Ayahuasca Retreats in Costa Rica 215.310.1250



New Life Ayahuasca Overall rating: ★★★★★ 5 based on 96 reviews
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Shamanic Value

5 5 1
Just before I traveled to New Life, I was given a book. It was a coincidence that the book was Stone Age Wisdom and that it was about shamanism. More important, it was something that I needed to read at just that moment – such are the synchronicities that pop up in your life if you’re ready to notice them. I knew a lot about Ayahuasca from reading and listening to Terrence McKenna. But I had given almost no thought to the other important factor in Ayahuasca ceremonies – the shaman. Author Tom Crockett wrote his book to demystify the function played by those who facilitate, host and present the ceremonies. His central premise is that shamanic work is about helping people to learn about and to heal themselves. You don’t have to be from a traditional culture and you don’t need a PhD in Shamanistic Studies. You just need to understand – intellectually and viscerally – the value of the rituals and pre-modern practices that can be so effective with or without the plant medicines. I feel very lucky that I ended up at a retreat with Matthew Mormello. The whole experience certainly engaged me in profound ways. Matt has obviously been trained well by traditional mentors but his background as an American helped make him and the ceremonies that much more amenable. He never refers to himself as a shaman but Matt’s efforts impressed me for their balance of wild energy and ceremonial dignity. I haven’t experienced so-called real shaman so I don’t know what I missed. But from what I know from reading is that Matt set the perfect tone and ambiance in which Mother Ayahuasca could do her magic. The experience can be a little intimidating so the other value provided by Matt and his partner Janae is safety. They really care about taking care of people. The feeling you get is love. They love what they’re doing. They love to help and serve. And they love enough to be really professional about the whole operation. The food is great. The rooms are great. The amenities are great. All in all: this is real value. The Ayahuasca experience is much more than merely drinking a plant medicine. It starts from the moment you are welcomed to the beautiful house high in the hills of San Ramon. This is something important to any shamanistic experience: the location. With a forever view of the surrounding hills, ocean and skies, this location is indeed liminal. The house is one with the sky and abounds with character and warmth. And all of that is buttressed by the warmth and care of Matt and Janae themselves. I’m still glowing and reverberating with little lessons from Aya weeks after the experience. If I didn’t get the genuine performance from a card-carrying native shaman in Peru, then I don’t care. I got what I needed. Thanks Matt and Janae, it was perfect.

Serene setting, beautiful experience

5 5 1
This was my first aya experience and I went into it with great expectations. Matt and Jeanae, who are both wonderful people, have created the perfect environment and did not disappoint. All attendees felt safe and comfortable which allows for a more profound experience with the medicine. The food, property, guests, and Shaman (and Jeanae!!!) were all A+. I couldn't recommend this place more and I will most certainly be going back.

Profound Experience

5 5 1
It's very difficult to describe what an amazing experience this was. Matt and Jeanae make you feel right at home upon arrival to their beautiful property. The rooms are amazing and very comfortable, and the view from the back porch every morning is breathtaking. Overall just a very positive energy surrounds this place and I instantly fell in love with it.. The ceremonies are unbelievably astonishing. Matt guides you through this intense experience with absolutely amazing Icaros, Gong, Drum, and Guitar. He becomes one with this medicine during ceremony, and it left me speechless. You can tell he puts 100% of his energy and passion into this, and I hold the upmost respect for him. Jeanae also plays the most beautiful sounding flute I've ever heard, and her presence during the ceremony is very soothing. Matt and Jeanae are very genuine and sincere people and I'm very grateful for what they have done for me. I cannot wait to go back!...Oh and Chopper is the coolest cat you will ever meet!
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Ayahuasca FAQ

Ayahuasca FAQ-

Q: How long does it take to feel the effects?

A: Anywhere from 15 minutes to a few hours, but generally speaking most people start to feel the effects of ayahuasca about an hour after drinking the brew.


Q: How long does the experience last?

A: Each experience is different, but about 3-4 hours on average. How long you feel the effects of ayahuasca depends on a number of things including the strength of the medicine, your sensitivity to the medicine, etc…


Q: Is it the experience the same every time you drink ayahuasca?

