Annual Summer Meditation Intensive—July 2018

About This Event

Attendance dates for the Summer Meditation Intensive have changed – we are now asking participants to register and attend a week at a time, in full.  Each separate week is a retreat within the Month-Long Meditative Container.  If you would like to attend more than one consecutive week, please register for both weeks and you can experience a continuous retreat.

Week 1

July 1-6: Resilience Through the Life Story of the Buddha (this week has been cancelled)

Week 2

July 7-13: Heart Cultivation: Slogan Practice and Tonglen 

**Registration is now closed**

Live-Streaming registration is now closed

Lama Willa, Lopon Liz, & Camille Hykes:

The second week of the July month-long Practice Intensive will focus on the teachings and practices of Heart Cultivation (Lojong).  Heart Cultivation, a lineage that derives from the teachings of Atisha, emphasizes that every moment of our lives can be practice. We will explore how difficult states and obstacles are especially welcome opportunities for transformation. Textual study sessions will focus on Shantideva’s Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life (Bodhicaryavatara) and Jamgon Kongtrul’s The Great Path of Awakening.  Retreatants are requested to purchase and bring these books with them.  A practice interview with Lama Willa or Lopon Liz is guaranteed.  Interviews are scheduled at time of check-in, not before.

Week 2 Special Event (open to the public!):  July 8, 4-5pm  Bodhisattva Vow Ceremony

Week 2 Program Curriculum & Schedule questions:  (contact info blocked)

Week 3

July 14-21: Vajrayana as a Path of Compassion

**Registration is now closed**

Lopon Liz, Lama Willa, Kathe McKenna, Lama Karma Chotso, Brendan Kennedy

How is Vajrayana Buddhism a path of compassion? In this week-long intensive, we will explore different dimensions of the vibrant tradition of the Vajrayana as a path of compassion, the branch of Buddhism extending from the Himalayan Regions of South Asia. We will explore some of the Vajrayana’s key features, such as:

Reverence, as a stance of profound appreciation and willingness to be transformed by the power of sacred view, meditation, and action.

Generating wholesomeness, the practices of arising, dissolving, and resting in our own inherent nature.

Outer, inner, secret, and innermost secret retreat. How to create the conditions for engaging in sacred world, whether we are practicing being in retreat with a group, alone, or in our daily lives.

How the Vajrayana cultivates relationship and the interpersonal through connecting with the lineage.

Some teachings & study of Creation and Completion.

A practice interview with Lama Willa or Lopon Liz is guaranteed.  Interviews are scheduled at time of check-in, not before.

Week 3 Special Event (open to the public!):  July 15, 4-6pm      Vajrasattva Empowerment and Transmission

Week 3 Program Curriculum & Schedule questions:  (contact info blocked)

Week 4

July 24-31:  Restricted to Vajrayana Level III students

Registration is available directly from the Program page. **Registration is now closed**

Week 4 Special Event (open to the public!):  July 31, 10-11am   Fire Puja


Daily Practice Schedule:

6:30-7:00       Sunrise Meditation

7:00-7:30       Breakfast

8:30-10:00     Yoga or Movement Practice

10:20-11:10   Dharma Teaching

11:30-12:15   Meditation Practice (guided)

12:15-3:00     Lunch and Mid-day Break

3:00-3:45       Meditation Practice (silent)

4:00-5:30       Dharma Study Session (M,W,F: Teacher-guided, all other days: Self-guided)

5:45-6:30       Meditation Practice (guided)

6:30-8:00       Dinner and Break

8:00-8:45       Evening Meditation (silent)

Venue Highlights

Located on twenty-five acres of rolling hills in Springfield, New Hampshire, Wonderwell was originally built as a summer home in 1911. Tranquil and serene, surrounded by woods, meadows, gardens, and century-old stone walls, Wonderwell’s stately main building offers a comfortable and spacious setting in which the transformative potential of meditation—for work, community and daily life—can be explored and realized. Recently, due to its many unique features, the building has been recognized as a New Hampshire state historic site.

