Ready for a retreat that offers the perfect balance of introspective time and adventurous activities?
Experience mystical Machu Picchu, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, on an 9-day, 8-night adventure specifically for highly sensitive people and introverts.
Wake up with mindful meditation and movement as you greet the stunning backdrop of the Andes Mountains and ease into your day.
Take in the sites of the Sacred Valley visited by few and take a solo hike to a nearby waterfall.
Befriend an alpaca and learn traditional weaving techniques of the local women at a cooperative in Chinchero.
Connect in a meaningful way through ancient rituals and vibrant culture as you learn about real Peru from our local guide.
Support education for Peruvian children, as both our accommodations and guide services fund NGO projects.
Take $100 off when you sign up with a friend or family member with code BUDDY100.
Final deadline for registration is December 15, 2019.
The world is full of amazing, life-changing experiences and many of us introverts and HSPs love adventure.
Yet, not everyone wants to travel alone and most group travel comes with its own set of challenges for us introverts and HSPs. We may worry about sensory overload, too much social interaction, feeling pressured by a group, feeling accepted… the list goes on, right?
This is why we offer a better way that helps take the anxiety out of travel – an opportunity to connect with others while honoring your needs for personal space and freedom.
We allow plenty of alone time to recharge. Traveling with a group can feel overwhelming if you always have to be with other people. We structure our schedules so that you have substantial downtime to do anything your inner heart desires.
We reduce the likelihood of sensory overload. We do our best to balance any activities that entail more sensory stimulation with ample free time the day before and after to mentally prepare and recharge. Many of our group activities are off-the-beaten-path to be able to enjoy the beautiful peace of the natural world. If a popular excursion is included in your trip, we do our best to visit at the least busy times and provide free time the day before and after to recharge. For example, Machu Picchu is spectacular, but it is a popular site. We take this into account so that you have personal space and time before and after this adventure.
We support self-guided activities. If you want to go on a solo excursion or meditate alone, you got it. No questions asked and we’ll help you arrange activities as you desire. Group activities are optional and we set the tone from the start to ensure that everyone can be themselves.
We minimize the small talk. Well, we can’t ban small talk, but you will be among like-minded folks that want to connect at a deeper level and understand that small talk can feel draining. We offer group reflection time to debrief the retreat activities and discuss other meaningful topics related to introversion and sensitivity. We encourage quiet hours during certain times of the day, in order to support a peaceful space.
We create authentic travel experiences. We select locations that we know will offer a genuine connection to the natural beauty and culture of a place. Our experiences allow the time and space to connect to yourself and fellow travelers.
We encourage you to be yourself. We set the stage from the start so that you can decline an activity or leave the dinner table early. We value each person’s individual needs and encourage you to say no when something is not for you. We ask all guests to honor your wishes.
What do I need to know about flights?
**Please do not book your flight until you receive confirmation that the minimum number of participants has been met (approximately 4 months prior to trip start date).
Length and Cost: You will fly into Cusco (CUZ) at Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport. You should be prepared that flights from most major U.S. cities can entail 12-16 hours (2 stops) of travel on average and may cost $600-800 USD.
When to Arrive/Depart: Plan your travel so that your flight arrives in Cusco by late morning on Day 1 (or the night before). We'll depart from Cusco at approximately 1:00pm on Day 1. The precise time will be determined once all travelers' flight itineraries are received.
Please plan your return flight so that it departs after 2:00pm on Day 9. You may want to plan to spend at least that afternoon and evening in Cusco and depart the next day.
If your travel falls outside of group transfers, you will be responsible for your transportation costs.
Flight Tips: Wait until about 2-3 months before your trip to book your flight for best pricing.
If your dates are flexible, both Google Flights and Kayak.com offer features for searching with flexible dates.
For domestic carriers in Peru, we recommend trying to book with Avianca or LATAM. Peruvian, VivaAir, Sky Airlines, etc. are not as reliable and often have delays and hidden fees.
Is Cusco part of our itinerary?
We will not be touring Cusco during the retreat, but we encourage you to spend a day or so visiting. Because of its high altitude, we recommend you visit Cusco at the end of your trip rather than before it so that you have time to acclimate. Even if you have a night in Cusco before the retreat begins, you may not have the energy to sight-see.
How will the altitude affect me?
Every traveler is different with respect to how their bodies respond to elevation change. Out of the places we will visit, Cusco has the highest altitude at 11,154 feet. Urubamba Valley is 9,420 feet and Machu Picchu is about 7,972 feet. Travelers may experience fatigue, sleeplessness, headaches, nausea, and shortness of breath during the first several days. This can be minimized by drinking lots of liquids including coca tea, avoiding alcohol, and not overexerting yourself the first day. Your doctor may prescribe you sorochi, a pill for altitude sickness, to take before you arrive as a precaution. If you have any medical conditions, it is recommended that you discuss the effects of altitude with your physician before traveling.
Do you have hotel recommendations in Cusco?
Hotel Niños is an adorable, modest boutique hotel that supports 600 Peruvian children with school and medical expenses. Both Niño Hotels (Meloc and Fierro) are good options, but we will depart from Niños Meloc on Day 1.
You may also check TripAdvisor or Airbnb for other options in the cute, quieter neighborhood of San Blas.
What is the climate like?
