Welcome to La Medicina! A plant medicine retreat sanctuary in the high jungle of Peru
We offer individual care and attention direct from the heart.
A traditionally trained Western Ayahuascero
Our lead Ayahuascero Chris, has over 14 years experience working with the medicine, and is one of the few westerners to have completed a traditional apprenticeship (Mestizo tradition) who continues to live and practice in the Peruvian Amazon. He also has a wealth of knowledge and experience in the Mind Body Spirit field, having worked for 39 years as an astrologer and clairvoyant, guiding over 10,000 people.
As you go through your healing process, nothing will be lost in translation, and you will be able to ask questions directly to the very person who has prepared and is serving your medicine.
Chris has also spearheaded the cultivation of various medicinal plants, and after 7 years our center is now fully self-sufficient in both Ayahuasca and Chacruna.
Supportive retreats in Pristine Nature
Maximum group size of only 8 guests, allows for plenty of individual guidance and support throughout your retreat. Our center has been built in the protected area of Cordilliera Escalera National Park, with the approval of the local government and community, and the beauty and energy of nature being so immediate seems to enhance the power of the medicine.
The Ayahuasca Podcast
Chris´s first podcast series, the Ayahuasca Podcast, launched on the 18th November in 2018 with 'Factors affecting Ayahuasca ceremonies'. It's an in-depth look at different ways to prepare the medicine including, varieties of the vine, the potential energetic effects of the ceremonial leader, and set and setting in both preparation of the brew and ceremonial space, peppered with many anecdotes from his 14 year journey through mestizo shamanism.
The second episode, 'All About Ceremony', came out in December, and looks at what can happen during an ayahuasca ceremony, including typical physical, mental and emotional responses, various types of purging, how healing can occur, and visions and their meanings. He concludes this episode with a short excerpt of his icaro, the Lupuna Blanca.
The Ayahuasca Podcast is available on the la-medicina website, iTunes and Google Play.
Enhancing Life-forwarding Experiences
Followings are excerpts of some of our guests´ comments after their retreats.
“La Medicina is a true sanctuary for healing wisdom.” Sebastian N (Germany)
“From the moment I got there I felt welcome and safe. The feeling of being safe, was integral to letting the medicine do its work.” Christopher M (USA)
“To say that Chris not only provided guidance but a safe space for my healing is an understatement. I was honoured by the time he spent helping me process and integrate what I was learning. The groups are intimate, which allows for more in-depth dialogue with the shaman.” Heidi E (USA)
“The secluded environment of the center is perfect to calm the mind and detox from daily routine. And the rich library of spiritual books and teachings is a great touch.” Olga and Oleg (Canada)
“From the first moment I felt comfortable with everything. For me personally, it was a kind of life-changing experience.” Nils K (Germany)
Wonder upon Wonder All becomes True, the Whole Universe Dancing through You
Venue HighlightsThe 78 acres of La Medicina are nestled within the Cordillera Escalera mountain range, just twenty minutes from the airport and the town center of Tarapoto, and yet an area of pristine nature and abundant wildlife. When building our sanctuary we have tried to leave untouched as many of the original trees and plants as possible. All of the land is in a protected zone, and we have developed a close relationship with the local government conservation agency. One can walk straight up the mountain into primary, virgin forest of the high jungle.
Nature itself is healing, and whether you are staying in our comfortable guesthouse or one of our solid and well screened Tambos, you will experience with all your senses the vibrancy of the jungle. Lush winds blow down from higher up the mountain, cicadas serenade dawn and dusk. Parrots, Toucans, Eagles, Hawks, Owls, Hummingbirds and Kites are just some of the birds who bless the land. Families of small monkeys regularly swing through the trees searching for food. A variety of coloful butterflies flitter about to brigthen each day. And the Choclino stream flows gracefully through the center, our drinking water coming from a sacred waterfall near its source.
