Music festivals are totally my jam. I've covered multiple here on the blog & have attended even more that I never wrote about. I went to KAABOO last year as press & was able to make a second appearance for this year's festivities. If you're interested in attending KAABOO 2018 read through this post to see if it's a good fit for you.

* Disclaimer: KAABOO provided me with a complimentary ticket. All opinions are 100% mine aka Carmen's. Learn more about my disclosure here. :]

kaaboo del mar

The Pros

fall out boy

rooney band

Range of Music

No matter your age or music preference, KAABOO included a range of artists such as Fall Out Boy, Aerosmith, The Chainsmokers, Lenny Kravitz, Rooney, Steve Aoki, & many more. I witnessed teens jamming out to Aerosmith & overheard a gentleman in his 60s tell his companion, "Flo Rida is good. I like this song!"

swell coffee

Variety of Food

Sumptuous delicacies. Top local restaurants & chefs. Craft beer. Exclusive wineries. Whether you were at the Palate Stage or checking out the Rock'n Chef Competition, the options were mouthwatering. Yes, I  bought multiple $7 lattes for no reason other than it tasted delicious & I needed caffeine to make it through the next set.

homer simpson art


Music is art itself, but I love the addition of paintings, sculptures, murals, dancers, & performance artists. KAABOO is basically a massive art gallery in that sense. View art. Buy art. Create art. Fred even participated & drew Homer Simpson on the free for all wall.

kettle jalapeno

Free Stuff

Just like last year, KAABOO was chock-full of complimentary samples, mostly food & little munchies. Music festival grub comes at high prices, so it's nice to have some free options to supplement yourself on.

beach sunset


The festival is hosted at the Del Mar Fairgrounds & Racetrack, which is iconic to Del Mar itself. I go to the Del Mar Fair every summer, so it's a joy being able to visit during a different time of the year. Not to mention, Del Mar is an utterly gorgeous place to be. 

The Cons

craft beer


Festivals in general thrive off of exorbitant prices & you have to take that into account. Not only are you purchasing tickets, but you should also factor in travel, parking, food, drinks, & any other necessary prepping. Beers cost upward of $12 for a cup, while I heard that liquor drinks were $20.

festival audience


The lines this year were noticeably worse compared to 2015. Bathroom lines for women were uncomfortably long. Lines for the Humor Me stage were literally hours long. Saturday was especially terrible.

kaaboo del mar

Car & Foot Traffic

Both car & foot traffic were big issues this year. There was a fracas on Saturday in which four people were arrested & police used pepper spray to disperse the crowd. At the end of the evening, some patrons waited over two hours to get out of the parking lot.

kaaboo del mar

Final Thoughts

Truthfully, I preferred my 2015 KAABOO experience. However, given the opportunity, I would absolutely revisit KAABOO in 2017. It's a new festival & it comes with growing pains. I believe KAABOO has the chance to grow & get better, & you can't do that if you didn't make some mistakes.

* Disclaimer: KAABOO provided me with a complimentary ticket. All opinions are 100% mine aka Carmen's. Learn more about my disclosure here. :]