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Healthy Vacations

Plan Your Holistic Travel! A Guide to Mindful Journeys, Health and Spiritual Destinations, Yoga Vacations, Eco-resorts, Vision Quests, Retreat Centers and much more.

Balenbouche Estate
Caribbean Island of St. Lucia
Balenbouche Estate is a secluded Seaside Plantation Eco-resort set within a fascinating natural and historic landscape on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia.  Beautifully landscaped gardens and nature trails surround the 70 acre property, which remains a working organic farm, St. Lucia heritage site, and family residence. Several secluded beaches are within walking distance. Balenbouche offers a different type of holiday experience, away from the resorts and tourist centers, and closer to the natural beauty, history, and culture which make up St. Lucia. Visitors can choose between self-contained one and two bedroom cottages and the antique-furnished rooms in the Plantation House.  Balenbouche can sleep up to 20 guests and is the perfect romantic escape for yoga and artist retreats, weddings, honeymoons, and other special events. Staying at Balenbouche is an unforgettable experience, leaving guests truly relaxed and inspired. For more information call (758) 455-1244 or visit www.balenbouche.com.

Bali Journeys Off The Tourist Track
Bali, Thailand, Machu Picchu and Fiji
For 10 years, as travel agent/tour leader at Journeys Off the Tourist Track, Linda County has been offering both individual travelers and group journeys that enter traditional cultures at a deep  level. Travel to Thailand and stay at a beautiful beach resort;  kayak to caves, enjoy snorkeling, massages, visit a Buddhist forest monastery, and explore Bangkok on the river. Or journey to Bali and explore ancient sites of exquisite beauty, ritual and ceremonies. Participate with remarkable traditional healers and master artists. Enjoy extraordinary experiences not generally available to tourists, and free time to pursue your own interests. Other upcoming trips include Machu Picchu and Fiji, or you can book individual journeys year round.  For more information call (415) 485-0247 or visit www.balijourneys.com.

Earth Wisdom Retreats and Pilgrimages
Central Cascades, Oregon
A pilgrimage is a spiritual journey seeking truth in response to heartfelt yearnings or questions. In the spirit of anicent traditions, individuals travel to sacred sites seeking vision, clarity, guidance, or inspiration.  Earth Wisdom Retreats provide a structure for deepening one's relationship with Soul through a connection with the natural world. The earth and nature are the guiding force behind the process, and become the source for wisdom, vision, guidance, and transformative process. Travel through the green and lush back-country of Oregon’s Central Cascades, experience mossy forests, volcanic mountains, rushing rivers and towering waterfalls. Trips may include whitewater rafting, hiking, kayaking, swimming & lots of time for rest, relaxation and comraderie. Call (510) 338-0135 or visit www.aboutsoulworks.com.

Four Springs Retreat Center
Lake County, California
Four Springs was established as a retreat in 1955 and has become known by people around the world as an inspirational setting for reflection, study and personal transformation. It is the ideal place for personal retreats, workshops and seminars. Four Springs is located on  280 secluded acres of woods in the foothills beneath Mount Saint Helena, in southern Lake County. The lodge, cabins, art and meditation buildings, library and seminar room, together with pool, grape arbor, meadows and trails combine to create a refuge from daily concerns. There is lodging for thirty in single and double occupancy rooms. All of the clear, refreshing water comes from natural springs on the retreat. Four Springs offers nourishment to the soul, space and time to discern inner possibilities that might otherwise go unnoticed. For more information call (888) 428-5189 or visit www.foursprings.org.

The Growing Edge Center
Big Sur, California
Poised on the cliff, over looking the exalted Pacific directly below, The Growing Edge is a place of inspiration, magic and vitality--an ideal setting for rest and rejuvenation. Enjoy quiet space, panoramic views, private beach cove, and miles of trails and pristine wilderness nearby. Affordable Bed and Breakfast-style retreats, wellness programs, and extended stays available year round. Small groups welcome. An organic, continental breakfast is included. A communal kitchen is available for those wishing to prepare meals. Services include: Psycho-Spiritual Support; Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultation; The Art of Self Care; Massage and Steam Treatments; Introduction to Yoga and Meditation; Doorway to the Wilderness. The Growing Edge offers the ideal balance between personal engagement and quiet space for reflection. For more information please call (831) 667-2366 or visit www.growingedge.org.

Mount Madonna Center
Watsonville, California
The next time you are contemplating the need for a change of pace, consider a stay at Mount Madonna Center. From its beginnings in 1978, Mount Madonna has grown to become the largest spiritual retreat center on the West Coast, drawing thousands of guests each year to its beautiful location overlooking the Monterey Bay. The Center is dedicated to providing an educational environment that fosters self-development, spiritual inquiry, and education. In addition, Mount Madonna Center serves as a residential community for about 100 people who are dedicated to spiritual practices that stem from the tradition of yoga, including postures, breathing practices, meditation, and selfless service. Residents volunteer their time and energy to offer classes, maintain the facility, and care take the property. The Center is open year round and offers a variety of programs, residential education opportunities, trainings, and retreats. For information call (408) 847-0406 or visit www.mountmadonna.org.

Pleasant Valley Sanctuary
N. San Juan, California
Pleasant Valley Sanctuary is set amidst the rolling Sierra Nevada foothills that line the Yuba River canyon. In addition to picturesque views, meadows full of wild flowers, and a beautiful stream cascading over countless waterfalls, the acreage includes a booming organic garden, an orchard, a couple of very fine little round cabins and platforms with furnished tents. It is a simply wonderful setting for deepening your connection to Spirit and developing a steady practice of spiritual disciplines and healthful living. Classes on wide-ranging aspects of meditation, yoga postures, and spiritually focused living are offered daily. Morning and evening meditations, gourmet vegetarian meals, and kirtans (group chanting) are a regular part of the experience. For more information visit www.pleasantvalleysanctuary.com or call (530) 292-3089.

Rancho Encantado
Quintana Roo, Mexico
Rancho Encantado is an eco-resort on beautiful, tropical Laguna Bacalar in Quintana Roo, Mexico. Serving individuals, couples, families and groups who seek an alternative to huge resort hotels, Rancho Encantado provides a tropical haven for ecologically-minded, culturally-curious travelers, and for archaeological excursions, birding, lakeside tranquillity and beautiful private casitas. After a day of trekking through the jungle exploring nearly unknown Mayan sites or swimming and kayaking on the lake, relax in their Jacuzzi under the stars, surrounded by night-blooming jasmine. Get a massage from an expert therapist in a thatched massage hut over the water. They can also arrange private and small group excursions to little-known Mayan archaeological sites and rainforest preserves, led by expert guides using Rancho Encantado as a luxurious base. The resort is also an ideal place for workshops, group retreats, yoga vacations, etc. For more information visit www.encantado.com or call (800) 505-MAYA.

Shambhala Ranch Retreat
Ukiah, California
Shambhala Ranch is a custom-built retreat and workshop center nestled in 140 acres of rolling hills, located halfway between Ukiah and the coastal town of Mendocino. The lodge is constructed of redwood, which lends warmth to walls, beamed ceilings and trim throughout. There are windows everywhere, letting in the sunlight and views of the surrounding hills. The spacious meeting room, which can be used for workshops, seminars, yoga, or indoor receptions, has its own sound system, and opens onto a large deck and lawn. The bedrooms are light and airy. The grounds include a spring-fed pond that’s excellent for swimming, a large garden, and a redwood forest. Shambhala also provides a pondside hot tub with a massage table under the trees, for the ultimate relaxing experience. For more information call (707) 937-3341 or (415) 389-8787, or visit their website at www.shambhalaranch.com.

Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm
Grass Valley, California
Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm is a year round retreat, located on 80 acres of beautiful, private land in the rolling foothills of the Sierra Nevadas. We offer a warm, supportive place in which all are welcome to discover the universal teachings of classical yoga, passed down, undiluted, through a lineage of yoga masters. Our practice is rigorous, involving a pure lifestyle, meditation, devotion, acceptance of diversity, and recognition of the one spirit in all. The Ashram was a favorite place of seclusion for Swami Vishnu-devananda, the founder, and has been an oasis of retreat and contemplation for over thirty years. The Ashram offers day, week, and weekend retreats, special workshops, events, and great vegetarian food. Yoga Teacher Trainings, daily classes, workstudy programs. For more information and a free brochure call (530) 272-9322 or visit their website at www.sivananda.org/farm.

Tibetan Buddhist Retreat
with Sogyal Rinpoche
With his remarkable gift for presenting the heart and spirit of  Tibetan Buddhism in a way that is both authentic and profoundly relevant to the modern mind, Sogyal Rinpoche is one of the most renowned teachers of our time, and the author of the groundbreaking book, The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying. His retreats follow a basic daily format which include morning guided group practice, teaching presentations by Sogyal Rinpoche and senior Rigpa students, afternoon study groups, and a variety of training, discussion and practice sessions. Ample time is set aside for meals and relaxation. Various types of lodging are available. For more information call (415) 777-0052 or visit www.rigpabayarea.org.

