'The goosebumps never lie'

Over the past 20 years Radio 1 has established itself as a widely regarded pinnacle of the Ibiza season. From the very first Essential Mix through to three-day island-wide extravaganzas, we've helped thousands of you escape from the everyday.

Do you remember the soundtrack to your San Antonio sunset? Or the mix that made you lose yourself on the dance floor? We take a look back at the music, memories and madness of Radio 1 in Ibiza. Click through for more from each year.


The start of something special

The sun goes down on another glorious day in Ibiza!

The incomparable Ibiza sunset

In July '95 Radio 1 made its maiden voyage. Buzz of the Ibiza magic had made its way to the UK, and bosses were wondering what the fuss was about.

Nicky Holloway offered the Essential Mix live from Manumission at Ku - now known as Privilege. Thousands of dance-hungry ravers packed into the sort of club that just didn't exist in the UK, successfully grabbing the attention of the Radio 1 team as well as the audience at home. Nicky opened with Let's Groove by Morel's Groove.

How did Pete Tong persuade bosses to head to Ibiza?

I convinced them that instead of doing roadshows in Bournemouth, we should be in Ibiza.

Pete Tong


Return to the island


Where it all began

With growing support, Radio 1's three dance shows – the Essential Selection, Love Groove Dance Party and the Essential Mix – went back for more.

'The Dance Weekend' live from Ibiza was born – an unprecedented broadcast for Radio 1. Dance music on the network was still fairly niche, but the DJs worked well to bring the infectious essence of Ibiza back to the UK. Danny Rampling's first show was from an empty Amnesia, which didn't have a day licence to allow him a crowd. Ravers did make it in for a mammoth Essential Mix from him, Pete Tong and Sasha. 1996 also marked the first sunset broadcast from San Antonio, which has continued since.

LISTEN: The Essential Mix Intro from '96


The move to Café Mambo

Danny and Vernon keep the crowd entertained!

Café Mambo, San Antonio

Having broadcast previously from Café Del Mar, it seemed Radio 1's party vibe didn't quite suit the gorgeous Balearic beats the venue is famed for.

And so Radio 1 popped down the road to neighbouring Café Mambo, and a long-standing partnership began. As a relatively new family-run bar, Mambo had already established itself as a pre-party destination - not least for its epic sunset vista. Now with a full broadcast studio, Mambo and Radio 1 continue to deliver world-class DJ sets, while remaining true to the venue's traditional bohemian values.

What music were we loving in 1997?


Love at first sight...

Zoe Fatboy Ibiza 1998

Love blossoming at the Radio 1 villa

Ibiza's magic draw was firmly established with hedonistic sun-seekers. For the first time the daytime Radio 1 DJs also headed to the Balearics.

Having never visited Ibiza before, then breakfast DJ Zoe Ball was keen to experience all that it had to offer. While her co-star Kevin Greening went to bed, Zoe sought someone in the know who was up for a party. One Norman Cook was the man to do it, and took her on a night out that meant she was still up by the time she went to air. After the hangover faded, love blossomed. The couple were married in 1999.

What else was going on in 1998?


'It's my club, I don't like it'

Ibiza 1999

Fashions and faces from Ibiza '99

We returned once more to party, henna tattoos and cowboy hats in tow. Entry to Space was a fiver. But 1999 didn't pass without a minor hitch.

Annie Nightingale was unceremoniously turfed from the Zenith Room DJ booth at Pacha by staff who didn't take to the idea of her broadcasting there. The show made it to air, but links came from the kitchen downstairs. The good vibes were in full flow elsewhere. Zoe Ball's breakfast show came from Café Mambo, Dave Pearce's Dance Anthems from Bar M and Gilles Peterson's Worldwide from Space. The last track of his set? Masters At Work's To Be In Love. A drink there was around 1000 pesetas, or £4.

More gossip from '99

Ibiza changed my life. It has a magnetic energy that attracts people from all over the world. I first came in 1980 and it had me hooked.

