TOUR NAME: “Rustic Elegance” Because YOU Deserve This Getaway!
DATE: Saturday, Sept. 16 and Sunday, Sept. 17, 2023 (rain-date Sept 30 + Oct 1st)
DURATION (ROUND TRIP): Saturday 8:00 am – Sunday 7:30 pm Please arrive 15 min. before departure at REI to board the bus. Return time is traffic dependent.
PRICE: $350/person (Overnight trip; all meals included; read description and itinerary to realize how much value you will get for this ticket price. You will truly be surprised!)
(purchase your ticket at TheNatureBus.com > Calendar)
Imagine the setting! Cedarmere in the Blue Ridge is fifty acres of fresh air, grass, flower fields, a pond, horses, with a view of the Blue Ridge Mountains as the backdrop. Beauty at a truly elegant farm! At this get-away a wellness expert, Christa, will host our group. Partake in food, nature, photography, flower arranging, meditation, and so much more.
The food will be “a beautiful experience” prepared by a chef who will welcome you with tables “dressed” like you see on Pinterest. You’ll want your camera ready to capture yourself delighting in freshly prepared “eat the rainbow” meals, dressed with tablecloths, candlelight, fresh flowers and twinkle lights. All of your freshly-made meals are included in your retreat price. The chef and hostess will interact with our group with stories about how healthy fresh food is the fuel for ultimate wellness. You will even have a Vietnamese Garden Roll workshop! Food is a wonderful vehicle to get to know other people; a great way to bridge from strangers to friendship. Envision yourself creating sweet new friendships (that may end up lasting a lifetime:)
This get-away is all about “nourishing yourself” – Nourish your body with colorful healthy and delicious foods; nourish your creative mind with flower picking + arranging, nature photography and shin-rin yoku “forest bathing” a nature sensory walk. Nourish your soul with joy, wine and laughter.
The wellness host will help us learn different ways to rest our bodies + mind and help us discover which approaches work best for each of us. She will teach us a simpler form of meditation that is attainable all day throughout the day as needed. Leave this retreat feeling rejuvenated and refreshed, and also take these simple skills home with you to use on our own.
Pamper yourself. Let’s check-in with ourselves. Go ahead and sign up! Give yourself permission to get off of the work/societal treadmill for these special 32 hours and enjoy pure rustic elegance. Allow total immersion in an itinerary filled with activities designed to allow you to relax and be gently creative and peacefully social.
SATURDAY, Sept. 16
8 am – Depart from REI/Town Center. Drive to Free Union, Va – just outside of Charlottesville (we will stop half way to stretch our legs, use restroom, and snack).
12:00 – (Noon-ish) arrive to a fabulous “spread of food” waiting for you. Think “Pinterest-Style” Rustic Elegance! After this beautiful meal, you will have some relaxing downtime, a short guided meditation by our host, giving yourself permission to fall asleep/nap on a yoga mat under the maple trees.
2:00 – we will take a sensory nature walk.
3:00 – Following our walk, we are heading 15 min away to Hark Vineyards; sip wine, view the mountains, and enjoy the local food truck offerings. Hark closes at 6pm. We will head back to our venue, Cedarmere in the Blue Ridge.
6:30 – 8:30 Down time; nap or explore the farm acres (pond, horses, an more)
Evening – We will gather around the campfire back at Cedarmere for “adult s’mores” all set out waiting for you. The sky is so big there in the countryside making for ultimate stargazing (weather permitting). Feel free to de-cork adult beverages if you brought some with you. Light rain? We will move inside the barn for crafting with dry flowers (make and take home project). Tuck yourself into bed at your Cedarmere bedroom when you want to call-it-a-night. The Nature Bus will take others to your hotel/B+B if you are staying off-site.
SUNDAY, Sept. 17
7 am – (if your B&B/hotel has breakfast included, ask them if you can partake at 6:45) The Nature Bus will pick you up from your hotel/B&B between 7:15-7:30 to head back to the retreat venue, Cedarmere in the Blue Ridge (25 min away). There will be coffee, tea, muffins and orange juice to snack on when we arrive (official breakfast will be served at 9am).
