Galle Literary Festival

6 – 9 February 2025
Galle Fort, Sri Lanka

“The World's
No. 1 Literary

Harpers Bazaar


Tales await within the walls of Galle Fort. Host to diverse voices from far and wide, Galle Literary Festival welcomes the curious to Sri Lanka’s vibrant south coast. From poetry to prose, our dynamic programme invites you to discover new narratives behind the historic ramparts.

Gourmet Galle

Experience poetry on a plate with Gourmet Galle. From scenic dinners to celebrity masterclasses, epicureans can sample a varied menu of culinary events between January and March. With celebrated chefs sharing dishes that embrace the tastes of Sri Lanka, foodies will find plenty to savour.

Art Trail

Art lovers assemble: Galle Fort becomes a walkable gallery as heritage properties play host to a curated exhibition of contemporary works. Follow our complimentary map to find pieces displayed in storied spaces throughout the town. Expect a genre-spanning collection from local and international artists.

Children's Festival

There’s fun in store for younger bookworms. With a full calendar of creative workshops and storytelling sessions, our Children’s Festival seeks to ignite the imagination of eager readers. Magical encounters lie ahead, as junior book lovers meet our visiting authors for listening and learning alike.

"This, in my view, is one of the most engaging literary festivals in the world"

Sir Alexander McCall Smith

Join our voyage as a volunteer.

Calling all collaborators: we need a team of helping hands to make our festival a success. From ticketing to logistics, volunteer with us to do your bit behind the scenes.

Shine a light on your brand.

 Help us to carry the torch for creativity and culture. Support Galle Literary Festival as a sponsor and share your story with a global audience of avid readers.

Quotes On Galle Literary Festival

It was a joy from start to finish. And the cricket made it extra, extra special!

Peter Frankopan (2024)

One of the most stimulating, fun and beautiful festivals I have ever attended.

Moni Mohsin (2024)

Magical, in every way, and so beautifully organised. There really is nothing else like it on earth.

Tom Parker Bowles (2024)

“This has always been one of my favourite festivals. Galle is such a beautiful city and seems made for a literary gathering. It’s a great place to meet people, to walk along the walls and chat, to catch up with old friends. The audiences are brilliant and I might even get some winter sun.

Anthony Horowitz (2024)

This, in my view, is one of the most engaging literary festivals in the world. The setting is superb and the atmosphere is perfect. I particularly like the scale of the events, which allow for personal contact between writers and readers.

Alexander McCall Smith (2024)

Best festival I’ve ever been to, not just for literature but the arts as a whole

Vidura BR (2024)

It was lovely to be a part of GLF 2024 and thank you for providing a space for emerging artists like me! I learned so much and enjoyed the company of veteran writers worldwide! Not forgetting the good parties! Cricket was ‘cherry on top’! GLF is one of the best literary tourism events in the world!

Nayomi Apsara (2024)

The Galle Literary Festival is the most exciting blend of books and art and conversations, so many wonderful people all joined through reading and discussion and opening to ideas. All in the most beautiful tropical seaside location. An absolute joy to have been there.

Amanthi Harris (2024)

Galle deserves this lovely gathering of imminent people and the visitors that throng to hear them. Nowhere else does one bump into your favourite author or your favourite historian comes to listen to your talk as at Galle. There are the stars, but in Galle they succumb to its charms and become so accessible!!

Channa Daswatte (2024)

Congratulations on an amazing feat – I know it wasn’t not easy but you gave it all you’ve got and it all turned out brilliantly. The GLF team excelled. Thank you for putting Sri Lanka’s creative arts on the map again. You  truly brought back the past glory that GLF had – and the well-deserved  statement by Harper’s Bazaar that it is the No 1 Literary Festival. The star-studded line up was profound, deep, entertaining and sources to learn from.

Savithri Rodrigo (2024)

It has always been a brilliant festival and this year it has been better than ever. The sessions, the venues, the conversations and evening get-togethers made it very special. I am sure it will go from strength to strength. Congratulations on making it such a magical event and creating such a precious haven in difficult times.

