JOIN US IN ITALY FOR A SPIRITUAL RETREAT YOU WILL NEVER FORGET!
Choose either May 5-12 or June 2-9, 2019.
Connect with like-minded people for a 7 day spiritual experience in beautiful Tuscany, Italy.
This retreat is sponsored and facilitated by Western Spirit Enrichment Center (www.westernspiritranch.com), a 501c3 non-profit spiritual retreat organization in Sedona, Arizona. For more information phone (602) 540-5808 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also access our webpage with all the trip details at https://www.westernspiritranch.com/spiritual-retreats-in-italy/.
Tuscany (Toscana) is a region in central Italy, some say the most beautiful part of the country, comprised of lush green rolling hills, nature reserves, olive groves, vineyards and their wineries, mountains, including the Apennine Mountains, and the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance, known for its history, traditions, culture, and artistic legacy of literature and music, as well as an area of Etruscan and Roman civilization heritage.
Lucca, located halfway between Florence and Pisa, is a mid-size (89,000 pop.) ancient medieval city on the Serchio River in the Tuscany region of central Italy. It was first inhabited by the Romans in 180 BC. Known for the well-preserved Renaissance-era walls encircling its historic city center and its cobblestone streets, the broad, tree-lined pathways along the tops of these massive 16th-century ramparts are a popular pedestrian promenade for strolling and cycling. It includes many medieval basilica-type churches, wide piazze (plazas), ornate palazzi (palaces), interesting museums, and of course, numerous fabulous restaurants serving delicious local Lucchese cuisine. Giacomo Puccini, the great opera composer of La Boheme and Madam Butterfly, was born in Lucca and his house is now a museum.
Dates of tour: Choose either May 5-12 or June 2-9. This is a wonderful time to visit Italy, before the heat and tourists arrive.
Accommodations: You will stay seven nights in an historic and authentic stone agriturismo, located in the beautiful and tranquil countryside of Tuscany, approximately fifteen minutes from the historic walled-city of Lucca. An agriturismo is a rural farmhouse (under this family’s ownership for four generations) that offers guest accommodations and locally-produced honey, olive oil, wine (which are available for purchase), fruit, and vegetables. The lodge, surrounded by a lush-green forest and walking trails, is recently renovated and modern, with full bedrooms, bathrooms and kitchenette facilities. There is also a sparkling pool on the property for cool dips on hot days.
Your hosts & guides: Marian and Garrett of Western Spirit Enrichment Center have been offering (non-religious and non-denominational) spiritual retreats to individuals and couples in Sedona, AZ since 2001 and have experience guiding thousands of guests on their spiritual journey.
Your hosts have visited Italy numerous times and have lived in a small village near Lucca. They are quite familiar with the area, local attractions and enticing restaurants. Marian’s Italian language skills will enable our retreat guests to communicate with the friendly locals.
What it includes: Seven nights’ accommodations; transportation from hotel to tours; eight empowering and life-changing workshops; guided meditations; tours of Lucca and Villa Reale; hiking on the Via Francigena trail; trip to sea-side town; five evening dinners.
What it does not include: Your airfare to/from Italy; airport transportation and transfers to/from hotel; breakfasts, lunches, alcoholic drinks, two dinners, and gratuities.
Cost of retreat: $2,395 per person + tax or $4,295 per couple + tax.
Reservations and Payments: Space is limited on this retreat and reservations are accepted on a first-come first-served basis. A fifty percent (50%) deposit payment is required at the time of your reservation to secure your space on the retreat. A reservation is not confirmed until the initial deposit is received. The balance of your remaining payment is due sixty (60) days prior to the retreat start date. Upon receipt of your initial deposit, you will receive a confirmation letter, a Guest Information sheet concerning details of the retreat, and a Guest Questionnaire. On the questionnaire, you will be asked to choose six to eight workshops of interest to you. Your choices will be meditatively integrated with the other guests’ choices and a program will be developed.
Size of group: A minimum of three guests and a maximum of six. We require a minimum for this retreat to proceed and operate. Western Spirit is not responsible for participants’ airline cancellation fees if the retreat is cancelled.
Sunday evening – We will meet and share a wonderful evening meal as we review the week’s agenda.
