Where to Do an Ayahuasca Retreat: An Essential Guide.

Choosing the right Ayahuasca center is a vital step to start your work with this sacred plant teacher. We are here to help.

APL Shamanic Journeys retreats blog
You may be asking yourself, "where to do ayahuasca retreat?" or "where to try Ayahuasca?" Embarking on an Ayahuasca journey is a profound experience, and the setting in which you partake is a crucial part of your journey. This guide will help you navigate these questions and find the most suitable environment for your Ayahuasca ceremony.

Understanding the Basics

A short introduction to Ayahuasca.
Ayahuasca is a sacred, traditional sacred plant used by indigenous communities in South America for centuries. It provides a deep spiritual, emotional, and physical transformational experience. Your chosen retreat should respect this rich history and adhere to traditional methods for the safest and most effective journey.

Where to do an Ayahuasca Retreat?

Choosing between Amazon and Europe:
When considering "where to do an Ayahuasca ceremony," two main destinations emerge as frontrunners: the Amazon rainforest and certain locations in Europe.


An Ayahuasca retreat in its native home, the Amazon, offers an authentic and immersive experience. The rainforest's dense greenery, rich biodiversity, and seclusion from the hustle and bustle provide an ideal backdrop for deep introspection and connection with nature.

Pros of Amazon Retreats:

  1. Traditional Practices: Retreat centers in the Amazon have maintained the age-old techniques and wisdom of the indigenous communities. They respect the sacred nature of Ayahuasca, ensuring a holistic experience.
  2. Experienced Facilitators: Amazon retreat centers often employ local shamans with years of experience in conducting Ayahuasca ceremonies.
  3. Integration Specialists: These retreats often provide integration specialists who guide participants in understanding their experiences and implementing insights into their lives post-retreat.

Cons of Amazon Retreats

  1. Accessibility: Traveling to the Amazon can be a lengthy and expensive endeavor, particularly for those living far away.
  2. Health Considerations: The dense rainforest environment may pose health risks for some participants, like allergies or reactions to tropical insects.


Spain is an excellent option for those wondering "where to do Ayahuasca retreat" in Europe. Unlike most other European countries where Ayahuasca is illegal, Reputable centers in Spain go under permitted and regulated Ayahuasca retreats.

Pros of Spanish Retreats

  1. Legality: Spanish retreats operate within the law, providing peace of mind for participants.
  2. Convenience: For European residents, Spain is a more accessible location than the Amazon.
  3. Experienced Practitioners: Reputable retreats in Spain engage experienced facilitators and integration specialists, ensuring a safe and enriching Ayahuasca journey.

Cons of Spanish Retreats

  1. Lack of Wilderness: While Spain offers beautiful landscapes, it can't match the unique, immersive wilderness experience of the Amazon.

Choosing the Right Retreat

Thing to consider before choosing an Ayahuasca center.
Just as there are signs to recognize a potentially unfit Ayahuasca retreat center, there are definitive indicators of a reliable and trustworthy one. Here's what to look for:

  1. Open Communication: Trustworthy centers are clear and direct about their practices, facilitators, and the Ayahuasca ceremonies' specifics. They freely share information and are open to queries and concerns.
  2. Post-Ceremony Support: A reputable center understands the importance of integration after an Ayahuasca ceremony. They provide guidance to help participants process their experiences and apply their insights in daily life.
  3. Established Experience: Centers that have been operating for several years usually have a track record of providing safe and enriching experiences.
  4. Skilled and Knowledgeable Facilitators: Trustworthy retreats are led by experienced facilitators or authentic shamans who deeply understand the Ayahuasca ceremony and its effects.
  5. Soothing and Comfortable Environment: A clean, peaceful, and comforting setting reflects a retreat center's commitment to ensuring a conducive environment for participants' experiences.
  6. Thorough Health Screening: A responsible center conducts a comprehensive health check to ensure participants' safety, as Ayahuasca can interact with certain medications and health conditions.
  7. Respect for Traditional Practices: Centers that adhere to traditional Ayahuasca practices usually provide a more authentic and respectful ceremonial experience.
  8. Small Group Sizes: A trustworthy center maintains a low participant-to-facilitator ratio, ensuring that each participant receives individual attention and support.
  9. Positive Reviews and Reputation: Positive feedback and a good standing in the community are often indicative of a retreat center's commitment to providing safe, supportive, and effective Ayahuasca experiences.
  10. Continued Support: Centers that provide follow-up support show a commitment to the long-term wellbeing of their participants, ensuring the Ayahuasca journey's benefits extend beyond the retreat itself.
Ayahuasca master Plant dieta
APL Shamanic Journeys’ retreat group in Spain

