Book tickets

Stanfords Travel Writers Festival

The Stanfords Travel Writers Festival returns to Destinations: The Holiday & Travel Show with compelling, inspirational and entertaining talks from explorers, adventurers, historians, novelists, TV personalities and many more of the very best travel authors. Join them to be transported to far-flung corners of the world.

Celebrity speakers at the 2018 event include Julia Bradbury, Rick Stein, Michael Portillo, Charley Boorman, Dallas Campbell, Timothy West as well as the producers of the incredible Blue Planet II and many more.

Authors will share accounts of their incredible adventures and expeditions, as well as offer expert tips for all those heading to these destinations. Beside the stage, you can browse through the 'Signings at Stanfords' shop where you will be able to purchase copies of the authors'  books and have them personally signed and dedicated.

*Update: Following appearances in 2016 and 2017, Levison Wood was looking forward to speaking again at the Stanfords Travel Writers Festival in 2018. However, as with all expeditions, the best laid plans are subject to change and unfortunately he will not be back in the country in time to appear at the Festival. We very much hope to welcome him back in 2019.

Entrance to the Travel Writers Festival is included in your ticket to Destinations.

For more news about Stanfords go to Twitter @StanfordsTravel, or Facebook /StanfordsTravelShop, or visit the website - www.stanfords.co.uk.

Visit their retail stores at:

12-14 Long Acre, London WC2E 9LP (T 020 7836 1321) 

29 Corn Street, Bristol, BS1 1HT (0117 929 9966).

Stanfords Travel Writers Festival timetable 2018

- 11:00am: Mission Planning with Adventure Athletes

Tobias Mews, Adventure Sports Journalist, Filmmaker & Athlete, Ash Dykes, Adventurer & Extreme Athlete

Ash Dykes and Tobias Mews will be talking about their epic adventures and giving practical guidance and expert tips on how to make and complete your own adventure. Whether it’s discovering a new place and a new way to get there, or reaching your nearest summit whilst racing your friend, they will advise on the method and ingredients you need to get you out of your comfort zone and into an exhilarating adventure, big or small.

After the talk, Ash and Tobias will be signing copies of their books, including Mission Possible and GO! at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


- 12:00pm: In Conversation with Julia Bradbury

Julia Bradbury, TV Presenter, Broadcaster & Co-Founder of The Outdoor Guide

Presenter,  author and co-founder of The Outdoor Guide Website Julia Bradbury talks about her life, work, writing and walking.  She will be giving us a sneaky peak at her two new television series due in 2018, and telling us how important access to the great outdoors is to life, whether you are a keen hill walker or a Sunday stroller, however fit or unfit, with equal opportunities for all.

After her event, Julia will be signing copies of her latest book Unforgettable Walks on the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.


Speaker: Interviewed byJulia Wheeler

- 1:00pm: Record Breaking Cycle Around the World

Mark Beaumont, Athlete, Broadcaster & Ambassador

On the 18th September 2017 Mark Beaumont completed his most incredible endurance test to date, circumnavigating the globe in 78 days, 14 hours and 40 minutes, travelling 18,032 miles through 16 countries and breaking 2 official Guinness World Records. No stranger to epic cycle rides, he has written books about his previous solo expeditions and will be sharing his experiences with us.

After the talk, Mark will be signing copies of his books including Africa SoloThe Man Who Cycled The World and The Man Who Cycled The Americas at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard and Tobias Mews

- 2:00pm: A Journey Across Arunachal Pradesh - India's Forgotten Frontier

Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent, TV Producer & Travel Writer

Antonia Bolingbroke-Kent is an established travel writer and public speaker with a particular love of embarking on difficult journeys through remote regions often by motorcycle. Her latest book Land of the Dawn-Lit Mountains documents her travels through the far north-eastern corner of India, Arunachal Pradesh. Closed to foreigners between 1950 and 1998, and even today the need for permits and restrictions makes this a little-visited region.

After the event, Antonia will be signing copies of Land of the Dawn-Lit Mountains at the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand. 


