Shinrin-yoku (Forest Therapy) Retreat

Back to the roots!

Seven night Vacation–Retreat in a stunning, mostly untouched natural forest in Nagano, Japan. The birthplace of Shinrin-yoku!

Mainly beech trees covered mountains in the northern part of the Nagano Prefecture will be the location for this amazing escape.

Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing) and Mindfulness in Nature techniques training and practice will be the main focus of our retreat, including a session by a local forest therapy practitioner Naoko Ito, most certainly providing an authentic Japanese Forest guiding experience.

Furthermore, the vacation component of this relaxing holiday will include half day and full day excursions to places rich in Japanese history and tradition. Private tours lead by a professional, English speaking, Japanese guide will allow us to soak up the sights but above all, learn about the culture of this amazing land.


Ama Kazariso

A quiet hotel, nestled in the mountains near Odiya Onsen, known as the secret hot-spring, and also the abundant wild forest covering these mountains provide abundant green, natural space,

The nearby Mt. Akashina soaring on the border of Odani village and Niigata prefecture and the northern Japanese Alps stand as the background to this amazing area hence adding yet another awe inspiring element to the landscape. 

Even though Forest Bathing does not mean actually bathing in water, this venue provides the opportunity to do so due to having access to a natural hot spring embedded in the forest located only two minutes by foot from the hotel.

The stunning Fall colours will be at their peek during our retreat, this was the main reason for picking this time of the year. 

A very special attraction for a “Westerner” with an eye for wild plants and trees, this is a discovery paradise because so many new species in the natural local flora which do not exist in the Americas or Europe, and all wearing their best colors!


During the week-long immersion in mindfulness and nature, we will visit different natural sanctuaries in the area, and also take a day trip to the mountains near the city of Nagano for a most amazing Japanese cultural excursion. We will visit the famous and historical treasure that is the Zenkoji Buddhist temple and the Togakushi Shinto religion shrines.

We will also experience a Shinto pilgrimage route with several historical shrines along the way, the Togakushi shrines, surrounded by 600+ year old Japanese cedars representing the close connection between Shinto and nature. Some of these majestic trees are considered sacred, showing the typical markings stating so.

Finally, the trail to the last shrine on this pilgrimage route is lined with these giant cedar trees, adding to sense of awe created by this incredible trail.


Upcoming new dates – 2024

Trip planning assistance: We will certainly help you in planning your trip from beginning to end. Including if you’re thinking of arriving a few days earlier or stay a week or so later to visit other parts of Japan, like Kyoto, Mt. Fuji etc.

Flight deals: Flights to Japan are not that expensive anymore, and we can help you furthermore by find some good deals on airfare.

Packed with activities:

1- Retreat component:

Mindfulness & Shinrin Yoku (Forest Therapy) Program

  • Daily mindfulness in nature guided meditation sessions
  • Daily Forest Therapy sessions in different forest trails
  • MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) basics training and practice
  • Introduction to Tibetan Dream Yoga philosophy and review of western practice
  • One on one coaching sessions (limited time slots available)

2- Vacation component:

Accommodation, Meals, Excursions & Train Station Shuttle Service

  • Full day excursion to Nagano Town Temples and Shrines featuring the splendour of this rich Japanese cultural history and also its deep connection with nature
  • 2 x Half day outings to nearby natural and cultural attractions
  • Outdoor hot-spring pools embedded in the forest
  • 7 nights’ accommodation (Various room type options: Japanese & Western styles)
  • Pick up and drop off to and from Minami-Otari train station
  • Use of surrounding forest and gardens for solitude walks
  • Group activities, creative writing and outdoor games
  • Outdoors Sake tasting evenings
  • Tea breaks with snack
  • Meals & beverages:

Authentic Japanese food provided by the hotel for Breakfast, lunch and dinner. Snacks provided during morning and afternoon tea-breaks. Selection of tea & coffee. Bottled water. Selection of wines and Sake will be available with dinner as well as domestic non-alcoholic beverages.

  • Shuttle between Minami-Otari Train Station and hotel:

Arriving and departing guests will be provided with transportation services between The hotel in the mountains and the nearest Train Station.

  • Half and full day outings to Nagano Town and around Otari. 

Full day excursion to Nagano Town Temples & Shrines. Half day excursions to Tsugaike Nature Park.

  • Accommodations at Ama Kazariso

Different room types are available at the hotel including full Japanese and Western configurations to choose from.


Total price per person= 1+2+3

1- Mindfulness & Shinrin-yoku Program fee:

€ 795.00 /person for the entire week

2- Accommodation & Meals Package:

Includes full board accommodation, plus Onsen (Hot Spring) entrance fee.

From € 130.00 /person /day, depending on room type and meal plan.

(Prices to be confirmed by April 2024. To be booked directly with hotel)

3- Private Excursions:

Includes transportation, private guide fee, lunch and entrance fees when applicable

Package of three excursions: € 595.00/person

Let us know if you are interested by clicking below

pre-register here

For more information about the area and the full day excursions, check out our blog entries here when we visited Japan in 2018

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