Some of a writer's best ideas come from the senses and feelings of being enveloped by a certain place. The spots that inspired some of the world's most famous authors are now perfectly preserved museums—but a few are available for rent.
We rounded up a list of six famous writer's retreats where you can stay for a night, week, or even a month. Our picks include the real-life neverland that inspired Jim Barrie's Peter Pan; Jane Austen's restored family home in Bath, England; and a New Mexico retreat frequented by the likes of Aldous Huxley and D.H. Lawrence. The literary journey offers stops in Scotland, England, Jamaica, and the United States. Keep scrolling to see more.
Nineteenth century English novelist Jane Austen apparently first found her writer's muse at this home in Bath, England. As her family's residence from 1801 to 1805, the home is where Austen began work on her early and unfinished novel, The Watsons. Today, the space is a restored, two-bedroom flat with rustic touches and a central outdoor courtyard. Current owners Maxwell and Anna have incorporated their own touches with generational antiques and shelves of books. Nightly rates start at £152.
It's easy to see how the enchanting and remote island of Eilean Shona is called the real-life neverland. Author J. M. Barrie is thought to have written both the screenplay of Peter Pan and the ghost story, Mary Rose, while staying for summers on the island in the early 1900s. Located on the western edge of Scotland—about a four-hour drive from Edinburgh or an overnight train from London—the former hunting ground is now a collection of cottages available for rent. Plan to stay for at least one week, with plenty of on-site activities to keep you busy. Prices start at £750/week.
The enduring story of James Bond begins on the north shore of Jamaica in Oracabessa Bay. It was here, in a house he designed himself, that former WWII intelligence officer and journalist Ian Fleming wrote all of the Bond novels. Designed in the local style, the main house features three bedrooms, with traditional louvered shutters, covered lanais, and a private pool to make the most of the island sun and breeze. Rates vary based on season and packages. About the site, Fleming once said: "Would these books have been born if I had not been living in the gorgeous vacuum of a Jamaican holiday? I doubt it."
The Vermont home built for British poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling in 1892 is now a historic rental complete with the original furnishings. Named "Naulakha," the landmarked property is where Kipling wrote several of his works, including The Jungle Book and The Days Work, as well as The Seven Seas, and Captain Courageous. In fact, guests at the property can sit at the very desk where the famed author wrote these stories. Options include a four-bedroom main house and a detached, two-bedroom carriage house, along use of the gardens and Kipling’s original clay tennis court. Prices start at ~$300 for the carriage house.
There must be something about the Sangre De Cristo Mountains in New Mexico that attracted several writers over the years, including English writers Aldous Huxley and D.H. Lawrence. Two historic cabins from the area are today housed on the grounds of a eco goji berry farm and retreat near the town of Taos, about two hours by car from Albuquerque. Current owners Elizabeth and Eric note having found watercolors and letters in the attic of the D. H. Lawrence cabin, which is today a one-bedroom rental on Airbnb. Aldous Huxley at one point lived in another cabin on the property and also built an outhouse that is intact. Both structures, along with eight other rentals, sit on 40 lush acres featuring multiple ponds and orchards. Nightly rates start at $68.
"I bought a small house and garden in Pacific Grove...," said American author John Steinbeck in a 1940s letter published in his later book, A Life in Letters. Today known as 'The Steinbeck Cottage," the one-bedroom 1920s structure offers original architectural features and is located next to a smaller writer's studio, also available for rent. The coastal location is within walking distance to Monterrey and the Pacific Ocean. Prices start at ~$2,000 per month for the smaller studio, not including fees.
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