8am – We will “harvest flowers” that you will need for your flower arranging bouquet! These MUST be picked early in the morning before the sun dries them. Pick them while they still have dew on them. Pick flowers, set them aside, and sit down to a lovely breakfast.
9 am – Breakfast of quiche, bagels, and fresh fruits. While eating, the host will give instructions on how to “condition our flowers” so they will be preserved for up to 2 weeks. After breakfast, we will engage in conditioning our flowers, then leave them marinating until later in the day. Time for the next workshop!
10:30 – 12:30 Meditative Nature Photography. This is truly Christa’s favorite thing to share. Using your cell phone (no fussing with aperture, lighting, focus, etc), learn how to tap in to your innate ability to mediate by framing photos with your phone. The phone camera helps us gain an understanding about ourself and our surroundings. She will help you analyze the composition of your beautiful photos. Cedarmere in the Blue Ridge is the perfect place to take breathtaking photos! You will gain a whole new thought process, gaining the benefits of meditation while taking photos (another skill to take home with you 🙂 All of this creativity will certainly make you hungry. Lunchtime is next.
12:30 – It is time for your most special meal at Cedarmere, which will truly be magical and delicious. Again, you must think “Pinterest-Style” dining at the elegantly set table in the meadow. Be sure to use your new photography skills to capture this stunning table. The goal of this meal is bonding through friendship. You will partake in Christa’s famous Vietnamese Fresh Spring Rolls experience. Participants engage in making, chopping, creating. It is a special art form, a discipline of sorts, to roll the spring roll “beautifully.” The lunch foods, plus the spring rolls, will dazzle your eyes with color and you will feel you are eating the rainbow of health. Share your new skills with loved ones back home.
2:30 – 4 – The final activity is the ‘Snip and Sip’ workshop. Wine can help you be more creative! Begin with a 5 minute guided meditation to help ground you before you begin to arrange your conditioned flowers. Learn to work with the flower in the way it is. Let the flower guide you, rather than forcing it to go a certain way. Through flower arranging, we can learn to work with life with the way things are instead of trying to change the things around us. You will make + take your flower creation home with you. Limited space on the overhead racks in the bus, so our final product will be a mini-arrangement made out of your freshly picked peonies, other woodland materials (moss, birch bark) and placed in a whimsical vessel. The skills you learn can be used to make a larger one once you are back home.
4:00 – 4:30ish – before we hop back onto The Nature Bus to head home, is a time set aside for socializing with your new friends, while the chef will serve “heavy hors d’oeuvres.” This is also a special time for the “retreat closure,” for saying our goodbyes to the wonderful hostess and chef and sharing our thoughts and feelings about our time together.
4:45 – We will make our journey back to Virginia Beach. We will stop mid-way for a 15 min stretch our legs, use the restroom, and then carry on. Depending upon the traffic, we should be back at REI/Town Center around 7:30ish, feeling grateful for having this opportunity to relax and unwind in such a unique way. Love an Peace to all of you ~ Suzanne XOXOX
– Air conditioned/heated new vehicle
– All fees (including gasoline, admission, tolls)
– Expert pre-planning services
– FIVE (5) meals (see below)
– 4 meals are “eat the rainbow” Pinterest-style table setting prepared by a chef!
– 1 meal is from the food truck at Hark Vineyard/Winery (wine not included)
– some wine (but not a lot); you are welcome to bring your own
– all activities + workshops by Cedarmere’s very own wellness expert, Christa
– sensory nature walk
– trip to a vineyard
– mountain views!
– campfire with stargazing and adult s’mores
– flower arranging workshop “Snip + Sip” with wine; fresh peony flowers, whimsical flower vessel with moss and birch bark
– meditative nature photography workshop
– Christa’s famous Vietnamese Fresh Spring Rolls experience
– Heavy hors d’oeuvres social time before departure
– yoga mat for resting under a tree
– tent (if you are interested in camping; totally optional)
– Included: a zen-feeling of relaxation, joy and making new friends
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:
– overnight accommodations (unless you camp/free); select your hotel or B&B from list below
– wine at the vineyard
THINGS TO BRING:
– Your digital/printed ticket
– Printed/signed waiver (please print and sign at home to save time at checkin)
– Photo ID
– Water bottle, sunscreen, sun hat, insect repellent, closed toe shoes for nature walk, rain jacket/hat/umbrella
– PACK YOUR CLOTHING/TOILETRIES IN A SOFT SIDED DUFFLE (it needs to be able to “SQUEEZE” into the overhead rack. Please pack lightly. These racks are not large. It will not even accommodate a duffle with a hard structure to it. A soft sack is what we are referring to.
