Stan Grant speaking at last year's Byron Writers Festival. Photo by Evan Malcolm.
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Byron Writers Festival

The annual Byron Writers Festival is the largest regional writers event that attracts more than 65,000 individual attendances and reaches more than 4,000 local school students. Considered a key attraction on Australia’s literary calendar, it has lured top local, national and international luminaries such as Jeanette Winterson, Tom Keneally and Charlotte Wood, and former politicians including Malcolm Fraser and Julia Gillard.

Over the years, hundreds of respected writers have participated through lectures, lunches, panels, conversations, launches and readings. The Festival also provides a platform for local writers to engage with audiences, meet with publishers and agents, and launch works.


2017 Byron Writers Festival

Three days of storytelling, debate, and big ideas in one of the world’s most beautiful coastal settings. At this year’s Byron Writers Festival (4-6 August) more than 100 writers and thinkers will converge on Byron Bay to celebrate all things literary.

Now in its 21st year, the Festival has come a long way since 1997, when a small group of locals led by Chris Hanley wondered whether authors might accept an invitation to spend a winter weekend in Byron. They did, and an audience of two hundred locals enjoyed a gathering of 50 Australian writers. Since then, the event has grown from a single venue event to fill five huge marquees and locations around town.

“Byron Writers Festival has developed into one of Australia’s most significant literary events but has always retained a relaxed and friendly atmosphere,” says Festival Director Edwina Johnson. “This year’s program is full of compelling, diverse voices guaranteed to deliver many entertaining conversations and discoveries.”



Local school children enjoying the Festival’s Kids Big Day Out. Photo by Kalem Horn.



Elements of Byron, which offers a range of beachside accommodation options, is just a short stroll to the Byron Writers Festival


Festival program

The full program will be available online from mid-June, which will include all Marquee sessions, feature events and workshops. For program updates including workshop and special event announcements, we recommend you subscribe to the Festival’s e-newsletter.



Blue skies and lush grass frame the Byron Writers Festival Marquee. Photo by Mike Smee.


Mark your calendar

Festival weekend: Friday 4 to Sunday 6 August
Earlybird tickets on sale: Wednesday 24 May – Wednesday 14 June (unless sold-out prior)
Full Program announcement: Wednesday 14 June
Regular ticket sales: Wednesday 14 June
Workshops: Monday 31 July to Thursday 3 August


Flying to Byron Writers Festival?

The best way to fly is via Ballina Byron Gateway Airport, which is the closest airport to Byron Bay. The airport offers up to 58 direct flights per week on Virgin Australia, Jetstar, FlyPelican and Rex and is a proud official sponsor of Byron Writers Festival 2017. For more info and flight schedules, click here.

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Veda Dante

Veda Dante is an accomplished journalist, consultant and content creator who has nearly 30 years’ experience writing about everything from tourism, hospitality and health to architecture, pools and luxury goods. When she’s not producing copy for clients, this self-confessed word nerd is usually writing and photographing the Byron Bay region for her blog www.livebyron.com.au

The opinions expressed in this article are the opinions of the author(s) and not necessarily those of Homeloans Ltd.