Danny Rampling


Here comes Coxy

Sara Cox 2001

Sara Cox keeps the clubbers awake a bit longer

Pacha's brand new beach bar was the setting for new breakfast show presenter Sara Cox's first – and rather surreal – broadcast from the island.

Having nearly missed the show due to flight delays, she was joined by hundreds of people who had come straight from their night at Cream... There was also a sudden change of venue for Dave Pearce's Dance Anthems, which ended up being re-rigged at Pikes Hotel at the last minute and borrowed the nearest cashpoint's ISDN line to get the show to air. Carl Cox brought a mammoth set from Space, Jay Kay and Noel Gallagher made an appearance, and fans were the accessory of choice.

WATCH: What does Sara Cox remember from 2000?

The crowd here are just fantastic, they're so supportive. Like a sea of happy faces. That's completely what it's been this morning - amazing.

Sara Cox, after her Ibiza Breakfast Show


'More shows than ever before'

Pete Mambo 2001

Ibiza veteran Pete Tong

There was double trouble in 2001. An official launch party in June saw a return to Café Del Mar, before the DJs descended in full force in August.

Seb Fontaine's set in June was his first Ibiza broadcast for Radio 1. When the DJs returned two months later, Manumission put on an extra night for the station, the 'Essential Mix Extravaganza'. Fatboy Slim, Seb Fontaine, Pete Tong and Darren Emerson provided the tunes. Pete kicked off with I'm So Crazy by Par-T-One. Elsewhere Sophie-Ellis Bextor, The Avalanches, Kosheen and Zero 7 all made appearances, and we ventured into 'webcasting' to bring the party to those back at home.

LISTEN: What was the soundtrack to the summer of '01?


The Windmill years

The Windmill

Punta Es Moli

We were busy bringing you Ibiza message boards and screen savers, but the weekend was still all about that heady mix of music, ravers, DJs and sun.

Pete Tong launched the weekend from a new site – Punta es Moli (The Windmill). A big amphitheatre overlooking San Antonio Bay with room for a crowd of thousands, it was the perfect spot for Radio 1 to host its own sunset party. Mr Tong joined forces with Seb Fontaine and the mighty Sasha for the Essential Mix at Manumission, one of the most outrageous events on the planet. Jay Kay turned up in fancy dress and P Diddy played saxophone in the DJ box. Naturally. Club entrance in '02 was €20-50.

Who else joined us in 2002?

For me, the years at Punta Es Moli were the best times. It was in the middle of the beach, the vista was incredible. It was accessible to everybody.

Judge Jules in 2005


'Your dreams have now been fulfilled'

P Diddy

P Diddy makes an entrance

Island visitors this year included Chris Moyles, as well as dance heavyweights like Eddie Halliwell. But it was P Diddy that stole the show in 2003.

Pete Tong's Essential Selection was in full swing at The Windmill, a beachside venue that allowed P Diddy to casually sail up to shore and step out of his boat in a white robe, champagne in hand, and jump on the stage. He performed Let's Get Ill as the crowd's – and the DJs' – minds were slightly blown.

What was Judge Jules playing in 2003?


Welcome, Annie Mac

Annie Mac 2004

A sunshine broadcast for Annie Mac

A week into their new jobs, JK & Joel joined the team on the White Isle – and were challenged to stay awake for 24 hours. Nothing unusual for Ibiza...

2004 saw sets from Sasha, Tim Deluxe, Paul Oakenfold, Eddie Halliwell, Eric Prydz and Above & Beyond. A fresh-faced Annie Mac also broadcast her second ever Radio 1 show from the island. No pressure. Big tunes this year included DT8's Sun is Shining, Max Sedgley's Happy, and who could forget Shapeshifters' Lola's Theme, which was entirely inescapable for the whole summer.

Who was partying on the White Isle in '04?


