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Retreat Center

Meaningful Work for Body, Mind and Spirit – Odiyan Retreat Center, California

Learn new skills and share your knowledge while making a valuable contribution to the preservation of enlightened knowledge for all humanity at Odiyan Retreat Center,  overlooking the Pacific Ocean on the spectacular north coast of California.

You Receive:

  • Housing, Vegetarian Meals, Living allowance $150 per month

  • Skill training in wide range of trades and traditional arts

  • Classes on Inner development of mind and spirit, Tibetan yoga and more!

You give:

Your Time and Energy

Currently seeking individuals or couples aged 23-50 who are physically competent and able to handle tools, small machinery and manual labor on a daily basis. You will be engaging gardening, farming, landscaping, cooking, construction, concrete, masonry and foundry work, and repairs of every kind, as well as sacred art projects in metal, concrete, fabric and more.

We also have interest in those with computer, writing, art and design skills.

Minimum commitment is six months.

Work in our  “Karma  Factory Foundry”  making bronze statues, in our organic veggie gardens and orchards,  and contribute to the maintenance and beauty of the land, temples and Sacred Art of one of the most beautiful Buddhist centers in the world.

Although Odiyan has its foundations in Tibetan Buddhism, no religious affiliation is required to join our team. We are seeking individuals who are open-minded, self-reflective and ready to engage deeply on both inner and outer levels.

Previous experience is preferred, but not required. You must have passion for a hard working wholesome lifestyle of service.

For over 40 years volunteers from all over the world have been coming to Odiyan for six months or more to develop their own potential and contribute to the unique and holistic vision of enlightened knowledge for the benefit of all beings.

APPLY NOW for Summer and Fall 2015.
Or Email  or call  510-981-1987 for more information and an application.

Minimum six month commitment. We cannot accept children or pets. Couples are welcome to apply.

Job Type:  Work-Exchange, Retreat Center

Location: San Francisco, California

Salary:  Housing, vegetarian meals, living allowance $150 per month

Season: Year Round

Learn More/ Apply At:

Residential Volunteer at Karma Triyana Dharmachakra, New York

Located on a 24-acre site in the heart of the Catskill Mountains above Woodstock, NY, Karma Triyana Dharmachkra (KTD) is a traditional Tibetan Buddhist monastery and dharma retreat center where students study and practice Tibetan Buddhism as taught by its distinguished resident lamas. People from around the world come to weekend programs and week-long retreats to study genuine Buddhist dharma.

KTD is currently seeking a Residential Volunteer who will split their time between food preparation and housekeeping. Food preparation tasks include cooking and preparing vegetarian and vegan meals for 10-60 people during breakfast, lunch and a light supper. Responsibilities also include organizing food supplies in the pantry and refrigerators, washing pots and pans, serving meals to guests, and cleaning up the kitchen and serving area. Housekeeping responsibilities include cleaning guest rooms, public spaces and storage rooms, laundry tasks, re-supplying rooms and bathrooms with soap and paper products, and other interior maintenance tasks. Benefits include dorm-style accommodation, free vegetarian meals, and opportunities to study Buddhism, practice meditation, and become part of KTD’s residential community. Applicants must have a strong interest in learning about Buddhism and be emotional stable and mature, willing to follow directions, work in a team environment, and go the extra mile for the benefit of the Monastery and its guests. If you are interested in this 1-3 month residential volunteer position, email

Job Type:  Retreat Center

Location: Woodstock, New York, USA

Salary: housing and vegetarian meals

Season: Year round


Learn More At:

Chef/ Operations Manager at Sewall House Yoga Retreat, Maine

On 03, May 2015 | In Retreat Center, Summer Jobs, Volunteer/ Work Exchange | By Jacqueline

Sewall House looks for work exchange for preferable a month minimum- if shorter please contact with your needs. One position is vegetarian chef for 3-10 people, usually averages 4-6.

Second position is operations manager, who helps with cleaning, air pickup and errands, as well as accompanying guests on hikes and kayaking etc if required. This is a fun position for someone who likes yoga, nature and is willing to do some house cleaning and kitchen help.

June to mid October- some positions may already be filled so please check for dates.

