Silent April – an insight journey.
Silence, Meditation, Mindfulness & Happiness Retreat in Namibia.
Spots available between 12. April to 27 April 2022.
Stay as long as you want.
Namaste. We are open to everyone. Break away from technology. Choose the length of your stay. Be happy.
There is no better place than our Silent April Camp 2022 to rejuvenate your body and mind with nature, meditation, and mindful movement to guide you into presence and stillness.
Vipassana (Insight) meditation is based on mindfulness, which is always available, everywhere, without limit or cost. The challenge is how to realise it. The answer is that we need to find ways to cultivate mindfulness that lead to insight.
This retreat is an invitation for beginners and experienced meditators not only to practise Vipassana but also to join other activities and experience different types of meditation, mindfulness-based activities, yoga, and spending time with yourself.
For beginners, this retreat offers simple, easy and different techniques to start meditating. For experienced (Vipassana) meditators, the retreat provides the frame to deepen their insight.
Mindfulness is developed by regular walking and sitting practice, by maintaining awareness during normal activities, such as eating, showering, dressing, and supported by noble chatting with other participants and meditators at certain times and with the facilitator.
This retreat invites you to stop running and to calm down.
Start your day with a mindful sunrise walk, a gentle yoga session, or a guided meditation and a healthy breakfast before taking a stroll in the gorgeous, natural Namibian surroundings of our retreat camp at Brandberg and join some of the offered activities – check out the programme below.
Come and simply enjoy walking without needing to arrive anywhere, grounding and nourishing ourselves with every step, benefitting from the positive impact of a forest bath amongst the Ana trees of the Ugab riverbed or experiencing different textures and sensations under your feet during a barefoot walk on the barefoot trail. Did you know that the Ugab was flowing this year 8 times? The area around the Brandberg looks extraordinary beautiful after all this rain this year.
Walking in silence is a powerful way to reconnect deeply with our bodies and with the earth. Each step made in mindfulness can bring us back to the here and the now. The rhythm of walking calms the mind and we become present, open to see the vastness of nature and the beauty of life.
At the end of your retreat, not only will you be a healthier, happier, lighter you, but you will also have the knowledge required to set you on track for a vibrant new healthy and happy lifestyle that will move your life forward.
The retreat will be held in a silent and introspective atmosphere. This is a technology-free retreat. This retreat will require from you to hand in your cellphone for the period of your stay. We will take pictures every day that we will share. Your phone will be returned to you after breakfast on the day you leave.
Participants are welcome to join and choose their length of stay (minimum 2 nights).
BENEFITS AND HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS RETREAT
Unique opportunity to experience the benefits of noble silence and meditation
Shut off your technology and experience how amazing it feels to unplug
Being at an ideal place to unplug, slow down that fast pace, and get back in touch with nature
Peace and quiet for the mind, refreshing energy for the body
Develop breath awareness
A destination far away from home and close to nature
Drop out of “normal life” for a period
Have a wonderful time learning a different practice than your own
Experience new techniques and tools for stress reduction
Rediscover yourself after maybe a long while of feeling disconnected
Get a good and deep stretch of your connective tissue and improve your flexibility through Yin Yoga
Find sleep in an area with no light or noise pollution
Suitable for yoga beginners or the more experienced
No specific meditation practice or experience required
If you have any questions you can just send me a whats app or give me a buzz.
RETREAT IN FACTS
Silence Retreat, Meditation Retreat, Yoga Retreat, Mindfulness Retreat, Walking Retreat, Happiness Retreat
Minimum 2 nights
Brandberg, Namibia, Brandberg White Lady Lodge
Camping in comfort with different upgrade options up to chalet – all single use
3 meals a day – vegetarian food (vegan options, gluten free options, dairy free options, sugar conscious, fat conscious)
Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Laughter Yoga
Meditations (guided, semi-guided) – sitting, lying, walking
Mindfulness-based activities, forest bathing (Shinrin Yoku), barefoot walk, nature walks, elephant tracking
Free gift to take home
WHAT MAKES THIS RETREAT SPECIAL
Do you love to spend time in nature and do you like the idea of a retreat that combines silence, meditation, yoga, walking, mindfulness and happiness?
