Uruguay·January 26 - 31 2025

Uruguay: The Haven Wander Writing Retreat with Laura Munson

A Feast to Help Us Slow Down & Awaken Our Senses

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Overview

Slow down and awaken your senses with a renewing writing retreat in the wide-open landscapes of coastal South America. This is a writing retreat like no other. New York Times and international bestselling author Laura Munson brings a travel-forward branch of her acclaimed Haven Writing Retreats to the wondrous terrain of Uruguay. You'll use the power of the written word to re-discover yourself, to find your genuine voice, and to feel new again. Settle into a tranquil Uruguayan oasis, where the air is infused with creativity and the scenery is breathtaking. Each day will begin with a soul-nourishing writing session led by Laura. Through this custom-made daily writing practice, you'll reconnect with your sense of awe, as you wander through your words, you'll breathe life into the next chapter. Unleash the power of your self-expression under the guidance of a world-class writing teacher and author. But this retreat isn't just about diving deep into your authentic voice. It's also about indulging in the beauty and serenity of your surroundings. Whether you're exploring the vibrant flora and fauna on a birding expedition, embarking on an adventure by foot, horseback, or bicycle, feasting on the exquisite local cuisine, walking the beach, or wandering the village, each moment of this retreat promises to be filled with inspiration. This writing retreat will be an extraordinary sensory experience, blending beach, nature, art, culture, adventure, gastronomy, relaxation, and the joy of one of South America's most enchanting destinations. Join us for a transformative writing retreat where creativity knows no bounds, and every day is an opportunity to discover the beauty of your sacred self-expression.

Highlights

Stay in a five-star, art-inspired, estate, set on miles of private land

Stay in a five-star, art-inspired, estate, set on miles of private land

Take a curated art tour of Jose Ignacio, a haven for local and international artists

Take a curated art tour of Jose Ignacio, a haven for local and international artists

Write each morning with Laura, using her custom Haven Wander writing practice

Write each morning with Laura, using her custom Haven Wander writing practice

Explore Jose Ignacio’s vibrant beach and art scene— said by some to be the “World’s Best Beach Town.”

Explore Jose Ignacio’s vibrant beach and art scene— said by some to be the “World’s Best Beach Town.”

Partake in a traditional Uruguayan cooking class

Partake in a traditional Uruguayan cooking class

Bird-watch in premiere, world destination habitat, full of rare species

Bird-watch in premiere, world destination habitat, full of rare species

Ride Criollo and quarter horses on the exclusive Estancia ranch trails

Ride Criollo and quarter horses on the exclusive Estancia ranch trails

Delight in Francis Mallmann’s live fire cooking and cuisine at El Garzón.

Delight in Francis Mallmann’s live fire cooking and cuisine at El Garzón.

Itinerary

Here's a day-by-day itinerary of the trip

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Optional Pre-Trip Extension Day 1: Friday, January 24th, 2025

Arrive in Buenos Aires before noon and grab a taxi to Hotel Casa Lucia in the Recoleta Neighborhood. (If you'd like a private car to pick you up, we can arrange that for you at an additional cost).

After checking in to the hotel and having a short rest, we'll head out for a guided city tour to immerse ourselves in the vibrant capital's rich culture and history. We start our exploration at the iconic Plaza de Mayo, where the Casa Rosada presidential palace stands as a symbol of Argentina's political heritage. Next, we'll walk the cobblestone streets of historic San Telmo, the birthplace of the tango. 

Next up is the vibrant neighborhood of La Boca, where the colorful facades of Caminito, a lively pedestrian street filled with artists, tango dancers, and vibrant murals, will greet you. Finally, we'll conclude our tour with a visit to the Recoleta Cemetery to wander through a maze of ornate mausoleums and marble statues as we uncover the stories of Argentina's most illustrious figures.

After an enriching day of exploration, we're in for a treat tonight. We'll combine a delicious dinner with an Argentinian wine tasting. We'll toast to a wonderful night of gastronomic exploration, where the flavors of Argentina come alive in a symphony of taste and aroma, marking the beginning of an unforgettable adventure in Buenos Aires!

Included

Guided City Tour

Dinner

Wine Tasting

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Pre-Trip Extension Day 2: Saturday, January 25th, 2025

This morning, after a hearty hotel breakfast, we'll head to the MALBA (Museum of Latin American Art) for a curator-led tour. The MALBA brings together paintings, sculptures, drawings, engravings, collages, photographs, installations, and artists’ objects from all over Latin America.

Departing the museum, prepare to taste the best food in Buenos Aires. Satisfy your cravings for local food and culture on a tasting tour led by an expert. Enjoy ten local, hand-picked “must-tries” like the iconic empanada and other dishes, like Argentinian pizza. Bring your appetite.

This afternoon you'll have time to rest at the hotel. 

You can’t visit Buenos Aires without a tango experience. Our senses will be immersed in the essence of the tango as we embark on a private adventure through the heart of the dance culture, learning its history, secrets, and cultural importance. At the milonga experience, you'll discover the energy of social dancing, a mesmerizing tango show, and live orchestral music. After all today’s excitement and tastings, we'll retire to the hotel for a light meal.

