About The Teacher

Amanda's goal as a Psychedelic Leader & Guide is to protect the practice of North and South American Spiritual traditions, ceremonies, and sacred practices. As an advocate of the safe, responsible use of psychedelics, she strongly supports not only the continued scientific research into their potential, but also the use of the traditions surrounding their ancient healing. 

Amanda has spent the past 4 years studying native plant medicine and ceremonial healing with over 500 guests in Ecuador, Mexico, Jamaica and around the world. During her stay as a manager and facilitator at Gaia Sagrada, she kept the sacred fire, taught holistic health workshops and meditation. Her position included managing and leading a group of 15 volunteers at the center. 

She splits her time between her home in Seattle, WA & Mexico. She is the founder of The Buena Vida Psychedelic Retreats & Sol Medicine Mexico.  She works with groups and retreat centers around the world. Her podcast, Semi-Woo, is a celebration of all things spirituality, consciousness and "woo-woo"!

Reviews  
  Write a review - tell others about your experience.

  • Julie Dunigan   June 14, 2019

      2nd phenomenal retreat with Amanda

    Just returned from a second retreat with Amanda in June 2019. I'm starting to believe this woman has SUPER POWERS. The retreat itself couldn't have gone smoother. The accommodations in Ensenada Mexico were so nice they were almost dreamlike. The food was healthy and delicious beyond imagination. Besides planning and organizing endless thoughtful details, Amanda's super powers lie in her shape shifting abilities. Facilitator, teacher, guide, comic relief, medicine woman, and being one of us, as we all bonded together. Words escape me as I try and describe the actual ceremonies. For me they have all been of extreme high vibration, supported with enormous love and protection. They were magical and transformational, I have returned more aligned with my true self!. You are extremely fortunate if you ever get the chance to be part of Amanda's amazing retreats.

  • Courtney P   April 21, 2019

      Exceptional Every Time

    I met Amanda a year prior at my first plant medicine retreat. She was amazing! Knowledgeable, personable, honest, hilarious! I had a wonderful experience. Fast forward some time, and I learned she had branched out and was doing another retreat with a different type of plant medicine. I was a bit nervous, but absolutely trusted Amanda and took the plunge. I have no regrets. She was there through every up and down, comforting and nurturing, and the wings that had begun to bud at my first retreat opened up and allowed me to soar. I am forever grateful for this beautiful woman who truly changed my life. I continue to evolve and a great percentage of that success is owed to Amanda Schendel! Thank you!

  • Richard Prager   April 02, 2019

      Committed, dedicated, and caring

    Amanda was very helpful and supportive before, during, and after the retreat my wife and I participated in with her in March, 2019. She is experienced, knowledgeable, and organized. She really wants everyone to feel safe and comfortable enough to take risks and grow. She has a sparkling personality, a good sense of humor, and great compassion.

  • Evan Renaerts   February 17, 2019

      Amazing Amanda!

    I knew the first time I met Amanda that she was a special being, so full of life and love. This was proven beyond any doubt during the week-long psylocibin retreat I participated in during January 2019! Amanda organized and executed hundreds of logistical details, offered up warm welcomes and held sacred space. She is able to do what she does so well because she is living her passion. I’ve seldom felt more loved and cared for! If you have a chance to be in retreat with Amanda, jump at it!

  • Martha Anandakrishnan   February 15, 2019

      Awesome retreat

    This is the second retreat I’ve done with Amanda and both times she did an awesome job as a facilitator. She was one of the organizers of second retreat in Mexico and she looked after the large number of participants with professionalism, compassion, and a great sense of fun. I was impressed by how well organized the retreat was and how creative she was with the ceremonies. She always made sure our needs were met, whether it was transportation, a hot shower, or help during the ceremony. I highly recommend any retreat that involves Amanda!

  • Julie Dunigan   February 11, 2019

      A true light worker

    I had the great honor of being part of a sacred Psilocybin retreat in 2019 in part organized by Amanda. Not only did Amanda successfully organize an awesome 8 day retreat, constantly working on all of our behalf, but it was a total joy to be in her presence. She has both tremendous comedic gifts and a very healing quality that made us feel completely accepted no matter what type of baggage or wounding we came with. Her compassion, kindness, and knowledge as a facilitator were exceptional and I felt safe and well cared for during these Psilocybin ceremonies. Once deep in the medicine I was informed by the spirit of the mushroom that Amanda and her team were truly made for this sacred work and were part of something extremely important. I recommend her to anyone looking to do this type of deep work and hope that I can return to a future Sol medicine event as it was one of the most beneficial retreats of my life.

  • Blair Owens   February 10, 2019

      Amanda brings love and light!

    Amanda is flowing with creative and loving energy. She is the best friend you can open up to, providing the space to feel safe and accepted while also easing tension with her charismatic and uplifting personality. She has had me on the floor laughing (one of the best medicines), guided me through meditation with her beautiful drumming and singing and has also been there to listen in my most difficult times. Amanda is knowledgeable, comforting and understanding. She is someone I look up to on this path and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to connect with her.

  • Petar Veljacic   November 20, 2018

      What a lovely soul!

