The amount of promising psychedelic research coupled with growing discontent and unease can make anyone want to book a healing retreat as soon as possible.
Choosing something so important as an Ayahuasca retreat is no easy feat. One would look to previous Ayahuasca retreat reviews to find the right healing center for them. Whether you’re looking for a low-frills, laid-back, value for money retreat, an authentic Ayahuasca journey with a traditional Shipibo healer deep in the Amazon jungle, or a pampering spiritual retreat in a gorgeous villa not far from your home, something exists for your needs.
In fact, with so many options, it’s easy to get lost. Reading Ayahuasca retreat reviews can help you gain some valuable information to help you make your decision. Yet retreat review sites like Retreat Guru, AyaAdvisors, and Safe Ceremonies have thousands of reviews of hundreds of different Ayahuasca retreats. Traditional Ayahuasca ceremonies in the Sacred Valley of Peru are one way to go. However, a more secular, bare-bones approach may be a better fit for you or your wallet. Legality, distance from home, price, the number of ceremonies on offer, the quality of the accommodations - there are many factors to consider when choosing the right psychedelic experience for you.
Whichever of these retreats you’ll choose, we always suggest that you contact the retreat center to ask for references from previous clients. If you know you want to go to Peru for your Ayahuasca retreat, check out our guide on retreat centers in Peru so you can know what to expect. If you prefer to stay within US borders, we have a guide on US Ayahuasca retreat centers and what you can expect from that experience. Wherever you’re going, before you board your plane, read through our guide to making the most of your Ayahuasca experience.
Behold offers a unique seven-week program. Compared to some other Ayahuasca retreats, which focus solely on the Ayahuasca ceremony, and perhaps a few days before and after, Behold Retreats hold the view that the Ayahuasca experience is about more than the Ayahuasca tea itself. While the Ayahuasca vine is the medicine, one needs to prepare for the experience to make the most out of the healing. Knowing what to expect, and adjusting the experience to meet your needs, is instrumental for the process.
During the preparation and follow-up phases, you will spend three to four hours per week preparing for and then integrating your retreat.
Your actual retreat and ceremony are highly customizable according to your needs and desires. Behold hosts beautiful retreats in Costa Rica, Mexico, Peru, Portugal, Netherlands, and Spain. Behold is a new player to the Ayahuasca retreat space, but it is a true psychedelic society composed of coaches, consultants, facilitators, and integration experts.
The Behold coaches and consultants will help you figure out which location is right for you and what type of modalities will best support your healing (such as yoga, massage, working with additional plant medicine such as magic mushroom, and so on). Behold also works with different types of psychedelic therapy. If you’re unsure if Ayahuasca is right for you right now, you may choose a San Pedro ceremony, psilocybin truffles, or another type of plant medicine.
The cost of your transformation retreat varies depending on the retreat location and length you choose, and if you decide to enroll in their 7-week life-accelerator coaching program which helps you prepare and integrate remotely with experienced psychedelic integration coaches and therapists. Retreats include accommodation, local, fresh, organic meals, yoga, meditation, breathwork, 1-1 sessions, 3-4 medicine ceremonies, massage, and healing modalities such as acupuncture and dead sea mud bathing, for example.
You can request a free consultation call with Behold Retreats below:
Vanessa says of her experience with Behold:
“The Behold team was accommodating and engaging in the way they conducted the sessions, putting forward themes and reflections for me to ponder, leading to great conversation and teachable moments.”
Another review stresses the importance of the lead-up to the Ayahuasca ceremony:
“The preparation I did with Behold Retreats made a huge difference to my experience - I would not have had the same journey nor made as much progress. The guidance I received was instrumental to my success!”
Behold’s unique private experience is intended primarily for leaders, entrepreneurs, executives, and other trailblazers ready to achieve profound breakthroughs. If you’re looking to achieve deep healing but can’t disappear from your life for weeks at a time, Behold’s program is for you.