Monday 9:00am to noon – two workshops
noon to 5:00pm – lunch and tour of the medieval walled-city of Lucca.
7:30 to 9:00pm – dinner at a local restaurant (ristorante).
Tuesday 9:00am to noon – two workshops
noon to 5:00pm – lunch and trekking on the Via Francigena trail, an ancient road and pilgrim route traveling from Rome to the Alps of France. Dating back to at least the year 725, it was one of the most important roads of travel and commerce from Rome northward.
7:30 to 9:00pm – dinner at a local ristorante.
Wednesday 9:00am to 4:00pm – a visit to the Tyrrhenian Sea in Viareggio or Lido di Camaiore for sunning, swimming and shopping.
7:30 to 9:00pm – dinner at a local ristorante.
Thursday 9:00am to noon – two workshops
Afternoon & evening – free time
Friday 9:00am to noon – two workshops
noon to 5:30pm – lunch and tour of the exceptional Villa Reale, once the home of Napoleon’s sister, the Duchess of Lucca Elisa Bonaparte Baciocchi, and its numerous renowned gardens, waterfalls and botanical rarities.
7:30 to 9:00pm – dinner at a local ristorante.
Saturday 8:30am – farewell breakfast and free time the rest of the day
Optional tours and activities guests can do during their free time:
A visit to nearby Pisa and its iconic leaning tower and nearby Cathedral and Piazza dei Miracoli.
A visit to Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance and the home of the Uffiizi Gallery, the Accademia Gallery (home to Michelangelo’s David), the Santa Maria del Fiore Duomo, the famed Ponte Vecchio (bridge), and the Santa Croce Church, where Dante and Michelangelo are buried.
A winery and vineyard tour of some of the world’s most notable wines. The Tuscany region is known for its elegant and hardy Sangiovese and Vernaccia grapes.
Visit Puccini’s home in Lucca and his summer residence and burial site at Torre del Lago
Take a day trip to visit one or more of the small, quaint hilltop villages in the area – Collodi (home of Pinnochio), Castelnuovo di Garfagnana, Pistoia, San Miniato, Bagni di Lucca and the nearby Ponte del Diavolo, or Vinci (Leonardo’s birthplace).
Cancellation & refund policy: If you have to cancel for any reason and request a refund in writing anytime more than sixty (60) days prior to the retreat start date, your deposit will be refunded, less a fifteen percent (15%) handling charge. If you cancel sixty (60) days or less prior to the retreat start date, all deposits and payments are non-refundable, although your reservation may be transferred to another person of your choosing.
Travel documentation and currency: Participants should be sure that their passports are valid and current, and are good for at least one month after departure from the United States. All prices for this retreat are in American dollars. Participants should investigate the current currency exchange rate and the lowest-cost way to convert their funds to Euro currency, which is used exclusively in Italy, before departing the U.S. or upon entering Italy. Bank ATM machines are available in the area.
Travel insurance: It is strongly recommended that participants obtain travel insurance to protect them against cancellations, health problems, medical expenses, theft, loss of luggage, etc. You should check with your private health insurance provider to determine if their medical coverage extends to overseas travel.
Disclaimer: Western Spirit Enrichment Center reserves the right to change any portion of this retreat program, as necessary.
Exclusion of liability: Western Spirit Enrichment Center, Inc. (“Western Spirit”), a 501c3 non-profit organization, does not accept liability for any loss, damage or expense (including legal expense) resulting from a major event, that means unusual circumstances beyond our reasonable control or the control of our agents, suppliers or vendors, the consequences of which neither Western Spirit nor its agents, suppliers or vendors could avoid even with all due care. Such events include, but are not limited to: war or terrorist activities, threatened or actual, civil unrest, political upheaval, epidemics, riot, industrial action, threatened or actual, adverse weather conditions, fire, flood, earthquake, drought, traffic conditions or accidents, natural or nuclear disaster, closures, labor strikes, unforeseen alterations to schedules, changes imposed by rescheduling, unavoidable technical problems, power failures, or any other event outside Western Spirit’s control, the consequences of which could not have been forecasted, known or avoided.
All retreat participants are required to sign Western Spirit’s liability release form prior to departure. A copy of the form will be furnished to you in advance and must be returned before departure.