We have no mains electricity, and use a low impact solar power system for lighting and refrigeration. Most of our retreats are technology free, a true digital detox that provides a much deeper experience. We also have Earth-friendly biodigester composting tanks, which means you can enjoy using flush toilets while still being kind to the environment!
- Includes Meat
- Gluten Free
- Dairy Free
Menu/CuisineFor the Ayahuasca Initiation Retreats you will be served mainly vegetarian/vegan food, with the addtion of some local fish or chicken. Breakfast includes a variety of fresh fruits with chia seeds, porridge and our own organic eggs. Lunch is usually a large fresh salad, rice and veg, with occasional fish or organic chicken. On nights with no ceremonies, a simple, light soup is provided, accompanied by either quinua or rice.
For the Dieta Retreats there are two options. A traditional menu selected from oats, eggs, white rice, farinha (fermented yuca) and fish. Or for vegans and vegetarians, brown rice, carrots and lentils, with farinha for dinner on nights with no ceremonies. No salt or other seasonings are used.
With all of our retreats, the food has been selected to enhance the work of the medicine. Wherever possible we use food taken from the land, and depending on the season, have bananas, plantains, papayas, yuca and wild potatato, mushrooms, plus of course chickens and eggs year-round.
AccommodationsDuring the 7 year construction period of La Medicina, our focus has been on creating a comfortable healing space that supports deep inner work. High quality materials have been used throughout to create simple yet elegant accommodation.
For the Ayahuasca Initiation retreats, you will be staying in either our main guesthouse or Casa Vista. Both are brick buildings with beautiful huayruro wood on the outside. The guesthouse has a living room and 3 twin bedrooms, each with its own en-suite bathroom and private terrace.
Casa Vista is higher up on the land, just below the medicinal garden. The views from the living room are stunning, and often monkeys can be seen scampering across the mango tree just in front. There are two twin bedrooms, each with its own bathroom and terrace. Water pressure is excellent in all bathrooms due to the inclination of our mountain setting. Hot showers are availble 24/7, although with intense medicine work, cold showers are often more advisible.
For Traditional Dieta Retreats, you will be in a single occupancy Tambos, (wooden huts.) Our Tambos are built using the highest quality wood available, huayruro and qunilla. Ondulay panels are used for the roofing, as palm leaves require too much insecticide use to deal with termites. All Tambos are very well screened against mosquitos and other insects. The lower Maloca provides bathroom facilites (flush toilets) for four Tambos, and one large Tambo called Paraiso has its own private bathroom unit. Candles are used for lighting at night.
For those completing a dieta who wish to add some days of integration on the land, there is a choice to stay in your Tambo or move into the guesthouse or Casa Vista. Most guests, however, find it a real wrench to leave the cosy medicinal world of thier Tambo!
DirectionsTarapoto is just over an hour's flight from Lima, with four main airlines providing a direct service. We ask all guests to arrive at least one day early, so that we can be certain of picking everyone up from their hotel/lodge at 10-10.30am on the morning of the retreat. Tarapoto is a safe and friendly town with many good cafes and restaurants, plus a variety of accommodation. It's a great place to wind down after your journey and prepare for the transformative week ahead.
La Medicina is only a twenty minute scenic car ride from Tarapoto, so before you know it, you'll be walking across our bridge and enjoying the pure, high jungle air.
Apr 13 - 21, 2019 (9 days)
May 5 - 12, 2019 (8 days)
May 18 - 25, 2019 (8 days)
Jun 4 - 8, 2019 (5 days)
Jun 15 - 23, 2019 (9 days)
Jul 27 - Aug 3, 2019 (8 days)
Aug 11 - 19, 2019 (9 days)
Aug 25 - Sep 1, 2019 (8 days)
Sep 8 - 16, 2019 (9 days)
Sep 22 - 29, 2019 (8 days)
ReviewsWrite a review - tell others about your experience.
