The Hermit Experience as a Form of Tourism

The growth of interest in the eremitical life seems to have led to the development what might be described as “eremitical tourism”.
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A number of religious (and some commercial) organizations have begun offering “the Hermit experience” in purpose built “Hermitages”, some of them very luxurious indeed.
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Some of the offerings are basically forms of solitary spiritual retreat in an isolated (albeit seemingly always scenic) location.
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Others are far more fashionable and self-indulgent, with spas, sauna and swimming pools. Air-conditioning and heating seem to be the norm.
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In some cases, meals are provided, but in others the temporary “Hermits” are required to self-cater in what are usually quite well equipped kitchens.
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Promotions usually include the assurance that it “offers people the opportunity to experience a hermit way of life that suits their own tastes and desires.”
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The Good Retreat Guide Online – – offers listings of “Hermitages”, although most of those facilities listed could not reasonably be described as “Hermitages”.
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While a retreat in comfortable (even luxurious) solitude may be a good thing, even spiritually and psychologically beneficial, it would seem an exaggeration to suggest that it can be a “Hermit experience”.
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Some examples of contemporary offerings on-line:


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