Mindfulness and Lovingkindness Meditation

  • The Esalen Institute The Esalen Institute
  • 55000 Highway 1, Big Sur, CA
  • Mar 22, 2015 - Mar 27, 2015 (6 days)
  • $650.00 – $3,550.00 (based on accommodation type)

About us

Stress in our lives seems never ending and our reserves feel like they are constantly low. We are over reactive when we don’t want to be, and when we want to be patient or kind we seem unable.

This retreat isn’t one of those vacations that drains you. Recharge your life batteries and connect to an unlimited power source: you. 

Mindfulness and Lovingkindness Meditation

Learn how to rest in the heart of joy, ease, and loving presence. Drawing on practices of mindfulness and lovingkindness, as well as recent neuroscience research, we’ll explore the transformational power of meditation. Discover the ways that lovingkindness and mindfulness support us in healing and living a joyful, vital, and compassionate life.In this workshop, you will be shown simple yet potent meditation practices and also new research in neuroscience that offers this hopeful message: We can change and reshape our brains to live healthier, happier lives. We will become familiar with specific practices and techniques for cultivating greater joy, ease, presence, and genuine compassion, and we’ll explore how to integrate these into our daily lives. And throughout, we’ll immerse ourselves in the striking natural beauty of Esalen, and allow the sounds and vistas of the ocean, exquisite coastline, and bountiful gardens to nourish and support our practice. Be prepared for unexpected delight, mystery, and stillness. This workshop is suitable for all health care and education professionals.CE credit for psychologists;CE credit for nurses;CE credit for MFTs and LCSWs;


Accommodations at Esalen are almost always shared. Couples will be housed privately. A variety of accommodation options is possible with workshop registration. Since some of these fill more quickly than others, it is advisable to sign up as early as possible. Please indicate your second choice for accommodations and workshop in case your initial choice is unavailable. We cannot guarantee specific room requests.

All rates include: workshop tuition or personal retreat fees, organically grown food with vegan and vegetarian and gluten-free options, 24-hour use of hot springs bath facilities, Arts Center access (except when a workshop is scheduled), meditation in the Round House, and participation in scheduled daily classes such as yoga, dance, meditation, art and special events.

Standard Rooms

Standard rooms are shared housing, with two or three people per room and in some cases a shared bathroom.Couples are housed separately. Guaranteed single housing in a standard room is available on a limited basis for an additional $125 per night.

WeekendFive DaysSeven Days

Standard Room near Maslow

Point Houses

Point Houses are private suites nestled behind the Esalen Garden and perched at the cliff's edge with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.

Each of the three Point Houses offers a living room with wood stove, a master bedroom, a sleeping loft, full kitchen and dining area, private redwood deck overlooking the Pacific with outdoor clawfoot tub, Internet connections, and an in-room telephone.

OccupancyWeekendFive DaysSeven Days

Esalen Premium Room Bathroom

Point House

Premium Rooms

Premium Rooms offer greater privacy, upgraded bathrooms, and enhanced sound and climate insulation. You can request either ocean view or internet (ethernet cable provided) with in-room phone, and we will do our best to honor these requests. 

Please call 888-837-2536 for details about premium room accommodations and availability.

OccupancyWeekendFive DaysSeven Days

All rates include: workshop tuition or personal retreat fees, organically grown food with vegan and vegetarian and gluten-free options, 24-hour use of hot springs bath facilities, Arts Center access (except when a workshop is scheduled), meditation in the Round House, and participation in scheduled daily classes such as yoga, dance, meditation, art and special events.

Esalen Premium Room in the Murphy House

Bunk Bed Rooms

Bunk bed rooms are shared accommodations with four or more people per room. 

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Bunk bed exterior

Off-site Accommodation

Off-site accommodation is available for those who are attending a workshop or special event and staying off property.

Weekend5 Days7 Days

Sleeping Bag Accommodation

Up to 12 sleeping bag spaces are offered per workshop period, and are BYOB. These spaces are in meeting rooms and as a result may have limited access in the evening when workshops are in progress.  There is available storage space outside the meeting rooms when the rooms are being used (9AM-11PM). 

