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Culture, Beauty & Music for the Soul

A Women’s Retreat in Western Ireland

June 19 – 25, 2019


Mystical Ireland . . . capturing the senses, inspiring the mind and stirring the soul . . . while entwined with a bit of fairy lore.


The lush landscape and misty mountains of Western Ireland provide the perfect opportunity to slow down, quiet your mind, and listen to your own inner guidance.  There’s something so healing when you wander among ancient ruins and truly tune into nature like druids did long, long ago.

Centuries of Irish culture will be be the backdrop for our 6-day women’s  retreat across the windswept valleys and rugged coastline of Western Ireland. We will revel in the wide, sweeping beauty of Ireland’s beaches; enjoy hiking her rich, green mountain trails; be transfixed by her soulful traditional music; and have our hearts warmed by the smiling welcome of the Irish people.

We will be delightfully immersed in the moon-like landscape of the Burren with its unique variety of wildflowers; with Connemara’s starkly beautiful interior, a kaleidoscope of rusty bogs, lonely valleys and shimmering black lakes; and the the rocky, wind-buffeted Aran Islands with a desolate beauty, preserving its age-old traditions and evoking a sense of timelessness.



Join facilitator, Karen Ely, and ten like-minded women travelers for a celebration of Ireland’s Celtic culture, an unforgettable experience of ancient sites and windblown shores, and intimate morning gatherings setting the stage for afternoon walking pilgrimages.

This retreat will be a unique and intimate experience of Ireland from the outside in and the inside out.



• Walking* in the Irish wilderness: its sand dunes, native forests, rugged hills, heather covered meadows, quiet river valleys, and ancient history.  Each day’s walk will be 3 – 4 miles with one day of about 6 miles. However, you can opt out of hiking on any day. There are alternative options such as sight-seeing, relaxing, reading, painting, listening to Irish traditional music, and generally just soaking up the Irish atmosphere. All our accommodations are based in scenic locations, so you are very welcome to just remain “home” for the day.

• Visiting, learning and experiencing the history, significance and beauty of Ireland’s iconic and mystical sites, enjoying vibrant towns, stunning landscapes, Irish music, and encounters with the best visitor attraction in Ireland — the Irish people.

• Reflecting, wandering and retreating will be part of each day.  We will gather each morning in circle, setting the stage for our walking pilgrimages through the beauty of nature and the ancient Irish culture. There will be time each day for reflection and wandering.  Over our time together, you will slowly rekindle a quiet sense of who you really are and the understanding that anything is possible.


We will fly into Shannon, Ireland on June 19th, enjoy a get-acquainted gathering, have time to explore the area and get a good night’s sleep before being picked up by our tour coordinator the following morning.   Our six-day tour will include: 

  • The Cliffs of Moher
  • The stunning geology of the Burren region
  • Inishmore, the largest of the Aran Islands
  • The fort of Dun Aenghus
  • Killary Harbour, Ireland’s only fjord
  • 2 nights Inishmore, Aran Islands
  • 2 nights in Clifden, Connemara
  • 1 night Ballyvaughan in the Burren

We will return to Shannon late afternoon on June 25th.


KAREN ELY is a speaker, facilitator, mentor and author who inspires audiences of women of all ages, incomes and backgrounds to live to their full potential. She is the founder and director of the Sedona Women’s Institute (originally A Woman’s Way), one of the country’s premier women’s retreat programs, which has offered hundreds of programs and touched thousands of women all over the world since its inception in 2003. Karen is also the author of five well-received books, including: Daring to Dream: Reflections on the Year I Found Myself, A Retreat of My Own, Breathing Space: Mini-Retreats for the Heart & Soul and 21 Stepping Stones to a More Peaceful, Meaningful Life. A Safe Place to Stand will be published in 2019. Karen has a lifetime of retreat facilitation experience and a deep commitment to assisting women in creating and living authentic lives of passion and joy. For more information on Karen and her work, please click here.


JOYCE BYRNE started Joyce’s Ireland Hiking Tours in 1994 and quickly realized that it was the best decision she’d ever made. She managed to convert what was essentially a passionate hobby into a small, well-run business. Suffering from wanderlust and having travelled extensively since her teens, she has been able to use the experiences she gained from her own journeys to devise itineraries that are both empathetic to the travelers needs and sympathetic to the environment. Joyce will be our primary tour guide with the assistance of local guides, each experienced hikers and guides with an excellent knowledge of their particular location. For more information on Joyce, please click here.



All our accommodations have been hand-picked by our guide to give us the best possible experience. Each are located in areas of outstanding natural beauty so that we can enjoy the best of Irish rural life and scenery. Ensconced in small hotels, guest houses, farmhouses and B & B’s, we will be welcomed by hospitable and friendly hosts. All rooms are en-suite, double occupancy. Singles are available for an additional fee (see below).

Meals will be carefully selected so you can taste the most typical, delicious, local cuisine. All breakfasts and most lunches and dinners are included in the retreat fee. Some lunches and dinners are not included to provide more flexibility during the day and so you can experiment on your own in the evenings.

* NOTE: Hiking is suitable for those wanting to travel at a steady pace with time to sit and look around, while soaking up the atmosphere, taking pictures, and listening to Irish folklore. All hikes are graded as easy to moderate.



Retreat fee includes:

~ Shannon Airport pick-up and drop-off

~ 3 & 4 star double occupancy accommodations each night with private en suite bathrooms. (single rooms are available for an additional $450 fee)

~ All land transportation

~ Return Ferry to the Aran Islands

~ Admission to Dun Aenghus Fort and Cliffs of Moher

~ 6 guided walks

~ Escort of full-time guide

~ Escort of local guides

~ All breakfasts

~ 4 packed lunches & 4 evening meals

Not included in the retreat fee:

~ Flight to and from Shannon, Ireland

~ Shannon, Ireland hotel

~ 2 lunches and 2 dinners



~ $1,500 is due at time of registration ($600 of this is non-refundable)
~ The remaining $2,075 is due no later than March 15, 2019 (after this date, there are no refunds)

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