Included

All Meals

Guided Museum Tour

Tango Experience

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Pre-Trip Extension Day 3: Sunday, January 26th, 2025

After breakfast and some free time for shopping, we will head to the airport to catch our flight to Punta del Este, included in the price of the pre-trip. 

Our journey is just beginning. Once we arrive in Uruguay, we'll immerse ourselves in nature, using the time to slow down and awaken the senses. You're off to a great start!

Included

Breakfast

Airport Transfer & Round Trip Local Flight

Not Included

Lunch

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Arrival Day - José Ignacio

Day 1: Sunday, January 26th, 2025

Arrive in Buenos Aires no later than noon. 

We'll Fly from the Jorge Newbery Airfield (AEP) airport at 4:20 p.m. to Punta del Este. If you arrive today, take a taxi from the Ministro Pistarini International Airport (EZE) to Jorge Newbery Airfield (AEP), from whence local flights like ours to Punta del Este depart. If you need help booking your local flights, please email our concierge. If you are on the pre-trip extension, we'll get you to the airport and take care of your round-trip flights.  

We'll transfer from the airport in Punta del Este to our beautiful private ranch for the week, Estancia Vik, where art, nature, and high design seamlessly meet. The resort is on 4,000 acres in the rolling countryside of José Ignacio, Uruguay. The Estancia borders the Arroyo (riverbed) and the lake, Laguna José Ignacio, which meets the Southern Atlantic Ocean.

In the late afternoon, after time to unpack and tour the facilities, we’ll meet for a welcome circle to discuss our itinerary for the week. Before dinner, we will take part in a Clerico class, learning the art of mixing Uruguay's signature Sangria.

Dinner will take place at the ranch restaurant, El Asador, where we’ll enjoy our meal in a beautiful brick-vaulted setting where gaucho tradition goes hand in hand with contemporary Uruguayan art.

After our meal, Laura will conduct a fireside evening reading and Q&A in the living room.

Included

Clerico Class

Dinner

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Day 2: Monday, January 27th, 2025

We start our day with an amazing Uruguayan breakfast.

Afterward, we will dive into our first daily writing session with Laura, learning her custom journal-writing practice, focusing on slowing to your curiosity and awe.

Then, we’ll head to the beach for lunch at Parador la Huella, a legendary beach restaurant listed in the World’s Top 50. Here, we'll feast on seafood* while absorbing the stunning coastal views. After lunch, we’ll have time to reflect while strolling on the beach. *All food allergies will be taken into consideration.

Next, we’ll return to the resort for afternoon relaxation and fun! Choose from pool time, spa, journaling, kayaking, bird watching, horseback riding, biking, reading, or just unwind.

Tonight, we'll pop into the local village to explore and enjoy a farm-to-table dinner at Cruz del Sur Farm Restaurant. Located in the heart of José Ignacio, right across from the square, it's just a stroll away from stunning beaches and the lighthouse…this is one of the town’s most exquisite settings. Thanks to the celebrity Chef Francis Mallman's talent, the area brims with exceptional restaurants.

Included

All Meals

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Day 3: Tuesday, January 28th, 2025

Early this morning, we’ll venture into an expert-guided expedition at one of the world’s premiere bird-watching destinations. We’ll wander in pristine lagoons and marshes, home to rare avian migratory and native species like the Chilean flamingo, black-necked swan, roseate spoonbill, and many more. This inspirational experience will feed the writing process. 

We'll have time for a late breakfast or brunch when we return, and for poolside journaling, rest, and reflection on the language and wisdom of the birds you’ve seen in their natural habitat.

Tonight's dinner promises to be the perfect end to the day, as we gather for a classic Asado Barbecue at the Estancia. Savor the smoky aromas and succulent flavors of traditional Argentine cuisine, expertly prepared. Buen provecho!

Included

Expert Guided Bird Watching Expedition

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Not Included

Lunch

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Day 4: Wednesday, January 29th, 2025

Today, we begin with a healthy breakfast before our daily morning writing practice with Laura, setting our senses alive.

We’ll balance our thoughts with an adventure in the visual arts. Uruguay is home to many talented visual artists. Our art tour includes private visits to artists’ studios, local exhibitions, and a special visit to the MACA, as well as the Atchugarry Foundation. Celebrate the art scene in Uruguay by buying a piece to take home.

Now it's time to bask in the tranquility of the beach, where we'll share a picnic on the shore— the perfect way to unwind, discuss our inspiring morning, and journal if the spirit moves.

We’ll return to the Estancia for a rest. Relax at the pool, enjoy your private wooden soaking tub, or wander the walking trails.

In the evening, prepare for a culinary journey to tantalize your taste buds. We have a special treat in store: a hands-on class where we'll learn the art of Uruguayan cooking. Under the guidance of an expert chef, we'll delve into the country's rich culinary traditions, discovering the secrets behind its flavorful cuisine.

After our lesson, we’ll feast on our delicious creations.