Romesh Gunesekera (2024)

What an amazing festival in the most beautiful of locations. From workshops and discussions by brilliant speakers to lunch in the shade of the lighthouse and outdoor signings under the trees, dinner by the crashing waves and sailing in the ocean to chamber music in an old Dutch church – there was so much to see and do. All capped off in perfect Sri Lankan style by an Authors XI vs Galle XI cricket match at the Galle International Stadium. Undoubtedly the most fun I’ve ever had at a festival!

Nizrana Farook (2024)

It was no doubt the best literature / art / culture fest I’ve experienced. From panels by exciting authors to thought-provoking art exhibits, GLF had it all!

Sachi Ediriweera (2024)

The Galle Literary Festival is always the best four days of the year for me. An intoxicating cocktail of people, conversations, talks, beautiful villas, parties, the café scene, tours and heritage architecture

Gehan de Silva Wijeyeratne (2024)

A 21st century literary festival in a 500 year old ancient fort, featuring some of the most diverse and interesting global voices – who could ask for more?

Afdhel Aziz (2024)

Attending the Galle Literary Festival as a student in 2017 and returning as a speaker in 2024 marks a significant highlight in my writing career. This vibrant and equally engaging literary festival will always hold a special place in my heart.

Isurinie Mallawaarachchi (2024)

Galle, one of my favourite places in Sri Lanka, comes alive with the Galle Literary Festival, which has always been a favourite of mine. Looking forward to the next one.

Artika Bakshi (2024)

The beautiful fortified town of Galle makes a perfect setting for one of the most vibrant and stimulating literary festivals in the world. I loved every minute of it.

Anthony Horowitz (2024)

It was, quite simply, a marvellous occasion – right up at the top of the list of international literary festivals. The atmosphere was warm and friendly and the unique combination of talks and social events made the festival utterly memorable.

Alexander McCall Smith (2024)

I lost my heart to this glittering gem of a festival.

Jasbinder Bilan (2024)

On the cricket – I felt honoured to share that historic ground with such a group of literary luminaries. Thanks for thinking of me for that. We had a blast and I must say, I am immensely proud of my contribution by way of incessantly annoying the batsmen from my vantage point at short mid-wicket, rather than anything I did with bat or ball.

Chevaan Daniel (2024)

Food for the brain and the soul: Galle Literary Festival punches well above its weight! There’s something for everyone at GLF! Avid readers, non-readers, adults and children, from the North, South, East and West. It was art, culture, music, tropical cocktails, heritage architecture, gourmet cuisine and a palm-fringed coastline – all accompanied by great conversation, new connections and memories made for a lifetime.

Chalana Perera (2024)

Probably the best literary festival in the world.

Sebastian Faulks (2024)

Gorgeous sunsets, thrilling conversations with exceptional writers, delicious food, and some of the most beautiful venues for events and parties that I’ve ever seen. So. Much. Fun.

Ella Frears (2024)

If you want to experience an absolutely unique and buzzing environment, Galle Literary Festival checked all the boxes. Thank you to the team of 2024 for an extremely well organised weekend, looking forward to the next one!

Jacqueline Samarasinghe (2024)

It was wonderful to have the Galle Literary Festival back at a time in which free speech in Sri Lanka continues to face substantial threats. Beyond the celebration of books, the stories told, and discussions had, were honest, powerful, and diverse.

Andrew Fidel Fernando (2024)

Sri Lankans can be crazy about books. Wonderful to see this in action.

Sujit Sivasundaram (2024)

I am excited that GLF has been revived. The country has a rich literary and cultural landscape that needs more activation, more engagement. As an emerging art professional I was glad to be part of it to speak about the education work the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Sri Lanka does.

Pramodha Weerasekera (2024)

Anyone who is seeking a joyous celebration of writing, reading and ideas will find an abundance of these good things at Galle Literary Festival. Situated in the charming town of Galle Fort, the festival is thoughtfully curated to reflect cultural conversations and remind us of the power of the imagination. What an honour to have been a part of this experience!

Balli Kaur Jaswal (2024)

Warm, engaging, and organized with love – this is the bar for what a literary festival can be.

Yudhanjaya Wijeratne (2024)

The taste of the Galle literary festival lingers like a fine spice, invoking real and imagined memory.

Dr Radha Kumar (2024)

GLF is a jewel of a festival, small enough to charm and big enough to excite the mind

Jackie Kay

Galle Literary Festival is the most friendly and attractive literary festival imaginable

Colin Thubron

The festival is quite simply magic; more fun, more human, more delightful by far than any lit fest I’ve ever attended.

