Eschewing the 6 am starts and jam-packed schedules often associated with a retreat, Wanderlust Solo Women Tours is about enjoying and savouring the best things in life, alongside like-minded company. Gina's retreat programs facilitate a safe space for women that have a longing for new experiences and new horizons, yet may be new to solo travel.
“Forget the tight schedules, early morning rises, and detox protocols.
These retreats are all about fireside chats, new experiences, great food and lots of laughs.”
Her retreats encourage guests to be themselves; to relax, destress and try something new. Here, guests are welcome to tip toe out of their usual comfort zones, knowing they are within a supportive community every step of the way. The goal is to empower women by building confidence and friendships through travel experiences. Guests may start off as strangers, but leave with a close circle of new-found friends. A long-time local in The Coromandel, Gina is able to share the unique magic of this area with her guests. Plenty of nature and wilderness is guaranteed, alongside time and space to cosy up and completely unwind.
“Women often harbour a deep longing to experience a real “escape.”
With international travel a seemingly distant memory, these retreats fill that gap and quench that desire by exploring our local region with greater depth and appreciation. Over 12 months ago now, Gina hosted her very first Mini–Escape Weekend Retreat for women. Since then, she has hosted 12 local escape retreats and her current retreat schedule is sold out with new dates filling up for early 2022.
Discovering a clear demand for this style and genre of getaway, Gina aims to increase and diversify her retreat packages and experiences leading into 2022, while still staying true to her mission to empower women to travel with joy and confidence. Wellness Tourism is a rapid growth market within New Zealand. With the events of the last 18 months, people are interested and invested in making their health and wellbeing a priority more than ever before. With time to reflect on the important things in life, people are also valuing time with like-minded communities, as well as opting for more meaningful life experiences.
"Many women wish to travel and explore the world, however they may have no-one to accompany them or they feel nervous or anxious about venturing out on their own. There are also common trepidations around ‘not fitting in’ or feeling ‘too old’ to travel or go on retreat."
Wanderlust Solo Women Tours encourage conscious travel and a “give back” ethos. Gina donates a percentage of retreat profits back to local communities and organizations, with the Pet Refuge receiving donations from her recent retreats.
Wanderlust Solo Women Tours was born out of Gina's own transformative travel experiences and passion for solo travel later in life. Coming out of a long-term relationship as she neared 40, getting out and experiencing the world had an enormous positive impact on Gina's self-esteem and confidence.
"While many Kiwi’s headed overseas in their earlier years, I had never left New Zealand before and when my stable world came crumbling down around me, I felt like I needed a major lifestyle shift to propel me into the next chapter of my life."
Taking a leap of faith, Gina filled a single backpack and headed to Europe with a one-way ticket, very little money and plenty of determination, spending the following eight months backpacking solo, volunteering, and working her way around Europe, Wales, UK, Morocco and Turkey. This experience transformed Gina's life and filled her with a sense of confidence and vitality that she never knew existed within me. It also taught her that age was not a barrier when it comes to experiencing the world (especially for women) and inspired her to reach out and help other women going through their own life challenges.
"Wanderlust Solo Women Tours evoke the wanderlust spirit we all have within us. "