Included

All Meals

Art Tour

Cooking Class

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Day 5: Thursday, January 30th, 2025

Let’s make the most of our last morning!

Bird enthusiasts: Kayak the lagoon and discover even more of the bountiful Uruguayan bird world.

Horse enthusiasts: Take a guided ride on the ranch trails with an experienced gaucho who will tailor-make your ride to your skill level and interests. Or sign up for a polo lesson with an expert coach on their famed polo field. Or take a restorative ride on the beach*.

Biking enthusiasts: Journey out on a ranch bicycle, whether on the trails or to the village or beach.

Enjoy breakfast on your own time. Consider bringing your journal to reflect on your newly activated senses.

*Some activities, like the horseback beach ride come at extra cost. 

We’ll convene in late morning for our final writing session in the serene ambiance of the ranch Chapel. Laura will guide you through a new writing practice that will endure long after the retreat.

We’ll have light bites featuring local meats, cheeses, and farm-fresh produce at the pool before we set off on our special afternoon finale.

In the late afternoon, we'll celebrate the culmination of our time together in Uruguay with a truly unforgettable dining experience. We'll make our way into the hills to the famous El Garzón, where we'll be treated to the legendary live fire cooking legacy of Francis Mallmann, prepared for us by a student of his. Chef Mallman of "A Chef's Table" fame is renowned for his innovative approach to cuisine. Prepare to indulge in a feast for the senses as we savor the flavors of Uruguay in every mouthwatering bite.

Retire to the Estancia living room to share our highlights and lasting memories over a cup of warm mate tea.

Included

All Meals

Horseback Riding

Not Included

Polo Lesson

Restorative Beach Horseback Trip

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Day 6: Friday, January 31st, 2025

As we gather one last time for breakfast, let's savor the senses that have enriched our journey. Following breakfast, we'll gather for our final session, setting our intentions for our return and sharing the stories and camaraderie that have flourished during our time together.

As the morning unfolds, it's time to bid farewell to our instructor and host, as well as the friends we've made during this rich experience. Though our time together may be ending, the writing we’ve done is just the beginning of our word-wandering adventures. Let's carry the memories and the lessons learned with us as we continue to write, explore, grow, and become.

Included

Breakfast

Airport Transfer

You'll Be Staying Here

Estancia Vik

Estancia Vik

Estancia Vik José Ignacio, is a romantic, rustic and traditional ranch which pays homage to Uruguay's nature, architecture, art and design. Situated on 4,000 acres, this five-star property is home to a herd of criollo and quarter horses, an estuary, an herb garden a chapel and a collection of contemporary Uruguayan art. 

Hosts

Laura Munson

Laura Munson

Laura Munson is a New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author, teacher, and speaker, instructing writers for over a decade at her acclaimed Haven Writing Retreats in Montana. With over a thousand alums of her various writing programs, Laura works with writers at all levels and skill sets from around the world.

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Price

Uruguay: The Haven Wander Writing Retreat

Uruguay: The Haven Wander Writing Retreat

A Feast to Help Us Slow Down & Awaken Our Senses

FROM$9,995

Optional Trip Extensions

3-Day Pre-Trip Extension in Buenos Aires

3-Day Pre-Trip Extension in Buenos Aires

Experience the vibrant heartbeat of Buenos Aires, where culture, history, and culinary delights converge to create an unforgettable sensory journey.

FROM$3,595.00/pp

The World's Best Beach Town

Jose Ignacio

Just up the road from crowded high-rise ridden Punta de Este, Jose Ignacio is world's away. A chic enclave where celebrity chef Francis Mallman reigns supreme. 

“I love this country…I mean, there's a vibe here that just is unlike any other place on the continent.” — Anthony Bourdain

Jose Ignacio

What's Included

What's Included

All meals as stated in itinerary

Daily writing instruction with best selling author Laura Munson

All lodging

2 glasses of wine with dinner

All activities as described in itinerary

International Airfare

Personal Souvenirs

Travel & Health Insurance (required)

Airport Transfers

Local airfare from Buenos Aires to Punta del Este

FAQs

The trip officially starts on Sunday January 26th, but if you are traveling a long distance to reach Argentina, consider arriving a day early so you have time to relax and adjust to the local time or join us on our Pre-Trip Extension. You should arrive no later than 12:00 p.m. on Sunday January 26th so you can catch the last flight of the day at 4:20 pm to Punta del Este. Our concierge can help with your local flights. 

Fly into Ministro Pistarini International Airport (EZE). This is where all international flights land. You will have to take a taxi to Jorge Newbery Airfield (AEP), from where local flights like ours to Punta del Este depart. If you need assistance booking your local flights, please email our concierge. 

The weather is pleasantly warm with a gentle breezes. The highs are in the upper 70's F and lows in the 60's F. 

We will have a zoom call about 6 weeks before the trip starts to discuss all that information and give you a packing list. Here is a great website that we love that will help you with packing and travel trips. 

Inquire about this trip

Uruguay: The Haven Wander Writing Retreat with Laura Munson

Uruguay· January 26 - 31 2025· 5 nights

FROM$9,995/pp