Can you hear the call that it is time to spend more time with yourself?
Are you prepared to learn more about yourself?
If you answered yes to these questions, then this retreat is definitely for you!
The simplicity of our retreat – the walking, the vastness of nature, the power of silence – combined with our retreat programme will bring you right into your heart and centre you.
When were you last silent? When did you last choose just purely to listen or simply enjoy the silence? To listen is to focus our attention on feeling, to notice and accept noise, and allow presence to wash over us. When this happens, we can not only access greater states of health and creativity but also develop our own wisdom.
But this space for you to be in silence isn’t all that is on offer.
You will also get the chance to experience new tools and techniques like mindfulness-based activities, forest bathing (Shinrin Yoku) and more. This will allow you to experience your optimal and precious time away from everyday and stressful life.
This is a chance to experience the Vipassana (Insight) journey on your own terms. Most retreats are based on a fixed duration and often only for long stays. We prefer to offer you the unique opportunity to choose a length of stay that suits you and a flexible programme of activities. In this way, beginners and busy people also have the opportunity to get to know this form of silence.
Are you ready to enter into this silent retreat?
WHAT ELSE TO KNOW
Please understand the programme as an offer to participate. You are more than welcome to skip certain activities if you are not comfortable with anything. But please maintain the noble silence.
You are welcome to join as a couple or as friends. But remember: please maintain the noble silence.
We will keep your cellphone(s) safe for you. We will take pictures on a daily basis that we will share with you afterwards. We will provide a WhatsApp/Cell number that your loved ones can contact in the event of any emergency.
We will return your phone(s) to you after breakfast on the day you leave. But please keep in mind that the signal at the venue is not great. You will be able to get better signal back at the main road and even better signal in Uis.
We offer healthy and nutritious vegetarian food. If you can’t live without meat, please bring supplies. However we do encourage you – maybe for a change – to be meat-free for the time of your retreat period. Otherwise, we can store your meat for you, provide a fire / pan and prepare it for you. The vegetarian food will be plenty, yummy and filling … you will not starve, that’s for sure :-)
We do provide a range of different smoothies and juices. There will be a blender and a juicer on site. If you want to add specific ingredients like ashwagandha, turmeric, moringa etc. feel free to bring your own. We do not serve any alcohol. If you don’t want to be without your drink, please bring supplies. We can keep it cool for you. The bar at the Lodge also serves a range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
We kindly ask you to smoke only in the designated area.
We will have a table with books to read and browse for the time of our retreat – feel free to contribute any book that might be interesting for others. Please put your name/sticker into the book to avoid confusion.
There will also be the opportunity to make use of templates from the colouring book and pencils. Feel free to bring any other items that you would like to use during rest / read / study periods.
You might never have heard of forest bathing (Shinrin Yoku) before – don’t worry. We are not running naked through the Ugab or around the Brandberg ;-) It is more about “absorbing the forest atmosphere.” This practice will encourage you to simply spend time in nature combined with a mindfulness- based experience. Forest bathing takes place at a slow and almost meditative pace.
Your tent will be equipped with a camp bed, mattress, pillow and sleeping bag/blanket – if you feel more comfortable with your own bedding, feel free to bring it.
The retreat is not connected to any kind of religion and/or associated with a central teaching figure, guru or similar. We are open to everyone.
Directions will be shared few days before your arrival with the exact pin from our camp to make sure you don’t get lost in the area. There is no 4×4 required to reach the venue.
Please make sure your torch / headlamp is working. Bring spare batteries or charging cable. We share our space with the desert elephants that might come over for a visit. After sunset, a working torch is absolutely necessary.
We do have a WhatsApp group for last minute questions and for relevant information to be shared. You will be added once your booking is completed. We do read messages during the retreat at least once a day – whilst you are not likely to get an instant answer, we guarantee that we will reply within 24 hours.
Please contact us for any further questions and bookings.
email: firstname.lastname@example.org and whats app: +27 72 5322447 or +264 81 7264340. Because of network connection an answer might take sometimes a bit longer. Sorry for that.