– If you plan to camp, bring a rollable sleep mat (available at REI), a sleeping bag or blankets, a pillow, a flashlight (please squeeze the excess air out of these items and roll them tightly, secure with rope or bungie, and place into the smallest bag possible)
– If you are sleeping at a hotel or B&B, bring your printed confirmation/reservation (you must select from one of the suggested places if you’d like The Nature Bus to drop you off and pick you up; see list below)
– Dress for the weather and for the types of activities that we will be engaging in
– CASH (optional) to purchase handmade/unique items from the “farm table gift shop”
– CASH (it is customary to tip 15% to the guide)
- We look forward to seeing you on the tour! Check out all of the 5-star reviews, so you will be super confident that you will have an amazing experience! You can read them at TheNatureBus.com > click the REVIEWS tab. See you soon!
- If you have any questions, please text/call the owner. Suzanne 757-288-9595
Important NOTES “Know before you go” ~
*We go “light rain” or shine. See our weather policy FAQs page. Please dress for the weather. In the case of light rain, we simply take cover and wait it out. In the case of very heavy rain, we move the experience to our rain-date. Be sure both dates will work for you (the original date and the rain-date). ALL SALES FINAL/NO REFUNDS
*PLEASE: Eating, drinking, chewing gum is not permitted on the bus. Please arrive 15-30 min before departure. We cannot wait for latecomers because we must adhere to our planned itinerary. Therefore we must pull away at the exact departure time. We cannot receive telephone/text calls to let us know your are running late because we will driving and using the phone as a GPS.
*ALL OUR TOURS INVOLVE WALKING; GUESTS SHOULD EXPECT VARYING DEGREES OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY. TICKETS ARE NOT REFUNDABLE.
COVID SAFETY MEASURES: We care about the health and safety of those participating in our nature experiences. The Nature Bus has been outfitted with dividers between rows of seats. The bus is sanitized between each tour. We ride with windows partially open, like an open-air tram, weather permitting. Please stay home if you are not feeling well or have a fever. We do not offer refunds, so if you stay home, please offer your ticket to a friend.
We are sleeping overnight; accommodations are not included in the ticket price of the retreat. Please arrange to stay at one of the following options. The bus will be dropping participants off after the evening campfire and will be picking up in the morning at 7:15 am at these locations:
PLEASE MAKE YOUR OWN OVERNIGHT SLEEPING ARRANGEMENTS AT ONE OF THESE:
- Camp on site – free – for the more adventurous folks – immerse yourself in nature and sleep in a tent under the stars (or pitch the tent in the loft in the super clean barn!), hot running water and flush toilet in the barn. We provide 2 large tents group tents. Or feel free to bring your own tent for more private quarters. Bring your own sleep mat, sleeping bag, pillow, and flashlight.
- Holiday Inn Express – room has 2 queen beds, breakfast included $112 + tax
- Blisspoint Inn B&B – 3 rooms available (1 queen, 1 queen, 1 king + pullout couch), no breakfast, sweet place, cute, clean, but not fancy $130
- Lafayette Inn – rooms are small, historical old inn, clean, beautiful + quaint, breakfast included, $158
- Cedarmere in the Blue Ridge – this B&B is on site of our retreat! (1 queen, 1 queen + single bed $175) (1 king bed + single + private bath $250) (Super quaint! “The Cottage” with king bed + single bed + private bathroom, private outdoor shower $250), includes breakfast.
|show details +||$350.00 (USD)||Goes On Sale|
January 3, 2023
Sale Dates- The dates when this option is available for purchase.
Goes On Sale: January 3, 2023 5:05 pm
Sales End: April 16, 2023 12:00 pm
Access- This option allows access to the following dates and times.
September 16, 2023 - September 17, 2023
8:00 am - 7:30 pm