The Hostel in the Forest was constructed in 1975 by Tom Dennard to allow travelers the experience of what it's like to live in a natural setting with only a minimum of trappings from the outside world. Since its opening, hostellers from around the globe have contributed their varied talents to create this beautiful oasis.
The hostel environment, beginning with the bumpy entrance road, somehow demands a slower pace and allows guests to delve deeper into self and spiritual awareness. Over the years this hostel has been sustained by people who love it and return to bathe in its comforting spirit. While money may buy materials, it could never begin to supply the time, energy, creative efforts, and love that so many people have put into this hostel.
If your needs require heating and air-conditioning, private baths or anything that resembles luxurious accommodations, you may be disappointed. Instead, we have compost toilets, outdoor showers, and while you will have a roof over your head and screens to protect you from insects, the air inside your room will be subject to the whims of nature.
If you spend enough time at the hostel to quiet the mind and eliminate thoughts of the outside world, you, too, will find the spirit that dwells here. Countless travelers have expressed this spirit through art, music, writings, crafts and creative buildings.
You may be asked to do a chore. This may include picking blueberries, gathering eggs, feeding chickens, tending our organic vegetable garden, cutting flowers, and helping with communal meals. But mostly we want to give you enough time to soak up the beauty of the surroundings and interact with the other hostellers from around the world.
The Hostel in the Forest is a center which promotes and teaches environmental sustainability, while also serving as a spiritual retreat, and hostel for international and domestic travelers. It teaches a hands-on approach to a sustainable lifestyle through activities such as alternative building and organic gardening while complementing the processes of nature. While the Hostel is not dedicated to any particular religion or denomination, its educational programs and services are designed to integrate the ecological, social, spiritual, economic and emotional aspects of the human condition.