Introduction to Permaculture

About us

This weeklong intensive course provides an empowering, functional, and affordable introduction to permaculture design with a variety of lectures, hands-on practicals, and group discussions. Through a series of dynamic facilitators, field trips, food harvesting, and other fruitful experiences, participants have no other choice but to discover fresh perspectives. This course covers about 70% of the full PDC at a fraction of the cost. Great for travelers and people interested in learning while on the road. Topics covered include: Permaculture Principles and Ethics, design theory, garden techniques and soil fertility, plant propagation, animal husbandry and integrated land use, water capture, storage, and efficient use,  alternative technology, community-based structures and much more! 

. . . As you can see, it's an "Introduction" in name only! Be prepared to have your mind blown and to walk away with a fresh awareness of the harmony and abundance that is possible when humans and nature co-exist.

Price includes the course, plus three meals a day, snacks, coffee/tea, and dessert, as well as shared lodging at the Bambu Guest House.

"I never thought about Permaculture until last week, and now I will use it for the rest of my life."

Event Highlights

  • In depth lectures and inspiring practical work daily
  • 6 nights lodging at the Bambu Guest House, a naturally-built eco-hotel and retreat center
  • 3 delicious vegetarian meals per day plus snacks
  • Field trip to visit regional permaculture sites

Venue Highlights

Lake Atitlan has been called one of the most beautiful lakes in the world, and in our humble opinion it is! At the Bambu you will re-connect with nature, falling asleep to the sounds of the nearby stream burbling past and waking to amazing sunrises over the lake. Nearby Atitlan Organics permaculture farm is a great opportunity to connect with Mother Earth and re-discover the harmony between humans and the natural world.


  • Free Wifi
  • Kitchen
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Restaurant
  • Yoga Studio
  • House-Keeping


A typical day looks like this:
7:00 - 8:00 Breakfast
8:00 - 10:00 Practical #1
10:00 - 10:30 Snack, break
10:30 - 1:00 Practical #2
1:00 - 2:30 Lunch and rest
2:30 - 4:30 Review and presentation/lecture
4:30 - 7:30 Free time and dinner
7:30 - 8:30 Optional movie

Menu Types

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


Retreat participants will receive three delicious, nourishing meals (with dessert!) throughout the day as well as mid-morning and mid-afternoon snacks, and tea, coffee, and filtered water throughout the day. Our restaurant is supplied by Atitlan Organics permaculture farm and other local producers to ensure the freshest meals possible. Trust us, your belly will be happy!


Lodging is in shared but spacious rooms. Twin and double beds available. Each room has a private bathroom with hot water, wifi, a balcony with hammocks and seating, amazing views, and comfy beds!


Coming from Antigua or Guatemala City you must travel to Panajachel, which is one of the three big towns on the lake and takes about 3-4 hours by shuttle. To get to Panajachel, you can take a tourist shuttle from Antigua for roughly Q100 per person or Q225 per person from Guatemala City. There are also private shuttle options that will you take you straight to our door in Tzununa. We can help make arrangements with any of this, so just let us know if you want some help.

From Panajachel, you take a boat (lancha) at the public dock. Tell the captain that you are going to the town of Tzununa ("zoo-new-nah") which is three public stops from Panajachel. This costs roughly Q15-20 per person.

Get off at the public dock in Tzununa and take a tuk tuk (little three wheeled car), tell them you want to go to El Bambu. This costs Q5 per person. When you get to El Bambu, go through the gate and up to the main building.

As noted, we are in the quiet, little town of Tzununa. From the guest house you are less than a 10-minute walk to the lake and less than 20 meters from beautiful rivers. You are a 45-minute walk or a 10-minute tuk tuk ride away from the town of San Marcos La Laguna. This has many places to eat, drink, practice yoga, etc.

We can help you get to the lake from Antigua, the airport, or from anywhere. Just contact us and we can arrange a shuttle for you.

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Why Retreat?

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

My inspiration sparks from my innate charge to connect with a collective innate goodness. I aspire to live in a way that continuously blossoms and embraces my wise and compassionate human nature. Freundl

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.

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