Five reasons to hit the books at Emirates Lit Fest

It’s no fiction to say that books = life. Whether you’re into can’t-put-downers, in-depth biographies or tall tales for bedtime stories, the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2019 is ready to inspire.

Words by Ipshita Sharma

Dubai’s Lit Fest is held between the 1st-9th of March, and is a little different from the other book fairs that happen around the UAE. The festival is a great mix of insightful talks, grand events and book signings that bring you up-close and personal with your favourite authors. There are also more than a few reasons why this year’s festival is extra special.


Blast Off

Take off on a voyage to Mars with the Emirati astronauts Hazza Al Mansouri and Sultan Al Nayadi who are launching a book about the UAE’s mission to space. Along with Salem Al Marri, assistant director-general from the Science and Technology Sector at the Mohammed Bin Rashid Space Centre, they will be on hand to take the audience through the struggles and joys of leading the UAE into the glorious world of space exploration.

AED 50. 4pm-5pm, 1st March. InterContinental, Dubai Festival City. 


Dear diaries

Get in touch with the kid inside with a session featuring the world-famous Jeff Kinney, whose book series Diary of a Wimpy Kid has fans of all ages around the world.

AED 50 (currently sold out, follow the festival for waitlist info). 6pm-7pm, 2nd March. InterContinental, DFC.


Golden opportunity

Go Willy Wonka and treat the Lit Fest as a sweet factory of treats, with an all-access pass that lets you check into every event, masterclass and workshop. If you have AED 20,000 spare, the tickets will also grant entrance to exclusive festival experiences, and comes with a snazzy Montegrappa rose gold-plated pen and free access to all Dubai museums throughout March. Check the Lit Fest website for more details.


Sisters in arms

The International Women’s Day event #BalanceForBetter also promises to be a great talk with some ladies from different worlds coming together. Get ready for insights that will challenge how you see feminism and how the women today are finding their way.

AED 75. 7.30pm-8.30pm, 8th March. InterContinental, DFC.


Team teen

Young Adult fiction sees a host of their superstars hit the stage this year, from Sandhya Menon to Holly Black and Victoria Aveyard. Check out why these writers are more than just mush, monsters and sparkling vampires, (not that there’s anything wrong with that! #TeamEdward)

Come for a dose of culture and stay for the creative vibes, there will be food stalls outside, play areas for the children and lots of formal dining options available with the Crowne Plaza and the InterContinental in the neighbourhood. Dubai Festival City Mall is also just next door and they have their own itinerary of fun activities during the book-based bonanza.

The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature 2019 takes place between the 1st-9th of March. Tickets to talks, workshops and events start at AED 50 and are held at various locations in Dubai Festival City. You can see the full list of events and buy tickets at

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