Nourish Thy Self Retreat – a week in the heart of the Portuguese countryside.

~ Merkaba community ~

After a super challenging year, I sought out a retreat for some much needed healing space. Although, what really happened is that this retreat sought me out. It appeared out of thin air through word of mouth and the stars aligned to bring it all into fruition…

We were based at Merkaba Community, a space created by world-wise Deva who has worked tirelessly on this creation for the past 5 years. His commitment to the project has grown and blossomed into the dreamy place it is now. Not without challenge, but undoubtedly worth every bit. Solar energy powers the two domes that were our homes during our time there, whilst rich mineral water from below came through the Fountain of Life. All our food was locally sourced, whether it be fresh fruit from the trees, veg from the garden or cheese from the lady’s goat nearby. Atop a Quartz crystal mountain, our view panned out for miles around.

Heavenly, heavenly moments ensued. It was transformational, inspirational, uplifting and, of course, fully nourishing for mind, body and soul. We allowed tears, conquered our fears and became all ears. We shared joy and laughter and lived happily ever after (sorry, that just had to rhyme. Hehe).

Arktara, our mother hen, used her powers of manifestation to bring us such a gathering. She has the playfulness of a child combined with the wisdom of an elder, making every day insightful and so much fun. We all instantly felt at ease in her presence.


~ Out of body experience ~

By Jodie

A sound journey welcomed us the first night… Gongs and sound bowls, amongst other instruments I don’t know the name of, channelled divine music that sounded so familiar and yet out of this world at the same time. You quite literally are taken out of your body to unseen realms during.

Neema Star, the alchemist of our fuel, lovingly prepared 3 veggie meals a day for us from day one. This kitchen witch cooks with such passion, creating a taste explosion in your mouth, then combines this with the mindfulness of consuming such delicious food. Before each meal we would join hands and bless, thank and worship the earth for all it provides, along with the sun for providing the light and ourselves for allowing expression of the energy we receive. Every pre-meal ritual was unique and expressed straight from the soul, creating such a wholesome feeling for us beforehand. It is such an important part of living to remember and be grateful of the abundance we are blessed to have. Throughout our meals, “mmm” was a constant sound. Neema outdid herself each time, which astonished us (how could it get more yum!?), although the tasty zucchini was my all-time favourite for sure.


~ Scrumptious breakfast delights ~

By Neema Star

Cacao ceremonies became a daily occurrence – something I’ve never experienced before. For anyone who doesn’t know of blissful Cacao, it is the raw form of Cocoa once used as currency by the Aztecs and known to open the heart (literally by dilating the blood vessels). It brings relaxing, peaceful and loving energies to you from within.

Humble yoga goddess that she is, Rachelle beamed light constantly. One day, she guided us through a voice activation in which we moved through the chakras, tuning into each tone as we did so. This goes “UH-OO-OH-AH-AY-I-EE” moving in succession from the root chakra (base of your spine) to the crown (top of the head). By the end of it she had us sounding like a choir of angels. A lot of healing was done in this workshop… Especially at the end, when we took it in turns to lay down in the middle and let everyone tune into a chakra we had chosen, sending pure vibrational magic into our bodies.

Nic, our wonderful fun-loving guru, serenaded us throughout the week with his guitar whilst sharing his deep yogic wisdom. He lead an eye-gazing session with us all and as we gazed into the windows of the soul, giggling and observing and meeting, we discovered incredible amounts. There’s a quote somewhere that says looking into another’s eyes reveals the secrets of the Universe and that’s about as close I can get to describing the experience.

Amongst these liberational lessons, we swam in a nearby lake, gazed at the visible and vibrant Milky Way by night, learnt about the power of essential oils, discovered yoni eggs, held sharing circles and sang.

There was such an air of supportive community around us. As the week unfolded, so did we, as a flower blooms. Each and every one of us opened up a new layer to ourselves and it was so beautiful to see and be a part of that.


~ The best way to start the day; meditation, yoga & hugs ~

By Jodie

For the entire 5 days, love poured through me as I radiated light. I went through a process of purification on a cellular level and I was reminded of the way of life I believe in.

I would encourage anyone seeking out inner growth and transformation to find themselves a retreat as such. Especially (but not necessarily) if you’ve been going through a hard time. It really works wonders and brings you back to your true self in so many ways. I’ve been propelled forward along my path and realised a vast amount of things. Mostly that self-love, taking care of yourself on all levels, is vital – fill up your cup and then let it overflow to all in your midst.

~ Our magical as f^ck facilitators ~

Nic, Neema, Arktara & Rachelle

Thank you for holding space for us to flourish whilst being nourished.

This only touches the surface… Boy do we have an iceberg underneath that cap! I have so much love for you guys, from the depths of my soul to the bottom of my heart. We created community, expanded the tribe and found family within one another. I wish each and every single one of you so many blessings on your journey and look forward to wherever we cross paths again, you wonderous beams of light.

~ Aho aho aho ~

By Jodie


  • See more magical moments captured by the wonderful Jodie
  • Keep up to date with Arktara’s journey and future events
  • Find out more about Rachelle’s yoga
  • Check out Nic’s sanctuary in Guatemala
  • If you’re interested in visiting Merkaba, please contact them first! 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s