Vietnam Writing Retreat – Hoi An
February 2-7, 2024
Ready for a writing holiday in Vietnam?
Imagine unlimited writing time. Your pen glides effortlessly over the page. Stories you have longed to write finally flow. Time disappears as you become immersed in deep creative connection.
Your senses are alive with new sounds and smells, the vibrant yellow of Hoi An, the fragrance of incense, the laughter of local children, the gentle sing-song of a foreign language. Capture it all on the page.
Sharpen your powers of observation while getting lost in the winding alleyways of the World Heritage listed ancient town of Hoi An.
Learn how to play again. Writing through the lens of Vietnam will imbue your voice with a new sense of wonder. Daily writing workshops, 1:1 feedback and a supportive writing group will allow you to grow as a writer.
Let this magical place empower you to delve deep into the stories your body holds and release them forever, onto the page.
Find your way back to your heart and who you really are!
Relax, Write & Transform
Get your stories out of your head and onto the page
connect deeply — emerge creatively recharged
6-day Yoga & Writing Retreat Vietnam – February 2- 7, 2024
This writing retreat is for you if you…
- crave focused writing time
- need guidance getting started, setting goals, or finishing a draft
- desire to explore the soul-nourishing power of writing things down
- want to learn about the essentials of the craft of writing (ie. plot, character, form)
- yearn to reconnect with your creativity and your body in a vibrant, beautiful environment
- need feedback and encouragement on your writing and crave the support of other writers
Whether you have an established writing practice and need dedicated writing time or have always wanted to write but never got started, this writing retreat is for anybody who wants to write.
Gentle morning yoga gets us into the flow, meditation allows us to drop into stillness, delicious home-cooked meals keep us nourished and healthy.
Writing our stories alone together generates focus and creative synergy.
Sharing your writing in a supportive group, will make you feel empowered and help you find your voice!
FIND FOCUS & FLOW at our Vietnam Writing Retreat
VIETNAM WRITING RETREAT
with Kerstin & Edwina
Let us take you on a journey through the rice fields and alleyways of Hoi An and on an inner journey of creative transformation. Savour beauty and stillness in vibrant yet gentle Vietnam and set your stories free.Benefit from the guidance of TWO experienced writing coaches and published authors.
- daily writing workshops on the craft of writing
- guided writing exercises & writing prompts
- ideas to help you delve more deeply into your stories
- strategies for incorporating creativity and writing into your daily life
- one-on-one feedback
- gentle morning yoga, daily mediation, pranayama & 1x tarot reading
- cultural excursions & more
How we roll…
Every day begins with gentle yoga allowing us to settle into stillness.
Mornings are reserved for themed writing workshops that will help you master the craft.
In the afternoons you have the option to participate in guided free-writing sessions, allowing you to dive deep into your creative well. Afternoons are also reserved for rest and free time.
We conclude each day with a scrumptious Vietnamese dinner, sharing, readings and good conversation.
Whether you’ll be bringing a draft or starting from scratch, there’ll be plenty of free time for writing as well as opportunities to share your work in no-pressure readings, as well as one-on-one feedback.
Experience the lantern-lit magic of Hoi An ancient town on a guided excursion by boat. Learn to cook flavorsome, authentic Vietnamese dishes in a cooking school set amid vegetable gardens and rice fields.
Savour the special time around TET, Vietnamese Lunar New Year, when the streets fill with flowers and the local markets are abuzz with special foods. This photoessay will give you an idea and an intro to the traditions.
All activities are optional! This is your writing holiday and there is no judgement if you skip the yoga or prefer not share your writing.
Your home away from home is An Villa Boutique Resort & Anicca Villa, halfway between Cua Dai beach and the World Heritage listed Old Town of Hoi An.Relax in this tranquil riverfront oasis amid palm trees and tropical gardens nestled in an authentic Vietnamese neighborhood.
An Villa is a small boutique resort offering self-contained bungalows and comfortable studios.
Anicca is a self-contained villa situated a short walk away across the river. It has beautifully appointed rooms with ensuites, two rooms sharing a bathroom.Both have private pools and there are plenty of quiet spaces to retreat in contemplative stillness and to connect with your creative flow.
Situated in the hamlet of Cam Thanh, you’ll be able to walk to the vibrant local neighborhood market or grab a bicycle and meander through ricefields or catch a taxi into the old town or the beach (each about ten minutes away).
