans ‘n Coffee Boulder event is a delightful convergence of van enthusiasts and coffee lovers, creating a unique blend of automotive appreciation and caffeine-fueled camaraderie. Against the picturesque backdrop of Boulder’s scenic landscapes, BCV – Boulder Camper Vans –  invites van owners and enthusiasts to check-out their newest campers.

This is an opportunity to celebrate both the art of van customization and the joy of a well-brewed beverage.

Overland Expo vanlife festivals

August 25 – 27: Overland Expo Mountain West Vanlife Festival / Loveland, CO


The Overland Expo Mountain West encapsulates the essence of adventure, exploration, and self-sufficiency in the heart of the rugged outdoors. This festival serves as a gathering ground for overlanding enthusiasts, vanlifers, and outdoor adventurers to immerse themselves in a world of off-road exploration and self-reliant travel.

Set against the stunning backdrop of the Mountain West region, the event offers a comprehensive experience, featuring informative workshops, hands-on training sessions, and a showcase of cutting-edge gear and vehicles tailored for overlanding and vanlife.

Whether you’re seeking to enhance your overlanding skills, connect with fellow travelers, or discover the latest in outdoor equipment, the Overland Expo Mountain West promises an enriching and dynamic platform that celebrates the spirit of self-discovery and outdoor adventure.

Women at summer vanlife festivals

🧝‍♀️ Vanlife Festivals: September 2023

When it comes to vanlife festivals in the United States, September emerges as the crowning jewel in the annual calendar. This month stands out not only for its vibrant energy but also because it’s the busiest and most anticipated period for vanlifers and outdoor enthusiasts alike. 

As the busiest month for vanlife festivals, September encapsulates the essence of the vanlife movement—a celebration of freedom, adventure, and shared stories against the backdrop of a changing season.

So, if you’re a vanlife enthusiast or simply someone eager to embrace the outdoors, mark your calendar for September’s vanlife festivals and be part of a dynamic and unforgettable experience.


Dates at a Glance:

Descend on Bend vanlife festivals summer 2023

September 1 – 4: Descend on Bend Vanlife Festival / Oregon Outback


Descend On Bend is an annual van-life gathering that takes place in Bend, Oregon. The event takes place over Labor Day weekend each year and welcomes hundreds of visitors to a unique weekend of outdoor activities, workshops, communal meals and more.

September 2 – 3: Adventure Van Expo Vanlife Festival / Ogden, Utah


Experience a family-friendly weekend open to all ages, celebrating the vibrant van life community and offering the chance to explore an array of van vendors and overland products. Alongside an impressive showcase of van builds, the event promises live music, delectable food, and local brews throughout the entire weekend.

Enthusiasts eager to display their customized creations are encouraged to participate in the DIY Contest, presenting their rigs to hundreds of event attendees and receiving evaluations from van build experts.

For those on the lookout to buy or sell, the event presents a treasure trove of offerings including roof racks, bumpers, solar panels, interior storage solutions, water filters, window coverings, beds, bedding, and 4×4 recovery equipment. Expect a diverse array of items, from practical gear to memorabilia such as coffee cups and t-shirts.

Don’t miss this opportunity to immerse yourself in the thriving van life culture while exploring an enticing assortment of products and enjoying live entertainment in a welcoming atmosphere.

September 9 – 10: New England Overland Rally Vanlife Festival / Thompson, CT


Prepare for the eagerly anticipated 2nd annual rally! Discover vanlife vendors, captivating live music performances, delectable food vendors, enlightening educational segments, distinct show vehicle competition categories, and enhancements to the off-road course.

Vanwild vanlife festivals logo

September 14 – 17: Van Wild Colorado / Montrose, Colorado


Introducing VanWILD: an invigorating three-day immersion that converges the vibrant van community for an exhilarating outdoor escapade entirely centered on harnessing the full potential of your van! Bid farewell to typical parking lot expos and mere vendor showcases – VanWILD transcends into a dynamic realm of camping, exploration, and shared experiences.

Set against the breathtaking backdrop of the Uncompahgre Valley just south of Montrose, Colorado, this year’s event promises an array of activities to suit every preference, from motorsports and off-road adventures to fly fishing and wine tasting. Regardless of your ideal van weekend aspirations, VanWILD guarantees an experience tailored to you.