VENUE & ACCOMMODATION
Brandberg White Lady Lodge is situated in the foothills of Namibia‘s highest mountain. Brandberg Mountain is located in former Damaraland, now Erongo, in the north-western Namib Desert.The name Namib means „an area where there is nothing” in the local Nama language. The Namib Desert is the world’s oldest desert and has existed for at least 55 million years. It is completely devoid of surface water but bisected by several dry riverbeds. Covering an area of 81,000 square kilometres, the Namib is a coastal desert, situated along the south-western coast of the African continent.
You will sleep in a 2.1×2.1×2.1m dome tent, equipped with camp bed, mattress, sheet, sleeping bag and pillow (single use to maintain noble silence more easily). Standard rate based on camping in comfort (single tent per participant).
Different upgraded accommodation options are available (Chalet, Treehouse, Room).
To maintain noble silence more easily, there is no shared accommodation.
Guided activities like a sunset drive, an elephant drive, and a scenic drive are available from Brandberg White Lady Lodge and bookings can be arranged. However, these activities are separate from the retreat programme, which will continue while the lodge activities take place.
Mountain / Brandberg
Close to nature
Gravel road to reach the venue (no 4×4 required)
Rock painting (White Lady)
Delicious, freshly-cooked vegetarian and vegan meals are shared. Veggies come from local farms where possible. Please contact us if you are a local farmer – we would love to include your yummy products.
Arrival time on your first day is after 14.00 – the earlier you arrive, the more you can get out :-)
Departure time on your last day is whenever you are ready. We just kindly ask you to move out of your tent by 10 am to clean for the next participant.
07.00 to 07.30
Sunrise walk with coffee/tea and rusk
(Time will change with the change of the sunrise)
07.45 to 08.30
Guided meditation or Yin Yoga
8.30 to 9.15
Musli, cereals, weetbix, cornflakes
Freshly baked bread or pancakes
Butter, different jams, peanut butter, honey, syrup
9.15 to 10.00
Journal-writing, intention setting or rest/read/reflect/study
10.00 to 10.30
11.00 to 12.00
(Rotating activities during the week)
or free space to be
and rest / read / journal / reflect /study until 13.00
For those who depart: 12.00 to 13.00 noble chatting
13.00 to 14.00
Hearty and nourishing meals cooked with lots of love and passion
Choice of vegetarian cuisine (vegan and gluten-free options) with different salads
14.00 to 14.30
15.30 to 18.00 (choice of following activities rotating – based on participants and energy levels)
- Forest bathing / Shinrin Yoku (120 to 150 mins)
- Barefoot walk (30 to 60 mins)
- Extended nature walk (60 to 120 mins)
- Elephant tracking and watching (60 to 120 mins) (dependant on local elephant activity)
Or be left in peace to use your time as you please / pooltime
and rest / read / journal / reflect /study
For those who depart the next day: 17.00 to 18.30 noble chatting with other meditators and facilitator (on your last full day before departure day)
18.30 to 19.30
Hearty and nourishing meals cooked with lots of love and passion
Choice of vegetarian cuisine (vegan and gluten-free options) with different salads
From 20.00 (choice of following activities rotating – based on participants and energy levels)
- Yin Yoga followed by Yoga Nidra (please bring something warm) (90 Minutes)
- Guided meditation (please bring something warm) (45 Minutes)
- Fire Ceremony (please bring something to burn) (120 Minutes)
- Creative writing ✍️
- Creative drawing 🎨
- Journal-writing 📖
- Reading/studying 📚
- Reflecting 🧠
- Stargazing 💫
- Growing 🧚♀️
- Bush TV 🔥
- Just be 🦄
Due to operational, weather, or group requirements, the programme will be adjusted
Please dress for comfort – wear what makes you feel connected to yourself and beautiful, or anything that represents LOVE, JOY & CONNECTION to you.
Bring enough warm clothes and a shawl / blanket for the meditations and Yoga Nidra.