Soul Quest offers a down-to-Earth three days, two nights Ayahuasca healing experience with basic accommodations and an option to upgrade to private rooms. You won’t find anyone claiming to be an authentic shaman from Iquitos. Still, you will experience yoga, shadow work workshops, integration groups led by experienced coaches, and several natural healing modalities such as Family Constellations and IV therapy.
A team of medical professionals oversees the ceremonies in addition to integration coaches and ceremony facilitators.
Soul Quest is perfect for those who have already experienced Ayahuasca or other medicine such as psychedelic mushrooms and want to deepen their experience. It’s also convenient for those with limited time who can only spare a weekend without leaving US borders.
One five-star review raved:
“I have gone to Soul Quest twice. Both times I have come out a better version of myself. The Staff are really angels on earth.”
Another five-star review adds:
“Everything about Soul Quest exceeded my expectations, both as a retreat facility, and as far as my own personal transformational experience. The staff and volunteers are some of the most beautiful and special people I have ever met, and they truly believe in their mission as a church, healing both people and the earth!”
There is a donation requested for the three-day, two-night retreat (including two ceremonies, meals, yoga, Rapé, and integration).
Another good psychedelic retreat option for Americans who don’t want to venture too far from home is the Pachamama Sanctuary retreat center in New Hampshire.
The glowing reviews prove you don’t need to go all the way to Machu Picchu to experience a truly healing Ayahuasca retreat center. One ceremony attendee says,
“I cannot say enough good things about this place! The staff was excellent, the ceremony was transformative and cleansing.”
Another recent review echoes the sentiment, writing:
“There’s a ton of love, power, non-judgment, and peace at Pachamama.”
The three-day, two-night weekend retreat includes meals, yoga, Shamanic holotropic breathwork, and two nightly ceremonies with Mama Ayahuasca.
If you’re looking for authentic shamanic healing, consider making the trip to Peru. At Mai Niti, you’ll be guided by true Shipibo maestros (shamans) and curanderos (healers). Meals follow the Ayahuasca diet according to the Shipibo tradition, prepared by a true Peruvian chef.
During your retreat, you can choose to have one-to-one sessions with Shamans. You’ll be given a personalized treatment plan and access to plant baths and saunas. You can also choose to learn to make Shipibo crafts, explore the jungle, and go on dolphin-watching excursions.
Mai Niti also offers Shamanic Apprenticeships, extended stays, and plant dietas for those looking to go particularly deep or heal deeper issues.
Here’s what retreat goes had to say about Mai Niti:
“Lucilla and Leonardo are incredibly compassionate, understanding and respectful healers that know exactly what each person needs in order to help them get the most out of their experience here.”
“Mai Niti was the perfect introduction to plant healing and ayahuasca. The whole environment was incredibly nurturing and authentic. Everything was done with the utmost respect and understanding for the process, with so many years of tradition and training behind the maestras.”
The cost for this retreat covers accommodation, meals, a private room, and five or six ceremonies with Mother Ayahuasca. There is also an option to attend San Pedro ceremonies. Mai Niti is a fantastic option for those with time on their hands who want to experience the Amazon jungle in addition to this great psychedelic medicine.
Gaia Sagrada prides itself on being a safe place for women. They make sure to have women present in every ceremony. In addition, the shamans stay until the end of the ceremony every time. Their retreat center is just half an hour away from a hospital, and they set a day of rest between ceremonies to give you the time to integrate your journey properly.
The retreat centre has hundreds of five-star reviews on websites such as AyaAdvisors, saying things like:
“I attended a 12-day retreat at GS back in Nov./Dec. 2017 and it was the very best decision I made in my entire almost 60 years of life.”
Another woman writes,
“I attended a 12 day retreat in January 2020. It was a profound experience. As a female i felt very safe and supported. Staff and participants were solicitous but not intrusive. One of the best experiences was the sharing in our family group of participants[...] Attentiveness from staff was notable, as were the lovely grounds, housing, food, and hot tubs!”
The price for the 12-day retreat ranges depending on the accommodation you choose. The price includes sauna, hot tubs, workshops, and between five to seven ceremonies, with a day of rest between each one. Gaia Sagrada also runs psilocybin mushroom retreats in Jamaica.