The beautifully preserved ancient seaside town of Hoi An was once a powerful trading port along the ‘sea silk road’. Merchants from China, Japan and later Europe settled here, creating a unique architectural fusion of timber framed houses, pagodas, assembly halls and wooden footbridges that survive intact to the present day.Today, the wooden shop houses are abuzz with trendy wine bars, artisan tailors, art galleries, fine restaurants, and everything in between.
Come and explore this fascinating town with us!
Vietnam Writing Retreat
February 2-7, 2024
- 5x nights accommodation in a 4-star river-front boutique resort, halfway between the old town of Hoi An and the beach
- All breakfasts, all lunches & dinners
- Daily writing workshops & one-on-one sessions led by two experienced writing coaches
- Boat trip into the UNESCO listed old town of Hoi An
- Authentic Vietnamese cooking class
- Daily morning yoga
- Evening meditations and guided gentle breathing techniques
- A personal tarot reading to help shine a light on your way forward
What’s not included:
- Airfares & local transport to reach the resort
- Visa fees and international travel insurance
- Additional activities can be organised at own cost
- Alcohol and personal items
Book early, don’t miss out!
Cost (in Australian dollars)
Early Bird ends August 31
Private Room with en-suite and private veranda (2x available) | $2550 (Early Bird)| $2750 (Full Price)
Private 1st floor Studio with en-suite, private veranda/courtyard (2x available) | $2650 (Early Bird) | $2850 (Full Price)
Private Bungalow with en-suite, private veranda/courtyard (1x available) | $2750 (Early Bird) | $2950 (Full Price)
Private Room with shared bathroom in shared villa (2x available) | $2550 (Early Bird) | $2750 (Full Price)
Private Room with en-suite in shared villa (6 available) | $2650(Early Bird) | $2850
Shared Room available upon request if booking with a friend/partner | $2050 pp (Early Bird) | $2250 pp (Full Price)
*All prices in Australian dollars.
Convert into your currency here: https://www.xe.com/currencyconverter/
A non-refundable deposit of $450 will reserve your spot.
“The retreat has been a way to reconnect with the writing process and has given me some really wonderful insights to take away and create my own writing practice at home. Not only has there been time to fully dedicate to the practice, but also plenty of time to relax, restore and to feel revitalized which was something that I really really needed.”
Emma Lovell, Lovelly Communications
Meet your Vietnam Writing Retreat leaders:
Kerstin Pilz & Edwina Shaw
Hi, I’m Kerstin
I’m a former academic with a PhD in literature and 20 years university teaching experience. I’m also a RYT 200 qualified yoga teacher and a published author.
My publications include an academic monograph (Mapping Complexity: Literature, Philosophy and Science in the works of Italo Calvino), book chapters, peer-reviewed academic articles as well as travel features including for The New York Times, The Australian, and The Sydney Morning Herald.
I called beautiful Hoi An home for several years until a global pandemic was declared and I unexpectedly found myself stranded in Australia.
Reunited with my journals but separated from my partner and my life in Vietnam, I finally wrote my memoir Falling Apart Gracefully (sign up to my newsletter to find out when it will be published).
I love helping writers at all stages of development and I enjoy the intense focus and joyful synergy we can create at a writing retreat.
Most of all, I look forward to introducing you to the magic of Hoi An.
Hi, I am Edwina,
I’m an Australian writer of fiction, memoir and screenplays. My books include the critically acclaimed Thrillseekers, In The Dark Of Night and A Guide Through Grief. You can find some of my publications here.
I’ve been writing and publishing since 2002 and have been teaching Creative Writing at the University of Queensland and in the community since 2005.
I love helping people get their stories out of their heads and onto the page.
I’ve run Relax and Write Retreats in Queensland for over six years and just love connecting with writers at all stages of their development.
Like Kerstin, I have a long-standing yoga practice and over twenty years teaching experience.
The mix of yoga and writing has been a great healing force in my life and I love to share the magic of these transformational practices with others.
I look forward to joining you for our adventure together in the streets of Hoi An and delving deep into the stillness of An Villa through yoga and writing, deep into our creative selves and beautiful spirits.
Vietnam Writing Retreat
Februrary 2-7, 2024
Price per person from: $2550*
A $450 deposit will reserve your spot.
*All prices in Australian dollars
Have more questions? Please get in touch:
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What kind of writing will we do?