    Amanda was one of the fire keepers in my final ayahuasca ceremony at Gaia Sagrada in Ecuador and I remember that she accomplished magnificent work that required loads of concentration and fine skills. She was moving around energies during my stay in Gaia with elegance and inspired many participants with the stories she shared. Key words that describe Amanda (except from being such a lovely soul) : clarity, efficiency and readiness. Looking forward to meeting Amanda again in some other set up!

  • Jansyn Cunyus   November 15, 2018

      Knowledgeable and Passionate

    My husband and I both had the opportunity to have Amanda facilitate our psychedelic journeys. I can say that without a doubt, she is both knowledgeable and compassionate. She helped my understanding of the experience and led me through several breakthroughs that were instrumental in my growth through the process. Her witty hilariousness never failed to lighten up any tense moments that arouse. Her breadth of knowledge on just about any subject matter made conversations with her as easy as they come. I would be honored to have her facilitate another one of my experiences in the future.

  • Megan   November 13, 2018

      Healing Magic

    Something about Amanda and her energy makes you feel accepted- which is a very comforting feeling during ceremonies. From the way she holds herself, holds a ceremony, and holds space for other beings is full of such natural grace it makes you feel warm knowing that you are safe with her. If you have been intrigued by this sort of healing but haven’t taken the leap I’d say that this is the sort of place to do it!

  • Megan   November 13, 2018

      Healing Magic

    Something about Amanda and her energy makes you feel accepted- which is a very comforting feeling during ceremonies. From the way she holds herself, holds a ceremony, and holds space for other beings is full of such natural grace it makes you feel warm knowing that you are safe with her. If you have been intrigued by this sort of healing but haven’t taken the leap I’d say that this is the sort of place to do it!

  • Jeff Canada   November 13, 2018

      Magestic human!

    Amanda was an amazing facilitator and friend on my retreat. Her calming energy was able to ground me and help me along my journey. She gracefully led me through meditations, yoga, ceremonies, massages, and was a kind friendly ear to listen and talk with me. I highly recommend Amanda and am so happy to have her in my life. ❤️

  • Tinatsu Wallace   November 13, 2018

      Compassionate and trustworthy facilitator

    Amanda facilitated during a retreat experience I had in Jamaica, and I absolutely loved her bubbly but grounded presence. Her knowledge, experience, and insight helped me navigate my own experiences, and she's just plain fun to hang out with as well. I would work with her again anytime.

  • Martha Anandakrishnan   November 13, 2018

      Joyful, Intelligent, Caring

    I connected with Amanda the moment I met her—she has the kind of positive energy people are drawn to immediately. The sort of work she does with retreats demands a serious commitment to the wellbeing of the participants (which can be challenging); yet Amanda has a light touch and a sense of humor that make the experience more effective and enjoyable. My best moments were spent with her and I trusted her implicitly. I would definitely do another retreat with her and highly recommend her!

  • Nicole Sambor   November 13, 2018

      Calming Presence

    As a somewhat anxious, introverted person, I have a tendency to keep my distance from most people until I know them well. This was not necessary with Amanda. I felt safe around her from the moment that I met her, while she was working as a facilitator at a retreat that I attended in Jamaica. Her compassionate, calming presence was felt immediately. Additionally, she has a great sense of humor, which helps. The retreat wouldn’t have been the same without her.

  • Sam   September 21, 2018

      caring and compassionate

    Amanda is one of the most caring and compassionate women I’ve ever met. She’s a strong, guiding force who wields her energy like a healing baton. She understands herself and her place within the world she inhabits, and she honors the journey and honors the soul in ways I’d never experienced before. She’s also grounded and hilarious, which makes even the scary moments fun. I’d recommend any time you can spend with Amanda as possible. Her retreat changed my life.

  • Paul Gambill   July 12, 2018

      Amanda is a warm and thoughtful guide who makes experiences more fun

    I went on a retreat hosted by Amanda in July 2017 at a beautiful house in Sammammish, WA. From the moment I arrived until the time that I left, I felt like a very welcome guest. Amanda has such a fun and endearing personality that makes it very easy to feel comfortable with her as a guide. She offered an opportunity to discuss 1 on 1 with her any concerns or anxieties I was feeling, and that was really helpful to preparing me for the ceremonies. Every detail about the weekend was meticulously planned, from food to activities to how to create a comfortable space for all the attendees. I had an incredible experience with her, and I would absolutely do it again if she was hosting a retreat in my area.

  • Katherine Elonna   July 10, 2018

      Joyful and Powerful Leader & Excellent Ceremonies

    I was lucky enough to have Amanda as one of my Ayahuasca facilitators. I've also worked personally with her in a one-on-one mushroom journey. She truly is able to hold space and provide such a caring and warm environment. I think its so important to trust the person who is leading you through these psychedelic spaces. Amanda has a firm grip on these medicines and also has such a light-hearted personality and warmth so that I always felt it was easy to let go and breathe into my lessons and healing. I find her experience with traditional ceremonies helpful as she creates a beautiful and intimate space for your journey. However, she also is a modern teacher and able understand the needs and background of westerners. Overall, I'd love to attend any retreat or journey that she hosted. I can't wait to see what's next for Amanda!

Why Retreat?

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

After having just completed my RYT 200 I have been inspired to further my yoga journey and my own personal journey inward. I have fallen in love with yoga and how it has changed my life and I just want to continue to explore so I can share this beautiful gift with as many as possible. Jessica
 

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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