A decade of dance in Ibiza

Ibiza 10 Years

The 10 year magazine

Radio 1 celebrated its 10th Anniversary in Ibiza in a way only Radio 1 could: with a special 12-hour party at Space, broadcast back to the UK.

Huge names including Faithless, David Guetta, Freemasons, Axwell, Ernesto vs Bastian, Erick Morillo, Timo Maas, Paul Van Dyk and Deep Dish raised roofs across the island. The standout set came from Laurent Garnier, who jumped back on the decks at Space Terrace... and played for six hours. Elsewhere Jamie Cullum serenaded us with a somewhat calmer sunset performance. Reaction came via online message boards, and there was even a special 10th anniversary magazine for ravers to get their hands on.

The 10 year special


Radio 1 goes rock

Zane Ibiza Rocks 2006

Zane Lowe greets the crowds

With Ibiza Rocks proving an exciting addition to the island, Radio 1 jumped on board with the help of Zane Lowe.

He entertained a new kind of Ibiza crowd with help of the The Fratellis, The Klaxons, Mark Ronson and Kasabian. The Ibiza weekend was part of a mammoth six-week summer series for Radio 1 in 2006, which also travelled to Mallorca, Wales, Global Gathering, Newquay and Reading Festival. For the hardcore clubbers, the cream of the dance crop still made their way to the White Isle. Paul Oakenfold and Steve Angello added some oomph to the Essential Mix from Amnesia.

Get all the action from 2006

We wanted to fuse dance culture and live culture, rock kids that wanted to dance, dance kids that wanted to rock.

Ibiza Rocks founder Andy McKay on Newsbeat


The joke's on you

2007 Pete Tong

A dubious Pete Tong finds himself attached

Six Weeks of Summer returned, and things got silly as Annie, Pete and Vernon Kay made their way to Ibiza to battle each other with challenges.

Annie got water bombed, Pete got attached to a smurf for 24 hours, Zane Lowe got involved... all in the name of radio. Coleen Rooney (then McCoughlin) joined us at Mambo, as did Judge Jules' young son. A five-hour Essential Mix from Cream @ Privilege was provided by Eddie Halliwell, Sasha, and three producers Steve Angello, Axwell and Sebastian Ingrosso... aka Swedish House Mafia. They wouldn't release a single under that name until 2010.

WATCH: Annie recalls the chaos of 2007


New year, new venue

Ibiza Rocks 2008

Ibiza really Rocks

Thousands of you descended to party with Pete, Vernon and Annie as they broadcast from the newly opened Ibiza Rocks Hotel.

Guests including David Guetta and Sam Sparro entertained a rather raucous crowd. The next day Trevor Nelson took to the stage to offer ravers a different vibe with Dizzee Rascal and Roots Manuva. The expansive line-up continued that night at Amnesia, where Zane Lowe offered his first Essential Mix, overrunning to give Justice time to get through the crowds to the stage. This made 2008 Radio 1's broadest Ibiza offering to date.

What was Pete Tong playing in 2008?


Dance chart explosion

Highlights from Cream's night at Privilege, featuring sets from 2manydjs and others.

Lights, camera, action

Dance exploded into the UK charts, so Radio 1 brought more names than ever to Ibiza in 2009, closing the weekend with a gargantuan night at Privilege.

Homage was paid to dance heavyweights with appearances from 2manydjs, Eric Prydz and Laidback Luke. There was also the small matter of Luciano providing the Essential Mix, alongside Deadmau5, at Eden. But Florence + The Machine's vocals also stunned us all at Ibiza Rocks, while Dizzee Rascal and Armand Van Helden were riding high in the charts with Bonkers for most of the summer.

WATCH: A rather ridiculous stage dive!


All grown up

Ibiza 2010

Zane Lowe battles Mark Ronson on the decks

The credibility of Radio 1's weekend in Ibiza was firmly established, and the big names just kept on coming, lured by the unrivalled crowds.