Speaker: Interviewed by Julia Wheeler

- 3:00pm: In Conversation with Motorcycle Adventurer Charley Boorman

Charley Boorman, Motorcycle Adventurer

In 2016 Charley Boorman suffered a major road traffic accident in Portugal. Having spent the better part of his life on some form of motorbike, his world came crashing down after he was knocked off a Triumph Tiger Explorer. It was unclear if he would ever walk properly again, let alone ride a motorbike. His latest book Long Way Back recounts Charley’s passion for motorcycles, his many adventures and his journey back to recovery.

After his event, Charley will be signing copies of his new bookLong Way Back on the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.

 


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 4:00pm: 200 Amazing Places and How to Do Them

The editors of the award winning The Sunday Times Travel Magazine reveal their favourite destinations to Hilary Bradt, including some well-known and others under-the-radar. Katie Bowman (Features Editor), Liz Edwards (Associate Editor) and Lucy Thackray (Commissioning Editor) share some of their secrets for how to do those places cheaper, quieter and smarter than the average holiday-maker. 

After the talk. The Sunday Times Travel Magazine Editors will be signing copies of 200 Amazing Places at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


Speaker: Katie Bowman, Liz Edwards & Lucy Thackray

- 11:00am: Travelling Solo

Hilary Bradt, Publisher, Lloyd Figgins, Travel Safety Expert & Adventurer, Phoebe Smith, Author & Adventurer

As more and more people choose to venture far and wide on their own, our panel of experts look at how this is in fact a more advantageous way to travel (despite any reservations you might have). They will also look at the logistical details of how you can stay safe and prepare. You may never want to travel with company again. 

After the talk, Hilary Bradt, Lloyd Figgins and Phoebe Smith will be signing copies of their books, including Roam Alone: Inspiring Tales by Reluctant Solo Travellers, The Travel Survival Guide and Britain’s Best Small Hills at the Signing at Stanfords stand.


- 12:00pm: Cycling the Iron Curtail Trail

Tim Moore, Author & Adventure Cyclist

Tim Moore’s writing has appeared in the Daily Telegraph, the Observer, The Sunday Times and Esquire. He is the author of Gironimo!, French Revolutions, Do Not Pass Go, Spanish Steps, Nul Points, I Believe In Yesterday and You Are Awful (But I Like You).  The Cyclist Who Went  Out in the Cold: Adventures Along the Iron Curtain sees Tim Moore tackle the 9,000km route of the old Iron Curtain on a tiny-wheeled, two-geared East German shopping bike.

 After the event, Tim will be signing copies of his books at the at the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 1:00pm: Michael Portillo’s Great Railway Journeys

Michael Portillo, Broadcaster

Michael Portillo was a Conservative Member of Parliament for almost twenty years and a government minister for eleven of those, including minister of state for transport and Secretary of State for Defence. 

Since leaving politics, he has devoted himself to writing and broadcasting. He is a regular on both BBC1’s sardonic political This Week programme and Radio 4’s The Moral Maze. He has made radio and television documentaries on a wide range of subjects, including nine series of "Great British Railway Journeys”, five series on the continent of Europe, three in the United States, and one in India, for BBC2.


- 2:00pm: How to Survive in the Wilderness

Megan Hine, Adventurer, Wilderness Expedition Leader & Survival Expert

Megan Hine acts as a consultant for private individuals and on television shows around the world including Bear Grylls: Mission Survive and Running Wild. Megan has explored remote jungles, arid deserts and high and cold mountains; taking private clients, celebrities and television crews to extreme and beautiful places they didn't even know existed. In her book, Mind of a Survivor she looks at how her mental and physical limits are tested in extreme environments.

After the event, Megan will be signing copies of her book Mind of a Survivor at the at the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.

