Loading Events

« All Events

Poetry Masterclass with Arundhathi Subramaniam

April 19 April 23

Poetry reflects the voice of the heart and soul. It can be healing and transformative. Writing poems helps one deal with inner turmoil while providing comfort in words. Poems encourage inter-connectedness in the universe. The shortest way to sense and semblance from a state of flux.

Each poem has a distinct rhythm that inspires poets to dream, imagine, observe and think. With the Himalayas as your backdrop, in this masterclass, you will discover the magic of poetry in nature.

Explore Poetry in different forms in the Himalayas with award-winning poet Arundhathi Subramaniam. Meld words to create magic and let the mountains be your muse.

The Himalayan Workshop sessions are held in the open or in the book lounge. Some meals maybe served in the open too if the weather is good. The outdoors are a very inviting and inspiring here.

The venue is the 5-star rated Himalayan Writing Retreat (you can read our reviews here).

While you’re here, walk in the wilderness, bask in the warmth of a sublime sunset, and gaze at the stars. Let your eyes feast on the magnificent Himalayan dusks and dawns, your ears on the live birdsong concert, your lungs on clean crisp mountain air, and your taste buds on the delectable, homely fare.

One of our past attendees – Radhika, has beautifully captured her experience of this retreat in her words. You can read her post Here.

The fees for this workshop is INR 40000. This covers a twin shared room for all four nights, all meals and taxes.

Questions? Call or WhatsApp +91 73035 16665.

Arundhathi Subramaniam (Award winning poet and Teacher)

Described as ‘one of the finest poets writing in India today’, Arundhathi Subramaniam is an award-winning Indian poet. She is the author of twelve books, of which five are books of poetry. Widely translated and anthologised, her book, When God is a Traveller (2014) was the Season Choice of the Poetry Book Society, shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize. Her new book of poems, Love Without a Story, published earlier this year with Westland Amazon, is already in its second reprint.

As editor, her most recent book is the acclaimed Penguin anthology of medieval Indian sacred poetry, Eating God. As prose writer, her books include The Book of Buddha; the bestselling biography of a contemporary mystic, Sadhguru: More Than a Life; and most recently, Adiyogi: The Source of Yoga (co-authored with Sadhguru).

She is the recipient of various Indian and international awards and fellowships, including the inaugural Khushwant Singh Prize, the Raza Award for Poetry, the Zee Women’s Award for Literature, the International Piero Bigongiari Prize in Italy, the Mystic Kalinga award, the Charles Wallace, Visiting Arts and Homi Bhabha Fellowships, among others.

Click Here to learn more about her journey and watch her live interaction with Chetan Mahajan (Co-founder, HWR) during FDC #10.

Day 0: Arrive. Walk. Chat. Mingle.

Day 1: What Makes for a Good Poem?

We look at the ingredients of good poetry, interspersed with readings of poems from around the world – canonical and less familiar. We analyse poems, discuss what makes them work, explore the role of metaphor and sound, free verse and fixed form, inspiration and craft. A day of intensive reading and discussion, interspersed with writing exercises that incorporate some of the vital ingredients we zero in on.

Day 2: The Poem Itself

We start by discussing how to approach a poem, and then plunge into the writing of it. We allow ourselves time for quiet, immersive work. We also allow ourselves time for group discussion and work at creating an ambience for supportive and rigorous workshop feedback.

Day 3: All Those Questions

Poets invariably have questions: the vexed business of writers’ block, how to deal with naysayers, how to find publishers, the challenges of social media, the festival maelstrom, poetry for the page and the voice, and many more. We try to address all these questions – the big ones and the small niggling ones. If we can, we try to make time for one-on-one interactions. We share favourite poems. We conclude.

Day 4: Leave after a leisurely breakfast

The Himalayan Writing Retreat is built for writing and learning. We are rated 5-star on google and facebook.

Once here, you will be sharing a room with a fellow participant (unless we’ve confirmed a single). All essentials like food, hot water, towels etc. are provided. No hidden costs.

Book lounge snow winter
The Book Lounge on a Snowy day.

