FAQ’s

Can I bring my child to Ratna Ling?

Absolutely! Children ages 12 and under stay at Ratna Ling for free. A fee of $30 per child per night is required to cover meals and amenities. Regular rates will apply to children 13 years and older. Although, most regularly scheduled classes and workshops are not necessarily appropriate for children (aside from specially designated programming), many families enjoy spending the uninterrupted quality time together. We ask that children be supervised and cared for by a parent or guardian at all times during their stay. Ratna Ling does not provide child care.

Can I bring an extra guest to stay in my cottage?

Yes. An additional $100 per person per night to cover meals and amenities will apply to the 3rd and 4th adult. There is a maximum of 4 adults per cottage.

Do I need to be a Buddhist to come to Ratna Ling?

Ratna Ling does not function as a traditional monastic community. We welcome all people regardless of lifestyle, culture, or religion and a relationship with Buddhism is not necessary. However, Ratna Ling does uphold Buddhist principles and all guests and residents are asked to adhere to mindful practices such as compassionate and respectful behavior toward oneself, one another, animals and insects, and the grounds. Guests are encouraged to join in our classes to discover more about Tibetan Buddhism.

Is Ratna Ling open 24/7 year round?

We are dedicated to your well-being as well as our own. The day is structured to offer you the maximum amount of care and attention while allowing our volunteer staff and guests alike ample time for spiritual practice and study. Ratna Ling is closed to the public between 12:00 PM Sunday and 3:00 PM Monday (except for special events). There is a holiday break from mid-December through mid-January so community members can enjoy their own retreat time and visit their families.

What time is Check-In?

Check-In is at 3:00 PM. Cottages may not be available prior to 3:00 PM, ask about early check-ins. Your first meal will be dinner, served at 5:30 PM.

What if I need to come later than 3:00 PM on check-in day?

As an intentional working community, Ratna Ling staff carries out many different tasks throughout the property and our hours of operation are between 8:00 AM and 6:00 PM. The Reception desk is staffed between 3:00-4:00 PM. If you plan to arrive after 4:00 PM it is important to alert Guest Services at (510) 809-4987 with your estimated time of arrival. If your estimated time of arrival is after 5:30 PM, we will arrange to leave an envelope with your name containing your Welcome Packet, cottage keys, invoice for remaining balance (if applicable) and map in the After Hours Check-In Box, located to the left of the Lodge main entrance doors. At this time there is no reception staff after hours.

What time is Check-Out?

Check-out time is 11:00 AM for Personal Retreats and 12:00 PM for Group Retreats. You will be asked to bring your cottage keys to the Lodge Reception Area to finalize your stay. There will be a $50 fee for unreturned keys. A member of the staff will be happy to assist you in any way we can. The last meal served on check-out day is 8:00 AM breakfast (Monday – Saturday) or 10:00 AM brunch (Sunday).{/accordion}

Is there anything I can do to help when it’s time to leave?

Yes! The Welcome Guide in your cottage lists several helpful actions that you can take to help tidy your cottage before you leave. Tasks such as stripping the beds or turning off the thermostat may seem insignificant, but actually are greatly beneficial to our housekeeping team. Of course, such actions are not required, but are much appreciated.{/accordion}

Can I bring my Pets?

We love our animal friends but unfortunately, due to health codes and guest allergies, we cannot have pets stay at Ratna Ling. We ask that if you stay with us you make arrangements to have your pet cared for while you stay at Ratna Ling.

What is the closest airport to Ratna Ling?

San Francisco and Oakland International airports are approximately 3 hours south of Ratna Ling by car. Alaska Airlines flies to and from Sonoma County Airport in Santa Rosa which is approximately 1.5 hours from Ratna Ling

Is there public transportation to Ratna Ling?

Unfortunately, due to the remoteness of Ratna Ling, there is no public transportation that can bring you directly to the Center. Please check airport websites for more information on car rentals and taxi or shuttle services.

Can I come take a tour and just look around?

Unfortunately, Ratna Ling does not offer public tours. All Ratna Ling visitors must have a reservation or previous arrangements to access the grounds.

Are there hiking trails nearby?

