Insight Retreat Center

Offsite Retreats

Offsite Retreat Schedule

  • Indoor Retreats & Nature Retreats: Some of the retreats listed below will be held indoors; others may be nature retreats and be held outdoors.  Please read retreat descriptions carefully. 
  • Cost: Retreats are offered freely at no cost to anyone who participates. Most of the financial support for IRC comes from donations participants offer at the end of retreats. Their generosity is what allows others to participate in future retreats.
  • Deposit: A refundable deposit via credit card is required to reserve a space in the retreat. Your card will only be charged if: (1) you are accepted into the retreat and cancel after the cancellation deadline, (three weeks before the start of the retreat), or (2) you are accepted into the retreat and do not attend.
  • For more information, contact the person whose email is provided in the individual retreat listing.
Offsite Retreats

5 day Dharma of Nature with Dawn Neal and Marjolein Janssen. An Insight Meditation Center & Off-Grid Retreats Collaboration
May 23 to 27, 2024  -  Hours: Thursday check-in is from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm  End time: Monday 1:00 pm

Explore the interconnection between the Dharma and the natural world, cultivating wisdom and inviting greater freedom.

This is an overnight camping retreat, we ask that you bring your own tent and camping supplies if you have them. If you don’t own camping gear, are unable to transport it, or don’t have experience setting it up, please let us know in your registration. There are pre-built tent options available which we’ll offer based on need.

This retreat will be held among the backdrop of the beautiful pine forests of Shelterwood Collective in Cazadero, CA.

For more information and to register: Dharma of Nature -- Registration

Requirements: We recommend having a regular meditation practice to get the most out of this retreat.
or Register for Carpooling

5 day Healing the Self, Loving the Self, Forgetting the Self with Matthew Brensilver. An Insight Meditation Center & Big Bear Retreat Center Collaboration
July 9 to 13, 2024  -  Hours: Tuesday check-in is from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm  End time: Saturday 12:00 pm

In this silent retreat, we will explore how mindfulness supports the healing of the self.

Many of the Buddhist teachings help us to tend to painful memory, old pains and the habits that compound suffering. As we become more gentle and loving towards experience, the self becomes less and less of a preoccupation. The more completely we accept ourselves, the easier it becomes to forget the self and rest in an awareness unencumbered by self-consciousness.

IRC is co-sponsoring this dana retreat at Big Bear Retreat Center in the San Bernardino Mountains in Southern California. We are excited to collaborate with Big Bear so our IRC teachers can offer more retreats within the culture of generosity we have at IRC. Registration and more information at Big Bear Registration


or Register for Carpooling

5 day BIPOC Nature Dharma and Insight Retreat with bruni dávila, Ram Appalaraju and Kuan Luo. This is an Insight Retreat Center offering at Big Springs Retreat Center in Sierra City, CA
August 6 to 10, 2024  -  Hours: Tuesday check-in is from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm  End time: Saturday 1:00 pm

This nature retreat for Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) offers a variety of contemplative practices in the northern Sierra Mountains in a rural retreat center. Each day will include meditation, earth-based practices, deep discussions on our relationship to the natural world, and guided exploration of forested lands of the 170-acre retreat center. 

In the beauty and harmony of nature, and having no access to internet and cell phones, we will have the opportunity to slow down, unplug and settle into the refuge that Mother Earth offers to us. Activities will occur outdoors or in the large meditation hall, depending on the weather.

Big Springs retreat center is located in the Sierra Mountains; about 1 hr 45 mins from Reno NV Airport, 2 Hrs 30 mins from Sacramento Airport, or 4.5 hours from San Francisco Airport and San Jose -- Big Springs Map

Accommodations will be either in single rooms in resident halls or, for those who bring their own tent and sleeping gear, on tent platforms among the trees near a bath house with toilets, shower, and sauna.

Photos: Big Springs Area -- Big Springs Woods -- Big Springs Meditation Hall


- Registration opened March 25, 2024 - or Register for Carpooling

  • Requirements: Having an established meditation practice and participated in one silent meditation retreat.
  • Your application and $100 deposit must be received by 5/15/24 to be entered in the lottery. Applicants will be notified about 2 weeks later if they have been Accepted or are on the Waiting List. Subsequent applications will be added to the Waiting List. Your deposit will only be charged if you are accepted to the retreat and cancel after 7/21/24.
  • Questions: Contact the Registrar: Prerana,   prerana@insightretreatcenter.org

6 day Insight Retreat with Dawn Neal and Kim Allen.
August 11 to 16, 2024  -  Hours: Sunday check-in is from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm  End time: Friday 11:30 am

A silent mindfulness retreat with alternating sitting and walking meditation, instruction, dharma talks, work meditation, and practice discussion with the teachers. This rustic retreat center is surrounded by the deep forest of the Santa Cruz Mountains, and includes a beautiful walk uphill to the meditation hall. Suitable for both beginners and experienced practitioners.

Location: Quaker Center, Ben Lomond, CA. More information: Quaker Center website

Accommodations are double rooms with a bathroom shared among several rooms. There are also a few camping spots available.

To reserve a place on this retreat: Reservation List


or Register for Carpooling


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