METTA & KINDNESS
Once you booked your own space for the retreat you will be able to nominate another person who you feel deserves a 2-night mini-Vipassana. Please share „the why“ with us by 15th of March. Explain in a maximum of 100 words why your chosen person deserves a free retreat via whats app or email. We will select one person from all the entries and invite him/her for a free 3-day experience.
Book in time for your favourite dates and duration as there is only limited space available.
We are pleased to offer the following rate:
20% discount for Namibians and SADC – Lokal is lekker rate: Base rate
Stay between 2 and 4 nights N$ 1 750 per night per person
Stay between 5 and 9 nights N$ 1 590 per night per person
Stay between 10 and 16 nights N$ 1 450 per night per person
Base Rate / Normal Rate
Stay between 2 and 4 nights N$ 2 190 per night per person
Stay between 5 and 9 nights N$ 1 990 per night per person
Stay between 10 and 16 nights N$ 1 810 per night per person
3% discount for returning participants from previous retreats
3% early bird off for bookings completed before Valentines Day, 14th February 2022
Tree House: base rate plus N$ 1 375 per night
Single Room: base rate plus N$ 1 375 per night
Chalet: base rate plus N$ 2 725 per night (sleeps normally 4 people)
Wake up with a sunrise walk, gentle yoga session, or meditation.
Choice of daily yoga, meditation and mindfulness-based exercises / activities (rotating programme).
Nature walks/hikes along the Ugab River.
Evenings with gentle yoga session or meditation or fire ceremony and unlimited star-gazing.
Open-air Yoga & Meditation Shala with 24-hour access.
Refresh yourself in the powerful aura of the Brandberg and the energy of the Namib Desert.
Access to a choice of books and colouring materials.
Accommodation (camping with comfort – single tent per person).
3 daily nutritious and delicious meals (vegetarian) (vegan and gluten-free options) and tea-time treats.
Smoothies and freshly-pressed juices.
Drinkable borehole water.
Daily specials like lemonwater or gingerwater or chai tea or homebrewed kombucha.
Water, tea, and coffee are served throughout the day (choice of teas and coffees, different milk types: full-fat, low-fat, lactose-free, plant-based).
Handmade Meditation and Yoga Nidra eye pillow to take home afterwards (choose your pattern from a selection at your day of arrival, or bring a piece of material with you).
Transport to the retreat (although we can arrange this for you as an added extra – just ask us)
Sparkling beverages / drinks (bring your own if necessary or purchase from the bar at the lodge)
Laundry (can be done by the lodge)
Items of personal nature
HOSTS & INSTRUCTORS/FACILITATOR
The retreat is co-hosted by Wild Cherry Adventures, chadmanwalking, and Ellen Horlebein (Ellen is a certified Yin Yoga teacher, Laughter Yoga teacher, Mindfulness coach, Shinrin Yoku coach and hiking guide).
Contact for more info & booking
Ellen Horlebein (English/German)
Whats app +27 72 5322447 (preferred number) or + 264 81 7264340
Chad Wratten (English)
Whats app +264 81 233 1833
WHAT TO BRING / PACKINGLIST
Comfortable clothes (no specific dresscode) – all temperatures (morning and evening activities require something warm)
Comfy shoes for a walk in the river bed and the area around
Sun Protection (hat, sun-block, etc.)
Yoga mat (can also be used for meditation)
Meditation mat / carpet (for those who want to lie down) (there are chairs for those who want to sit in a chair during meditation sessions)
Extra blankets/shawls, pillows, cushions for a comfy seat for meditation and to keep warm and cozy (also for early morning and evening sessions)
Any of your own yoga props for bolstering for a yin yoga session – otherwise, a small cushion and blanket and a thick towel (preferably all three)
Torch / head lamp (that lasts for the period of your retreat)
Journal and pen for question prompts, reflections, and journal-writing
Book(s) if you want to read and/or to share them with others to read during the period of the retreat
For the fire ceremony:
Any item that you want to burn – any item or symbol that stands for anything you’ve been piling up recently or that has been weighing upon you for a long time – now is the time to close this chapter (a photo, your office shoes, your diary, a print out of a WhatsApp/email conversation, etc.) – if you are with us for a longer stay, bring several! :-)
Before your retreat starts, please send us your favourite song as an mp3 or provide a YouTube link. We will play your song during the fire ceremony. If you prefer to burn without a specific song or in silence, that’s fine too.