Katie Bouva December 11, 2018
La Medicina is a great centre if you decide to take the work with plant Medicine seriously and complete a plant diet by yourself in isolation. The plant you will be working with will be carefully assigned to you and you will spend 8 days in your own bungalo dieting it. Personally I find dieting in isolation to be a very effective transformation experience and the fact that you will receive proper guidance makes it a safe journey as well. The centre itself is very beautiful with many Medicinal plants growing on the land. It provides high level of comfort - hot water on the last day of the diet, very comfortable blankets, outstanding cleanness. The atmosphere of the centre is very trusting and peaceful. Amazing library of spiritual books ! I highly recommend La Medicina if you are looking for a place for a deep transformation and very serious work with medicinal plants.
Yuriy Blokhin December 08, 2018
Chris & Nori from La Medicina have built a true sanctuary of Amazonian plant medicine. As you explore the massive land on which the centre is located, you may be struck with amazing intentionality of both humans and nature, as they jointly have created this unique temple of ayahuasca medicine. There's not a single thing that is random or unnecessary in terms what Chris & Nori have built on the land. Tambos for dietas are isolated, sparse, simple, yet perfectly self-sustainable for prolonged periods of solitude to be experienced by dieteros. The two ceremonial malocas are both compact and made with the purpose of hosting intimate groups of pasajeros, unlike the many "mega" malocas of the late Iquitos scene that host 20-30 people each night. The two malocas deliver on two very different ceremonial energies: the deeply grounded and sunk in forest lower maloca seems to do especially well for ceremonies aimed at deep healing and extraction of wounds & traumas. The surrounding forest is literally protecting the space from the intruding energies. In contrast, the upper maloca sits on top of the mountain and exposes itself as a perfect launchpad for cosmic explorations of spirit. Ceremonies in this maloca tend to happen at the end of a good dieta once the initial purga has been done for this specific retreat. There's also a world-class library full of books on every imaginable spiritual tradition & discipline. Having said that, Chris will make sure to keep you focused on your plant work and will limit the number of books you're able to take with you to the tambo, and it's a good thing. On the other hand, it's evident that mother nature herself has really actively taken part in the creation of this sanctuary. There's a massive amount of various medicinal plants & trees growing right on the land. Under Chris' efforts, there's now a fully self-sustainable harvest of ayahuasca and chacruna growing on the land too. Moreover, once you get your bearings around staying grounded enough during the ceremonies done with the Cielo vine, I recommend asking Chris if he'd be open to introduce you to some other more energetically intense vines like Cascabel or Trueno. Not for the faint of heart and definitely not a first-timer experience but the amount of cleansing that can happen in such a night is astounding. After one such night, our group of fellow pasajeros seriously discussed the merits of getting a set of t-shirts saying "I survived the Cascabel ceremony of Mar 1, 2017". The territory is massive and profoundly well preserved in its pristine wilderness under the watchful eyes of Chris and Nori. In formal terms, the centre is more of a jungle conservation project rather than cut & dry commercial ayahuasca retreat and it really shows in how everything human-made is embedded in the natural yin-yang of the place. Now, importantly, this review would be incomplete without a separate note on Maestro Chris and his medicine. I've done 2 life-changing dietas under his guidance which have profoundly altered the course of my life. Prior to meeting Chris, I was already firmly on a plant medicine path and looked for a clean environment to deepen my practice and take it to the next level. Needless to say, I've got so much more than that just deepening my practice with the medicine. While Medicine is a miracle and everyone whose life was touched by its grace will not stay the same, I want to credit the Maestro explicitly too. While of course it's the medicine that does the healing & teaching, it's Chris & Nori's profound integrity & sincerity in their relationship with the Medicine and people who come to them which makes the place extra special. There are many places where you can drink ayahuasca, there's only one where you can drink it with Chris Odle. Time over time, I saw his humility and integrity protecting the sacred space during the ceremony and holding it exceptionally well to facilitate the deepest possible healing. Chris has truly surrendered himself to the path of medicine and to the process of guiding people through their deepest, most vulnerable moments of their lives. Many my family members & friends have also come to the centre on my recommendation and not a single one left without a sense of profound healing and uttermost respect for the way Chris took care of them during the intense work we are all doing when in the jungle. Salud, Maestro Chris! Salud, La Medicina!
