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The Esalen Institute
Certificate of Excellence
simi valley
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 July 2014

Because this place is a learning institute, you can only stay here if you're registered for a workshop - unless you're a 'friend of Esalen' and then you can do a weekend retreat IF there's room. This was my 3rd time here and each time was just as amazing as the times before. The food is excellent, ground beautiful and workshops have been very good. I look forward to the next opportunity to learn & relax at Esalen!

Visited June 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

186 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Boston, Massachusetts
Level 5 Contributor
79 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
“Out There”
Reviewed 2 June 2014

We made a reservation for the 1-3am public access to the hot springs and pulled up on the side of the highway at 12:45am as instructed. A woman met us right before 1am and took us down to the check-in kiosk and then down to the baths. We knew that clothing was optional (all changing rooms are co-ed as well) and while that didn't make us totally uncomfortable, it's not exactly the way most places are back on the east coast (I know, I know, we're so uptight). We enjoyed a lovely hour or so under the stars--it's truly a spectacular setting. I would recommend this attraction to others who are pretty open-minded, although the sulfuric smell of the hot springs was a bit too much for my boyfriend.

Visited May 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Seattle, Washington
Level 6 Contributor
158 reviews
39 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“A Great Experience”
Reviewed 5 April 2014

The buzz seems to be that the Institute is going through changes the past few years, trying to redefine and keep relevant in an era when spiritual pursuits are available everywhere.
I took a cooking workshop workshop over 5 days, and cannot overstate how delightful the experience was. The teacher Leslie Cerier and her assistants were knowledgeable and fun, and my classmates were a great group

The meals in the dining hall were tasty, wholesome and plentiful, and the onsite staff always helpful and kind (the phone staff who takes rezzies is another story altogether). Though not inexpensive, I felt that everything offered was well-worth it, and there was no sense that they were trying to up sell anything...not that there was anything to up sell.

I stayed off site, which was less convenient, but certainly a good move economically. Rooms I saw were not anything great, and were pretty costly.

And the massages were great. I had a few. Jen was particularly good. No rushing and very relaxed atmosphere. Head into the baths before and after. You will feel like rubber.

My highest accolade: I would definitely return.

Visited April 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Morro Bay, California
Level 6 Contributor
137 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
“A massage from heaven!”
Reviewed 4 April 2014

One doesn't have to stay at Esalen to experience a phenomenal massage in a magical setting. Call Esalen and reserve a massage within 30 days at selected times as a guest, and not only will you have one of the best, if not the very best massages ever, but you will be able to enjoy the unbelievably beautiful spa, right above the waves crashing on the rocks for an hour before and after. What a way to take a break as you're driving Highway One or visiting Big Sur!

Visited March 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
28 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 March 2014

It is a magic place surrounded by one of the most beautiful nature in the whole world. The pools are locate on the top of a cliff with an amazing ocean view.

Visited September 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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