Re-Treat Yourself

2023 is the year to become your best self by working on your physical and mental well-being, but it’s not always so easy. Sometimes you need some guidance, and what better way to help you on your journey than by booking yourself into a retreat hosted by well-being experts?


Are You Breathing? 

When was the last time you dipped your toes in a mountain stream, observed tiny creatures, or touched fine leaves? If you’re looking for a one-day escape from the hustle and bustle of life, we’ve got the perfect retreat for you. A Forest Breathing Retreat, guided by Carol Segal, will be taking place on 1 April 2023 at KhulaShanti Sanctuary in Boston. 


The retreat consists of one day full of tranquillity and meditation, focusing on connecting with nature. Explore by stepping into KhulaShanti Sanctuary’s lush mistbelt forest with its giant trees, fairy fern fronds, ephemeral webs and perennial stream and ‘letting go’. You will learn to breathe in a way that promotes a calm, clear and productive state. 


Carol is a breathing coach, qualified Iyengar yoga teacher and experienced retreat facilitator. She handcrafts her retreats to meet the needs of a particular group. Her Forest Breathing Retreat includes rejuvenating activities such as forest walking, tree gazing, breath control techniques, mindfulness exercises, guided meditation, wide horizons and body scan relaxation, as well as a scrumptious plant-based feast.


Carol is fascinated by the power of breath. She says that enhanced breathing supports a positive mood, detoxifies the body, relieves pain, and is the antidote to low energy levels. When we utilise the respiratory system to its full potential, we create a state of homeostasis in the body. Her one-day retreat is designed to invite this equilibrium back into your life.


“You are given 22 000 breaths a day. How many of them are conscious? When we breathe, we are better. Exploring breath and its benefits will inspire and recalibrate your physical, emotional and mental beingness,” says Carol. When we breathe in the forest, we receive immune boosting phytoncides, which are the organic compounds released by forest flora. These have antibacterial and antifungal qualities which help plants combat disease. The magic is that when humans breathe in these compounds, our bodies respond by increasing white blood cells, boosting our immunity. Simultaneously, forest meditation allows us to deepen our awe and understanding of being connected to everything.


This Forest Breathing retreat is one day of rest and investing in you. Sufficient guidance in meditation and breathing will gift guests practical habits to weave into their everyday lives. Above all, this day of self-care is sure to invigorate your energy. 


Places are limited for this day of quietude. Contact Carol via email,, to book your spot for the Forest Breathing Retreat or ask about other restorative retreats.


Personal Empowerment 

Needing a boost in your self-confidence? Satori Getaway’s Self-Empowerment Retreats are designed for all women, especially those who are needing to re-evaluate themselves and their lives and want to live life more fully. Often many women feel overwhelmed by the pressures of life, and this retreat is designed to enable them to find balance in everyday life and overcome feelings of powerlessness. 

The Self-Empowerment Retreat can be requested and booked any time of the year for private or small groups. Hosted by Louise Ghersie, who has assisted many people in their journeys in life, this retreat can be between two and four days in length, where you stay at the scenic Satori Getaway in Dargle. There’s no better way to experience a retreat than in beautifully decorated lodges surrounded by majestic mountain views. 

You may be thinking, “What is self empowerment?” Louise explains, “Simply put, it means to become powerful within yourself through living fearlessly and with conviction and confidence, and trusting your intuition. It’s about slowing down to breathe more easily into life, knowing that it’s okay to sometimes feel insecure and overwhelmed, and living truthfully on your terms.” Louise guides her retreat on the belief that the more we learn who we really are by doing more of what we love and trusting ourselves, the more we can live and love from a place of strength and power.

Louise was inspired to start this retreat when she decided to stop seeking validation from others and being fearful of failure and rejection, and started her own journey of self-discovery and self-care.

The retreat programme includes exploring personal topics to help you gain confidence and empowerment, such as learning to live fearlessly through recognising and acknowledging personal fears and moving forward with courage and bravery, re-connecting with yourself in quietness and stillness (guests are encouraged to take walks and sit in the forest and just ‘be’), and being alone, which can be difficult for so many who feel the need to fill each moment with busy-ness. You will also acknowledge what sets you back in life and have the courage to move forward regardless, be honest about what you love and what you don’t, and learn to set boundaries by saying ‘no’ with no excuses.

Satori Getaway’s retreat enables you to rest, reflect and find the inner strength to move forward with a greater sense of well-being and just be who you are without feeling the need to please others for validation of who you are. To no longer be a worrier, but a warrior. 

Visit their website,, to experience this one-of-kind retreat.


Put Pen to Paper 

Sometimes there’s no better way to clear your mind than by writing down your thoughts and feelings. No one understands that better than Antoinette McDonald, who will be hosting the April Journaling Retreat from 20 to 22 April at Brookdale Health Hydro in Nottingham Road. This journaling retreat happens four times a year at Brookdale. 

All levels of ‘journalers’ are welcome – from absolute beginners to avid writers. The programme starts with a two-hour session on the first day, followed by a two-and-a-half-hour session on day two, and an hour session on day three. So, you’re able to experience the wonderful offerings of Brookdale Health Hydro between your inspiring journaling sessions with Antoinette, who is also available for individual coaching during your stay. At the end of your retreat, you get to take home a summary of the course to keep your newly acquired journaling skills alive. 

Ant is a journalist, businesswoman, speaker, podcaster and journaling mentor. Having worked in both radio and television in South Africa and internationally, she understands the power that words have to completely transform your life, especially when they’re your own words. During this retreat, she will teach you journaling tools that show you how to find new adventures and create the interactive map you need to walk in a new light every day. By connecting your vision, dreams, heart and mind through journaling, you will discover your soul opening up to deep healing and new perspectives. 

Ant believes that journaling re-ignites your heart and reawakens you to live with greater self-awareness, mindfulness and courage. “Journaling connects your hopes and dreams, your heart and mind. It is a powerful enabler to become more passionate and alive, and to follow a path toward a richer, deeper and more meaningful life,” she says. 

When she realised what a difference journaling made in her life, Ant was inspired to start her unique workshops and retreats to help others reap the same rewards. She journals to remember things she easily forgets, to give thanks and appreciate, to be still and listen when there’s so much noise competing for attention, to dream, to be more true, to let out her deepest prayers, to ponder, and to find peace. 

Science is now showing that writing down your thoughts and feelings plays an important role in mental clarity, emotional healing and creative enrichment. It can also calm and clear the mind, and proves to be an excellent de-stressor. Research shows the benefits of journaling even extends to our immune system functioning. 

By visiting the April Journaling Retreat and learning how to include this practice in your life, you invest in your emotional and mental health. 

Contact Ant,, for more information on this unique retreat. 


Words: Jordyn Trollip

Carol Segal photos: Christeen Grant & Penny Carolan

Ant McDonald photos: Christy Mulder