A Matter of Life & Death Retreat

Event Highlights

  • The serenity of a Zen Retreat by a Maya village
  • Amazing lake and volcano views, with river flow through the land
  • Morning yoga sessions – Deepen your yoga practice (optional)
  • Pranayama practices to enrich your energy and life force
  • Daily meditation
  • Osho Kundalini meditation
  • Zen Dance
  • Deepened self experience
  • Doron and Tina’s personal attention throughout the week
  • Daily vegetarian breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • All other facilities and events at DYZC
  • Philosophy and psychology
  • Detailed workshops that will change the way you see the world
  • Practice gratitude – joy-enhancing techniques
  • Lake swimming
  • Temascal / sweat lodge / natural sauna
  • Exciting evening fire-side Zen talks / chanting


Your days begin with pranayama (breathing practices), meditation, and yoga asana (no yoga experience required). The morning practices set the tone for your day, and support a clear mind, energetic body and joyful heart. This early morning practice is followed by a yummy, nutritious, super food breakfast. You then get a break to relax, read or go explore. After a break you will find an inspiring A-Matter-of-Life-and-Death workshop until we have lunch.

After lunch you have a break for self-study, relax in your hammock, or by the river on the property, or chat with new friends. It’s also an easy walk to the lake, where you can enjoy swimming or sitting on the dock by the water.

In the afternoon we continue the A-Matter-of-Life-and-Death workshop until we have a nice dinner. On 2 – 3 evenings we will have common activities like campfire, Zen talks, temazcal, or movie night.


We structure our days flexibly so that you will also have ample free time to enjoy the gardens, the river or explore the nearby Mayan villages and activities around Lake Atitlan. Enjoy the beautiful surrounding nature by swimming, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding in the lake, or hiking up one of the surrounding mountains or volcanoes, maybe even up to a waterfall. Indulge yourself in a sound vibration session or massage (at an additional fee).

Walk / hike around Tzununa, up the mountains or to next-door villages
Sit on a rock in the river and meditate or read a book
Sit by the river, or on a hammock and relax
Swim in the lake or chill out on the dock with awesome views
Hike The San Pedro Volcano (with guide)
Kayak in San Marcos or San Pedro
Stand up paddle, in Panajachel or San Marcos
Waterfall hike (when available)
Get a massage in our “by the river” room
Venture by boat, tuk-tuk, or foot into one of the neighboring towns for some shopping for traditional textiles, paintings and crafts, sight seeing, and a feel for some local Mayan villages

About This Event



If you had only one year to live what would you do?

Quit your job? Get a divorce, a lover? Begin living your dream today?

The key to a joyful life is the art of understanding death. Death is the master teacher for a joyful life today.

This retreat teaches you how to have equanimity in living and dying. How to live your best life today!

The art of understanding death is one of the most important keys to living a joyful and fulfilling life. By examining our relationship to death, and releasing the fear and uncertainty it brings into our hearts, we can understand what it means to be truly ALIVE. Learn to work with Death as a master teacher through this one-week journey of healing, openheartedness, courage, and gratitude.

Bring clarity to your life’s purpose and priorities, and start to greet the unknown with open arms. The acknowledgement of our own impermanence holds within it the key to life itself.

This workshop is suitable for anyone facing death in the next 90 years. It will be a reflective, meditative, poignant, life changing, and fun week!

No prior experience is needed to participate – all you need is open mind and curiosity. Yoga is optional. No yoga experience required.


Increasing courage to life fullyInvestigate our fear of death, and use it to cultivate our true heart and power for life.Find our essential wisdom and joy, and how to bring it to life on a daily basisLearning to let goPreparing for your death during your lifetime and how to support othersTo sharpen life and soften death “while we still have the chance”Learning how to flow through life smoothly and trust the processTo support and be with dying people


6 nights accommodation3 Daily vegetarian meals, locally-sourced food, all cooked from scratch with quality ingredientsFiltered water, herbal tea and coffeeRetreat to build a holistic  lifestyle, integrating mind, body, food and nutritionDoron and Tina’s personal attention throughout the weekLive in a spiritual communityPranayama and breathing exercisesZen MeditationGuided meditations, programs and workshopsTime to explore the distinct and charming towns of Lake AtitlanHammocks, chill out benches and spots around the property


ExcursionsExtra snacks and beveragesTransportation and transitions to and from the retreat (we can organize it for a fee)Massage therapies or other consultations with our experts

Your Hosts

Martina Preisler, clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, psycho-oncologist, palliative care specialist

Doron Hanoch Zen & Yoga senior Master teacher, author, life coach, artist, founder and CEO of DYZC and the Doron Yoga school (RYS 500)

Venue Highlights

Doron Yoga & Zen Center is a spiritual eco village, based on permaculture principles with touches of Zen. It manifests the power and energy of the magnificent lake Atitlan. The lake can be majestically viewed from our grounds, with volcanoes and local villages perfectly framing the scene. We are part of the Maya village of Tzununa in Guatemala. Located 7 min walk from the lake. Hammocks hang by the river and gardens, and connecting paths are all paved with local stone.

