Eco-Retreat: Hollyhock Educational Center

Recharge your soul in the Hollyhock educational center.

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Zach Sukuweh (left) and Shine Edgar playing didjeridu.

Photo by Rick Ellis

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Is it the tranquil sound of lapping waves or the sweet scent of coastal cedar forest that makes Hollyhock, a Canadian educational center, so magical? This rustic idyll on remote Cortes Island, north of Vancouver, exists to inspire, empower, and nourish people who strive to make the world a better place.

Commune with nature

Ramble rainforest trails, row at full moon through bioluminescent waters, attend a star talk, sail to a seabird colony, or flop in a weathered Adirondack chair beside the rocky, driftwood-strewn beach.

Get garden therapy

Hollyhock’s heart is its one-acre biodynamic garden, which attracts guests like bees. The organic vegetables, fruit, and herbs provide food for the mostly vegetarian meals, and flowers become breathtaking bouquets.

Enroll in a workshop 

Expand your horizons in courses such as illustrating a nature journal, global activism, woodcarving, vegetarian cooking, Tibetan Buddhism, storytelling, yoga, or African drumming.

Re-energize 

Opt for a didjeridu session, in which Australian aboriginal-trained healers use the instrument’s vibrations to open chakras and unblock energy. You lie on the floor in Hollyhock’s beautiful cob (a mix of clay, sand, and straw) sanctuary as the therapists direct sound waves along the body’s meridians.

Hollyhock Granola
Makes about 10 cups