Explore what the Sanctuary
has to offer
This secluded, wilderness sanctuary is located on 330 acres of beautiful Sonoran Desert adjacent to Alamo Lake. The sanctuary is surrounded by thousands of acres of Wilderness and Public Lands (BLM). It is located 2.5 hours from Lake Havasu, 3.5 hours from Phoenix and a 4 hour drive from Las Vegas.
The sanctuary's isolation provides abundant wildlife, stars, silence and an environment of wonder and introspection, a place to unplug from society and a fast-paced life.
For thousands of years the area was the home to indigenous cultures. From 1910-1940 is was a manganese mining operation. From the 1970's until 2000 it was home to a survivalist family compound. Our goal is to restore the biodiversity of the area which was damaged by the removal of flora and fauna by its 20th century inhabitants.
Permaculture and Land Regeneration
A permaculture plan is in place to restore the land and make smart use of precious water resources. A Sonoran Botanical Garden will feature meditation gardens, hiking trails, group retreat space and a labyrinth. The sanctuary will be self-sustainable, featuring edible landscaping and utilizing state-of-the art aquaponic container farming for agriculture to provide fresh organic produce for guests. Totally off of the grid, the property is powered by wind and solar. The drinking water supply comes from a crystal clear well.
At this time the existing houses, barns and other structures are being re-imagined and renovated to provide guest accommodations and group meeting spaces. Our first campground is underway and will feature safari tents, yurts as well as hook-ups for a limited number of RVs. It is our goal to provide wheelchair access to as much of the property as possible, so everyone can enjoy the serene wilderness environment.
Spiritual Sanctuary is our philosophy of a lifestyle directed by sacred intention. By combining spiritual practices and a mindfulness approach to all aspects of living, we expand what is sacred beyond the walls of the cathedral/temple/mosque and into every aspect of life. We can recreate our lives, our homes, our communities as spiritual sanctuary. The Sonoran Desert Sanctuary lives this philosophy through our actions, organic gardens, vegetarian menus, a philosophy of non-violence, and a mindful approach to decision making. We invite you to participate with us on this journey as a retreat participant, an individual seeking solitude, or as a volunteer. Everyone is welcome.
Follow the story of the Sonoran Desert Sanctuary as it unfolds!
Jen has her Master's Degree in non-denominational Ministry and Spiritual Leadership and is currently working on her Ph.D. in Spiritual Practices, with emphasis on working with people challenged by PTSD and Moral Injury. Jen specializes in spiritual direction and wilderness guiding and combines the two for a unique experience of healing and transformation.
Jen is a native of the Sonoran Desert, originally from Tucson Arizona. In addition to her theological background, Jen proudly brings her experience as a logistics coordinator and her hands on skills as a commercial truck driver, heavy equipment operator and vegetarian chef. Over covid, Jen had the honor of apprenticing to be a bee keeper. "Building this sanctuary takes participants and volunteers who are willing to bring ALL of their skills to the table and learn new skills on the fly."
Group retreats will be offered beginning in the fall of 2023. Collaboration takes place with a number of guides from a variety of different backgrounds and faith traditions. Contact us to be added to the email list. We are also eager to work with you to plan a custom retreat for your organization or group of friends and colleagues.
For those who desire individual spiritual direction, or self-organized time of contemplation and solitude, the Sonoran Desert Sanctuary can tailor to your needs.
The Sonoran Desert Sanctuary is the home of the Anderson-Arroyo Foundation (501C3). The Anderson-Arroyo Foundation is committed to healing trauma; the trauma suffered by individuals, as well as the earth-based trauma of abused landscapes and other-than-human species. Through land regeneration projects that collaborate with wilderness retreats programs, our goal is to help heal the earth and her inhabitants, side by side, hand in hand.
The Sonoran Desert Sanctuary will be accepting bookings for Fall of 2023. Book your retreat, reunion or destination wedding! The proceeds go towards supporting The Anderson-Arroyo Foundation.
Features of the land work beautifully for nature based experiences:
Meditation gardens and labyrinth
Lake activities include kayaking, fishing and diving (underwater ghost town)
Migrating birds flock during spring/fall, migrating bats in the summer
Exceptionally dark night skies for star gazing
Desert cactus, flora and fauna
Hiking, mountain biking and other outdoor sports
Unlimited space for artists, healers and spiritual seekers
The sanctuary will model sustainable living through organic, sustainable food sources and education. The Sonoran Desert Sanctuary will be providing much of the fresh produce for guests. Retreats centered around sustainable agricultural practices, sustainable foraging, native herbalism and vegetarian cooking classes will be offered. Recipes from will be posted on the Sanctuary's blog.
Right now we are hoping to plant as many trees for the orchard as possible, as well as paint some of the farm structures. Your donations will help make that possible!
We are officially a BEE RESCUE operation! Our beekeeper has rescued seven hives in residential areas that would have been exterminated. We did the math and we can handle at least 40 hives in the 20 acres that the Sonoran Desert Sanctuary has set aside for bees! For the bee sanctuary to be fully operational we need monetary donations for the hive boxes and flowering plants, trees and herbs to help support the bee population. Every little bit will help whether it is $10 for a native sage or $200 for a hive box. If you believe in the rescue of bees and feel called to be a sponsor of our Bee Sanctuary, please contact us directly for larger scale donations at firstname.lastname@example.org. Our farm is a 501c3 non-profit and donations are tax deductible.