New Mexico, fondly known as the Land of Enchantment, is a place steeped in history, art and culture. This is a place where art ignites through land, and expressive experiences offer much more for visitors beyond postcards.
People are thirsty for immersive, hands-on, educational, enriching experiences. Whether it’s for a few hours or a few days, they want to “see, do and feel” the essence of a place. A visit to New Mexico and one of its retreats is a great way to awaken the creative spirit. From soul-nurturing workshops to abstract painting retreats, these four experiences offer something for anyone looking to expand their horizons in the Land of Enchantment.
If you’re an art enthusiast looking for a unique and creative experience, Santa Fe offers some of the best art retreats in the country. With its stunning natural beauty and rich cultural heritage, this city has long been a hub of artistic inspiration and practice. Whether you want to learn new techniques or immerse yourself in a supportive environment with like-minded people, there is a retreat to suit your desires in Santa Fe.
Looking to nurture your soul? The retreats in Abiquiu and Taos might be just what you need. The landscape and energy of both of these places has drawn seekers of spirituality for many years. Words can’t capture the essence of Abiquiu and Taos: only a visit to these immensely beautiful places will help you understand the power of these places.
Santa Fe, New Mexico is a destination that has long captivated and inspired artists from around the world, so it is no wonder it was voted as the #7 best city in the world for art lovers (Travel + Leisure 2022). This city’s natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and diverse artistic communities provide a unique setting for retreats.
Janna Lopez is an accomplished author, sought-after psychic writing guide, and retreat leader. People come from all over the world to work with Janna for her psychic intuition about what keeps them stuck, and learn her proven method to “unearth writing freedom forever.” Utilizing Santa Fe’s stunning landscapes and natural beauty, visitors leave with completely new perspectives and relationships to their writing.
Lopez covers topics such as how to write your own book, overcoming writer’s block, and therapeutic writing. She “blends” the beautiful setting of Santa Fe with core writing themes to help students discover new inspiration and creative pathways beyond imagined limitations. From “Writing Poetry in the Park”, “Hike ’N Write”, to “Memoir on the Mountain,” each 3-hour curated experience guarantees profound creativity and productive breakthroughs. She also offers the option of picnic baskets filled with wine or beer, cheeses, chocolates, and fruit.
Andrea Cermanski’s Painting Beyond Boundaries abstract art retreat in downtown Santa Fe allows participants to learn or advance their painting practice in an historic adobe studio right across from the Santa Fe River. Students come from near and far to connect with their creative selves in one of the most artistic cities in the world. Cermanski teaches students how to paint abstractly using a variety of techniques and methods she developed after 30 years of painting experience. Her studio and gallery space is located just one block from the legendary Canyon Road, which affords participants the opportunity to visit hundreds of galleries to find inspiration.
Students share their goals and support each other in this small retreat (limited to six) in which Cermanski provides ample personalized coaching. The retreat is designed for all levels of painters, and gives students the skills and confidence to continue a practice of abstract painting upon return home. By the end of the workshop, students feel renewed by learning a multitude of new techniques and ideas that will launch their work in new and exciting directions.
Santa Fe Painting Workshops’ downtown location is ideal if you would like to stay in the heart of the city. The Inn on the Alameda is right next door, and The Drury Plaza Hotel is only a block away. You can also find plenty of vacation rentals and airbnbs in the area. For a list of the best accommodations in the area, check out this article about where to stay in Santa Fe.
If you are looking for a retreat set in a stunning desert landscape, Ghost Ranch offers the perfect opportunity. Ghost Ranch is located one hour North West of Santa Fe. Its mission is to “steward a place of great beauty to nurture the human spirit and mind, discover the sacred, and care for creation.” The landscape of Ghost Ranch—made famous by painter Georgia O’Keeffe-encompasses over 20,000 acres of rock walls, vivid colors and vast skies.
They offer a variety of programs, including multi-day art, writing, photography, and wellness retreats. The workshops cater to all skill levels. There are several different mediums available, including oil painting, watercolor, pastels, encaustic painting, and mixed media. Accommodations include a campground and a variety of cabins and other lodging.
Antara is a family-run business that sits on five acres of land within walking distance of the breath-taking town of Taos. Their mission is “To support the evolution of consciousness by integrating the sacred into everyday life.” The retreats are focused on assisting participants to discover the obstacles within as an effort to connect more deeply with one’s “most essential Self.” Antara offers private and multi-day group retreats.
Meals are nutrient-dense, vegetarian and locally-sourced in order to nourish the body for the work that will be done. They are stewards upon the land which they sit, and are growing food at the impressive elevation of 7,000 feet. Their goal is to eventually grow all the food offered at the retreats using biodynamic farming methods, and shift to renewable resources such as solar and wind. Their vision for the future is hopeful, and its what fuels the good work they do in the world.
From the vibrancy of artistic Santa Fe, to the colorful canyon walls at Ghost Ranch, to the misty mountain tops in Taos, all travelers can find inspiration, healing, and hope in enchanting New Mexico.
I am an artist out of Santa Fe, New Mexico who has been painting for almost 30 years. I love to teach first-timers as well as experienced painters who need a creative reboot. My work has been displayed in several galleries around the country, and I have a Bachelor’s in Art History, a Master’s in Art Education, and had my work in a show juried by Judy Chicago. The idea of getting more people painting makes me light up as I want to inspire more people to express their creative selves and tap into a place of joy and calm.