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Looking for a Herbal Medicine Course in London? Five Reasons to Escape the City Instead

Written by Meghan Rhodes MCPP MAPA


When I began my own herbal learning journey many years ago, I was living in the heart of London. I was working in a corporate job, had my own health challenges I wanted to work through and was yearning for fresh air, connection, space and a much more natural pace when it came to learning herbal medicine. I couldn’t have foreseen at the time that I'd ultimately move to the countryside, but here are five reasons I chose to escape the city instead of taking a herbal medicine course in London.


Qualified herbalist Meghan Rhodes teaching a herbal medicine course in a herb garden

1. A change of pace you won’t get on a herbal medicine course in London

Every major world city has its own unique melody, but they all have something in common - a fast underlying pace. Their rhythm is intense and relentless. The energy of so many people, so much movement, everything bouncing off so many vehicles and buildings made of steel and glass and concrete - it can be like living in a pinball machine.


Even if you head to Hyde Park or Regent’s Park or a smaller green space for an outdoor herbal medicine course in London, you’ll still be surrounded by that frantic pace - if not plunged straight back into it as soon as you head home for the evening.


But nature doesn’t move at that frantic pace. Its many creatures and plants and elements sing in harmony with each other. Both herbalism and humans are nature, so it makes sense to step out of the London hustle and learn surrounded by nature’s pace.


2. The space to connect with the rest of nature

One thing I remember saying when I lived in London was how little space there was. Perhaps that’s because I lived in a one bedroom flat with no outside space at all, but that’s the reality for many Londoners! Yes, there are little gems and pockets of space in the city, but it’s not the same as getting out into the countryside, gazing out across the endless horizon and big, empty sky and just filling up your lungs.


Even if you enjoy the buzz, all the incredible cultural and social activities on offer, choosing to learn in the countryside instead of taking a herbal medicine course in London means you will have the space to connect with the rest of nature - not just the physical space, but the mental space, as well. 


3. A change of scenery opens your mind and switches on your senses

It may seem like learning herbalism is a mental exercise in information gathering, but it’s actually a very sensory-based process of developing knowledge and skills. When you choose a course that gives you a change of scenery over taking a herbal medicine course in London, you’re making a physical shift that opens up your senses, as well as your mind.


That’s why so many companies take their teams on ‘away days’ out of the city. It gives them a fresh perspective, gets them out of their daily habits and into a much more creative space. When you learn herbalism, you’ll be tapping into the tastes and smells of herbs, the textures of infused oils and herbal creams, the sensations within your body - all of which are much easier to tune into with a change of scenery.


4. It infuses your herbal studies with a sense of wonder

If you’ve already started learning herbalism by reading books, doing a few free online courses, maybe a workshop or two in London, you may be feeling inspired or - like many people - you may be starting to feel a bit overwhelmed with how much there is to ‘learn’. But going on a herbal medicine course in the countryside shifts that feeling and infuses your herbal studies with a sense of wonder.


I’ll never forget the first herb walk I did on the countryside course I took all those years ago. It transformed the world around me from a sea of vibrant green and made it come alive. It filled it with nuance. That unidimensional blur of green became individual plants with names and properties and tastes and textures and qualities. Once that sense of wonder is sparked, the flame will always burn.


5. It refreshes you in a way a herbal medicine course in London can’t

The combination of fresh air, plenty of space, the sights and sounds of nature, the conversations with like-minded people, the use of all your senses, the working with your hands, the inspiration sparked by new knowledge acquired - it all refreshes you in a way a herbal medicine course in London can’t.


There is a special alchemy in learning herbalism in the countryside. It feels closer to the earth, closer to the practice, closer to the ancient-ness of it all. Herbalism isn’t something we need to cram into our brains. It’s already within us. We just need to give ourselves the space and pace to reawaken it within our bodies and bring it to the forefront of our minds and the tips of our fingers. 


So if you’ve been looking for a herbal medicine course in London, I would highly recommend taking the opportunity to treat going on a herbalism course as a well-deserved and much-needed break from the city. You’ll get a change of pace you won’t get on a herbal medicine course in London. You’ll have the space to connect with the rest of nature. The change of scenery will open your mind and switch on your senses - essential for learning herbalism. It infuses your herbal studies with a sense of wonder. It refreshes you in a way a herbal medicine course in London can’t. And chances are, if you want to go on herbal medicine course, you’re looking to connect more with the rest of nature anyway.


If you’re looking to escape to the country to learn herbalism, you’re very welcome to join me in my beautiful yurt in the Yorkshire countryside to take the next step on your journey learning herbal medicine with me. This is where I host my intensive herbalism course - Awaken Herbal Wisdom - which spans all four seasons and gets herbalism both deep into your bones and your daily life. It’s a hybrid course that blends in-person gatherings in the yurt once a season (plus a beautiful closing ceremony) alongside one-hour live Zoom sessions in between, so you’ve got a solid span of learning with five glorious breaks from London. You can learn more about the course here.


Whatever your next step learning herbalism is, I hope you get out into the fresh air and enjoy the journey!




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