Our previous trips have taken us to various parts of the world. When we travel and mastermind together, we each discover something new in the world and in ourselves.
"The Wisdom Quest experience brings women leaders together for an opportunity to spend time as friends while sharing new sights and cultures, and most important – to look ahead to the future as well as reflect on life’s lessons from the past and present. I treasured the opportunity to develop lifelong friendships, to laugh together, and to learn from, and contribute to, the variety of conversations explored."
– Carol A. Poore, Ph.D., MBA
We met in Porto and travelled to Rolapipas, Portugal. There on the Douro River in the heart of the Douro Valley, our own private villas waited for us. An area rich in history, the Douro Valley is a UNESCO World Heritage site and the oldest demarcated wine region in the world. Our mastermind sessions there, specific to “owning your story,” were held there.
Throughout our busy schedule, we met each day to work on our curriculum, “owning your story.” It was a process, and I believe that we all left renewed and focused.
Through our curriculum, we learned to:
“When we deny the story, it defines us.
When we OWN OUR STORIES, we get to write a brave new ending.”
– Brene Brown
Prior to this journey, some of our travelers knew each other, some had been on previous Wisdom Quests, some were newbies, and some joined us not knowing anyone. At our conclusion, the camaraderie, coupled with the trust, support, and open sharing, created a caring and supportive group.
This journey included Moscow landmarks such as beautiful Red Square, St. Basil’s Cathedral, and shopping at the famous GUM department store. We explored the Kremlin walls and visited it’s famous Armoury Chamber that houses a unique collection of crown jewels and the world-famous Faberge eggs. Our Moscow visit concluded with a session from Marilyn Murray. Ms. Murray, who maintains offices in Scottsdale, Arizona and Moscow, Russia, is the founder and director of Health Restoration International Ltd., which provides education and resources for emotional, physical, intellectual, and spiritual health.
We journeyed to St. Petersburg via the modern high-speed "Sapsan" train.
In St. Petersburg we visited numerous historical sites including the Palace Square, the Mariinsky Theatre, Nevsky Prospect, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, the Church of the Savior on Spilled Blood, and the opulent Catharine’s Palace. In addition, we took special tours at the Hermitage Museum and the summer residence of Russian stars and the gem of palace architecture - Peterhof. At Peterhof we visited the famous Bath Cottage and took a walk in the beautiful Lower Park which is lavishly adorned with 176 fountains.
During the last night in Russia, all 14 of my fellow travelers gathered with me in the lobby bar of the elegant Astoria Hotel, in St. Petersburg. We came together to bring our trip to an end, check-in, and give me an opportunity to thank each of these beautiful women for joining me on this journey and contributing to the collective wisdom.
"When you no longer allow your past to chose the course of your future,
when you stop letting yourself be defined by others and by outside sources,
when you refuse to compare yourself to others—in order to measure your self-worth—and
when you realize that WHO you are is more important than HOW you look,
THEN, you will be able to authentically live a life of gratitude
… and a life that you truly deserve."
I found a new peace on this journey. It’s a peace strengthened by genuine friendships, love and gratitude. And I reminded myself and savored the delights and rewards of connecting individuals and watching them learn about and enjoy each other. Farewell to Russia.
The Peru Wisdom Quest was a first-class trip designed to visit Machu Picchu, the most visited tourist destination in Peru and one of the Seven Wonders of the World.
We began in Lima, Peru and took time there to visit the Museo Larco, and other city sites. We shopped and dined on native cuisine in this epicurean capital. After leaving Lima, we flew to Cusco.
In Cusco, we stayed at the beautiful Belmond Hotel - Monasterio. We visited El Templo del Sol or Koricancha, then the Cathedral. Our tour continued as we visited four ruins near the city of Cusco; Sacsaywaman, Kenko, Puca Pucará and Tambomachay.
Traveling beyond Cusco, we experienced a full-day guided tour to Valle Sagrado de los Inca (Sacred Valley); visiting Pisac, where the Inca Market and the Handcrafts Feria are held. We continued to Urubamba, the main population of the Valley. We lunched in a local restaurant and then continued to the Ollantaytambo fortress, a magnificent Inca building, with a very rich history and tradition.
We again boarded the Belmont's Hiram Bingham luxury train for our journey to Machu Picchu. Catching the train in Cusco, we sang, we danced, and we dined as we passed thru the spectacular country side. Arriving in Machu Picchu, we were transported up the mountain and checked into the Belmond’s Sanctuario Lodge. We spent two days exploring, before we returned via train to Cusco for our final night at the Monastery.