 


Speaker: Interviewed by Julia Wheeler

- 3:00pm: Islander

Patrick Barkham, Author & Natural History Writer

The British Isles are an archipelago made up of two large islands and 6,289 smaller ones. In Islander Patrick Barkham explores some of the most beautiful landscapes in the British Isles as he travels to ever-smaller islands in search of their special magic. Meeting all kinds of islanders, from nuns to puffins, from local legends to rare subspecies of vole, he seeks to discover what it is like to live on a small island, and what it means to be an islander.

Patrick will be signing copies of  his new book at the ‘Signings at Stanfords’ stand after his event.


- 4:00pm: The Silk Roads

Peter Frankopan, Author & Professor of Global History at Oxford University

The region of the Silk Roads is obscure to many in the English-speaking world. Yet the region linking East with West is where civilization itself began, where the world's great religions were born and took root, and where languages, ideas and disease spread. The Silk Roads were - and still are - the world's central nervous system. Peter Frankopan discusses the central themes from his findings and looks at how The Silk Roads are rising again.

After the talk Peter will be signing copies of The Silk Roads at the Signings at Stanfords Stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 11:00am: On Foot Through the Heart of the Middle East

Leon McCarron, Adventurer & Film Maker

There are many reasons why it might seem unwise to walk, mostly alone, through the Middle East. That, in part, is exactly why Leon McCarron did it. The Land Beyond charts Leon McCarron’s journey through the Holy Land: from Jerusalem to Jordan and the deserts of the Sinai. A tribute to the humbling and immersive art of walking, this quest reveals the everyday reality of the Middle East and its people, who have been for too long misunderstood. 

Leon McCarron will be talking about being On Foot Through the Heart of the Middle East. After the event, Leon will be signing copies of his book The Land Beyond at the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.

 


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 12:00pm: In Conversation with Julia Bradbury

Julia Bradbury, TV Presenter, Broadcaster & Co-Founder of The Outdoor Guide

Presenter, author and co-founder of The Outdoor Guide Website Julia Bradbury talks about her life, work, writing and walking. She will be giving us a sneaky peak at her two new television series due in 2018, and telling us how important access to the great outdoors is to life, whether you are a keen hill walker or a Sunday stroller, however fit or unfit, with equal opportunities for all. 

After her event, Julia will be signing copies of her latest book Unforgettable Walks on the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.


Speaker: Interviewed byJulia Wheeler

- 1:00pm: Space: The Final Travel Frontier?

Dallas Campbell, Broadcaster & Factual Presenter

Dallas Campbell has presented some of the most ambitious landmark series across the BBC, including Stargazing Live, which broadcasted Astronaut Tim Peake’s historic live launch to the International Space Station. His book, AD ASTRA An Illustrated Guide to Leaving the Planet is Dallas’ hilarious and informative guide to human space travel, cosmology and space science for anyone who has looked up in wonder at the stars and wondered how to get there.

After his event, Dallas will be signing copies of his new book AD ASTRA An Illustrated Guide to Leaving the Planet on the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.


- 2:00pm: Everest, the Quake, and Life in the Aftermath

Jules Mountain, Mountaineer & Motivational Speaker

Jules Mountain was at Everest Base Camp when the worst earthquake to hit Nepal in living memory struck on 25 April 2015. To reach the summit of Everest had been a life-long dream, one which he was more determined to realise, having won his battle with cancer two years earlier. His book Aftershock tells of his ordeal during the most deadly disaster in the history of mountaineering on Everest.

After the event, Tim will be signing copies of his book Aftershock at the at the 'Signings at Stanfords' stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 3:00pm: The Joy of Travelling Slowly

Anna Hughes, Travel Writer & Cyclist, Nick Hunt, Author, Christopher Somerville, Author & Journalist

Is it more about the journey than the destination? Christopher Somerville, Anna Hughes and Nick Hunt discus the concept that travelling slowly by walking or cycling opens your eyes to a much wider journey. Between them they have travelled thousands of miles by such means and have a wealth of experience to share.  