Yes! Should you choose to venture off property, our location is ideal for exploring the sheer natural beauty of 76 miles of Pacific Coastline and ancient redwood forests. As Ratna Ling is situated on the ridge line of Salt Point State Park, we provide all guests access to hiking trail maps of the surrounding area, complete with suggested routes to our favorite hiking trail and clear directions to other local trail heads. These maps are located on the Reception desk of the main Lodge for easy access during retreats.

Will My Cell Phone Work at Ratna Ling? Is there Internet Access?

There is rarely cell phone reception in this area (coastal highway Route 1 to Ratna Ling). If you need to use your cell phone, plan to make your last phone calls well in advance. Every cottage has a telephone that is available for your use and calls within the country are free of charge. The phone in your cottage can also receive calls and your direct line will be displayed on the telephone’s LED screen. Feel free to give this number to family or friends once you have arrived. Complimentary wireless internet is available in every cottage and in common areas. There is no password needed.

Will there be shopping close to Ratna Ling?

Ratna Ling is in a beautiful but very remote location. The closest shops are nearly 45-60 minutes away by car. Please be sure to shop for any snacks, toiletries, etc. prior to your arrival at Ratna Ling.

Is it true that shoes are not worn indoors?

Yes, this is true. We ask all guests and visitors to kindly and respectfully remove their outdoor shoes at all entrances including the Lodge and Dining Hall, Yoga Room and Cottages. Clean “indoor only shoes,” such as slippers, are wonderful items to bring. Bare or socked feet are okay indoors.

What will the meals be like at Ratna Ling?

Our all vegetarian meals are prepared with great love and care and served buffet style three times a day. Please visit our Dining Page for more detailed information.

What will the weather be like?

The climate around Ratna Ling, though mostly moderate, can change rapidly. Winter weather can be moderate and sunny to quite chilly, windy and rainy (November – April) with temperatures averaging in the low to mid-50’s. Summers, on the other hand, tend to be dry and warm, climbing into to 80s and 90s during the day and then cooling down to the 50s and 60s in the evenings. Hot days are often followed by a few days of marine layer fog that can drop the daytime temperature by 20 degrees.

What should I bring on my retreat?

Because of the unusual coastal climate which can change throughout the day and week, layers of comfortable, casual clothing are always the best! Due to the spiritual nature of Ratna Ling, we do ask that men and women dress respectfully and tastefully and do not wear revealing or offensive clothing.

What is your policy on drugs and alcohol?

Ratna Ling is a drug-free and smoke-free facility, there are no exceptions. There will be a cottage clean-up charge assessed if this policy is violated. It is okay to bring a bottle of wine or beer to enjoy in the privacy of your cottage. Please refrain from bringing hard alcohol. Alcohol may not be consumed in common areas.

What should I do if I get sick before my retreat?

It is important that all guests arrive at Ratna Ling healthy and ready for full participation in your retreat. As we live in a small community, contagious illnesses can spread quickly. Please delay your arrival if you are sick or have any type of cold, flu or illness that could be contagious to others.

Can you accommodate my environmental sensitivities?

We are cognizant of the environmental sensitivities that some people suffer from. We have designed our spaces to be comfortable for most people. Please do alert the Ratna Ling staff prior to booking if you have any specific allergies so that we can confirm our ability to accommodate you comfortably.

Other items you may wish to bring include:
  • Sun Protection: Hat, sun block, sunglasses, breathable long-sleeved shirts, etc.
  • Rain gear, umbrella and good sturdy shoes during the rainy season
  •  Appropriate outerwear for the season
  • Yoga clothes or clothes that allow you to move freely
  • Flashlight (it can get extremely dark outside at night and there is very limited outdoor lighting)
  • Water bottle
  • Alarm clock
  • Slip-on shoes or slippers for indoors
  • Insect repellent for summer retreats
  • Personal hygiene items such as your favorite shampoo, moisturizer, toothbrush/paste, soap etc. (Towels, bedding and hand-soap is provided)
  • Calling cards for international calls. Domestic calls are complimentary.
  • Meal service is provided, however, you are welcome to bring additional snacks and beverages into your cottage.