Charles Allen

Be warned, the GLF is a heady cocktail: history; culture; gossip; and some great food

Nicholas Lander, FT

GLF encourages readers, it brings together writers from different latitudes and longitudes, different countries and different sensibilities, and it opens our eyes, culturally and politically. And to everything. People talk about literary festivals and say, oh, it’s a lot of people going to parties – I’ve been to a few parties, and why not? But what it does is that it brings people together, and therefore, out of it, something good must come

Edna O Brien

They treat you like royalty

Ian Rankin

The most companionable of all festivals

Charles Michael Morpurgo

A magical festival in an extraordinary setting. Anyone who cares about Sri Lanka will want to support this visionary undertaking

Michelle de Kretser

This is a jewel of a festival. If you wish to rise above your station, be taken seriously and treated like a satrap, this is your festival

Thomas Kenearlly


Vikram Seth

The perfect reconciliation of hedonism and bookish high-mindedness

William Dalrymple

To me the sun house in galle was perfection

Rick Stein

By being associated with the Galle Literary Festival we got a lot of worldwide publicity.

Peter Hill, CEO of Sri Lankan airways

Remember to book in advance for the Galle Literary Festival, it is the best in the world… attended by some of the liveliest audiences that I’ve ever been privileged to address

Justine Picardie, editor of haters and queen

The galle festival is truly wonderful, one of the most elegant and charming I’ve yet visited. Its beautifully organized, in a delightful place and its full of character. its audiences are large and responsive. so it is no wonder it attracts the best writers

Simon Sebag Montefiore

A stimulating literary experience in a splendid setting, the Galle Literary Festival is a feast for the senses as well as the mind!

Shashi Tharoor

A memorable trip to a beautiful country and the chance to meet interesting and diverse readers

Philippa Gregory

The location is splendid and vivid, offering a sharp sense of the complexity of the history of Sri Lanka. The audiences are great, the hospitality is warm and the organization is superb

Colm Toibin

I greatly enjoyed the festival, the charming setting and the engaging conversations with the audience. The selection of writers was excellent.

Anjan Sundaram

A literary festival in a medieval fort. Palm trees and sunsets over the Indian ocean; poets and jazz singers; book lovers from Sri Lanka and around the world. What not to like! Galle was the most magical literary festival I have ever been to. I didn’t want to leave.

Christina Lamb

The Galle festival has been a real highlight for me. I had a brilliant time and loved every minute of it

Sophie Hannah

What a wonderful festival…. plus, the writers are treated like royalty.

Cathy Marie Buchanan

I’d return in a heartbeat.

Alison Wearing

Every street buzzes. It’s the kind of festival that invests the acts of writing and reading with meaning all over again.

Catherine Bush

Galle Fort is the perfect place for this meeting of minds and I can’t wait to come back

Geraldine Coates

GLF is a perfect showcase for this beautiful country. My only complaint is it’s too short!

John Gimlette

The GLF is my favourite festival in the world. It’s both profoundly international and intimately Sri Lankan.

Nayomi Munaweera

What probably impressed most was the meeting the country’s upcoming generation, who recently have finished their studies, curious and with many interests.

Michael Fehr

Idyllic!  One of the loveliest literary festivals in the world

Peter Frankopan

I could settle down and live here

Madhur Jaffrey

Where’s my luggage

Gore Vidal

The most companionable of all literary festivals

Michael Morpurgo

They treat you like royalty

Ian Rankin

This is a paradise for book lovers

Alexander Mccall Smith

This is a jewel of a festival

Thomas Keneally

I have been to many literary festivals, but this was quite extraordinary: the combination of the beautiful setting, the choice of authors and scheduling of events, the brilliant organization and the wonderful parties was really wonderful.

Alexandra Pringle, Bloomsbury

I’ve been lucky enough to be invited to literary festivals on three continents and have so far found the Galle Literary Festival the most enjoyable – partly because of the beguiling location, partly because of its intimate and relaxed nature. We ended up falling in love with Sri Lanka.

Jancis Robinson

Galle feels like the most cultured home in the world

Stephen Jones

Title Sponsor

Silver Sponsor

Festival Partner