The Yoga Forest Guest Handbook

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our vision

Conscious Living in Community

The Yoga Forest models conscious living in community as a spiritual practice, offering a unique retreat space for learning and personal growth.

our mission

Deep Green Yoga

We live, work & play harmoniously with nature, creating inclusive abundance and a safe space for personal transformation and authentic self expression. Through intercultural relationships of respect, we weave together local and global visions that inspire positive social and ecological impacts in the world.


community guidelines

Whether visiting, living, or working at The Yoga Forest, I agree to adhere to these principles and practices while I am a member of the forest community.

Striving to display unconditional love in all aspects of life.

Engaging in conscious communication with all brothers and sisters.

Offering mutual support and respect for each other’s individual paths and self-expression

Embracing the principles of Permaculture as a way of life.

Continually refining one’s self-awareness, both internally and externally.

Practicing mindfulness and responsibility for our own thoughts, words and deeds.

Incorporating the Yamas (external disciplines) and Niyamas (internal disciplines) of yoga in our daily lives.

Cultivating an environment oriented to spiritual practice, maintaining a retreat space; respecting silence and privacy for all seekers.

Maintain honesty and integrity to ourselves and others.

Respect for The Yoga Forest vision, practices, culture and family.

 
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community daily schedule

6.30-7.00am   Meditation

7.00-8.30am   Yoga class

8.30-9.30am   Breakfast

1.00-2.00pm   Lunch

4.00-5.30pm   Restorative yoga

6.00-7.00pm   Dinner

observing quiet times

The Yoga Forest is a place of tranquility and peace. We maintain quiet times from 9.00pm to 9.00am to respect the serenity of the natural setting and encourage inward reflection. Lights in communal areas will be switched off and silence is requested. Please respect and show kindness to all staff and other guests.

 

Karma Yoga

As a conscious community, all community members, visitors, staff and guests are expected to clean up after themselves. Please be conscious and do not bring plastic rubbish (plastic bottles, plastic bags) up the mountain with you, if you do, please take it back down to town.

Extra Activities

Rockclimb our unique cliffs, swim and paddleboard in the lake, hike the volcanoes, pamper yourself with amazing treatments and massages, detox in the forest sauna, and enjoy weekly offerings such as Community Kirtan, Ecstatic Dance and Sound Ceremony

Money & Payments

If you are enjoying your time with us and plan to extend your stay, we ask that you pay in advance for any extra days/weeks in cash or credit card. Forest café bills must be settled upon departure. There is an ATM machines in the town of San Marcos la Laguna at Super Tienda Jose behind the Libreria Arco Iris and beside the bridge of the dry river bed.

Health

Our filtered water has been tested by a local authority and is approved for drinking and washing. While we take necessary steps to ensure your drinking water is filtered and food is prepared in a safe and clean manner, we encourage you to take responsibility for your health in Guatemala.

It is common for travelers in Guatemala to suffer from upset stomachs, diarrhea and/or vomiting from exposure to different bacterias. If you do fall sick during your time with us, we encourage you to surrender into the experience and allow it to be an opportunity for growth and learning about the deeper layers of Self. Many insights arrive during times when the body is releasing if we allow the space for it.

We encourage you to regularly eat papaya seeds, probiotic foods such as kimchi, add kombucha vinegar to your water, and take GSE and Activated Charcoal if you have a sensitive system.

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Food

We serve local organic produce whenever is possible and prepare our delicious vegetarian meal with love. We can cater to certain dietary restrictions, such as vegan and gluten free. Please advise management of your needs as well as any allergies.

Internet

We do not have wifi available for guests at The Yoga Forest and recommend that you connect in town prior to hiking to The Yoga Forest to let your loved ones know that you are safely in San Marcos. The Yoga Forest is a unique retreat space where we encourage you to disconnect from modern day distractions and fully immerse in the experience of being here now!

Electricity

We operate on a simple solar electricity system. You may charge your devices in the morning when the sun is shining ONLY between 9-10am. Please put devices on charge in the charger station at breakfast and remove them at lunch, the charging station will be turned off in the afternoons once the sun has passed over the panels or when power is low. We recommend you keep your devices in FLIGHT MODE while with us to maximise your battery life.

Office Hours & Space Holder

Our manager can assist you between 9 and 10 AM each day for reception assistance and access to the safe. The Office is closed outside these times. If you need assistance, please see our Space Holder on Duty, which will be one of our Resident Staff members. They will not have access to the safe, so please plan accordingly. Space Holder on Duty Roster can be found on the kitchen door.

Telephone

Telephones for international calls can be made in the town of San Marcos La Laguna. We also recommend that you give your family our contact details so that you can be contacted in the unlikely event of an emergency back home. Phone +502 3301 1835 and email info@theyogaforest.org.

Weather

Weather in San Marcos La Laguna is usually very mild. Most days the temperature is around 17-24 degrees Celsius, however due to the altitude here at Lake Atitlån (1500m), nights can be as low as 8 degrees.

Guatemala has a dry season (November to April) and a wet season (May- October) each year. July and August are often also dry with a break in the rains. Please pack accordingly for stays during the wet season.

Hygiene

Please wear shoes and keep clean feet at all times, especially in sacred spaces. Wash your hands regularly with filtered water and soap, especially before meals.

Café Space

Our café space is small and easily becomes cluttered with personal items. Please be conscious of picking up your belongings and keeping them in your room, in your bag hung on the office wall hooks, or on the shelves there. Any loose items left in the café space will be put in our LOST & FOUND and are available for anyone to claim.

Temascal (Sauna)

The Temascal is lit once a week and available for use for guests of The Yoga Forest. This is due to the conscious use of wood for fire.

Shower & Washing Supplies

As the Yoga Forest operates using organic farming principles, we insist that our guests use ONLY organic and environmentally friendly bathroom and cleaning products that are biodegradable. Lago Atitlån is an endangered lake and we hope to educate and promote the use of bio cleaning alternatives around the lake basin. Unnatural soaps will be removed from bathrooms. We have natural soaps and moon cups for sale if needed.

Laundry

Laundry can be sent to town for our local ladies to wash your clothes in their homes and will be brought back to you once they are line dry, which can be a few days in the wet season. You can also take your washing to laundry services offering wash/dry service by machine if you prefer, cost is usually Q50 per 12 lb load.

Donations Appreciated

Please help us help others by bringing items to leave after your stay such as Dr Bronner’s products, yoga mats, spiritual and permaculture books and references, musical instruments, and any other items you believe to be useful for a growing conscious community.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us directly at info@theyogaforest.org. 

Namastay in the Forest!