10 Amazing Writing Retreats in Central and South America
Image by Jessica Castro
Life has a way of getting in the way of the things we really want to do, like finally writing that memoir, or finishing that novel. It can be hard to find time in your schedule to devote to the projects of your dreams, which is why a writing retreat is such a great way to make leaps and bounds on new or existing work, while connecting with like-minded people—and your creative self. Oh—and you also get to explore new cities and cultures, and immerse yourself in an international writing community. Win-Win-Win.
So, if you’ve already read our first blog post about some of our favourite writing retreats in North America and are looking for something a little more adventurous, stick around while we share ten amazing writing retreats in Central and South America.
Hosted by experienced American writing teacher, Leigh Shulman, Pen. Paper. Paradise. is a writing retreat for women who want to escape the cold winter climate and focus on their writing pursuits. Held in Salta, Argentina, this retreat features regular writing workshops, one-on-one evaluations, and online support following the retreat. It’s also entirely customizable, giving you the option to choose when you would like to go, and for how long—ideal for those with busy schedules!
Where: Salta, Argentina
When: Whenever works best for you.
Application Deadline: N/A. For more information on how to book with this retreat, visit their website!
The Artist in Residency program out of Residencia Corazón was introduced in 2006 and aims to create a place for local and international artists and writers to create and display a wide range of work. Based in La Plata, Buenos Aires, this residency provides both studio space and accommodation to their residents in a picturesque location, with plenty of opportunities to connect with the local art community. Residencies last between one to three months, with a maximum of three artists in residence at one time.
Where: La Plata, Argentina
When: Year round.
Application Deadline: There’s no application deadline.
Cost: Unlisted. For more information on residencies, visit their website!
Hosted by master teacher Laura Davis, this sixteen-day retreat is aimed at writers looking to adventure while also improving their writing practice. Including regular yoga classes, cultural exploration into Peruvian history, and plenty of hiking, it’s ideal for those who are interested in crossing off a few bucket list items in a peaceful retreat atmosphere.
Where: Peru, South America
When: May 13–28, 2019
Application Deadline: January 15th. For more information regarding upcoming retreats, check out their website here.
This five-day retreat held at the Jaguar Reef Resort in Belize is perfect for writers looking for more insight into publishing their manuscripts. Including five days of workshops, master classes, and manuscript critiques by literary agents, this retreat looks to help writers master the business of writing, and properly market themselves. Other beachfront amenities include snorkelling, ocean kayaking, and yoga. Participants are also given time for writing and networking!
Where: Hopkins, Belize
When: April 6–11, 2019
Application Deadline: Unlisted. They do have limited space available, so check out their website for more information.
Cost: Between USD $2,113–$2,020 depending on accommodation.
During this nine-day women’s retreat combining the practice of writing and yoga, participants are encouraged to take part in an inner journey through meditation and daily writing sessions. Facilitated by freelance writer and yoga instructor Aimee Hansen, this retreat is focused on self-exploratory writing, making it perfect for those who are looking to work in memoir and personal essays.
Where: Lake Atitlán, Guatemala
When: July 25–August 3, 2019
Application Deadline: Unlisted, though there are limited spaces available! For more information, check out their website here.
Cost: USD $1,495–$1,795 depending on accommodation.
Held at a 17th-century estate in Otavalo, Ecuador, the Excellence in Fiction and Writing Seminar and Retreat is an eleven-day retreat focused around a series of classes and workshops facilitated by writers Steven James, Leonardo Wild, and Linda Sands. With plenty of time for yoga classes, nature walks, and exploring the nearby city of Quinto, this retreat strikes a good balance of relaxation and learning.
Where: Otavalo, Ecuador
When: April 3–13, 2019
Application Deadline: Unlisted, though spaces are limited. For more information on applications, check out their website here.
Cost: USD $1,790
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Catering to both experienced and beginner writers, the Centauri Arts Creative Writing Retreat is based at Finca Luna Nueva, a rainforest resort just outside of La Fortuna, Costa Rica. Including facilitated workshops, readings, discussions, and plenty of personal writing time, the retreat is aimed at inspiring creativity and passion in a picturesque setting.
Where: La Fortuna, Costa Rica
When: February 8–15, 2019
Application Deadline: Unlisted. For more information about upcoming retreats, check out their website!
Based on the island of Itaparica in Bahia, Brazil, Instituto Sacatar offers two-month residencies to support artists and creators. A major aim of the program is to encourage residency fellows to connect with local Bahian communities through their work and is offered to those in theatre arts, dance, visual art, and writing. Since its conception in 2001, the program has hosted over three hundred residency fellows and prides itself on the impact and connections made to local communities.
Where: The island of Itaparica, Bahia, Brazil
When: Year round.
Application Deadline: Applications for their open call residency fellowships are currently closed, but check their website here for updates on upcoming deadlines.
Cost: Varies depending on the program. Funding available.
If you’re interested in taking a slower approach to your retreat with more emphasis on personal writing time, the Writer’s Retreat in Ojochal, Costa Rica, is a great option. Though this resort, consisting of ten private villas, does offer writing workshops, the main draw is as a private, quiet place for writers and artists to work in a beautiful setting—ideal for those who are looking to get away on a solo vacation to focus on their projects and passions.
Where: Ojochal, Costa Rica
When: Year round.
Application Deadline: No application deadline.
Cost: Depends on the size of the villa and the duration of your visit. For more information visit their website here.
Hosted at the peaceful Tranquilo Retreat in Corando, Panama, The Word Tour consists of a wide variety of writing workshops, writing tours that emphasize a connection to nature, and writing retreats. Participants are able to choose which workshops and events they would like to participate in, making this a customizable experience. The retreat places an emphasis on fostering creativity and channelling each writer’s own unique voice.
Where: Coronado, Panama
When: Year round.
Application Deadline: Unlisted. For more information on upcoming writing retreats and workshops, check out their website here.
Cost: Depends on accommodation and number of workshops and events you choose to participate in.
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Editor, Writer & Founder of JEC. She's inspired, most often, to write about writing and how women (writers) can fix the world. She has a lot of opinions, actually.
Hayley is Copy Editor/ Editing Ninja for JEC. She is also an arts journalist for several online publications including Scene 360 and Illusion Magazine.
Georgia is JEC's Content Writer, a published poet, and past Poetry Editor for This Side of West, Modern and Contemporary Genre Editor for TheAlbatross, and Contributing Writer for The Martlet and Saltern Magazine.
Jaime is a Research Curator at Royal Roads University and as such knows a thing or two re: communications. She is JEC's Communications Specialist.