The Risks of Choosing the Wrong Retreat Center.

Mistakes that people make by trusting irresponsible Ayahuasca providers.
Selecting the wrong Ayahuasca retreat can lead to a disorienting, or even dangerous, experience. An inexperienced guide may lack the proper knowledge to safely guide you through the Ayahuasca realms, potentially leading to physical and psychological discomfort. Additionally, a lack of post-ceremony integration support can leave participants feeling lost and unable to apply the profound insights gained during the experience. Thus, careful consideration when choosing your Ayahuasca retreat is crucial.

Detecting an unfit Ayahuasca retreat center is just as crucial as pinpointing the suitable one. Here are some crucial indicators to watch for:

  1. Absence of Openness: A credible retreat center is forthcoming and candid about their methods, guides, and the specifics of the Ayahuasca rituals. If they are secretive or elusive, this should raise suspicion.
  2. No Post-Ceremony Support: The integration phase following the ceremony is an indispensable part of the Ayahuasca journey. If this support is lacking, it might suggest the center doesn't have your wellness as a priority.
  3. Limited Track Record: While newly established centers are not inherently problematic, those with a longer history often have more experience in offering safe and nurturing experiences consistently.
  4. Guides with Limited Experience: Centers that are managed by less experienced guides, or those without a genuine shaman, can jeopardize the safety and efficacy of the ceremony.
  5. Subpar Setting: An immaculate, tranquil, and comfortable setting is key for an Ayahuasca retreat. Centers that don't maintain such conditions might not prioritize your comfort and safety.
  6. Inadequate Health Evaluation: Ayahuasca can have interactions with certain health conditions and medications. A center that doesn't carry out a comprehensive health check is exposing participants to potential risks.
  7. Disregarding Traditional Rituals: Centers that neglect or show disrespect to the traditional Ayahuasca rituals may offer a less authentic and potentially hazardous experience.
  8. Overcrowded Groups: Smaller groups ensure personalized attention and support for each participant. If a retreat is teeming with people, it indicates that the center might be focusing more on profits than participants' welfare.
  9. Negative Feedback or Reputation: Detrimental reviews or a tarnished standing in the community can suggest that a retreat center is falling short in delivering a secure, supportive, and effective Ayahuasca experience.
  10. Lack of Continual Support: A committed retreat center cares about your journey even after the retreat has concluded. Absence of post-retreat support could indicate a lack of dedication to your long-term wellness.

Where to do an Ayahuasca Retreat?

Choosing between Amazon and Europe:

Exploring Ayahuasca Safely with Reputable Retreat Center.

Respecting the tradition, discovering the integration.
We at APL Shamanic Journeys ensure the above guidelines are adhered to strictly.

We offer Ayahuasca retreats in Peru led by Amazonian shamans with a lifetime of learning and practice. We also offer Ayahuasca retreats in Spain for those seeking a European location, with the same high standards of experience, safety, and integrity.

Choosing "where to do an Ayahuasca retreat" is a deeply personal decision, involving many considerations. It is vital to respect Ayahuasca's sacred traditions and ensure the retreat center and its staff align with these values. Whether you decide to journey to the Amazon for an authentic experience or prefer the legally sanctioned retreats in Spain, prioritize your safety, integration support, and the authenticity of the shaman guiding you. Remember, Ayahuasca is not merely a trip, but a spiritual journey requiring the right environment, guidance, and care.

We hope this guide provides you with valuable insights as you make your decision and embark on your transformative Ayahuasca journey.


APL Shamanic Journeys
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