Preparing for Your Retreat

As you prepare for your retreat, here are some things to keep in mind:


Bowen Island ferry

Please notify us of your arrival time in advance. Before you come, email us your estimated arrival time and mode of transport from the ferry terminal, so that the host knows when to expect you.

Arrival and Departures: Check in time is in the afternoon.  As the location is quite isolated, we recommend you arrive during daylight hours.  Check out time on your final day is 12 noon.

Please read the section Getting there ahead of time, particularly if you plan to travel from Snug Cove via bus/foot.

Practical considerations as you prepare to come: 

Food:  You will need to bring your own food, and be aware there is limited fridge space. Easy to prepare, simple meals are recommended while on retreat.  There are a few staples in the kitchen, like salt, pepper, oil, vinegar and sugar for your use.  

10-clip-art-recycle-symbol-free-cliparts-that-you-can-download-to-you-fi6q2i-clipartGarbage and composting are available at the Hermitage, but you are responsible for taking your recycling items with you when you go.  There is a recycling depot on Bowen Island located near Snug Cove.  

Personal effects:

Please bring clothes appropriate for the season recognizing that the hermitages are non-serviced (i.e no plumbing or electricity) and heated with a small wood stove.  You may also want to bring a pair of slippers since outdoor footwear should not be worn in the main house or cabins.

You will need to bring your own towel and bedding warm enough for the season (the cabins can be cold in winter).  If you are bringing sheets, please take note that the mattresses in the hermitages are twin width extra long.  Double bed sheets will work or sleeping bags. A pillow is provided but you will want to bring your own pillowcase, or even your favourite pillow.

flashlightYou will need a flashlight and/or headlamp.  There is no lighting in the hermitages nor on the pathway.  No need to bring candles, we provide them.  Lit candles should not be left unattended and always kept in a safe container.   

There are trails nearby so bring your hiking boots and rain gear.

Rhythms of prayer: 

The Hermitage follows the same prayer rhythms as the main Rivendell Lodge.  We gather in the loft in the Forest House of Prayer for the 8 am Centering Prayer and the 5:00 pm Centering Prayer with Lectio Divina.  Participation in these gatherings is optional.  Please inform the host if you are not planning to attend the 5:00 pm gathering. 

Communication access

There is cell phone reception at the site, but it is limited.  We encourage retreatants to use their retreat time to unplug from electronic devices.  The host’s room has a landline phone for emergency use.  

Caring for the space

400px-broom_icon-svgAs a gift to the next person, you are asked to clean your room and leave it the way you found it …or better. 

We are collectively responsible for the cleanliness of the Forest House of Prayer (there are no maids or magical mothers/fathers).   If you see a space that needs cleaning, feel free to take the initiative.  Cleaning supplies are in a cupboard in the kitchen, in each bathroom and in the laundry room in the basement. 


Following Rivendell’s guidelines and in recognition of the imbalance of economic resources, you are invited to pay according to your means.  The Hermitage is committed to a financially self-sustaining model and relies on your donations.  Any payment per night over $75.00 will provide you with an income tax receipt for the amount over the $75.  Payment is by cash, cheque or etransfer.  

Blessings as you prepare for your retreat.