Job Type:  Chef/ Retreat Center

Location: Island Falls, Maine, USA

Salary: Room & board & yoga

Season: Summer


Learn More At:

Customer Service at Ratnaling Retreat Center, California

Ratnaling Retreat Center is looking for volunteers who are open minded and grounded to help in a variety of areas: cooking, landscaping, gardening, customer service, Tibetan book binding and more!

We offer free housing, organic vegetarian meals and free classes in Buddhist studies, Tibetan language, Tibetan Yoga and Buddhist history.
Monthly living allowance of $150.

Job Type:  Retreat Center

Location: Cazadero, California, USA

Salary: Free room, meals, classes, living allowance of $150/month. Volunteer pays airline ticket/travel.

Season: Year round

Learn More At:

Housekeeping Assistant at Salt Spring Yoga Center, Canada

Daily life at the Centre is based on karma yoga, the practice of selfless service, one of the three main paths of traditional yoga, as the common background to all of our daily activities. In selfless service, efforts are made to perform all actions without self-interest, but nonetheless wholeheartedly, with enthusiasm and focus. Despite working toward an objective, the work is done without attachment to the fruit of the actions. These are high ideals – virtually all our actions contain some degree of self-interest, even as it gets more and more subtle. Over time this results in action that has, at its foundation, a deep peace and joy that are unaffected by adverse circumstances. Those who stay at the Centre become guided by these principles, not as external rules, but through the understanding that they bring about the reduction of the ego, the “I-me-mine” concept as the motivating force of all our thoughts and actions.

All of our volunteer opportunities require a full commitment to and a focus on the needs of the community. As a gesture of support, we offer volunteer staff a small stipend to offset some of the basic daily costs of living while at the Centre. This amount is not intended to be a ‘wage’, but rather a small allowance for incidental expenses.

In support of our mission, the Centre offers classes, workshops and training courses aligned with the teachings of classical ashtanga and hatha yoga as passed on to us by our teacher, Baba Hari Dass. We also rent our facility to like-minded groups to run their own programs and retreats. Providing a supportive environment for these activities requires an organized infrastructure. Those coming to the Centre as volunteer staff join the residential community in supporting this mission, and in so doing, benefit from this personal growth opportunity, the peaceful environment, a wide variety of classes, the natural lifestyle and immersion in a spiritual community.

Non-Canadian residents will require a work permit for Canada. Applicants are responsible for arranging and securing the required permits.

Job Type:  Retreat Center

Location: Salt Spring Island, Canada

Salary:  Lodging, vegetarian meals, and a small stipend

Season: Summer, Fall


Learn More At:

Meditation in Action at Dechen Chöling, France

This summer you can go beyond the superficial and fully immerse yourself in community life and all its challenges.

The Meditation in Action Summer Programme has three parts – study and practice, volunteering, skills development and community living. The aim is to bring meditation into our daily life to help us to apply mindfulness in a practical way. Our resident teachers offer classes and study sessions to support your training and deepen your practice. It is an opportunity to delve deeper into your personal meditation by focusing on topics most relevant and useful to your life Your community involvement helps to support the experience of the participants at our programmes. You will do this by helping in departments that fit your interests and skills. Training and mentoring will be provided when necessary. In the summer high season (June to September), flexibility is requested to meet the challenging demands of the centre.

Community life is a practice in itself – learning to share, tolerating other people’s habits and communicating honestly to resolve differences. It helps us to develop loving-kindness, loosen the divide between self and other and to gradually realize the interconnected nature of life. By doing so, it is an opportunity to come face to face with your authentic self.

Above all else, we encourage you to find joy in your stay, and your life. With many personalities and interests on land, we enjoy a varied social life with activities proposed throughout the year. Some of our favourites: going to the weekly night market in local villages to enjoy a barbeque and experience the French culture, swim in the cool waters of our river the Vienne – great on hot summer evenings, enjoy an ice cream or two in our café or simply sit around a campfire at night while star gazing or playing the guitar.

Job Type:  Retreat Center

Location: St Yrieix sous Aixe, France

Cost to Volunteer:  10 Euros/Day

Season: Summer, fall


Learn More At:

Work Exchange at Ratna Ling Retreat Center, California

* Are you looking to be a part of something significant and meaningful to benefit yourself and others?

* Are you seeking work in a community that supports your values and encourages personal growth and self-discovery?

