Going on a Nature Wellness Retreat has become something that everyone is talking about. The value of the wellness industry alone is now over $ 4 Trillion, the growth of which has been twice as fast as the global economy. People all around the world are investing in their health and wellness in a multitude of different ways. One such way is to dedicate time on retreat to reconnect with yourself.
What is a nature wellness retreat?
A nature wellness retreat is, quite simply, time spent in nature. A nature wellness retreat takes many forms at Londolozi. The original form is a classic safari that takes you into nature by way of two game drives each day. But equally, it could be just the simple ways to connect with nature each moment that you are here. An outdoor shower with the birds chirping. A dip in your plunge pool with an elephant feeding in the river below. The chance to disconnect from technology and enjoy long periods of silence. More recently, we have pioneered a new way to adventure on a nature wellness retreat by way of crafting 5-day, tailored healing experiences – be it at the Londolozi Healing House retreat, a tracking retreat with Boyd Varty specifically tailored to men or the now famous African S.T.A.R retreat with Dr. Martha Beck.
Londolozi has long since partnered with skilled and specialised wellness practitioners who have years of experience in their chosen fields – all of which is geared to guiding each guest through the process in the most beneficial and transformative way.
Retreats then and now
Retreat. What does that word mean to you? For some, it may mean to back away, to turn-tail, or to give ground. It may have a negative connotation – a failure to advance. For others, it may mean to withdraw, to retire, or to ebb – a passive shrinking into something in order to regroup and try again. Or to try a new way. Something that holds a positive feeling to it.
Nowadays we speak about retreats in different ways. Where once they were a part of battle, now they are a part of wellness and of prioritising a relationship with yourself. You can retreat into a cocoon of many different types. A specific room in your house, a custom-designed retreat space or – my personal favourite – nature. And this retreat can take many forms… it can be something unplanned – part of a daily or weekly routine. Or you can schedule it, invest time and money with someone who’s willing to craft a specific retreat experience for you. You can retreat for the purposes of reconnection or for healing. Retreat into stillness wherever you are. Retreat alone or with loved ones and people you trust in order to share the experience.
A long history with nature wellness retreats
At Londolozi, we have been creating nature wellness retreats for almost 100 years. Our nature wellness retreat story began when Charles Boyd Varty and Frank Unger bribed a train driver to stop at siding 61 and stepped off into this vast and unexplored wilderness that would later be known as Londolozi. For these two men, retreating into nature would become advancing into a deep connection with it that would set them, and all of us, onto a trajectory that would guide people on a journey into their own true nature almost a century later.
Nature as the main event – how we incorporate it into your experience
There is a simplicity to the way that we bring nature into a nature wellness retreat. The idea is simply to arrive into nature and spend some time in it. It’s about the awareness of the subtleties of nature and how slowly our own bodies, minds, hearts, and souls wake up to nature. There is no forcing of nature. It has a gentleness and yet a strength that slowly works its magic.
The first and most obvious way is to simply be in the nature. Not only do you get to experience this while out on twice-daily game drives where you have the opportunity to interact with wild animals in their natural habitats, but each of the five Londolozi camps is deeply set in nature. Where some other offerings might be more focused on the proximity of your room to the dining area or closest shops, we prioritise the view from your room, the way the trees gently shade your private deck, the outlook over the Sand River, and the horizon beyond. We pay close attention to things like birdsong, the rushing of the river, and silence. Should those be disturbed, we too get disturbed.
Simple, natural elements are also critical in bringing nature to a nature wellness retreat. The sounds of nature play a huge part in every nature wellness retreat. The auditory effect of natural sounds has been shown to have a huge effect on regulating our nervous systems. Waking before dawn to the dawn chorus or simply sitting quietly in firelight, listening to the night sounds and the crickets have incredibly healing effects on our bodies.
Why choose a nature wellness retreat at Londolozi?
There are very few places left in the world where you can truly be surrounded by wildland. We have protected the land from human influence, from development, or from degradation. Londolozi has always been a window into the pure essence of nature. And by choosing Londolozi as the destination for your next nature wellness retreat, you will have the opportunity to simply be in this expansive wilderness.
Here, we allow nature to be the main event. Everything else is just in support of what nature has to offer. We maintain a connection to nature throughout your entire experience – like eating out in nature – under a canopy of trees with monkeys playing overhead or under a huge starry sky. We celebrate nature in every game drive through storytelling and teaching. Silence and time for quiet contemplation are respected. We understand that there are secrets found in stillness. We value the art of finding the perfect spot to stop and watch the sun go down and we allow the animals to share their silent wisdom with us during each encounter.
Join us on your own tailored retreat
Whether you choose to come on a classic Londolozi safari (here’s a quick guide on how many nights makes up the perfect safari) or you choose to experience one of our crafted, 5-night nature wellness retreats at the Londolozi Healing House I can assure you that nature will show you the way back to a life more peaceful, more meaningful and a life more full of joy.