Retreat Testimonials: Costa Rica

“The Sacred Warrior retreat was a wonderful foray into the world of plants, natural healing, community and adventure. Remember being a kid and the joy of learning about something new? Something you were genuinely enthralled by? That was my experience on the retreat. I was re-introduced to a world I remembered as a child; a world where getting dirty, play and magic were a part of my everyday experience. I learned about the power of plants to heal, warn, soothe and teach. I experienced this among a community of like-minded folks, all searching to be re-connected to the natural world, all of us looking to disconnect, albeit temporarily, from laptops and phones. We ate delicious and healthy meals, went on Jungle hikes, made medicinal tinctures, communed with nature, laughed, shared and got connected to the earth and one another; not just in a “woo-woo” way – but in a way that felt grounded and sustainable.

Vanessa is a wonderful teacher; striking the perfect balance between sharing knowledge and having us discover our relationship with nature on our own. I returned to NYC grounded and satiated. I have become totally sidetracked walking down Brooklyn streets, entranced by plants that have always been there, though I never noticed them before. I’m clear this is only the beginning of learning about this ancestral knowledge. The benefits of the Sacred Warrior retreat are still showing up, even though I returned home three weeks ago. I’m looking forward to continuing this education and experiencing the benefits for my life and my community.” ~ Jahan Martin, Co-Founder & Strategist at Project Inkblot

“The retreat was a real transformative experience. It was exactly what I was looking for and more. The setting in Costa Rica was perfect. I had been to Costa Rica a couple of times before, but never like this. i have been on a search for the meaning of life for 45 years. Some people try to spoon feed you their answers and others allow you to experience your own separate reality while in a group setting. Vanessa is able to pull off the later, which is very enriching to the individual. There was a real ” heart and soul” to the retreat. Everything felt relaxed and spontaneous not fixed or contrived. There is a form to the retreat but natural pauses in between where you can get to know the other members of the group. i feel as if I have made many new friends, regardless of age or gender we all have common hopes and feelings.”
~ Mitchell Shakour, Owner of Northfield Drive-In 



Vanessa’s retreat was legit the most magical trip I have ever taken. We literally learned how to communicate with plants. I never thought that was possible before, and I heard their messages loud and clear. We fully took on plant allies, convened with plant and animal medicines, and had incredible discoveries in the jungle. There are no words. I highly recommend people experience this. It’s sustainability and what’s being taught out there in an entirely different dimension. ~ Boyuan Gao Co-Founder & Strategist at Project Inkblot

“I have been training as a warrior since I went down to Costa Rica in December for a Sacred Warrior retreat. I practiced meditation, started my boxing training and learned plant medicine in the jungle surrounded by my new crew of amazing Warriors. Since then, I have been training with Vanessa in NYC. She uses her own special technique combining the fierceness of boxing with the focus and visualization of meditation… then makes it more of a beautiful bundle when she teaches you about healing (physically, emotionally, spiritually) with local medicinal plants. I can only fully express my gratitude for her teaching and guidance by sharing it because she has changed my world and made me feel like more of the Bad Ass that was waiting to be released! *cue Eye of the Tiger please!”
Danise Prescott, Professional Dancer

“The Costa Rica retreat was purely magical, and a profoundly transformative experience. I got to ‘unplug’ from technology and everything that doesn’t serve me, and completely immerse myself in working with plant allies and tuning into the Elements. The sweat lodge ceremony was in itself a unique, powerful and humbling experience. I never felt closer to my roots or the Earth. The members of the retreat became like family to me, and we supported one another through releasing the old and discovering the new/forgotten on our journeys.I can’t recommend Vanessa’s teaching style enough – if you have a chance to work with her in any capacity, I urge you to do so, without hesitations. She is wise beyond her years, beautiful from the inside out, and radiates kindness. I realized that her kindness is completely without boundaries – it extends to anyone on her path, which is a beautiful thing to witness.” ~  Dr. Marina Book, Pharmacist, Herbalist & Naturopath at RawFork
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