Upon Acceptance to the International Shravasti Varsa (Rains Retreat, Yarne)
Initial information and Part 1 application found here
Upon acceptance, you will need to send a photo, a copy of your passport, statement of Covid vaccination (the most up to date available in your country), and proof of health travel insurance with evacuation. You can access the form to submit those items here or you can email to email@example.com.
Once accepted you can begin to study the ceremonies and join music practice. The ceremony prayer book can be downloaded or purchased from Sravasti Abbey here.
A music practice will be organized in early 2023 at a time to be announced (TBA) in the future.
This is a lengthy retreat and international travel is complex and demanding. It’s important that you evaluate your suitability carefully. The bus ride from Delhi to Shravasti is 11 hrs. We will offer simple vegetarian meals prepared in kitchens kept to international sanitary standards. Special diets cannot be accomodated. Medical and dental facilities are distant so basic good health and checkups before coming are important. Along with travel medical insurance, you will need to supply the name and contact info for a person who will be willing to handle any emergency travel and support should you need to leave the retreat.
To join the Varsa retreat at Shravasti Temple, you will need to have the most up-to-date vaccinations available in your country. Your vaccination certification may also be checked as you go through customs in India.
Upon arrival at the Temple, you will be tested for Covid-19 using a quick test, and there will be quarantine space available for anyone who tests Covid-positive. We hope that each attendee is able to bring at least four Covid-19 rapid tests with you; please let us know if you are unable to obtain your own rapid tests.
His Holiness Kyabgon Thinle Lhundup has found sponsors for all the meals during the stay at the Great Shravasti International Buddhist Temple.
Attendees are responsible for covering their own travel expenses, including visa fees, insurance costs, air transportation, and New Delhi hotel expenses.
Buses will be provided from designated hotels in New Delhi to transport attendees to Shravasti. Please note that travel to Shravasti from Delhi can take up to an estimated 15 hours. Please arrange your hotel accommodations so that you arrive a full day before we need to travel to Shravasti.
While we cannot guarantee travel funding, we recognize the costs may be out of the reach of some. The organizers are currently seeking sponsorship funds. If you or your community can help fund travel for those who cannot otherwise afford to attend, please reach out to Ven. Khenmo Drolma.
It is helpful to have an estimate for the amount of sponsorship funds we will need. As soon as possible, please provide an estimate of air travel expenses and the amount you can contribute toward it if you are requesting sponsorship.
We will be providing transport from Lucknow. You can fly on a short domestic flight from Delhi to Lucknow and then we will provide bus transport from there. The bus ride should be about 3.5 – 5 hours.
There are double-occupancy rooms in the monastery adjacent to the Temple. Two people will be assigned to each room. As many are unused to the climate, air-conditioning has been built into the facilities. Healthy vegetarian meals will be cooked by a Taiwanese team according to bhiksuni dietary rules. Pure water will be available. We are unable to accommodate additional special needs diets.
Click here to see the list of items you should bring to Varsa. Please check back regularly as we will be updating the list as we become aware of changes.
Indian Visa Information
(up to date as of April 2023)
- Applicant photo – A recent photo of yourself, taken against a white background
- Passport personal details scan or travel document showing your photograph and passport details
- Copy of the last page of your passport (if applicable)
- Valid email address
- Credit or debit card to pay the fees
Here is the official visa site from the Indian government. https://indianvisaonline.gov.in/visa/visa-provision.html
- You can apply for a visa electronically. You can do so as early as 120 days before your intended date of arrival (as early as March 26, 2023) or a minimum of 4 days in advance of your date of arrival.
- You cannot apply for the 30-day visa since that will not cover the duration of the Varsa retreat.
- You can either apply for a 1-year eVisa (government fee $43 USD) or a 5-year eVisa (government fee $84.05 USD). If you use any third party services for conventional (non-eVisa) visas, there will likely be additional fees.
- 1-year and 5-year eVisas allow multiple entries and allow you to be in the country for up to 90 days (or 180 days for citizens of the USA, UK, Canada, Japan).
- Your eVisa is good for 1 or 5 years after the issue date.
- Travel Health Insurance is required by the Indian government.
- For US citizens: Please be aware that if your visa was issued before October 6th, 2021, it is no longer valid and you will need to apply for a new visa.
- Visas are good for entry at 28 designated Airports: Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Bagdogra, Bengaluru, Bhubaneshwar, Calicut, Chennai, Chandigarh, Cochin, Coimbatore, Delhi, Gaya, Goa, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, Lucknow, Madurai, Mangalore, Mumbai, Nagpur, Port Blair, Pune, Tiruchirapalli, Trivandrum, Varanasi & Visakhapatnam.
- 5 designated seaports: Cochin, Goa, Mangalore, Mumbai, Chennai.
- However, travelers can exit from any of the authorized Immigration Check Posts (ICPs) in India.