Kellee Morris November 20, 2018
La Medicina is an experience of the secret life of plants in every dimension. The owners and faciliators have a connection to the truth,through education from the natives of the Amazon who practice the sacred art of plant medicine. Maestro Chris Odle learned from some of the last true Vegetalistas and Paleros in the upper Amazon as well as the lower Amazon to really learn the medicine of the plants and trees and thus has experience of practically all the sacred plants and how they are used to heal body, mind and spirit with specific recipes for specific issues. La Medicina ;ives their talk to degrees which I've never before experienced and definitelly not just for commerce, be assured of that, their committment to what they do has been tested to a degree which asked everything of them and still they endured to provide this healing, teaching center to ignite a level of medicine on the planet which is unsurpassed in my experience. La Medicina is the real deal if you are interested in true transformation and to immerse into the profound teachings which come from dieting the plants and experiencing integrity in the ceremonies. What you will encounter at La Medicina is not just another trippy experiencein fact if you come and you are not sincere about learning and growing you will probably get your ass handed to you on a plate with a laughing emoticon!. Don't get me wrong...it will trip you out to face the line which separates illusion from truth but this is the most potent medicine there is, that which separates what is true within from what is false without. My path in the medicine exploded after one experience here and Maestro Chris was brave in showing me where I was off and perhaps which way would be better to go for me to be in harmony with what I was born to do. The staff, the grounds, the amenities, the simple. but so carefully prepared and sourced food, the clean and beautiful amenities and grounds...everything here is what we call in mainstream "mindful and sacred". Truth is, the owners have availed themselves to the greatest degree of sacrifice, personally, financially and with unfailing stamina, to ensure that every guest experiences plant medicine which is pure and unpolluted by hype or mainstream popularity of a tradition which is, in my experience , the most powerful, sublime, sacred medicine there is when the wisdom of what is taught comes from the pure saviduria or wisdom from the plants and masters of consciousness. Come to La Medicina and be forever changed whilst basking in an environment which feels like being in the womb, the creche of nature. Be held, be taught, be free, be expanded, be stretched, relax, enjoy an environment free from EMF's to heal your brain, your heart and open your consciousness. Be assured, you will be in the best hands possible, you will be safe, you can trust and let go and allow exactly what your life is supposed to be. There are hardly words to describe the experience you will have here and how profoundly deep it will go long after you leave this beautiful sanctuary. I have practiced this tradition since 2005 and countless hundreds of ceremonies and 30 dietas so I do believe I am qualified to critique with integrity, Chris Odle and his wife Nori have provided an experience which is, hands down, so potent, that a few visits to them will accomplish what it's taken me years to figure out because I previously was trying to do this work in a place where I was too overwhelmed with the sheer number of people and activity which distracted me from doing the work which, when done in solidarity, as is the case with La Medicina, is far more effective. As I said in the title, if you are in earnest, sincere and truly looking for medicine work with integrity, sincerity and personal focus, with a Maestro who cares so deeply about the purity and wisdom of the plants, then La Medicina is absolutely the place for you. A sanctuary of plants and spaciousness, wisdom and peace with some disarming humour every now and then, great pure food, a library to get lost in for years and beauty unspeakable. Thank you Chris and Nori for La Medicina. I cannot wait to return and diet the plants, heal more deeply and be in your space again. Namaste, Kellee Marie Morris
Chris Copp November 14, 2018
Having experienced the medicine in a number of different environments with a variety of shamans I can say the experience at La Medicina is second to none. Chris and Nori have gone to great lengths to make every part of the retreat geared to your highest good. The beautiful land, simple accommodations, nourishing food, personal attention, and loving atmosphere were the right setting to open to the medicine. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend a retreat with them.