The Amalfi Coast Wisdom Quest was an elegantly designed journey coupled with facilitated group discussions and individual coaching which focused on the participants ability to open up and free their vision and write the next chapter of their lives.
Two back-to-back Wisdom Quests
The Nepal Wisdom Quest was designed to explore the breath-taking Himalayas on this “behind the scenes” learning journey to Nepal. Visit ancient Buddhist temples, enjoy light hikes among the backdrop of one of the most majestic mountain ranges in the world, explore life on the steppes and meet local social entrepreneurs who are the country’s leaders in health care, economic empowerment and rescuing children from sex trafficking or being sold into indentured servitude.
While we were there we dove deep into the Buddhist and Hindu culture - where spiritual principles and daily economic realities serve as constant opposing challenges for living one’s highest purpose.
Throughout the journey, we facilitated time to allow for reflection on one’s purpose and the footprint we are leaving behind - that someday - others will follow...
We arrived in Kathmandu and gathered for a welcome dinner at our Hotel, Yak and Yeti.
The next day we visited the Tilanga Hospital and the UNESCO protected Bhaktapur City. While we were in Kathmandu, we also visited Maiti Nepal and spent the afternoon at Pashupatnath and Boudha Nath, and shopped at the night Thamel market.
An early morning flight took us to Chitwan National Park, we settled into our Tiger Tops Tharu Lodge, and prepared to journey out and hope to see the rare and endangered tigers, Asian rhinos and a unique, fish eating crocodile. We also learned about the challenges of protecting endangered animals in competition against the needs of a growing population. –
After two days, we departed Chitwan and drove to Pokhara and checked into Shangri La Resort where we visited the Ayurveda Health Home – learning about the healing elements of Ayurveda, experienced a traditional treatment and massage.
While we were there, we took an early morning drive to Sarangkot to witness an incredible sunrise and views of the Ana Purna range. The next day we transfer by boat on Phewa Lake and hike up to the World Peace Pagoda.
Before returning to Kathmandu, we shopped the many gem and jewelry stores in Pokhara - and many of us left with local treasures. In Kathmandu, we concluded our Nepal Learning Journey and prepared to begin our Bhutan Wisdom Quest.
Bhutan, known as the 'Land of the Peaceful Dragon,” is still regarded as one the last 'Shangrilas' in the Himalayas. Its remote and spectacular mountain range and unique ancient Buddhist monasteries are still relatively unexplored.
The kingdom shares the world's greatest concentration of mountains and the fifty- minute flight from Kathmandu to Paro is often described as a flight into fantasy, where we were fortunate enough to enjoy close-up views of Mt. Everest from our plane!!
As a purely Buddhist Himalayan Kingdom, Bhutan is unsurpassed in its scenic majesty and vibrant culture. It is the first country to strive to be 100% organic and has declared happiness part of its GDP.
Meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal, many of us booked a traditional Nepali massage to help recoup from jetlag. The next morning, went flew to Paro, Bhutan and drove to Thimphu. While at Thimpu, we enjoyed a morning of sightseeing, visited temples, villages and shopped for traditional Bhutanese silver and art. In the afternoon we will transfer to our resort in Wangdu.
We conducted a peaceful morning Session at the beautiful resort and that afternoon enjoy the beautiful scenery while white water rafting on the proximate river.
In addition to a full day group and individual coaching sessions mixed with visiting one of Bhutan’s most famous and ancient temples, we also learned about Bhutanese wine making.
Truly one the highlights of this trip was our journey to view the Tiger’s Nest Temple, also known as the famous Taktshang temple.
The trip that gave birth to Dr. J’Lein Liese and Deborah Bateman’s Wisdom Quest. J’Lein is a frequent traveler to Africa and invited Deborah to join her on this trip. Deborah then invited eleven of her girlfriends and life has never been the same.
Thru J’Lein’s expert guidance we started our journey in Nairobi, where we acclimated from the long trip, visited local NGO’s and shopped. Our life changing journey then took us to Govenor’s Camp on the Masai Mara where we witnessed the dramatic Wildebeest Migration and roamed the Masai Mara for days observing mother nature’s work and the circle of life.
Leaving Kenya, we embarked on a road trip to Kigali, Rwanda where we visited the emotional Genocide Museum, and them crossing the border into Uganda, we headed for the Clouds Mountain Gorilla Lodge to prepare for our life-changing Silver-back Gorilla Trek.