The daily writing workshops are designed to help you unleash your creativity, connect you with your voice and to lead you towards the stories you need to write.
There will be a two-hour formal writing workshop each morning after breakfast exploring a particular aspect of the craft of writing and also some free-writing exercises to carefully selected writing prompts.
Timed freewriting allows you to bypass your inner critic so that you can write straight from your core, without stopping to think or edit or worrying about grammar and spelling.
There will be many opportunities for sharing. Sharing your writing is totally optional, but we find that reading your writing out aloud helps build confidence, momentum and creative synergy!
The writing sessions are aimed at any level of writer, whether you are working on a project, or simply writing for yourself as a way to make sense of your personal self-narrative.
What if I don't write in English?
You are encouraged to write in your native language as this will allow you to connect more deeply with your inner voice.
The writing you will be doing in this retreat is for your eyes only. Sharing is optional but encouraged. Some of our foreign language writers in the past have opted to summarise their words in English .
What kind of yoga will we do?
We will start our days with a gentle Vinyasa flow sequence to wake up the body and get you connected to your breath.
The classes are designed for people who have some experience with yoga but you don’t have to be an experienced yogi to participate.
7:30 Morning Yoga
15:00 1:1 sessions/tarot card readings/massages/ guided free-writing in a group setting
Terms & Conditions
• A non-refundable deposit of $450 is required to book your spot.
• Full payment for all bookings is required 3 months prior to retreat start. Any bookings made thereafter, must be paid in full.
• To participate in our international retreats, you will need to provide evidence of international travel insurance. This will also protect you in case of flight cancellations or any unforseen events.
We understand that circumstances can change. In the unlikely event of another Covid related lockdown, any monies paid will be transferred to a future date.
If you cancel 3 months out from the retreat, we will refund your fee minus the $450 deposit.
Cancellations up to eight weeks prior to retreat start will receive a 50% refund.
If you cancel one month out from the retreat, we are unable to provide any refunds.
However, if you can find a replacement to fill your spot, we are happy to transfer all fees paid to the new participant minus a $250 administrative fee.
Where do I fly into & how do I reach An Villa?
Da Nang, the third largest city in Vietnam, has the closest international airport.
Airport transfers are not included but airport pick-up by private taxi can be arranged upon booking through An Villa.
I want to add extra nights & trips
We always encourage our participants to arrive a few days early in order to acclimatise and absorb the jetlag if you are travelling from faraway.
The friendly staff at An Villa can help you add extra nights to your booking (pending availability) and we are more than happy to put you in touch with our local contacts on the ground to help you organise additional excursions and onward travel.
Praise for our Writing Retreats
As the week progressed, we all went deeper and deeper into our creative expression. I particularly liked that there were a variety of approaches to opening up our writing: visual, verbal, drawing.
The yoga, meditation, sound baths and excursions were all wonderful. Kerstin attended to every aspect of being in a foreign country. The individual consultations were extremely helpful, motivating and inspiring and as a result, I am leaving with a project that I knew I needed to do but was avoiding.”
Heidi, craniosacral therapist, Woodstock, NY
“If you are thinking of a writing retreat, I wholeheartedly recommend Kerstin’s retreats, for seeing with fresh eyes. You will love the self-care, stimulation, reflection and perspective it provides. The writing experience on the retreat prompted us to hone in on our unique voice. Writing sessions focused on a theme such as beginner’s mind, writing for the senses, storytelling, memoir and crafting a personal creative manifesto.
Kerstin was adept at crafting a gentle writing curriculum experience that opened us up to our voice and skill. It was so valuable for me to work with themes, prompts and exercises to dust off and access my voice.
An individual hour-long sound bowl meditation with Nigel was included and involved the placing of sound bowls around us and on our body. It was the deepest of relaxation experiences. That night I slept like I hadn’t slept for a long time.
Kerstin arranged a well-balanced itinerary and journey through the week. The yoga and writing complemented each other perfectly as we attended to both practices.”
Terri, life coach, Sydney. Read her full write-up on her blog Quiet Writing.
The individual sound bowl session that I had with Nigel was my first time doing sound bowl meditation. I will definitely be trying it again, it was so relaxing and calming, literally the best thing ever!
The overall organization was fantastic. I enjoyed everything about An Villa! The staff were fantastic it was so good of them to provide us with all that we needed and go out of their way to ensure that we were comfortable.”
Flora, poet, activist & youth worker, Melbourne
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