The house is situated on a west-facing hillside with sweeping views of sky and mountains. On one end of the building is the Great Room, now the meditation hall, which can accommodate groups of up to 100 people. The hall has an oak balcony encircling the room above and two fieldstone fireplaces. Other features of this historic building include a large covered porch for outdoor practice, a kitchen with industrial appliances, dining facilities, 13 bathrooms, and 15 bedrooms of varying capacities sleeping up to 36 people. We have been working tirelessly, with a successful major capital campaign and continuing renovations, to bring Wonderwell into the 21st century, and complete the work necessary to keep this lovely historic building code-compliant, safe, and sustainable.

The house is partially shielded from a country road by majestic, old oak trees, and is framed by well-established perennials, with multiple garden spaces. Behind the house is an acre of open field that gives way to sloping forested land with excellent trail system potential and sites for several retreat cabins. The back of the house faces west toward jaw-dropping, sky-gazing views of Mount Croyden, behind which the sun sets in the evening.

For the many volunteers and benefactors who support Wonderwell, as well as for the people who work there, caring for Wonderwell has become a practice of sacred stewardship. For all of these people, Wonderwell is not just a building; it is a community.


We offer a variety of accommodations, from dormitories for women and men, to double shared rooms some with private bath, some with shared bath, private rooms with private or shared baths, and a lovely Benefactor Suite at some retreats. We also offer the possibility of camping in warmer months, and all retreats also have a non-residential option, if you are commuting from home or staying at a local B&B or motel.


  • Free Parking
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Ceremony Space

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Organic
  • Gluten Free
  • Dairy Free


Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are included in your accommodation fee. Our kitchen is dedicated to providing local fresh and/or organic foods whenever possible and we enjoy relationships with Kearsarge Food Hub, and other farmers in the area.

All meals are vegetarian, with gluten-free and dairy-free options available at every meal. Meals are served buffet style. Snacks such as fresh fruit, toast and crackers, nut butters, jams, nuts, and dried fruit are available 24 hours a day. Coffee is offered, usually until lunchtime, and hot water and all kinds of teas are always available.

The fee for the commuter registration option also includes all meals.


From Boston and points East
By Car: Wonderwell is a 2 hour drive from Boston. Take Highway 93 North to Highway 89 North. Take Exit 12A. At the bottom of the exit ramp, take a right turn. When that road T’s take a left onto Route 114. Take Route 114 past Lake Kolelemook (to your right). After going through the small town of Springfield, turn right on Philbrick Hill Road. Wonderwell is at the top of the hill, on the left.

*By Bus: The Dartmouth Coach runs from Boston (from Logan Airport and South Station) to New London (the Wonderwell stop) many times a day, and is a quick, efficient way to travel here. The Coach has wifi on board. Tickets can be purchased online or at South Station in Boston.

From NYC
*By Bus: The Dartmouth Coach runs from New York City to Lebanon, NH. The coach is a direct and comfortable way to travel between NYC and New Hampshire. For more information, see the Dartmouth Coach website.

From the Upper Valley
By Car: Wonderwell is 30 minutes south of Lebanon, NH on Highway 89. Take Highway 89 South to exit 13 (Grantham). At the bottom of the exit ramp, take a right turn. Continue past the Post Office until you intersect 114, and take a left. Take Route 114 for about 4 miles until Philbrick Hill Road and take a left. Wonderwell is at the top of the hill on the left.

*See our website for information on getting picked up at a bus stop.

Cancellation Policy

100% deposit refund for cancellation 30+ days before event.
50% deposit refund for cancellation 15-29 days before event.
0% deposit refund for cancellation 0-14 days before event.
The remaining balance (total price minus deposit) is due upon arrival.
Get full details...

Reviews     To review this event, visit the page for the venue or retreat leaders (above).

Similar Retreats You Might Like

Thank you!

We're glad you've joined our retreat community. See you around :)

Return to my event ×

Why Retreat?

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

Have been spending this year getting healthy and a retreat to relax and focus would be wonderful. Crocker

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.