Welcome to the Hostel in the Forest

The Hostel is a membership organization, please browse through our website before calling us to make a reservation. If you have further questions, we would be happy to answer them over the phone any day between 10am and 6pm, 912-264-9738. We can not accept reservations, cancellations or provide availability by email. If you have a reservation PLEASE check in no later than 7pm


We are always looking for skilled instructors willing to share their knowledge on a variety of subjects that support our vision. If you have some ideas or suggestions, or would like give a suitable presentation or workshop, please contact us..

If you are interested in working at the Hostel please review the applications page.*

Our Vision

The world would be a much healthier and better place if all its inhabitants advocated sustainability instead of unlimited growth. Rather than trying to control nature and use it as a resource for development, we should revere it, respect it, and work with it. The Hostel in the Forest is taking steps to manifest this vision. We see that nature’s creatures, including humans, animals, birds and insects share the same land in a unique manner. Inspired by the creativity found in the natural environment, we have transformed our ideas into actions by having an organic vegetable garden used in our dinners each night, recycling our wastes, having a cutting-edge gray-water system, watering plants with a solar powered irrigation system, and using a worm box that composts our table scraps into fertilizer for the garden. Hostel members sleep in tree houses, hike the T-trails through the 133 acre forest, swim and paddle canoes in the lake, take part in the healing process of walking our labyrinth, participate in the sweat lodges held on the nights of the full moon, eat a healthy vegetarian or vegan meal each night, and attend the many educational retreats and lectures designed to teach us how to move toward a wholesome and more sustainable future. We invite you to visit us and be a part of our work in progress; even participate in helping us with our projects, if you so desire. If you are financially able to do so, we would also be most appreciative of any gifts to our 501 C 3 tax-deductible organization in order to encourage and further our goals.


Latest News and Events

Join us for a winter solstice celebration to feed the soul and spirit. Rich with opportunities to connect with our hearts and with nature, this sacred and nourishing space will guide you more deeply into your own radiance with the return of the sun! Midwinter has traditionally been a time of ritual, connection, reflection and renewal. Like our ancestors have done throughout the ages, we honor the cycles and the seasons to acknowledge and remember the great web of life that connects us all. Experiencing the longest night opens an opportunity to look into the darkness, greet it, honor it and enjoy it, and then bring forth the light. Winter solstice is an occasion to move from the outer world into our inner world, offering time to feed our spirit and nurture our soul. We will embark on a journey that helps cultivate rest, renewal, inner wisdom and our innate powers to heal.

The retreat will include: Medicinal and delectable herb walks, mead-making (and sharing), awareness games, co-counseling (healing through deep listening), dawn chorus bird sit, connection with yourself, each other and nature, Thai body work and acrobatic play, candlelight dinner, night walks, healing the heart, and a solstice ceremony!


Josh Fox has built a life around the healing powers of plants, people and nature. He has a Master’s degree in Oriental Medicine and is a faculty member of Daoist Traditions College of Chinese Medical Arts and the Blue Ridge School of Herbal Medicine. He also teaches through many venues including his own healing practice, Warren Wilson College, earthskills gatherings and private workshops. Find out more about Fox at www.foxhealing.com

Jamie Sparks is a long-time herbalist, body worker, yoga instructor, educator, artist and event organizer. She is excited to bring her knowledge, vision and enthusiasm to the Hostel. Jamie runs an herbal CSA and a massage practice part of the year and teaches at earthskills gatherings the rest of the year. She believes in year-round fun and joy. Find more on Jamie at www.herbanfarmacy.org.

Chuck Thompson’s life was changed when he did a month of worktrade at the Hostel in 2007: he was inspired to pursue a more meaningful life full of adventure, passion, skills, forests and tribe. Seven years later, he is site coordinator at four regional earthskills gatherings, organizes several smaller skills gatherings each year, mentors youth through nature connection, and teaches next-level tree climbing, fire management, tracking, animal processing and community leadership.

Ann Delia Turner joins us from Athens, Georgia, where she works to inspire aliveness, creativity and awareness in children and adults through the nature connection programs of Wild Intelligence. She has a passion for inter-species communication and restoring the role of humans as conscious life forms actively participating in a sentient landscape.

COST: There is a sliding scale fee for this event of $100-$150. This includes accommodations at The Hostel for Friday and Saturday night, a vegetarian dinner on both nights, brunch on Saturday and Sunday, and 48 hours of celebration!

WHEN: Please prepare to arrive Friday afternoon. Opening circle will convene after dinner on Friday, Dec 19th, and closing circle will conclude by 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec 21st.

BRING: Bring a sense of ceremony, ready-to-eat snacks for Saturday afternoon, songs to share and instruments to play, and an open heart.

May the Forest Be With You

The Hostel Staff

Forest Update Summer 2014

Posted May 26th, 2014

Spring has sprung in the forest and the summer sun has begun to shine down bright. Apollo (also known as Steven) has departed beyond the horizon, leaving good vibes and a field of solar beauty in his wake. During his mighty sun streaked chariot ride across the forest, Steven oversaw the reclamation of the Hostel’s dome roof which, after thirty nine years of moss growth and forest symbiosis, was ready to be repaired and re-imagined. A skilled team of hostel family craftsmen united to take on this important and prestigious project. Dirt, Freddy, Frank, and Eddie along with Hostel staff and dozens of gracious volunteers, dipped, hand cut, and nailed over three thousand red cedar shakes, completely transforming our beloved mothership. After seventy seven days and seven thousand nails the roof has been restored to it’s vital glory.

The inspiration and enthusiasm exuding from the dome’s grand completion has whirled down the garden path to the (not so) secret garden where the plant king Chris has been utilizing his extensive love and knowledge of all flora and permaculture technique to maximize the work and devotion that has come before him. The garden is now poised and ready to produce a summer of great abundance and beauty.

As always the soul kitchen is providing delicious vegetarian dinners courtesy of Jeff, the Hostel’s master of cuisine. When not intriguing weary travelers with the wafting smells of exemplary meals drifting throughout the dome, Jeff moonlights as the Hostel barber, resident reiki master and all around integral fellow.

Excitement flows deep as the era of the Fantastic Four comes to an end and the age of the Fearsome Five begins, with the advent of the great and glorious Dawn joining the forest crew.

From the acoustics of the library to the serenity of the lake the Hostel in the Forest is ready to usher in a summer of dreams.

May the Forest Be With You

The Hostel Staff