Every year at the end of April, Organik Festival attracts techno lovers from around the world. They flock to the shores of Huting, Taiwan just over half an hour south down Highway 11 from downtown Hualien. It’s a music festival at one of the most scenic locations imaginable, attracting an international crowd with a reputation for being among the best music festivals in Asia.
The secluded location in Huting provides fans an opportunity to party on a private beach in the mouth of valley with a view of mountains diving straight into the crashing waves; a perfect place to spend a Vanlife road trip. Getting there by public transportation is tricky, so having everything you need to enjoy the weekend is easiest by van. Plus, you can fit more of your friends along for the ride! The muddy winding road approach down the valley from Highway 11 is only one kilometer, but it’s steep and hard to trudge while lugging any gear. Driving down to the bottom to unload and driving back up to park and taking the shuttle down is the best option.
No outside drinks are allowed, but there is drinking water available for free onsite, and you can bring in food to eat. There are plenty of food vendors every year and several bars throughout the festival grounds. The past two years, they have changed from cash to tokens, so having a pouch or bag to keep track of tokens all weekend is a good idea and you can expect to pay higher prices as a festival premium for food and drinks.
Anyone unfamiliar with the festival or the East Coast of Taiwan is truly in for a treat. The three-day festival has grown over the years from two days and one night over the weekend to curating a lineup of international and local DJs playing music from Friday afternoon until late on Sunday night. Stages feature Funktion-One’s Evo 7 loudspeakers and F124 sub soundsystem on the main outdoor stage overlooking the beach, and an indoor stage for a more intimate dancefloor environment.
Both stages of music and every detail of the festival is organized by Taipei-based promotion company, Smoke Machine. They have been putting on Organik since 2012, making this the eighth edition.
Besides the fun of going to a music festival, the location is a sacred place for the Amis aboriginal tribe that lives in the area, and the many of the wood-carving and sculpture decorations are permanent, adding a unique flavor to the aesthetic and feeling. Don’t miss the climb at the south end of the beach which is the best place to catch the sunrise after a long night of dancing. The terraced cliff is steep, but the view is worth every step.
The sandy beach becomes the campground for all festival goers over the weekend, so having a shade tent or shelter of some kind is essential. Carrying all of the gear from the van to the beach was a breeze, and the extra shelter definitely came in handy as the weather went from downpours to a scorching hot sandy town of tents. Those taking a rest from the throbbing techno pulsating from the main stage for hours on end were happy to have plenty of water to drink, coolers of food, and something to sit under besides their tents, which only cooked in the open sun on the beach.
There is no camping allowed on the festival grounds or up atop the hill overlooking the beach, so it’s best to head straight down to the campgrounds when you arrive and set up basecamp. Since tickets were sold out, space filled up quickly, as rising attendance has brought more and more fans each year. Compared to other music festivals in Taiwan, many of which take place in the city, or in various campsites in the mountains, Organik has the most incredible landscape to swim in the Pacific and the number of people is just big enough to have a full dancefloor and just small enough to have no lines other than for the shower in the morning.
Organik is one of the most anticipated festivals rooted in Taiwan’s electronic scene. Over the years, it has become an institution for fans of techno worldwide, while still maintaining the same breathtaking location and local Amis spirit at the paradise beach that is Huting.