November to April is considered to be the rainy season in the Sacred Valley. January receives the heaviest rain and rain is minimal in March and April, so you can expect little rain. When it does rain, it typically does not last all day and the green lush valleys are spectacular. Daytime temperatures in fahrenheit are typically in the 60s and nighttime temps can drop down to 40s. Please pack accordingly.
What is the level of difficulty for planned excursions?
It's important to note that the effects of the altitude can make normal activities much more challenging. Machu Picchu can be challenging for some, as it has many stairs and is steep in some parts. That said, we can take it slow to accommodate various levels of fitness. Tours such as the ruins at Ollantaytambo, Maras, and Moray require minimal walking.
Can you meet my dietary needs?
Yes, please inform us of your dietary preferences and restrictions so that we can plan accordingly.
Do I need a passport or visa?
Peru does require a current passport valid for a minimum of six (6) months after your travel dates. Peru does not require a special visa to enter.
Do I need travel insurance?
We strongly recommend and encourage the purchase of travel insurance. Read What to Know Before Buying Travel Insurance for a quick overview of the features you want to look for in a travel insurance policy. Basically, you want to be sure your policy includes trip cancellation/interruption, medical coverage, emergency evacuation, lost baggage and flight insurance. In theory, you’re supposed to buy insurance as close to the date of your first trip payment as possible to ensure coverage for all expenses and eliminate any risk of claim denial for pre-existing conditions. Many use a site like www.insuremytrip.com to purchase travel insurance.
Do I need vaccinations?
No vaccinations are required to enter Peru. However, we strongly recommend and encourage you to consult with your doctor or visit your local travel clinic to ensure you are up to date with all relevant vaccines.
What do I need to pack?
A packing list is provided in this Pre-Departure Packet, as well as other answers to many questions you may have.
We'll stay at El Santuario, a private property of Munay Sonqo, which is nestled in an oasis of native plants and fruit trees and nourished by a magnificent waterfall. Munay Sonqo is also an NGO, which uses retreat profits to support educational permaculture projects to support and provide food to the local community.
Both double and single occupancy are available for the retreat. You do not need to sign up with a friend for double occupancy. We'll pair you up with a compatible roommate.
Guest rooms are modest, yet comfortable. Each is a reflection of the Peruvian culture in the Sacred Valley and offers quality beds and linens.
Munay Sonqo serves three (3) delicious meals per day with locally-grown, mostly organic, and lovingly prepared ingredients. Dietary needs and restrictions can be met.
On Day 2, we'll go the home of our guide for a traditional pachamanca lunch, a Peruvian stew cooked in the earth.
On Day 4, we'll take a packed lunch from the retreat center for our excursion around the valley.
Two (2) lunches and one (1) dinner during our Machu Picchu excursion are NOT included in the trip cost. Breakfast before Machu Picchu IS included.
You will fly into Cusco (CUZ) at Alejandro Velasco Astete International Airport. You should be prepared that flights from most major U.S. cities can entail 12-16 hours (2 stops) of travel on average and may cost $700-800 USD.
The retreat center, Munay Sonqo, is located about 1 hr and 45 minutes from Cusco. A private return shuttle will be provided between Cusco and the retreat center.
Note that the retreat center is remote and the nearest town, Pisac, is roughly 30-40 minutes away and approximately a $20-25 taxi ride. We've included several group excursions to offer you opportunities to see the valley, as well as time to relax at the retreat center or visit other sites on your own. There's a nearby waterfall to visit about a 45-minutes hike from the center.
-More than 90 days before retreat start date, 100 percent of your payment previously made may be applied to another retreat.
-60-89 days before retreat start date, 75 percent of any payment previously made may be applied to another retreat, excluding your deposit. You will forfeit 25 percent of the price of your retreat, excluding the deposit. Example: If your retreat cost is $2000 with a $400 deposit, and you’ve paid in full, $1200 may be applied toward a future retreat.
-15 – 59 days before retreat start date, 25 percent of your payment previously made may be applied to another retreat, excluding your deposit. You will forfeit 75 percent of the price of your retreat. Example: If your retreat cost is $2000 with a $400 deposit, $400 may be applied toward a future retreat.
-If you cancel 14 days or less before retreat start date, you will forfeit your entire payment.
Twin bed with shared bathroom (2 per bathroom). Rooms are spacious and have high-quality linens.
See El Santuario Room Diagram for layout. You will likely be placed in Casa Piscina, possibly Casa Blanca.
Share with a friend or we will pair you up with a compatible roommate!
Spacious bungalow with loft reading space, kitchen, bathroom, and patio. Bungalows are spacious and have high-quality linens. Great option for couples/friends.
If you'd like to stay in Casa Misky as a single occupancy room upgrade, the cost is $2695.00.
See El Santuario Room Diagram for layout (Casa Misky)
Private single occupancy room with shared bathroom (nearly private bath). Rooms are spacious and have high-quality linens.
See El Santuario Room Diagram for layout. Single occupancy guests will likely be placed in Casa Blanca, which has 6 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms.
All guests will need to meet at Hotel Niños Meloc in Cusco by 1:00 p.m. A private shuttle will transport us to Munay Sonqo Retreat Center in the Urubamba Valley. We will arrive around 3:00 for a welcome snack and then have time to settle in before our opening circle and gentle yoga at 5:00. The circle will include introductions, intentions, and some gentle stretching and meditation to move our bodies and ground after traveling. We will then have our welcome dinner at 7:00.