Look no further! Ratna Ling Retreat Center is located in the redwood coastal hills of Sonoma County in Northern California and may be the perfect match for you. Live and thrive in a truly unique environment where personal inquiry, cooperation and spiritual exploration are supported and encouraged. Enjoy rewarding work and a healthy lifestyle in a country environment while participating in an integrated program of learning.

Ratna Ling (Tibetan for “Jewel Place”) is a non-profit retreat center and intentional community grounded in Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Supported by a spiritual community of like-minded people dedicated to service to humanity, this year-round residential work-study opportunity allows your skills and enthusiasm to flourish.

We are seeking people who have a sincere interest in exploring work as a path to inner freedom. Our weekly schedule is rigorous (6 days a week) and rewarding! Visit for details, photos, application, and everything you need to know about living and working at Ratna Ling Retreat Center.

Minimum commitment is 6 months. No religious affiliation required. Minimum age is 23 years old. Couples are welcome to apply.

Contact us! Phone: (707) 847-3777 ext: 115 E-Mail:

Job Type:  Retreat Center

Location: Cazadero, California, USA

Salary: Housing, delicious vegetarian meals, classes and meditation, monthly living allowance of $150

Season: Year round

Learn More At:

Urban Farming Fellowship at Urban Adamah, California

The Urban Adamah Fellowship Now Accepting 2015 Applications

Connect to Something Bigger: Earth, Community, Social Justice, Jewish Spirituality

The Urban Adamah Fellowship, based in Berkeley, CA, is a three-month residential training program for young adults (ages 21–31) that combines urban organic farming, social justice training and progressive Jewish learning and living within the setting of an intentional community.

Through the operation of Urban Adamah’s one-acre organic farm and internships with social justice organizations, fellows gain significant skills, training and experience in all aspects of sustainable urban agriculture, community building, leadership development and urban food access. The Fellowship’s experiential curriculum is designed to equip fellows with the tools to become agents of positive change in their own lives and in their communities.

Now in its third year, the Fellowship has graduated over 100 young adults who have gone on to work in the fields of environmental education and policy, sustainable agriculture, community organizing, Jewish education and social entrepreneurship.

Upcoming Fellowships
Summer: June 7 – August 21, 2015
Fall: September 1 – November 20, 2015

The cost of the Fellowship is offered on a sliding scale from $1,300 to $1,850. Program fees are highly subsidized and include room, board and all other program expenses. We are able to offer this highly subsidized fee thanks to the generous support of individuals and foundations. Please note that limited financial aid is also available to reduce the price further.

We accept 12­–14 fellows per season. Admission is on a rolling basis, and we encourage applicants to apply as soon as they’ve made the decision to enroll in a particular season. Visit the Urban Adamah website today to learn more and to request an application. |510-649-1595 | | See us on Facebook

The Urban Adamah Jewish Community Farm, located in Berkeley, CA, integrates the practices of Jewish tradition, sustainable agriculture, mindfulness and social action to build loving, just and sustainable communities.

Job Type: Fellowship

Location: Berkeley, California, USA

Cost of Program: $1,300 to $1,850

Season: Summer, fall


Learn More At:

Work Exchange at Pacha Mama, Costa Rica

Pacha Mama work exchangePachaMama is an oasis of an alternative lifestyle. It’s a place to dive into a transformative spiritual voyage, rejuvenate the body, connect with nature and celebrate life. The community is located on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica in a forested valley. PachaMama was founded 13 years ago by Tyohar and fellow travelers who responded to the invitation to manifest together a commune that embraces a new way of life. Ever since it was founded, the oasis became a gathering place for people from all over the world, creating a colorful and unique energy field.

The land size is 500 acre, (2,300,000 m²). In the past this land was used as a cattle farm, without electricity, water system, roads or any living space.

There are plans to allow the village to grow continuously as more spiritual seekers, individuals or families, hear the call and want to enjoy the experience of PachaMama on a more permanent basis by putting down their roots here. The PachaMama experience is a profound journey into the depth of one’s being. It is designed to challenge and to embrace. It dares one to experience the depth of life in its totality, be it laughter or tears, the liveliness of togetherness or the silence of aloneness. It is a Temple of Transformation.

The Work Exchange Program (WE) is an opportunity to experience PachaMama and become an integral part of the community through service. It allows the participants of the program to cover a substantial part of the costs through working.