A: No, every experience is different. Some experiences are very intense, some are subtle and gentle. Regardless of how many times you have drank ayahuasca or even if you use the same quantity and quality of medicine every time, you can still get very different results. Ayahuasca has a certain energy that can be felt each time you drink, but the overall experience usually varies each time.


Q: Will I vomit?

A: Mostly likely. Not everyone experiences the purge in the form of vomiting, but it is likely that you will. Some people may also experience diarrhea during the ayahuasca experience. This may sound unpleasant, and it can be, but the purge serves its purpose in detoxing the body and spirit. It represents the release of negative built up energies in the body and soul.


Q: Will I see visions and what are they like?

A: We can not guarantee you will have visions as ayahuasca affects all people differently. However, the vast majority of people that consume ayahuasca do have intense visual experiences. This sacred medicine manifests itself differently to all people so it is impossible for us to predict what your visual experience will be like. Just trust that the medicine will take you where you need to go.


Q: Is ayahuasca dangerous?

A: Ayahuasca can be dangerous for certain people with pre-existing medical conditions or people taking certain medications. Please refer to our ayahuasca safety page for in more information about potential dangers. Always disclose any medications or herbal supplements with staff when making reservations.


Q: Can I overdose/die from ayahuasca?

A: Scientifically speaking, you can overdose on ayahuasca but you would not die from it unless there were pre-existing medical conditions or other medications were mixed with ayahuasca consumption. We can assure you that at New Life Ayahuasca we would never administer any dose of ayahuasca brew that would put any guest in danger of overdose. Please always follow our safety precautions and the ayahuasca diet strictly.


Q: Is ayahuasca addictive?

A: No, ayahuasca is not addictive. Ayahuasca brew is a sacred plant medicine that is used for spiritual growth and healing. An ayahuasca experience can be pleasurable, but it can also come with some discomfort.


Q: Why do people continue to drink ayahuasca again and again?

A: People can have extremely profound life changing experiences from ayahuasca. As mentioned earlier, each time you drink the brew the experience is different. Each experience is a new opportunity to learn and grow in different ways. This is what makes ayahuasca so appealing to spiritual seekers and those wishing to overcome destructive behaviors.


Q: Can I drink ayahuasca if I am pregnant?

A: No. At New Life Ayahuasca we do not allow any pregnant women or those who think they may be pregnant consume ayahuasca. We also do not allow any minors at ceremony or at our facility.

Questions about New Life Ayahuasca

Q: Do you make your own medicine?

A: Our medicine is made in Peru by a reputable shaman using ingredients grown directly on his farm. Please refer to our page about our brew for more information about the importance of knowing where the medicine comes from and what it contains.

Q. Do you have a shaman?

A: Our ceremonies are facilitated by Matt, who acts as a guide for the experience. While he would never refer to himself a Shaman,  his intentions and passion in his work are unparalleled. There is no question of his integrity and his sincerity in his mission to help others. His presence during ceremony is strong and grounding, and his Icaros and unique way of playing a Tibetan signing bowl help guide the participants’ experience.


Q: Is there internet?

A: Yes, we have WiFi available at our facility. However, we require that no electronics are used for 12 hours prior to participation in ceremony.


Q: Is there hot water?

A: Yes, our facility is equipped with a solar water heater.


Q: How do I get to the New Life Ayahuasca facility and how long does it take?

A: We are located in the mountains of San Ramon. We provide complimentary airport pick up. We are about an hour from SJO international airport in Costa Rica. Return transportation to SJO is the responsibility of the participant, however we are happy to help arrange for a cab or take you to the bus station.


Q: What do I need to bring?

A: Everything is provided for you once you arrive at New Life Ayahuasca. The only thing you need to bring with you is spending money for souvenirs, cigarettes (if you smoke), and return transportation to the airport (we are happy to arrange for a cab or take you to the bus station. Also, please be advised Costa Rica charges a tax of $30 to leave the country, however most airlines have starting to include this tax in the price of the ticket. Please visit our page on What to Bring for more information and suggestions on how to pack for your ayahuasca retreat.


Q: How many people are accommodated for ayahuasca retreats?

A: Each week we typically limit spacing to 7 participants, however we may make exceptions for couples. We will never have more that 8 participants per ceremony.