Weekend5 Days7 Days

All camping or sleeping on the grounds, either in tents, campers, or vehicles of any type is strictly prohibited. We do not have parking space to accommodate RVs.

Just as the eye cannot see itself, The mind cannot know itself. As such, all knowing must spring from that which is vaster.

~ Wu Shin

Kitchen & Dining

Whether after a rigorous workshop session or a long soak in the hot springs, a meal among friends in our lodge is surely one of the most nourishing and enlivening Esalen adventures.

The Esalen kitchen staff serves delicious, healthy meals to 250 to 350 people per day. This includes everyone from workshop participants and teachers to Esalen board members and staff. The kitchen team crafts each meal with mindfulness and care, featuring produce and herbs from the Esalen farm and garden.


Breakfast: 8:30 - 9:45 am
Lunch: 12:30 - 1:45 pm
Dinner: 6:00 - 7:30 pm

Between Meals

Coffee, tea, house-made bread for toast, preserves, nut butters, and fresh fruit are available all day and night until 5AM.

Hot cereals, quinoa, eggs and steamed prunes for breakfast  at Esalen lodge.

Getting Here

We are located along a scenic and relatively remote stretch of California's central coast, approximately 12 miles south of Big Sur. Our address is:

Esalen Institute
55000 Highway 1
Big Sur, CA, 93920

Traveling by Air

Our closest airports are in Monterey and in the San Francisco Bay Area:

  • Monterey Peninsula Airport (MRY) – 47 miles, approximately 75 minutes
  • San Jose International Airport (SJC) – 120 miles, approximately 2.5 hours
  • San Francisco International Airport (SFO) – 150 miles, approximately 3 hours

Airport Van Shuttle

Whether you're flying into one of Esalen's nearby airports or you live locally, using the shuttle service is a great alternative to renting a car or driving your own. You have the choice of relaxing quietly and enjoying the views down coastal Highway 1, or starting a conversation with one of the other participants sharing the ride with you. Either way, you arrive refreshed after the journey and have the satisfaction of knowing you made a sustainable choice.

  • $60 from Monterey Peninsula Airport (MRY)
  • $100 from San Jose International Airport (SJC)
  • $120 from San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

Prices listed include round-trip transportation and are payable upon arrival to Esalen. No discount applies if return trip is unused. Return service must be confirmed with the Esalen office at least 48 hours prior to departure.

Please message us to book or cancel an airport van shuttle reservation.

Driving Directions

From San Francisco or points north:

  • Take Route 101 South.
  • At Prunedale, take Route 156 west to the Monterey Peninsula and Highway 1.
  • Take Highway 1 South approximately 45 miles, past Monterey, Carmel, and Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park.
  • Nepenthe, a popular restaurant located on the ocean side of Highway 1, is 11 miles north of Esalen.
  • Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park is 3 miles north of Esalen.
  • Look for the Esalen Institute sign on the right side of the highway, at mile marker 32.4.

From Los Angeles or points south:

Those coming from the south should take Route 101 north to San Luis Obispo, and then take Highway 1 north to Esalen.

What to Bring to Esalen

Accommodations can be a little rustic and drafty and the coastal weather unpredictable--we recommend bringing a few items to make your stay more with us comfortable and safe. 

In addition to layered and comfortable clothing and items necessary for your workshop, we encourage you to bring:

  • Flashlight
  • Alarm clock
  • Hair dryer
  • Medications
  • Toiletries (shampoo & conditioner)
  • Water Bottle (NON glass)
  • Cash –There is no ATM onsite
  • Hiking shoes/ Sneakers
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses
  • Earplugs – If sharing a room.
  • A watch ( as cell service doesnt work here)
  • Warm layered clothing

What to Leave at Home

A few things we encourage you to do without:

  • Candles or incense or anything flammable as the fire danger is severe and they are not allowed.
  • Any illicit drugs as we have a strict anti-drug policy
  • Pets which are not  service animals
  • Expensive valuables as we do not have safes and cannot guarantee their safety.

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Mindfulness and Lovingkindness Meditation
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Mindfulness and Lovingkindness Meditation

at The Esalen Institute

  • Mar 22, 2015 - Mar 27, 2015 (6 days)


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