Travel Mindfully: A Permaculture Retreat Should Be Your Next Vacation

What is permaculture? “The conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive ecosystems, which have the diversity, stability and resilience of natural ecosystems,” says one of its founding fathers, Bill Mollison. Developed in the 1970s, permaculture is an agricultural philosophy that allows us to use the resources we have around us to their fullest potential. Forty years later, you can choose to stay at a permaculture retreat center virtually anywhere in the world.

Learn how to live mindfully and better yourself and the planet with one of these retreat centers:

1. Inanitah

Located on Isla de Ometepe in Nicaragua, this earth-based spiritual community and transformational living and learning center is inspired by the path of freedom and aliveness. You can stay as a guest for a short-term stay, or volunteer for a minimum of one-month stay.

2. The Yoga Forest

Located on Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, the Yoga Forest was founded as a sustainable living experiment, through a desire to live simply, greenly, and in communication with nature. Retreats include everything from yoga teacher training to shamanic healing to permaculture design.

3. PLACE for Sustainable Living

Located in Oakland, Calif., PLACE for Sustainable Living is a public-serving, experiential learning center to showcase and foster sustainable living practices, urban homesteading, community resiliency and preparedness, social justice and art expression.

4. Rancho Delicioso

Located in Montezuma, Costa Rica, Rancho Delicioso is creating an organic community of eco-minded artists, who offer an all-inclusive, weeklong Permaculture and Yoga Course, with an option for longer-term volunteers.

5. Paititi Institute

Located in Manu National Reserve, Peru, Paititi Institute for the Preservation of Ecology & Indigenous Culture is a nonprofit organization devoted to the integration of indigenous wisdom into everyday life. With ongoing classes, such as plant medicine, breath work, yoga, permaculture and chi gong, there are many things to learn and experience.

6. Ecoaldea Huehuecoyotl

Located in Mexico, this community was founded in 1982, but goes back farther than that. The early founders traveled the globe as surrealist artists and beatniks for the first half of the century, and organized a theater troop-community, protesting against nuclear power, environment degradation and social injustice.

7. Valhalla Movement

Located in Montreal, Canada, the Valhalla Movement builds and develops a practical educational site focused on sustainable solutions relating to human needs such as food, shelter, water, energy and social structure. With projects and eco building, you will be learning how to create a better world anywhere.

8. Pulau Macan

Located near Jakarta, Indonesia, Palau Macan is a small eco lodge that spans across two tiny islands in the middle of the Java Sea, only two hours by boat from Jakarta. With 12 rooms / sea-front huts and a few tents, all constructed out of natural materials, it’s the perfect place to get away mindfully.


Have a favorite permaculture retreat that we missed? Join the conversation and share it with us on Facebook and Twitter!



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Brittany Nelson

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