September 16 – 17: Adventure Van Expo Vanlife Festival / North Lake Tahoe, CA


Enthusiasts eager to showcase their unique custom builds are warmly invited to register for the DIY Contest. In this exciting competition, their meticulously crafted rigs will be showcased before an audience of hundreds of event attendees and evaluated by esteemed van build experts.

For those seeking to make a purchase or sell their vanlife-related items, the event promises a diverse array of offerings. From roof racks, bumpers, and solar panels to interior storage solutions, water filters, window coverings, beds, bedding, and 4×4 recovery equipment – the event caters to a wide spectrum of needs. And not to forget, there’s an array of memorabilia such as coffee cups, t-shirts, and much more awaiting discovery.


September 21 – 24: Vanquinox / Grandjean, Idaho


From September 21st to 24th, 2023, venture to the enchanting Sawtooth Lodge in Grandjean, Idaho, for a captivating convergence of camper vans and overlanders. Embarking on the autumnal equinox, this event unfolds at the gateway to the majestic Sawtooth Mountains.

Vanquinox is an informal gathering so there’s not a formal agenda. You’ll revel in live musical performances, bask in the soothing embrace of natural hot springs, and traverse breathtaking trails, all while partaking in a shared camping experience. 

September 21 – 25: Northwest Nomads / La Pine, Oregon


A jam packed camp-out full of live music, informative workshops, raffles, community pot lucks and a ton MORE! Enjoy a safe and welcoming atmosphere – loved by everyone. 

September 22 – 24: Revel-Mode Van/Rocky Mountain Adventure Rally / Grand Junction, Colorado


Previously known as the Revel-Mode Van Rally, the Rocky Mountain Adventure Rally will be held in Moab, Utah. With four years of event experience, these guys know how to make your weekend one to remember. From the vendors to the educational series , they are there to help you enjoy our event from the ground up.

September 29 – 30: Big Iron Overland Rally / West Mineral, KS


Big Iron is a weekend camp out and concert experience at the Big Brutus historic landmark! There is nothing better than that evening conversation around the fire! Who has the best camp set up? What does that new rig look like? Big Iron is a central location for vanlifers and enthusiasts to come together, listen to great music and sharpen iron around the campfire. 

Adventure vans expo logo

September 30 – October 1: Adventure Van Expo / Bend, OR (Redmond Expo)


Experience the Bend area Adventure Van Expo, where attendees are welcomed to a showcase spanning niche rigs, meticulously customized vans, and production models. The event boasts an impressive display of custom-built Adventure Vans, often crafted on the Mercedes Benz Sprinter platform, alongside notable production models like the Winnebago Revel.

Throughout the weekend, engaging van community activities unfold, catering to families and participants of all ages.

Campervan festivals

5 Essential Tips for Unforgettable Vanlife Festivals


1. Plan Ahead 🗓️

Before setting off to vanlife festivals, meticulous planning is crucial. Ensure that you have a clear itinerary, know the festival’s schedule, and have all the necessary supplies for a comfortable and enjoyable experience.


2. Connect with the Community 👩🏾‍🤝‍👩🏻

One of the most rewarding aspects of vanlife festivals is the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals. Strike up conversations, attend workshops, and participate in group activities to make lasting friendships and memories.


3. Respect Nature and Locals 🌵

While embracing the freedom of the open road, it’s important to practice responsible and sustainable vanlife habits while at vanlife festivals. Leave no trace, dispose of waste properly, and be respectful of the environment and local communities you encounter.


4. Capture the Moments 📸

Vanlife festivals are a treasure trove of unforgettable moments and stunning landscapes. Remember to bring along your camera to capture the essence of the festival, but don’t let this distract you from being present and ‘in the moment’.


5. Allow Room for Spontaneity 🧚‍♂️

While planning and preparation are essential for successful vanlife festivals, don’t forget to leave room for spontaneity and open-mindedness.

Vanlife festivals are opportunities to connect with a diverse community, explore new ideas, and create unforgettable memories. Allow yourself to step out of your comfort zone, engage in impromptu conversations, and say “yes” to unexpected opportunities. Whether it’s joining an impromptu jam session, trying a new adventure activity, or simply striking up a conversation with a fellow vanlifer, embracing the unexpected can lead to some of the most enriching and enjoyable moments during your festival journey.

Remember, the heart of vanlife festivals lies in the spirit of adventure, and being open to new experiences can lead to some of the most cherished memories of your vanlife adventure.

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