Clubs on the White Isle had also now opened their doors beyond house music in a big way. 2010 saw Mark Ronson, Tinchy Stryder, Chase and Status, Riva Starr, Katy B, Swedish House Mafia, Aeroplane, Afrojack, Grandmaster Flash, Sven Vath, Above & Beyond and Underworld entertain the masses for the Radio 1 weekend. Phew.

LISTEN: Swedish House Mafia at Radio 1 in Ibiza 2010

Tinchy smashed it, Chase and Status tore the roof off and new girl Katy B made everyone fall in love with her with her tune 'On A Mission'.

Annie Mac, after her Ibiza Rocks show


Ushuaia brings the party

Danny Howard 2011

Danny Howard's Radio 1 debut

Bossa's glittering new poolside venue Ushuaia turned the Friday night show into a true spectacle, with a massive stage and a line-up to match.

Every genre of music was represented - dubstep from Skream, Balearic beats from DJ Alfredo, rap from Pro Green, plus SBTRKT, 2 Bears, Carl Cox, Erick Morillo and Calvin Harris, and surprise appearances from David Guetta and Tiesto. Things got more serious in Space as Zane Lowe delivered Magnetic Man, Deadmau5, Knife Party and Skream & Benga. Not a night for the faint-hearted. And let's not forget the debut appearance from a then unknown competition winner called Danny Howard...

WATCH: Superstar DJ winner Danny Howard's story

It’s the magical rave island. People have tried to replicate it, but there’s something about it - a magnetic charge that makes people go crazy.

Calvin Harris


Sunsets and lasers

Live at Ushuaia Beach Hotel

A stunning show from Groove Armada

From unknown competition winner in 2011, Danny Howard returned to the island a year later – this time as a fully fledged Radio 1 DJ.

Vernon also went back for more, as did Pete Tong, Zane Lowe, Rob Da Bank and Annie Mac, joined by Greg James and Charlie Sloth. But it's never really about the Radio 1 DJs... the line-up was truly world-class. Groove Armada, Eats Everything, Disclosure, Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso, Iggy Azalea, DJ Fresh, Chase & Status, Benny Benassi and Sub Focus filled the bill. This year the network descended on superclub Privilege, as well as Mambo and Ushuaia. It seems the Ibiza beast just can't be tamed.

WATCH: Groove Armada live from Ushuaia


Eat, Sleep, Rave, Repeat

Fireworks at Ushuaia

Bigger, brighter, louder

Just four words = the 2013 Ibiza mantra thanks to Fatboy Slim's unavoidable smash. Everyone was more than happy to follow his lead – Radio 1 included.

And rave they did... with the help of NERVO, Eric Prydz, Fred V & Grafix, Hardwell and Chris Malinchak, following the magic venue formula of Ushuaia, Mambo, and an epic Essential Mix from Cream @ Privilege. There were dancers, flames, lasers and light shows - and more satisfied clubbers than ever. Radio 1 in Ibiza had come a long way from broadcasting to an empty Amnesia back in 1996...

WATCH: B. Traits talks about covering for Annie Mac


Last but not least...

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Radio 1 in Ibiza 2014 Official Aftermovie

What could possibly be left to do in 2014? Well, a week-long pop-up station focused solely on dance music ahead of the Ibiza weekend, that's what.

The online stream delivered beats 24 hours a day with takeovers from Defected Records, Resident Advisor, Food Music, Hospital Records, Eton Messy, House Of Coxhead and more, crossing live to Ibiza for the weekend. THEN there was the island event itself. David Guetta, Duke Dumont, Kiesza, Afrojack, Sasha, Above & Beyond, Hot Since 82, Steve Angello, MK and more made sure there was no messing around. This highlights video should jog any hazy memories. Now, are you ready for Ibiza 2015?

WATCH: MK from Radio 1 in Ibiza 2014

Globally, dance music is bigger than ever. The fact that Radio 1 has been at the forefront hosting events from Ibiza for 20 years is a huge landmark.

Pete Tong