The Spirit Vine retreat impressed both those new to the Ayahuasca journey and those with more experience. One person who visited the retreat center wrote on AyaAdvisors,
“I have had many ayahuasca ceremonies in the past 6 years with various tribes in different countries where I was just given the medicine without a lot of explanations and integration techniques. The approach Silvia uses in her center is different and it was more productive for me. There were workshops at the center that gave me tools to work with during the ceremonies.”
“If you are thinking of doing ayahuasca for the first time and you are scared, then this is the safest place to do it, because the staff is so professional, the tea is measured personally for you to find the right dose. Even before the ceremony during the workshop I was guided so gently out of my fears.”
The retreat includes workshops on topics such as soul retrieval, meeting your inner child, and realigning with your higher self, in addition to yoga and group sharing sessions.
The price for the retreat ranges depending on your accommodation and includes four Ayahuasca ceremonies in addition to the workshops.
Arkana Spiritual Center in Sacred Valley provides a container for deep healing work led by experienced Shipibo shamans. Your Ayahuasca retreat will be complemented by sound healing, yoga, and breathwork.
One participant says of their experience,
“Each of us that were there at Arkana came in as separated people, and by the end of the retreat, you couldn’t help but leave as a family.”
A mother who attended the retreat with her son wrote:
“The ayahuasca ceremonies, San Pedro ceremonies, and sapo ceremony all worked together to help me break through the defensive barriers of my past conditioning and experience a new realm of spiritual understanding and expression.”
The retreat includes your meals, accommodation, three Ayahuasca ceremonies, and any additional healing modalities included in the retreat.
If you’re looking for a more luxury Ayahuasca experience at an affordable price, consider Soltara. Access to two semi-private beaches, air-conditioned rooms, flower baths, and creative spaces for self-expression help you to relax and integrate your journey.
Soltara offers a variety of supportive healing modalities, such as art spaces and supplies for creative expression (coloring books, instruments, dance sessions), yoga, meditation, and breathwork.
One happy participant wrote,
“I was extremely impressed with the installations; the experience and skill of the facilitators; the experience and skill of the Shipibo healers; and the chef's creative, healthy and delicious offerings. Soltara is a serious and dedicated healing center.”
Another said of their experience,
“Everything was curated from beginning to end with absolute focus on every detail, and for that I am grateful.”
The price for this retreat ranges depending on your accommodation type. The retreat includes three Ayahuasca ceremonies.
If you want to experience an affordable, intimate Ayahuasca retreat near Macchu Picchu, head to Sapan Inka. Groups are small, and as one participant writes, the effect is noticeable:
“I felt welcomed and safe from the moment I stepped on to their property. It was also evident that careful consideration is given to every detail, from the size of the group, to dosing, and the order of the ayahuasca and San Pedro ceremonies.”
One first-time journeyer said of her experience,
“Erik and Nilda were very helpful, caring, and experienced. It was my first time and I never felt unsafe. The retreat I went on including some trekking and therapy sessions so I felt very connected to them and the whole group.”
Included are two Ayahuasca ceremonies, one online preparation session, one San Pedro ceremony, accommodation with a private bathroom, and meals.
If you want to be led by a shaman in your Ayahuasca experience, learn more about the Shipibo traditions and help support the protection of the Shipibo people and traditions, check out Caya Shobo. A team of shaman healers with a minimum of 15 years of experience lead the ceremonies.
Each retreat is limited to ten guests for a truly intimate experience. There are also women’s-only retreats for women who want to surround themselves with feminine energy. A personalized plant dieta will be prescribed to you.
One participant wrote on Retreat Guru,
“I was always made to feel there was someone available to help me go through whatever I needed too, whenever I needed to. I felt very safe, both physically and emotionally while in the hands of the staff and volunteers at the center.”
Another reviewers writes,
“Our stay at Caya Shobo was wonderful. The staff was very friendly and helpful, the room was nice, the food was amazing and the maestros were incredible.”
Included in the retreat is a standard room, eight ceremonies, and all additional plant therapies.
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