After the talk, Christopher, Anna and Nick will be signing copies of their books, including The January Man: A Year of Walking Britain, Eat, Sleep, Cycle: A Bike Ride Around the Coast of Britain and Where the Wild Winds Are: Walking Europe's Winds from the Pennines to Provence at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


- 4:00pm: In Conversation with Rick Stein

Rick Stein, Chef, Author & TV Presenter

Rick Stein OBE is an English chef, restaurateur, cookery book author and television presenter. He has written over 20 cookery books, an autobiography and made over 30 TV programmes including 13 cookery series. In is latest BBC six-part series and accompanying book The Road to Mexico, he brings us his unrivalled enthusiasm and trusted expertise to the fresh, flavourful food of Mexico and California. 

 After his event, Rick will be signing copies of his new book The Road to Mexico at the 'Signing at Stanfords' stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Julia Wheeler

- 11:00am: How Russia Secretly Mapped the World

Alexander Kent, Academic, Editor & Author, John Davies, Map Collector, Editor & Author

You may not be surprised to learn that during the Cold War the Soviet Union gathered information about the West. But you may be astonished to discover just how much they knew about your town, your street, even your house. John Davies and Alexander Kent, authors of The Red Atlas tell the story of the world’s most comprehensive mapping endeavor and, arguably, the world’s most intriguing maps.

After the talk, John and Alexander will be signing copies of The Red Atlas: How the Soviet Union Secretly Mapped the World at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


- 12:00pm: Wild Swimming

Jenny Landreth, Script Editor & Writer, Joe Minihane, Journalist

Water, water, everywhere. 2017 has been awash with books about people connecting with nature and finding peace through swimming. With open water swimming on the rise, Jenny Landreth and Joe Minihane discuss why swimming is so important to them and share their best spots for swimming in the UK.

Jenny and Joe will be signing copies of their books, including Swell: A Waterbiography and Floating: A life Regaine at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


- 1:00pm: Blue Planet II

Mark Brownlow, Series Producer, Blue Planet II, James Honeyborne, Executive Producer, Blue Planet II

Join James Honeyborne and Mark Brownlow as they discuss the book and BBC TV series Blue Planet II. This talk will feature breath-taking clips and photographs from the BBC Natural History Unit's spectacular footage. The science and technology behind the making of the programme is explained together with how the team captured these amazing adventures - many of them filmed for the first time.

After the talk, James and Mark will be signing copies of Blue Planet II at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


- 2:00pm: Great Canal Journeys

Timothy West, Film, Stage & Television Actor

For more than half a century, a shared love of canals and narrowboats has been inseparable from the marriage of Timothy West and Prunella Scales. Hear Timothy talk about how the actors have spent many of the happiest days of their life together enjoying the calming pleasures of watching land and nature unfold before them at four miles an hour.

After the talk, Timothy will be signing copies of Our Great Canal Journeys at the Signings at Stanfords stand.


Speaker: Interviewed by Julia Wheeler

- 3:00pm: Explorers Against Extinction

Daryll Pleasants, Endangered Species Anti-Poaching Expert

Stanfords is a proud supporter of Explorers against Extinction, an exciting initiative highlighting the plight faced by some of Africa’s most iconic species. One of the conservation partners are Animals saving Animals, run by Daryll Pleasants. Hear all about this UK project that is making a real difference in the fight against the ivory and rhino horn trades by using some of the best tracking dogs in the world and training them to work in the African bush seeking out poachers. 


Speaker: Interviewed by Paul Blezard

- 4:00pm: What a Drag: A Tutu in Afghanistan and China in Drag

Michael Bristow, Journalist & Author, Iestyn Edwards, Bass Baritone & Drag Ballerina

And now for something completely different. Iestyn Edwards and Michael Bristow have both seen countries from a different perspective. In My Tutu Went AWOL Iestyn somehow found himself performing drag ballet to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. In China in Drag, Michael shares his experience of travelling with his cross-dressing Chinese language teacher. They talk to Julia Wheeler about their experiences and peoples’ reactions.

After the talk, Iestyn  and Michael  will be signing copies of their books My Tutu Went AWOL and China in Drag at the Signings at Stanfords stand.