Job Type: Work Exchange/ Volunteer

Location: Costa Rica

Cost To Volunteer: Based on duration of commitment.

Season: Year Round

Learn More/ Apply At: Pacha Mama

Volunteers at Padmasambhava Peace Institute, California

Join our community! We welcome full-time residential or day-only volunteers wishing to support the activities PPI focuses on – spiritual development, caring for the land, and creating a beautiful retreat space for oneself and the community at large.

Our volunteers come from all walks of life. Together with the full-time residential volunteer staff, you can focus on personal growth and awareness in a supportive community while experiencing the joy of serving others and nurturing the environment.

Work may include gardening (landscaping and organic vegetables gardening),, cooking assistance and general kitchen support, cleaning and construction. This assistance is in the context of the Institute’s general operations and also its provision of services to community groups renting the facility. A volunteer’s specialist skills are always welcomed when applicable. The Institute is committed to using low- or no-chemical products throughout the property.

We welcome applicants from all backgrounds, regardless of race, age, education, religion and sexual orientation, and are looking for volunteers with:

  • a commitment to community life
  • an interest in supporting the center as a place of retreat for themselves and others
  • concern for the environment and interest in land stewardship
  • the ability to work with clear direction alone or as part of a team
  • the ability to communicate clearly with others
  • a responsible attitude towards handling their workload
  • willingness to carry out tasks to the best of their ability and able to work flexible hours on occasion (eg during big events)
  • good physical health and stamina

There are many beautiful places to hike around the property and we are located 20 minutes from the stunning Sonoma coastline and the Russian River resorts. Just over an hour away are the towns of Santa Rosa and Sebastopol which offer a full range of cultural activities from traditional to alternative.

Spiritual instruction and support are available from the lama-in-residence Tibetan Buddhist master Jigme Rinpoche, and volunteers are welcome to join in the group daily practice and make use of the center’s shrine-room and library. They can attend the center’s Buddhist events free of charge.

The center maintains an organic vegetable garden which operates along principles of permaculture as much as possible and twice a year PPI hosts Earth Activist Training courses under the direction of Starhawk and other eco/spiritual leaders.

Job Type:  Work exchange

Location: Cazadero, California, USA

Cost to Volunteer:  Room and board are offered in exchange for an agreed number of work-hours per week. Accommodations are single or shared clean, carpeted rooms with adjacent bathroom facilities.

Season: Year round

Learn More At:

Resident Employees at Harbin Hot Springs, California

On 30, Jul 2014 | In Autumn Jobs, Retreat Center, Spring Jobs, Summer Jobs, Winter Jobs, Year Round | By Jacqueline

In-person interview required!

For centuries, the land and hot springs here have been regarded by Native Americans as sacred and healing. Harbin is a magical place – 1700 acres of woodlands nestled on the mountainside, where you breathe the freshest air, surrounded by natural beauty. Harbin is an oasis that offers an alternative lifestyle, away from the anxiety and stress of today’s fast-paced, high-tech world.

We – the approximately 150 Harbin residents – come from varied walks of life, and join as a team to run all aspects of Harbin and live together in community. We gladly accept the responsibility of providing service to our guests who come for rest, reflection and renewal. We create community in our lives by living, working and growing together. Harbin is a place that encourages personal development through service.

Before being accepted, applicants for candidacy need to pass an interview process (in person), plus a job of 30hrs/week needs to be available. Availability of work is unpredictable, but generally more work opportunities occur during our peak season which is from May through October.
Applicants who are accepted join the candidate program – a time of orientation to the lifestyle and work environment during which both the individual and the candidate council can choose whether to proceed with residency.

-Work requirement: 30 hours/wk

- Compensation: begins at minimum wage (CA – $8.00/hr) or more

- Housing: on-property camping ($60/wk), shared community house in Middletown ($62/wk + utlities), or on-property dormitory (($66/wk)

Come with a positive attitude, ready to contribute your gifts and skills to the growth of Harbin. Come with a committed work ethic because service to our guests and fellow residents creates the foundation on which we build our individual and collective experience of community. Come with an open heart to participate in our sweet and supportive community.

