‘Forest Bathing’ Is Great for Your Health. But what exactly is Forest Bathing?

May 4, 2023

Most of my weekend retreats at Sandhill House include a Forest Bathing experience. We head to the forest for 2 hours and we walk at a slow and relaxed pace. We do a few mindful practices along the way as we savour the sounds, smells and sights of nature and let the forest in. We always head back to Sandhill House feeling refreshed and inspired.

Forest bathing means bathing in the forest atmosphere, or taking in the forest through our senses.

This is not exercise. It is simply Being in nature and connecting with it through our senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch.

So many of us don’t manage to spend time in nature. But the good news is that even a small amount of time in nature can have a positive impact on our health. A two-hour ‘forest bath’ will help you to unplug from technology and slow down. It will bring you into the present moment to de-stress and relax you.

What happens in a forest bathing experience?

We head into a quiet part of the forest, turn our phones on silent and slow down.

The forest bathing experience varies with individuals. For some it is a nourishing walk in nature. For others, it’s a deep remembering of our connection to nature and the mystical energy of the forest.

The slower pace and gentle route mean that the forest bathing experience is suitable for most levels of fitness. There is always the emphasis on slowing down to absorb the ‘medicine’ of the Forest.

Scientific evidence explains how the environment of the forest can enhance health and well-being. (rich biodiversity, phytoncides, microbes in the soil, negative ions, fractal patterns in nature, a natural soundscape, and unpolluted air)

But I like to keep it simple and remember my favourite forest quote:

“And into the forest, I go,

To lose my mind and find my soul”

– John Muir

The next time that you are in the forest:



  • Inhale the medicine of the Forest air
  • Exhale and let go of stress
  • Connect with the wisdom of the trees


Our next retreat experience at Sandhill House is in just a few weeks time.

The forest will be full of young nettles, wild garlic and will be blossoming with colour. We will be connecting with the energy of Bealtaine, early summer, and may even forage some of nature’s goodness along the way to make nourishing nettle tea.


L x

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