We may just have one of the most beautiful yoga spaces in the world, consisting of a sprawling cypress floating floor, surrounded by large glass sliding doors, held up by huge bamboo pillars, and featuring jaw-dropping views. High ceilings with extra insulation keep the temperatures perfect year round. It is a temple sitting along the Tzununa River, allowing for the sound of water to flow softly and soothingly into our practice. Unlike many ashrams, they did not cut corners, and you can see the beauty in the details. The place is kept very clean and has a wonderful vibe to it. The cane, Cyprus, pine, and rocks used in the construction are locally sourced, where local community workers built each house with care. Permaculture principles are followed to ecologically enhance the quality of the construction, garden, and design functionality of the center.

The Buddha café is a wonderful meeting place. It hosts a large deck with a variety of seating options and a gorgeous view of the lake. It serves super nutritious, delicious gourmet, vegetarian food. One of its primary highlights is the great company. Travelers meet to share stories, experiences, a cup of tea, and a hug. It offers a place to rest, connect with new friends, read and have some delicious food.

Permaculture principles are followed to ecologically enhance the quality of the construction, and design functionality of the center. We grow coffee, bananas, avocados, lettuces, beans, yams, radishes, herbs and around 30 other fruits and vegetables (yum, guacamole!).

We have a beautiful fire pit under the grand Jocote tree (which you may want to climb). Additionally, we’ve built a natural, large, ceremonial-grade sauna to help with detoxing and cleansing. We offer massages and can organize tours around the lake for you.

The DYZC was built on a high-frequency vibration land. We are sure you will feel it as you come stay with us. As one guest stated: “center” doesn’t seem to be the most fitting word- maybe something like dream village, or yoga farm, or riverbank Zen oasis.


The rooms at the Doron Yoga & Zen Center (DYZC) are simple but beautiful. Rustic, yet charming, many rooms have either a jungle, garden, or lake view.

All DYZC accommodations are new, and are built for comfort and safety while being ecological. Our showers have hot water, and we have western toilets (eco treatment). Our water source is from a spring supplied by the municipality and from river water that runs through the property.

We have 3 private rooms with shared bathrooms. These rooms are unique and have their own painted wall murals, and other special art and decorations. There are 3 toilets, 2 showers and 2 sinks, separate from one another, so there is never wait time.

There are two lovely and spacious dormitories, which sleep 5 -6 people and share the bathroom area. They have nice mattresses with traditional Mayan coverings, nightstands, shelves and other storage places. They have a cozy, artsy feeling.

There are also three beautiful log cabin rooms. These rooms have en-suite bathrooms, a deck with hammocks and chairs, gardens and beautiful lake view. These rooms have skylights and a peaceful, creative energy. Bathrooms have locally sourced slate for the showers, hand carved mirrors, bamboo and wood elements. They feature local hand crafted furniture and orthopedic beds.


  • Free Wifi
  • Sauna
  • Towels
  • Tour Assistance
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Cafe
  • Restaurant
  • Yoga Studio
  • House-Keeping

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Ayurvedic
  • Gluten Free
  • Nut Free


Each meal is substantial, varied, and nourishing, to energize you through your practices, without leaving you feeling too heavy.

All food at the Doron Yoga & Zen Center is prepared as healthily and nutritiously as possible, under the guidance of the founder and director, who is also a trained chef and certified nutrition consultant.
To the greatest extent possible, food is organic and locally sourced, including from their own blossoming gardens.

You will get a great balance of raw food, cooked food (with healthy oils), fermented foods, healthy sauces and condiments, homemade jams and peanut butter, fresh homemade granola, baked sourdough bread, fresh made tortillas on wood oven, pizza from our clay and wood burning pizza oven and so much more.

We offer snacks and drinks for a pick me up or dessert. Try our chocolate chip banana muffins, vegan power super food rich bliss balls (made with local Mayan raw cacao), vegan black bean brownies, or one of our drinks: kombucha or probiotic ginger.

Notes: Be mindful of food and water hygiene, as travelers’ diarrhea is not uncommon in Guatemala. This can be quite challenging when embarking on a yoga program. Bring some grapefruit seed extract and for daily maintenance, add of seven to eight drops in water or juice. Remember to bring along any other supplement that helps soothe your tummy.


To get to DYZC from La Aurora International Airport (GUA) or Antigua please do the following:

Take a public shuttle to the town of Panajachel at lake Atitlan. We can also arrange a private / shared shuttle for you.
From Panajachel arrive to Tzununa (our village), by taking the boat (lancha) in the direction of San Marcos (Tzununa is one stop before San Marcos). The last boat from Panajachel is at 7pm. There are also private boats available. You can take a boat from San Marcos or San Pedro as well (last boat is at 5:30pm)
In Tzununa, take a tuk-tuk from the dock to Doron Yoga – all tuk-tuk drivers know where we are.

We can also arrange a shuttle from the airport directly to DYZC. It takes a bit longer as they go around the top of the lake, but on the other hand you get into one shuttle all the way here.

Cancellation Policy

All deposits are non-refundable.
The remaining balance (total price minus deposit) is due 14 days before the retreat start date.
The remaining balance is non-refundable once paid.
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