Can You Find Love At Coachella?

“By the end of the night, we were making out.”

The “we found love in a hopeless place” jokes practically write themselves at Coachella, but the evidence, both anecdotal and official, suggests otherwise. According to a survey conducted by the dating app BLK, 18% of users have experienced a festival fling, of which 37% have blossomed into lasting relationships. (The same poll even found that people are significantly more inclined to swipe right on a profile that includes a festival photo.)

But when we sought out real people’s Coachella love stories, we got a mixed bag of heartache, ’shrooms-induced breakups, and… one happy marriage, at least. Ahead, read five true tales about looking for amour (or not) among the bright lights and sweaty mosh pits of Indio.


The Harry Styles Look-Alike

NYLON; Amy Sussman/Getty Images

Kristen Kearley spotted Harry Styles at Coachella 2022 — then attended an afterparty where she hit it off with his doppelgänger. The student and influencer was living in L.A. at the time, so she expected the connection to be short-lived. But after texting for a month after the festival, Not Harry Styles flew her to Miami. “Then I moved in with him,” she says.

Though Kearley says Coachella was too stressful for her to return, she’d recommend it for vetting new love interests. “If he’s finding a house, tickets, and setting up flights, he’s at least a guy who can coordinate a schedule and put together an itinerary,” she says. Kearley’s instincts were further confirmed when, three months post-Coachella, the couple took a trip to the South of France. “He probably got a bunch of other girls’ numbers that weekend,” Kearley says. “But now I have a boyfriend.”


The Security Guard

NYLON; Shutterstock

For Kat Cooper, what started with tequila shots ended with “just a nice memory.” In 2017, the And Such co-founder attended Coachella for a brand activation, where she worked closely with the lead security guard. “By the end of the night, we were making out,” she says. The next year, while Cooper was staying with him when she was in L.A. for work, he took her “on this dream date in Malibu;” shortly after, he visited her in New York, where they had another cute rendezvous. But because they lived in different cities and were on “very different paths,” Cooper says the flame soon fizzled out — though the pair still follow each other on Instagram.


The Obama-Influenced Breakup

NYLON; Evan El-Amin/Shutterstock

Between doses of ’shrooms and episodes of Planet Earth, Ella’s one-year relationship came to an end at Coachella 2022. The 26-year-old says she and her ex had already had “an absolutely awful” experience walking around the festival for two hours without speaking to each other before getting into a huge fight while trying to leave. At the hotel, they put on the nature documentary, during which she had a revelation. “I will always thank Obama for helping me realize ‘He’s not the one,’” she says, “because I just kept hearing his narration about how many things matter in the world, and I was like, ‘This man does not matter.’”

The next morning, Ella’s ex asked her if she thought they should be together. Her answer: no. He then asked if she wanted to go to Day Two. Again, no. They drove back to L.A. in silence and haven’t spoken since. Ella, now single, did return to Coachella the next year, where she exchanged numbers with someone at an afterparty. They soon bumped into each other again at the festival. “They went to find their friends 20 minutes before Frank Ocean’s set, and then right before the set started, they came back and said, ‘I’d rather just stay here and watch it with you,’” Ella says. “I thought, ‘This is it. I don’t need anyone else for the rest of my life.’ We hooked up and then never talked again.”


The Dominic Fike Test

NYLON; Tim Mosenfelder/Getty Images

Four years after graduating college, Nicholas Lopez found himself in a “will they or won’t they” situation at Coachella 2023 when he ran into a former crush from school with whom he’d always had “unspoken tension.” “There would be little things like holding hands through crowds and getting on my shoulders,” he says. “It was during the Kaytranada set that we ended up kissing.” Their situationship withstood the ultimate test: She wanted to see Dominic Fike and he didn’t; Lopez went with her anyway. But by October, when he bumped into her at the III Points festival in Miami, “the magic from Coachella [had] disappeared,” he says.


The One That Ended In Marriage

Nylon; Shutterstock

A few weeks prior to Coachella 2015, Katie Durko and Adrian Karvinen — whom she’d casually spoken with on a dating app — decided to have their first date at the festival itself. “We met in the VIP area at one of the bars and instantly connected,” she says. “From that moment until the Monday after Coachella, when we were driving back our separate ways, we did not separate.” (Karvinen never even checked into the hotel room he’d booked for the weekend.)

Durko says their Coachella encounter allowed them to meet each other's friends straight out of the gate and discover that they both loved rocking out in the front row to headliner AC/DC — and the magic didn’t wear off afterward. “Our first proper date was very hot, heavy, and passionate,” she says. “We said ‘I love you’ within a month or two, to be honest.” They moved in together half a year later, married in October 2018, and now have two children. For their 10th Coachella anniversary in 2025, the couple are planning “a big reunion tour to the desert.”