Alex Ka November 13, 2018
La Medicina is a very special place. I felt like the experience I had here has helped me grow more than any other experience I have had so far. There was enough guidance and enough space to work on my own. Chris and Nori are great people, and I am looking forward to spending more time with them at the center in the future. The center itself is very clean and well maintained. You will be cared for here and this will be a good place to experience that which you need to experience. I highly recommend La Medicina to anyone looking for a retreat.
Greg Y November 12, 2018
From what I observed the experience was very individual and not able to truly be described in words. All who were present had different experiences that seemed completely relevant to what is going on or has gone on in their lives. The sensitivity I experienced during and when leaving the retreat took me some time to understand and work with. There was no hiding I felt, like you had to face who you are and perhaps we all had that in common. I was unable to ignore certain things that came up from my past and the time alone in the tambo helped me face and work though things along with some guidance from Chris. What I got from the experience was a feeling of an internal cleansing both mental and physical. I would truly like to return and spend more time exploring with Chris and Nori. I felt they really care about the individual experience and help each person get the best out of their time in such an intense and beautiful paradise. Greg Y. (New Zealand)
Viktoriya Blokhin November 09, 2018
La-Medicina is a very special place, it becomes your home and family in the jungle. The center is dreamlike beautiful and greatly designed. I couldn’t ever expect to feel so safe and comfortable in a jungle. However, I believe that many people would agree with me that the very special part of La Medicina is its hosts. Chris and Nori are truly kind, caring, and profound couple. Even if you would simply spend time with them that would be a powerful and transformative experience by itself. They provide you with just enough guidance and support. You walk through the experience by yourself but feel that they are there for you if needed. If you are looking for a retreat I couldn’t think of a better place than La Medicina.
John Patton November 07, 2018
I have been working with medicine for over 12 years and La Medicina retreat center is the finest center I have experienced for healing and growth. Chris and Nori have gone above and beyond in developing the center in order to provide guests the best environment in which to do their own deep work. From the layout, taking great care to leave as much of the forest undisturbed as possible, to the quality and comfort of the center to the focus on conservation and sustainability of the forest and medicinal plants, this center is the best I have experienced for the purpose of deep, personal work. Chris practices a powerful and nurturing blend of many years of training in the mestizo tradition of the Amazon, deep plant knowledge and an abiding love for shamanic traditions as a whole.
Pietro Gagliano November 07, 2018
My brother and I visited La Medicina just over a year ago, and it was a transformative experience. While it was amazing to re-connect with nature and separate ourselves from technology, the visions and teachings that I received from the Medicine were so profound that they ultimately changed my life. Chris approaches his practice from such a warm, authentic place, and I was very impressed with how he is able to balance ancient wisdom with modern philosophy. I would recommend this retreat centre to anyone who is looking for answers from their heart.
Olga G. November 06, 2018
My husband and I had a powerful and mind blowing experience in opening the heart and eyes to better and conscious life. We loved everything about the center - the quietness, lush gardens, monkeys and butterflies everywhere. This place radiates harmony, care and love which is direct reflection of how Chris and Nori see the world. The secluded environment of the centre is perfect to calm the mind and detox from daily routine. And rich library of spiritual books and teachings is a great touch. Chris and Nori in essence are a family to us now and we will be back again. Highly recommend to anyone looking for an empowering healing and mindful experience.
Sebastian Nienaber November 05, 2018
La medicina is a true sanctuary for healing and wisdom. Chris and Nori provide such a peaceful and loving space in the beautiful surroundings of the High Jungle. In his healing art, Chris offers a rare and powerful blend of many years of shamanic training, deep plant knowledge and fluency in different forms of divination - all while being rooted in eastern, non-dual philosophy. My time at La Medicina was one of the most important experiences in my life - all in all, I can not recommend it more highly!