Recommended: hot water bottle for coziness and cool nights
Watch / alarm clock (remember you don’t have your phone)
Bring your face mask (not talking about the covid one), foot bath, hair dye, or whatever wellness items you like. You will find time to pamper yourself
Hammock – there are plenty of trees
Swimming costume and an extra towel (there is a pool)
Meditation mala beads (if you have them) (we do have some to borrow and/or purchase)
Candle and/or incense as an offering to mother nature
Ground cover if you do not want to put your mat onto the soil/sand
MEDICAL CONDITIONS & CONTRA-INDICATORS:
Please let us know if you have any physical complications or allergies, if you are taking any anti-depressants (which kind), if you are on any medication that advises against the intake of coffee, tea, nuts, sugar, gluten etc., if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
If there are any other medical conditions, or physical/mental health concerns that you feel that we should know about, please do e-mail us.
Physical distancing is maintained and instructors/teachers/guides maintain a distance from the participants at all times if possible.
Activities take place outside where possible.
Staff follow all safety protocols as directed by the Namibian Government
Hand sanitizer is available
A First Aid kit is available
Protective masks are available for all staff
Protective masks are available for all participants
All health protocols and Covid-19 regulations are in place – with social distancing, sanitizing and masks – for your safety and well-being.
PAYMENT / DEPOSIT
To save your spot, you will need to pay a deposit of 25% upon registration. The remaining balance needs to be paid at the latest, 30 days upon your arrival date. 75% is refundable until 14 days prior to the start of your retreat period (Base rate relevant).
If the retreat cannot take place due to Covid-19 restrictions imposed by the Namibian Government, you can come on a later date or get refunded.
Extra cancellation policy for upgraded accommodation:
2 Months prior to booking
25% of invoice
1 Month prior to booking
50% of invoice
15 days prior to booking
75% of invoice
7 days or less to booking
100% of invoice
How do I prepare for silence at home?
Begin your time in stillness by letting family, friends and colleagues know that you will be temporarily unavailable. Then turn off all electronic devices such as phone(s), tablet, computer, television, radio etc. Silence them completely. Even eliminate vibration so that your attention will not be compromised. Sit or lie down and listen. Or go for a mindful walk – it’s not about the distance, it’s about the intention.
What can I expect in a silent retreat? What does noble silence mean?
During a silence and meditation retreat you are asked not to speak with other participants during the length of the retreat (noble silence). You are also encouraged to reduce elements of non-verbal communication with other participants, whether by gestures, sign language, written notes, etc.
The facilitator of the different activities will talk and guide the participants through.
Participants may, however, speak with the teacher/facilitator whenever necessary and they may approach any team member from the retreat with any problems related to food, accommodation, health, etc. These contacts should be kept to a minimum.
Most of the retreat is what you might expect: meditating, sitting and experience different activities in silence.
There are enough times for breaks, rests, etc., and of course eating and sleeping. The day before you depart, you will be able to talk to others that are also on their last day (noble chatting) in a specific area.
Meditation – what to expect?
Meditation is the practice of focusing the mind and developing awareness to help achieve clarity and calm. It is widely recognised for its incredible benefits, including reducing stress and anxiety, improving sleep and concentration, and increasing overall happiness.
There are many styles of meditation that offer different ways to redirect your focus and attention. There’s not one universally accepted “best” type; it’s about finding what works for you. Examples for guided meditations from the retreat: guided imagery for mental control, feeling sensations, focusing on breath to produce calmness, body awareness, mental clarity, self-love, focusing on sleep, stress relief, acceptance, breathe away anxious thoughts, dropping the suitcases of worries and regrets, and more.
Please contact us for any further questions.
email: email@example.com whats app: +27 72 5322447 or +264 81 7264340. Because of network connection an answer might take sometimes a bit longer. Sorry for that.