Job Type:  Retreat center

Location: Middletown, California, USA

Salary:  Starts at $8/hour

Season: Year round


Learn More At:

Work study at Seung Sahn International Zen Center, South Korea

According to a long tradition dating back to the Great Zen Master Pai Chang, famous for teaching “A day without work is a day without food,” simple manual work which does not require much prior knowledge or complex thinking is best to sustain a practicing mind. Therefore, Haeng Won Participants will be given work in the kitchen, such as assisting the cook with food preparation, in the garden, harvesting or weeding, and cleaning the buildings, such as the dormitory, storage or Buddha and Meditation Halls. These simple duties, along with the administrative tasks usually performed by Sunims, are the fundamentals of the daily running of a temple.

The schedule starts before dawn, at 3:00 in the morning, and ends at 9:00 in the
evening, when the lights go out. In between, there are 5 hours of formal practice including sitting, chanting and bowing and 5 hours of work spread throughout the day with some breaks in between. Generally, the schedule is rather structured. In order to reinforce a simple, practice-oriented spirit, the participants will rarely leave the monastery grounds. In temple training, the schedule is our first teacher because it simplifies life and limits the personal sphere of likes and dislikes –by just performing our duties for others, we learn to put down our opinions, let go of our habits and
cultivate a true freedom not dependent on situation.

Haeng Won Work-Study Program
* Haeng Won Work-Study Program has been developed to allow practitioners from all over the world to get in touch with the Korean monastic root of Zen Master Seung Sahn’s teaching.

* Practitioners receive free room and board.

We are now accepting applications for 2014 fall Hae Jae,
2014 winter Kyol Che Retreat, and 2015 spring Hae Jae.

* Fall Hae Jae: Sep 1 ~ Dec 4, 2014
* Winter Kyol Jae : Dec 6, 2014 ~ Mar 5, 2015
* Spring Hae Jae : Mar 21, 2015 ~ May 30, 2015
Applicants are accepted for a minimum of 1 month and a maximum of 3 months.

Job Type:  Work exchange

Location: Chungnam Province, South Korea

Cost to Volunteer: Free room and board

Season: Fall, Winter, Spring


Learn More/ Apply At

Yoga Retreat Center Internship, Anamaya Resort, Costa Rica

Anamaya Yoga Resort is truly an exotic place, built on a cliff edge and overlooking the most incredible ocean views. The resort is a few steps away from epic waterfalls, surrounded by rainforests, and located in one of the world’s most beautiful tropical beach towns. “Anamaya” is Sanskrit for “good health” and that is our focus. Our unique retreat center offers gourmet organic food, yoga teacher training, several types of yoga classes and yoga retreats, a variety of luxurious spa services, and an array of uniquely designed retreat packages, workshops all in respect to the body, mind and spirit.

Are you looking for an internship somewhere exciting? Do you love yoga, the beach, rainforest, and tropical climate? Then Anamaya could be the place for you.

Anamaya is one of the most beautiful places in the world, and if you have the right skills, attitude, and super-friendly personality we’re looking for, then you could live here onsite and be part of our team in this small paradise resort.

We have two internship positions available all year at Anamaya:


We need help in the kitchen, and to devise new recipes using the organic produce we’re growing at our “Rancho Delicioso” organic farm nearby. Many of these veggies are exotic species and unfamiliar to most chefs. You may also be asked to fill in if one or our regular chefs is sick, or to help serve the guests. Our current multi-talented chef intern is a singer and plays guitar for the guests from time to time, and she also is writing blog articles describing our recipes and helping with the cookbook. The chef intern will also help with tasks such as making coconut milk or goat cheese, which generally our regular kitchen staff don’t have time for.


The other position is what we call “Media” which can mean many things. We need help with our website, promotions, SEO, and many other parts of the business. Are you a great writer? Photographer? Would you like to make some promotional videos for Anamaya showcasing our yoga? Or perhaps a series of healthy food preparation videos with our kitchen staff? Maybe you are a great painter and could do a mural or wall detail on some of the rooms? What about websites… are you familiar with wordpress or graphic design and could help with that? Social media is also an option. We always need help with new posts to our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest profiles.

This position requires great creativity and skill. If this sounds like you, then contact us!

Job Type:  Work-Exchange, Retreat Center

Location: Montezuma, Puntarenas, Costa Rica

Cost to Volunteer:  $500 per month. You will receive room and board.

