Abbey Retreat Centre :


A Centre of Excellence in Whole Person Care & Integrative Cancer Programs

Our focus is on engaging in a process of healing and advancing integrative cancer care in Canada
About Us


Abbey Retreat Centre (ARC) offers a suite of wellness retreat programs. Central to our mission is offering a four day program for people living with cancer and for their primary support person, looking after the whole person.  Body, mind, spirit…

Businesses, families, and community groups are invited to use the facility as a gathering space or as a customized retreat experience for a moderate price. All funds generated through fundraising events, facility rentals, and generous donations help to keep our facility beautiful and increase the programs that we offer. Most importantly, these funds help us to continue to offer our cancer retreats to participants free of charge.

We understand the financial burden that can often accompany a cancer diagnosis and we strive to provide a place of healing that does not add to that burden.


Cancer Retreats


Our retreats are for people at any stage in the cancer journey and their primary support person. They include discussion groups, yoga and meditation, nutritional learning, creative expressive arts, connection with nature, and rest time – all in a supportive, caring community atmosphere.

Time at retreat provides the opportunity to explore the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual areas of healing with cancer. Our retreats are 4-day experiences with ten participants. The resulting sense of enhanced well-being and knowledge from being at retreat can allow those with a cancer diagnosis to continue and complete traditional treatment programs staying as well and whole as can be.

CANCER Retreats

Weekend retreats offering a sanctuary experience based on an integrative, whole person approach to healing and wellness.

Day Programs

Day programs based on local interests.
Speakers, classes, groups.

Rent the Retreat Centre

The Retreat Centre is available for rental when not in use for its retreat programming.  Groups, business, families, are welcome to rent smaller spaces or the entire Centre.  What would you like host here ?

About Abbey Retreat Centre

Integrative Cancer Care  *  Rest & Renewal   *  Healing Power of Community

Abbey Retreat Centre

Abbey Retreat Centre

ARC was born of a vision to advance the work of integrative cancer care in Canada. The Retreat Centre offers several program areas, a commercial-grade kitchen, office space, and sleeping accommodations for 12.

The Centre is located at Abbey Gardens Community Trust, Haliburton, Ontario, Canada.  Our core work is to provide 4-day residential retreat experiences for cancer patients and 

The Retreat Centre is the newest member of the Abbey Gardens family. Abbey Gardens is a charitable organization whose big dream is to transform a spent gravel pit (300 acres) into a green space that provides economic and recreational opportunities for our community.

The Abbey Gardens property enhances the retreat experience for ARC guests as they are immersed in a peaceful setting in nature. Gardens, hiking trails, Local Food Hub, educational displays and local business partners (including a craft brewery) are all located on site in the beautiful Haliburton Highlands, Ontario. Retreat participants can tour the gardens, visit heritage breed ponies and chickens, shop for local food at the Food Hub, enjoy lunch on the restaurant patio or participate in one of the programs offered throughout the year.

News & Events



The Abbey Retreat Centre is offering a series of evening speakers and conversations on staying well – Tuesdays at 7pm. at the Centre, located on the Abbey Gardens grounds just outside West Guilford off Hwy 118.  Each evening will be a comfortable fire-side setting in the Retreat Centre premises, with good people and meaningful conversation.

Tuesday October 15 – our guest will be Adriane Boag, program producer at the National Gallery of Australia, and her work with taking programs to galleries all over Australia to engage with those living with chronic illness, and their caregivers, art-making as a way to foster resilience.


 Tuesday October 22 – the art and science of mindfulness.  Join with Dr Wanda Bowman Taylor and Gaul Sauer (ND) for conversation about transforming our world, from the inside out, with the cultivation of mindful awareness


Tuesday October 29  – The Caregivers Club – we will be screening an award winning documentary film looking at the work of offering care to those with chronic illness, particularly those dealing with dementia.  A joint presentation of the Retreat Centre and the Haliburton Highlands Health Services.  A film followed by conversation.


Tuesday November 5 Spiritualities for Staying Well.   We turn to spiritual practices for hope and meaning, some of these are very traditional and some are emerging.  Anje and Rob Hilkers, and Doug Norris, will speak about their experiences with small groups and contemplative practices, and time to hear about your experiences.


Tuesday November 12  –  Environment Haliburton will lead a conversation about how we can continue to stay well in our relationship with the earth, a balance of lament and determined hopefulness.


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Introducing Doug Norris

Introducing Doug Norris

The Board of the Abbey Retreat Centre (ARC) is pleased to announce a new Executive Director (ED). We have chosen Doug Norris to lead our organization beginning March 2019. In order to ensure a smooth transition, he will also be working with our present ED Donna...

We Invite You to Learn More About Abbey Retreat Centre

Register for programming, rent the space or get involved.