Written by Shawndra Russell
The mountain region has a long, storied tradition of being a locale for healing—including on the spiritual level.
Western North Carolina’s reputation continues to grow as a place of healing in connection to the truly stunning natural backdrop we residents get to call home, whether for the healing power of nature on our mental or physical state. Wellness-related entrepreneurs have flocked to Asheville in particular for our yoga teacher-training programs, hyperlocal farm-to-table mantra, and above-average active community. This writer originally comes from Savannah, Georgia—where we did not have the abundance of city sports leagues that exist here or weekend warriors going mountain biking, hiking, rock climbing, paddling, and (scary) road biking every chance they get—and it seems like everyone in Asheville cares about health, wellness, or at the very least, nature, to some degree.
So, for folks seeking a spiritual awakening, realigning, or healthy experience, what does our region have to offer?
Well, it turns out that the spiritual retreats in this area, and likely most spiritual centers in the world, share a few key factors: nature, clean (often vegetarian) eating, and an emphasis on self-reflection. Plenty also include yoga, guided meditations, communal living, journaling, share circles, and rustic settings. And while it could be argued that a DIY approach (aka renting a cabin alone in the woods for a few days) could be the right spiritual retreat for you since even just a hike in the woods can be a spiritual event, there are plenty of local options for those who want a more hands-on, guided, and supported journey.
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