Season: Year round

Facebook: Anamaya on Facebook

Learn More/ Apply At

Lead Cook at Ratna Ling Retreat Center, California

Work and live in the redwood coastal hills of Sonoma County, CA at beautiful Ratna Ling, a non-profit retreat center in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition in northern CA.  Be in a spiritual community of like-minded people dedicated to service to humanity through a wide variety of projects both local and global. This year-round residential work-study opportunity combines meaningful work with opportunities for self-growth.  Seeking those with a sincere interest and a strong work ethic.

If you would like to cook in a truly unique environment where personal inner inquiry, cooperation and spiritual values are supported, as well as participating in an integrated program of work and learning, this may be the place for you.


Job Type:  Work-Exchange, Retreat Center

Location: Cazadero, California, USA

Salary:  Room and board, free classes, $150 a month living allowance

Season: Year round

Learn More At:

Apply At:

Work Exchange at Mana Retreat Center, New Zealand

 Mana retreat center NZMana is a prestigious retreat and conference centre situated in a scenic and lovely part of the Coromandel Peninsula in New Zealand. Mana offers a wide range of workshops and events in the areas of body-mind education, creative expression and spiritual exploration. Mana can accommodate up to 50 guests in comfortable modern rooms, and provides vegetarian and wholefood cuisine. Ingredients are mostly organic and often sourced from the beautiful Mana garden. Mana is a guest oriented business serving an international community.

The energy, enthusiasm and efforts of wwoofers (Willing Workers on Organic Farms) and other volunteers, is an essential component of Mana and is welcomed by the small staff team who direct their work. We prefer longer term wwoofers (at least one month) as there is much to learn in our different areas (house-keeping, kitchen, gardens), and we need to train you to work to the standards we maintain. Mana is especially interested in workers who would like to extend their stay beyond  a month, and train to take more responsibilty. If you wish to consider a more intense and longer work/learn experience, then please indicate in a mail attached to your application.

Job Type: Work Exchange/ Volunteer

Location: New Zealand

Cost To Volunteer: Accommodation & food provided in exchange for labor. No fees involved.

Season: Year Round

Learn More/ Apply At: Mana Retreat Center

Work Exchange at Tauhara Retreat Center, New Zealand

On 20, Apr 2013 | In Autumn Jobs, Retreat Center, Spring Jobs, Summer Jobs, Winter Jobs, Year Round | By Jacqueline

tauhara retreat centerTauhara is the expression of an unfolding vision. It was founded to create a spiritual and educational centre which would draw together people of differing viewpoints and methods of working, but united in their search for truth and the establishment of goodwill and understanding in the world. Tauhara is a free association of people from throughout New Zealand and beyond, who come from all walks of life, all faiths, and who hold many diverse views.Through coming together to share and learn, to give and receive, working physically, mentally and spiritually, they extend and add richness to the expression of Tauhara.

We are especially interested in people who wish to experience something different, a quieter, more spacious, natural environment, with the opportunity for reflective time using our library, a resource reflecting the many, different spiritual and philosophical pathways, and our Sanctuary, for quiet contemplation. Tauhara also enables you, through the work you will do here, to support others who come here in this supportive and co-operative environment. We accept only non-smokers with a low interest in alcohol.

Tauhara has comfortable accommodation in shared units or caravans for short term work exchange (2- 6 weeks), and typically has an average of 4 volunteers at any one time, rising to 6 or 8 at times of busiest garden activity in spring and autumn. Accomodation and meals are provided, and exchange volunteers work an average of 5.5 hours per day. The type of work varies: you may be assisting one of our cooks to prepare delicious meals, or helping with general housekeeping (cleaning) or gardening, wherever possible reflecting a balance between your interests and the needs of the Centre. It is essential to make contact first by email (best option) or ‘phone, as there are times when we are booked up some weeks in advance.

We encourage volunteers to come for a minimum of two weeks, which is open for extension if mutually agreed upon. No experience necessary – open hearts and willing hands are especially welcome! Please call if you feel drawn to experience this beautiful Centre!

Job Type: Work Exchange/ Volunteer

Location: Lake Taupo, New Zealand

Cost to Volunteer: Food and accommodation provided in exchange for labor.

Season: Summer Fall Winter Spring

Learn More/ Apply At: Tauhara Retreat and Conference Center