Gooluwatu writer’s retreat

Gooluwatu is a four-bedroom holiday house in Goolwa Beach, South Australia. It is a 7-minute walk to the beach and 2-minute drive to the local shopping centre.

The name is a combination of Goolwa (which means ‘elbow’ in the local Ngarrindjeri language) and Uluwatu in Bali (a place known for its surf and temples).

Its owners, Lynette Washington and Mark Maxted, offer the house to a writer or group of writers at significantly reduced rates for writing retreats.

The first retreat was offered in 2019. Below are some of the comments from retreat recipients in 2019:

“So productive! I now have a first draft completed. Some days I wrote until my eyes went blurry….such a peaceful place and everything was within walking or riding distance….can’t wait to get back to my novel now I have a solid first draft. Thanks again Lynette – it was so incredibly productive being there in your beautiful house.” D.M. Cameron, author of Beneath the Mother Tree 

You can read D.M. Cameron’s blog about her retreat here.

“Goolawatu is the perfect writers’ retreat. The accommodation is very comfortable, immaculately clean, the bedrooms pleasant and the living areas very spacious, light-filled and relaxing. The house is very well equipped – everything you could possibly want has been thought of. Location is quiet and peaceful, very close to the beach but away from the busier areas – the perfect spot for a few days of creative reflection and inspiration!” Anne Green, author

“It was a wonderful indulgence to stay at the peaceful Gooluwatu and write. We sat at the huge dining table with our laptops, dictionaries, notebooks, cups of tea and snacks spread out around us and wrote and wrote and wrote. I have never written so many poems in the space of a week! I loved exploring the riverbank, the main street and the galleries for inspiration, and of course the delicious cafes. Thank you for this wonderful opportunity. ” Kristin Martin, author of To Rhyme or Not to Rhyme?

“Gooluwatu had everything we could have wanted and more! Large, comfortable living area with lots of lovely games and books to stimulate the mind after a day spent writing. We felt very welcomed and spoiled. Added bonus was its proximity to a stunning local beach. Can’t wait to come again.” Alys Jackson, author of This Land Belongs to Me


The retreat must be taken outside of peak periods (school holidays and public holidays). The length of the stay is negotiable, but there is a 5 night minimum. Dates can be negotiated, and will be dependent on availability.

The house can sleep up to 9 people, but is best suited to up to 6 people if there are no couples. Bedding configuration:

  • 1 king sized bed
  • 1 double bed
  • 4 single beds
  • 1 trundle bed.

You can learn more about the house by checking out the Airbnb listing here. 


The writer is responsible for all travel expenses, and all personal expenses including food. The retreat offers accommodation only.

The writer/s is responsible for paying:

  • $100 cleaning fee
  • $40 per night for 1-2 people, $70 per night for 3-4 people, $90 per night for 5-9 people.


  • If 1-2 writers stay in the house for 7 nights, the total cost would be $380.
  • If 3-4 writers stay in the house for 7 nights, the total cost would be $590.
  • If 5-9 writers stay in the house for 7 nights, the total cost would be $730

If you have any questions, please email Lynette at

We also take bookings at standard rates on Airbnb. 


You can apply at any time, but we advise you to apply in advance as the house books up quickly.

To apply please: