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7 Days Magical Forest Yoga & Writing Retreat, Guatemala

Relax for a week of inspiring landscape, higher perspectives, and beauty all around. Join us for a sacred journey in self-exploration through yoga & writing at The Yoga Forest in San Marcos La Laguna, Guatemala. We invite you to pause and exhale, take an honest and creative journey inside, and connect with your inner voice. Within each of us lies the adventure of opening deeper into our hearts and animating our own sacred expression.

Where

San Marcos La Laguna Sololá, Sololá GT 00

Type of Event

  • Retreat

Yoga Styles

Levels

When

Feb 7 to
Feb 13
2015
10:00 amto05:00 am

Price

$695

(First four sign-ups receive 10% discount: $625)

Full Description

RETREAT HIGHLIGHTS

Surreal & inspiring location with panoramic views

Daily meditation & yoga practice

Daily self-exploratory spontaneous writing sessions

Scenic outdoor thatch-roofed yoga shala & writing space

3 delicious organic vegetarian meals/day

Mayan sauna

Breaks for swimming, hiking, or relaxing

6 nights stay in shared, beautiful eco-friendly cabanas

Maximum of 14 participants

OUR SACRED JOURNEY

This transformative retreat offers a creative inner adventure through meditation, daily yoga and the use of daily spontaneous self-exploratory writing as an expressive channel to reveal insight from within.

We provide a relaxing space for you to breathe, stretch, connect, and express from your own heart center while sharing in the sacredness of the journey with other kindred souls. We take a step out of our daily lives and into our innate nature to allow for healing and self-discovery, surrounding ourselves with beauty and inviting openness. We create the space to release emotional and energetic layers, to open into deeper self-truths, and to reveal the joy of enchanting and animating our lives from our core.

Inspired by the four shamanic directions, we call in practices that help us to empower ourselves as the storytellers of our lives, and open further into the voices of our heart.

Meditation & Yoga

With the space for daily meditation & guided yoga, we bring our awareness and our intentions back to ourselves. We reconnect with the direct sensory experience of our breath, of our motion, of our stillness, of our mat, and become increasingly aware of the power of the energy we bring to each moment. As we become present to the moment, we become fully present to ourselves.

Four Directions

We will thematically bring in the four directions insights and practices for an inspired journey. The four directions – embodied by the serpent, the jaguar, the hummingbird, and the eagle – beckon us into an adventure of higher levels of perception and experience. They call us to dis-identify from the self-limiting perspectives and stories that hold us out of harmony with ourselves and the world, and bring us back to our heart. We look beyond what seems real, to become aware of how we help shape our reality and our experiences. We are invited to recognize our role as storyteller and envision our lives into greater beauty.

Outer Creative Expression

We practice dynamic and creative self-exploratory exercises with the opportunity to share with the group. We provide the opportunity to release our inner voices, speak our experiences, enliven our imagination, and connect with each other.

Inner Story Exploration

With raw expression, we play at exploring the inner stories that limit and shape us – what are the lenses we look through, limiting beliefs we narrate, character roles we play, plots we repeat, and words that entrap us? We seek to transcend these limiting perceptions. Releasing the energy caught inside of these “creative blocks” is a spiritual practice of opening into more of who we are.

SAMPLE DAILY FLOW

Guests may will arrive anytime on Saturday, February 7th to relax and settle in. We’ll have a brief opening session in the evening. Our daily flow will begin on Sunday, 8th February.

6.15- 7.00 Sadhana Meditation

7.00- 8.30 Holistic Hatha Flow/Vinyasa Flow

8.30- 9.30 Delicious Breakfast

10.00-12.30 Spontaneous Writing Exercises/Discussion

12.30-1.30 Delicious Lunch

1.30-2.45 Restorative/Yin Yoga

3.00-5.45 Spontaneous Writing Exercises/Discussion

6.30 – 7.30 Delicious Dinner

7.45 Candlelit Meditation or Satsang*

*some evenings

We’ll include some morning breaks to relax, hike, swim, or visit the village. We will complete the retreat before noon on Friday, 13th February in time for afternoon shuttles to Antigua or Guatemala City.

LOCATION

In the rural highlands of Guatemala, The Yoga Forest perches high in the jungle overlooking Lake Atitlan and three majestic volcanoes.

San Marcos la Laguna is a small Mayan village on Lake Atitlán in the western highlands of Guatemala. It has become a Mecca for international travelers attracted by its beauty, tranquility and diverse options for spiritual exploration and therapy. It is often quoted as the most naturally attractive and peaceful village on the lake.

The Yoga Forest is a 25 minute gorgeous hike into the valley from San Marcos, with an entrance of stone steps leading to this surreal spot, where the adventurer is richly rewarded with dreamlike views.

Inspired by the creative union of yogic and permaculture principles, this location provides an eco-friendly living experience in harmony with nature.

ACCOMMODATION

A stunning location hidden away in the valley behind San Marcos La Laguna, The Yoga Forest offers beautiful shared cabins with comfortable beds, panoramic views, delicious vegetarian meals, yoga, and Mayan sauna in dream surroundings.

Retreat guests will stay in shared cabanas of up to 4 people. Made of bamboo frames, adobe walls, cypress, and thatched palm roofs, each cabana features Guatemala furniture, Mayan fabrics, and Indian textiles. Cabana living is attuned to the natural electricity-free rhythm of day & night.

The Yoga Forest aims to help grow and inspire deep green yogis and yoginis. The Yoga Forest has been built using various natural and traditional building methods. We use solar energy for simple electricity and hot water, natural grey water filtering systems for our kitchen and outdoor shower. We cook outdoors with a beautiful rocket stove and barrel oven installation. We blend our smoothies using a bicycle blender with much joy. We use compost facilities with outstanding views and minimize waste.

This is a real chance to disconnect and re-treat yourself to the experience of going inwards. Internet is available on one main computer, and electricity is used only in the cafe. We encourage you to connect into your natural rhythms during this retreat.

FOOD

All meals are vegetarian. The Yoga Forest is dedicated to growing food organically and understanding the organic nature of our relationships to our food, our environment and the people within it.

INSTRUCTORS

Aimee Hansen (Self-Exploratory Writing)

As long as she can remember, Aimee Hansen has had a curious attraction to playing with words and metaphors. Ten years ago she began sneaking away from the office for creative writing classes at Central Saint Martins College in London and has since published travel articles and a short story.

Longing for more authentic and meaningful plot in her life, she left her corporate job in London to travel around the globe for two years. In 2012, she landed in Guatemala. Her intensive self-studies with an intuitive mentor who called her "the storyteller", and her own passion for human insight, have led her on a fascinating journey into the nature of truth and authenticity. Her teaching explores the power of the stories we tell within our lives and invites a creative adventure in perception.

Currently she is writing a novel about the storyteller within and children's stories. She also holds a 200+ hr yoga teacher certification. She is inspired and humbled by witnessing how something raw and honest in the human spirit aches to open, when given the invitation. She began Storyteller Within retreats to share in the inspiring experience of exploring our humanity.

Hayley Tennyson (Meditation & Yoga)

Hayley Tennyson is the Founder of The Yoga Forest, with a deep passion for conscious green living and yogic lifestyle practices, and desire to bring to life the union between yogic philosophy and permaculture principles in one gorgeous setting. After studying with the founders of the permaculture movement, Hayley completed her 200hr Yoga Teacher Training with her mentor Yogrishi Vishvketu in Rishkesh, India. Furthering the journey, she completed a 500hr Yoga Teacher Training with School Yoga Institute in the Sacred Valley of Peru in 2014. Along the yogic journey she has also completed Level 1 & Level 2 AcroYoga training at AcroYoga Montreal.

Her wealth of culinary experience from working around the world as a private chef for 7 years and her knowledge of holistic nutrition have inspired the kitchen at The Yoga Forest.

INCLUDES

Daily guided meditation

Daily guided yoga

Daily self-exploratory writing sessions inspired by the four shamanic directions

6 nights accommodation at The Yoga Forest (shared – up to 4 people)*

Delicious vegetarian breakfast, lunch, & dinner

Mayan Sauna

*Inquire if you have a strong preference for private room.

Excludes:

Flights, transport to & from the retreat, travel insurance, extras

GETTING THERE

The closest international airport is Guatemala City, four hours away from San Marcos.

You can arrange a private shuttle with us or regular public shuttles await outside the airport and run to Antigua (cost $12), a nice place to rest & relax overnight if you wish.

The village of San Marcos La Laguna is easily accessed via shared shuttle or private shuttle, morning or afternoon, from either Guatemala City or Antigua (3-4 hours).

IMPORTANT INFO

Check-in: Noon
Check-out: Noon

What to Bring:

Bring a backpack (rather than suitcase) & spirit of adventure! Please also bring your own biodegradable toiletries, a towel, and layers of clothing to suit varying temperatures during the day and night. Natural insect repellent is nice to have and a headlamp is a necessity. The Yoga Forest is a 25 minute hike out of town, so we advise bringing anything you might need on hand.

Flight & Transport:

Unless you contact us to arrange you a private shuttle at an extra cost, you are entirely responsible for transportation to & from the retreat.

Passport:

Please note a valid passport is required to enter and depart Guatemala. If flying from the US, or through it, you will need to provide evidence of a departure within 90 days of arriving. Tourists will receive a visa stamp upon arrival, normally of 90 days.

Travel Insurance:

You are fully responsible for attaining travel insurance for your visit to Guatemala.

Payment:

Payment accepted: Paypal. No credit cards.
Deposit to reserve your space: 50%.
Full payment required 1 month prior to retreat.

Cancellation:

75% refund if cancel by 2 months before retreat start date.
50% refund if cancel by 1 month before retreat start date.
No refund if cancel within 1 month of retreat start date.