Visiting the Festival

Covid-19 safety

The Book Festival will follow Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh Council health and safety recommendations at all times to ensure the safety of our audiences, artists and team. Please continue to check the website for the latest Covid-19 safety measures at Edinburgh International Book Festival.

Edinburgh International Book Festival 12–28 August 2023

Entry to the Book Festival Village is FREE and EVERYONE is welcome. The Festival's home is Edinburgh College of Art, a charming, leafy courtyard with lovely old listed buildings, which house our venues, cafes, bars, bookshop and broadcast studios. The Book Festival Village opens 09:30-23:00 every day from 12-28 August. Pop in for a visit, it's a wonderful space to sit, talk, think, play and be entertained. The site also has free WiFi for visitors. You can see a favourite author, enjoy a cuppa in the café, a beer in the bar, or simply park yourself on the grass (with or without a book) and soak up the atmosphere. You don't need a ticket to an event to enjoy the Book Festival village.

See our Access page for more information on our facilities for visitors with access requirements.


Watching events in our theatres

Please see details about our venues on the venue information page.

Book Festival Bookshop

The Festival Bookshop in our festival village is brought to you by Waterstones and is located in the beautiful old Fire Station building on Lauriston Place. It is open daily during the Book Festival and stocks titles by all our visiting authors plus an array of related contemporary literature and books from Scottish publishers.

Book signings

Most authors in our programme sign copies of their books immediately after their event. These take place in the Signing Tent in the Courtyard at Edinburgh College of Art. No need to book, simply turn up and join the queue.

Cafes and bars

The Book Festival Village offers a range of places to buy food and drink, including a licensed indoor Café, open until late, which is a large and airy space with a lovely vantage point across the main courtyard. There are also outdoor seating areas, some of which are undercover, along with a variety of areas to buy hot and cold drinks and snacks.

Children’s play area and baby change

The children's play area is a welcoming area in our courtyard and provides a dedicated space where little people and their families and carers can play and relax. You can bring a packed lunch if you’d like. There is are toilets and baby change facility nearby.

Buggies and pushchairs

Please park your buggy in the Buggy Park next to the children’s play area. Buggies cannot be taken into the theatres.


Toilets for everyone are located in the paved area at the rear of the Book Festival Bookshop, including a standard Disabled Toilet and a Changing Places Toilet (with a hoist). Access to the toilets is via a ramp from the courtyard.

Picnics and packed lunches

You’re welcome to bring your own food and soft drinks into the Book Festival Village and relax on the grass for as long as you want – you don’t have to have bought a ticket to see an event. There is a drinking water tap for you to fill up your water bottles.


The Edinburgh International Book Festival is hosted at the Edinburgh College of Art as part of a long-term partnership between the Festival and the University of Edinburgh. We would like to thank the University of Edinburgh for their support in making this year’s Book Festival possible.