During Overnight Programs guests will sleep on futons and, depending on how many people there are on the course, may be required to share a room.

Before booking any program, please check our calendar for retreat dates.

Zen Retreat

A retreat is a rare opportunity to get away from the everyday hassles of life and focus on personal growth. It aims to provide a sense of inner peace and relaxation, while furthering your spiritual exploration.
Meditation is the core practice in Zen Buddhism. It is the mindful quality present in everything we do, and the pathway to discovering our basic mind and heart (who and what we are), building awareness of mind, self, others, and our surroundings.
In addition to meditation, each retreat combines a variety of Zen Buddhist practices, i.e.:

  • walking meditation, where we coordinate our steps with the breath and the terrain.
  • chanting, where we express our heart through our voices.
  • samu (work), where we learn to focus on the tasks at hand.
  • silence, which facilitates awareness of our surroundings.
  • artistic activities, which unleash creative energy and facilitate nonverbal expression.
  • tea ceremonies, which foster present moment awareness and gratitude.
  • talks, which share the teachings of the Buddha.
  • discussions, which provide the opportunity to ask questions and learn from others.

Our activities during the retreat will help you quiet your mind and gain awareness of your thoughts and that deeper inner voice called intuition. The retreat also helps you focus on how to apply the Zen teachings in your daily life through contemplating one of the many Zen Sayings during free time and exchanging your views with the participants and teachers. Through this variety, the Zen Retreat is a unique opportunity to get a glimpse of the many facets of Zen.

Fee:  4 nights retreat 35.000 Yen (main meals, overnight stay and program),

Meals are vegetarian, special dietary requirements can not be met, but you are free to bring own provisions. Bring your own snacks if you need, tea is provided.

Overnight Silence Retreat

This opportunity for an overnight stay is ideal for regular participation. It gives you a chance to step out of your every day routine to spend time in silence and meditation. 
The stay starts at 6:30 pm with a walking meditation outside if the weather permits, followed by Zazen meditation inside. If requested, we can start with a talk to focus on in the following meditation periods. Apart from that the time will be spent in silence until after breakfast next morning. 
This is to allow the full contemplative and relaxing benefit of the meditation programs.
The following day starts again with walking meditation outside, zazen meditation inside, followed by a short morning service (chanting). After breakfast we have some tea and the chance to reflect on our stay.

Fee:  4000 Yen (including overnight stay and light Japanese breakfast)

Yoga Workshop

This program is not run very often, as the yoga instructor has to be booked especially for the program. Yoga workshops are normally organised to run with a weekend or overnight program, with the Yoga workshop making up a part of the morning’s programs. Please keep an eye on the website where we will announce the next Yoga Workshop.

Zen Practice Residency

Our residency program is a unique opportunity to practice Zen within a non-monastic setting. Horakuan accepts residents for up to one month between the months of April and November. During your residency, you will receive instruction, and the opportunity to participate, in a wide variety of Zen practices, including: zazen meditation, spiritual text study, sutra copying, art activities and samu/work. Practice of Japanese tea ceremony is optional. Participants are also welcome to join any events taking place at Horakuan during your stay. We can facilitate English, Japanese, and German speakers.


FEE: 30.000 Yen per week  This includes arrangement of a personal program, accommodation, access to a full kitchen, and use of a car for grocery shopping.