Blue Cliff Monastery

About This Center

Blue Cliff Monastery is a mindfulness practice center and monastic training center founded by the Vietnamese Buddhist monk, author, and peace activist--our beloved teacher, Thich Nhat Hanh.

Blue Cliff is a place to quiet the mind, look deeply, and enjoy the wonders of life within and around us through the practices of sitting meditation, walking meditation, mindful eating, deep relaxation meditation, and sharing togetherness. We invite all who wish to cultivate peace and happiness in their lives to plan a visit--for a day or for a retreat.

Life waits patiently for true heroes. It is dangerous when those aspiring to be heroes cannot wait until they find themselves.

Venue Highlights

Nestled on 80 peaceful acres of woodland in the southern Catskill region about two hours northwest of New York City, Blue Cliff is home to a thriving community of monks, nuns, and lay practitioners who share the art of mindful living with thousands of adults and children every year. Visitors are welcome year-round.


Most people who visit Blue Cliff stay in a simple dorm-style room with bunk beds and two to ten people, depending on the size of the retreat. Sharing a living space with others is part of our practice of community and togetherness. Spaces for couples and families are available.

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Dairy Free


Three meals per day are included with your registration fee. We are 95% vegan. If you have food allergies, we ask that you take care of your own needs. There is generally a variety of options available at mealtime, including steamed veggies, brown rice and white rice, oatmeal, fresh fruit, nut, soy and rice milks, but you may bring non-perishable supplementary food for yourself if you have a particular dietary need.


Blue Cliff is located about two hours from New York City, two hours from Hartford, three hours from Philadelphia, and four hours from Boston. If using GPS, please note that “Mindfulness Road” is often listed as “Hotel Road.”

By Plane
All NYC-area airports are within a two hour drive of the Monastery. Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR) has an easy connection to New Jersey Transit train service. (See "By Train" above.) Stewart International (SWF) in Newburgh, NY is the closest airport to Blue Cliff (about 40 minutes by car). Please use the website of your arrival airport to get the most up-to-date and accurate information about ground transportation.

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All are seeing God always.
But they do not know they are. Sri Ramana Maharshi

Why Retreat?

We asked people why they go on retreat, here's what they said:

My inspiration is to find some very much needed solace away from the stress of raising 4 children, working (as a dietitian) and trying to get my private nutrition counseling practice launched. I am a registered yoga instructor and have practiced for over 10 yrs, and have always dreamed of taking a yoga retreat just for my own inner well being. Linda

Retreat Guru's Vision

We believe human beings are innately wise, strong and kind. This wisdom, although not always experienced, is always present. Going on retreat is a beautiful way to reconnect to our basic sanity and health. Our aspiration at Retreat Guru is to inspire people to experience authentic retreats and reconnect with their innate wisdom, strength and kindness.