Tree of Life Rejuvenation Ctr
Patagonia, Arizona
The Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center is an innovative, educational, spiritual retreat center and holistic medical “spa” committed to healing and awakening. Founded and directed by Gabriel Cousens, M.D., an internationally celebrated spiritual teacher, holistic physician, and author, the Center blends a unique, transformational alchemy of ancient spiritual practices, modern holistic healing techniques, live-food nutritional protocols, rejuvenating detoxification, educational programs, and organic environmental technologies. Organic gardens contribute to the gourmet, vegan-vegetarian, live-food cuisine. Their beautiful, high-desert mesa in the Patagonia Mountains occupies 166 acres in Patagonia, Arizona. This vibrant setting with majestic views of pristine mountains supports your discovery as you move through Yoga, meditations, breathing exercises, hiking, sweat lodge, or just taking time to relax. For  more information, please call (520) 394-2520 or visit www.treeoflife.nu

Trekking the Inca Trail
to Machu Picchu
Travel to Peru, South America in a spiritual adventure journey led by Serenity Transformational Tours. Nourish your spirit in the breathtaking High Andes and enter a magical world with time to enjoy the natural splendour of the Inca Trail and explore the esoteric mysteries of Machu Picchu. At the heart of every traveller is a yearning for a world beyond the world we “know.”  Aware of this, one can make a quantum leap beyond common modes of travel to explore a parallel journey, one that will transform the inner landscape of one’s Being. Then the world becomes more personal, and one can find a profound sense of connectedness. And purpose. This is an incomparable pilgrimage for the person wanting more--something extraordinary--from their travels. For more information visit www.transformationaltours.com or call call (800) 944-2655.

Vitality Fasting Retreats
N. California & Mexico
Vitality Fasting and Rejuvenation Retreats led by Ed Bauman, Ph.D. are self-healing vacations held in a beautiful, pristine setting where the air is fresh, the water pure, and the light clear. In the summer, they are held in the mountains of Northern California, so that participants can leave work, toxins and stress behind. In the winter, they are held in sunny Mexico or other tropical venues. A fast provides the time to reconnect with one’s healthy self, let go of bad habits and reclaim a healthy diet and lifestyle. Fasting is a time-honored spiritual practice that helps people let go of unwanted habits, creating wider access to direct spiritual experience. Designed to cleanse the body, mind, and spirit, the Vitality Rejuvenation program includes juice fasting, gentle exercise, massage, meditation, relaxation, and fun. Participants receive loving support to explore core issues around food, body care, nourishment, and self-love. Fresh organic fruit and vegetable juices, nutrient-rich broths, and herbal teas comprise the daily fasting fare. For more information call (707) 795-1284 or visit www.baumancollege.org.

Wellspring Life Enhancing Ctr
Mt. Shasta, CA
People come to The Wellspring Life Enhancing Center to heal their body, strengthen their mind, and enrich their spirit.  Wellspring offers individualized healing retreats and lodging in the life-enhancing environment of Mt. Shasta. You’ll enjoy the magnificence of five acres of pristine land amidst towering forest pines which comfort the spirit, and free the mind and body to sources of well-being and healing. Through our Integrated Health System, we educate people about the truth of self-healing. We guide you in discovering your path to wellness through our carefully blueprinted combination of natural life enhancing techniques. Our experiential program of detoxifying and nutritionally balancing your body will assist you in transforming non-productive lifetime habits. For more information call (888) 551-1207 or visit www.healingretreat.com.

Women’s Quest Retreats
with Colleen Cannon
Women’s Quest Retreats provide a mixture of traditional and alternative training methods. They empower women from the “inside-out” through athletic endeavors, journaling, yoga, meditation and other activities. Women’s Quest is open to women of all ages, backgrounds, and athletic abilities, from beginning walkers to seasoned athletes. (Sisters, mothers, and daughters often attend together.) The activities are supportive, friendly, and non-competitive. As a world champion triathlete, Women’s Quest founder Colleen Cannon discovered that physical activity is a powerful, underutilized tool for personal development, balance and creativity. For more information call (303) 545-9295 or visit www.womensquest.com

A Woman’s Way Retreats
Sedona, Arizona
A Woman’s Way, located in beautiful Sedona, Arizona, provides a space and sponsors a process that assists women in discovering that they already are the women they aspire to become. A Woman’s Way retreats offer a unique opportunity for women to be guided by gifted facilitators, each an expert in her field, in an intimate setting surrounded by other women and supported by experienced staff.  Women attend these retreats for many reasons--to look within, to reconnect with their forgotten selves, to learn to trust their instincts, to discover their creative potential, to find their unique path--but all will find themselves inspired by a desire to learn and grow. With between 20–50 women attending each retreat, there is ample time for one-on-one attention, as well as time for solitude and quiet reflection.  For  more information, please call (928) 282-7044, email info@awomansway.com or visit www.awomansway.com.

Yoga Journeys with Ulrika
Mexico, Thailand, Belize
A Yoga Journey is a great opportunity to get to know new yoga friends while visiting magical parts of the world. Ulrika has been leading yoga retreats around the world for the past six years including Belize, Mexico and Thailand--and locally at Esalen Institute in Big Sur. Every destination, international or local, is a journey to a pristine and remote setting where the natural atmosphere is conducive to inner exploration and a deepening of one’s yoga practice. Three healthy meals a day are provided along with lodging, two yoga classes daily, plus optional excursions. Immerse yourself in Anusara Yoga and Vinyasa Flow Practice. All Levels are welcome, beginners through advanced. For more information visit www.yoga-journeys.com or call (707) 942-6639.


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