It can snow in winter. Weather can vary and the weather chart of Mukteshwar (12 km from the retreat) is here. A pair of sturdy walking shoes, some rain protection and an extra layer or two are always a good idea.

Our rooms are built to let nature in and inspire you. To see pictures of the rooms click here . To see pictures of the writing spaces click here

Depending upon where you travel in from, you can reach us by road, train or air. Even if flying or taking a train, the final stretch is a drive, and the last 150 metres is a walk.

By Road

The retreat is a 370 km/9 hours drive from Delhi. If driving, we recommend you leave early. Note that parking at the retreat is on the road – we do not have any private parking. We have limited driver accommodation, so please check in advance.

Overnight Volvo buses ply between Haldwani and Delhi, the more reliable of which are government operated. You con book those here. Private Volvos and Sleeper buses also ply between Delhi and Haldwani, which you can book on redbus. Make sure you pick a bus with a high (4+) rating.

By Train

There are three trains a day from Delhi to Kathgodam, the nearest train station. Some others also come in from Kolkata, Lucknow and Dehradun. From Delhi, Ranikhet Express is a convenient overnight train both ways, but finding tickets can be difficult. 

Most people prefer to take the Kathgodam Shatabdi (Delhi dep: 6.20 AM, Kathgodam Arr: 11.40 AM). A cab from Kathgodam to Satkhol takes about 2.5 hrs / Rs. 2200 (more for a big car). Cabs are often shared by participants. 

By Air

There are daily flights from Delhi to Pantnagar. A cab from Pantnagar to Satkhol takes about 3.5 hr / Approx INR 4K.

There are direct flights from Mumbai and Bangalore to Bareilly 3-4 days a week. Satkhol is a 5hr / INR 5.5k cab ride from Bareilly. (More for a big car). Cabs are often shared by participants.

  1. Why should I choose HWR Workshops?   
  • Personal Attention: We don’t take more than 10 students in a class. You get a lot of personal attention and feedback. No classrooms of 20-30 people or one-way pre-recorded videos here.
  • Class Quality: For most courses, we filter our participants. You can’t just pay and sign up. We need to see a writing sample (in our application form) to ensure the class is of a uniform standard.
  • Quality of faculty: No lightweights here. Many of our faculty are award-winners. All are experts and great teachers. We don’t settle for average.
  • Feedback scores: Across courses, we are rated 4.5/5, or higher. You can read our reviews HERE.
  1. Do I get a certificate of participation?

Yes, certificates are available on request.

  1. Any discounts for students / other categories?

At the Himalayan Writing Retreat, we follow a strict no-discount policy.

  1. Is the workshop fee refundable?

Our cancellation policy is as follows:

  • Online Writing Workshop: 100% refund if cancellation 2 weeks before the event start date, 50% if cancellation one week before the start date, 0% if less than one week before the start date.
  • Creative Writing Workshop at the Himalayas: 100% refund if cancellation 4 weeks before the event start date, 50% if cancellation two weeks before the start date, 0% if less than two weeks before the start date.
  1. Is the Himalayan Writing Retreat a business or an NGO?

The Himalayan Writing Retreat is a social enterprise. It works closely and actively with two local NGOs in its community work initiatives: Chirag and Alaap. In 2020, HWR raised INR 6.1 Lakhs to support the Chirag School.

Have more questions? Feel free to write to us at info@himalayanwritingretreat.com or connect with us at +91 73035 16665 (Call/ WA/Signal).

Event Summary


April 19
April 23
Event Category:

Hurry! Only one seat left.

Additional Guests, Single room and Cancellation Policy:

Additional Guests may stay with participants, subject to availability. Their stay is charged at a rate of INR 4000 per night including meals and taxes for a shared room.

Single rooms are not available for this Masterclass.

100% refund if cancellation 4 weeks before event start date, 50% if cancellation is done two weeks before start date, 0% if less than two weeks before start date.

If participants test positive for Covid-19 before travel (RTPCR Report Required), full credit will be held for six months for any future event, subject to availability.

Village Satkhol
District Nainital, Uttarakhand 263138 India
+ Google Map
+91 73035 16665