Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve

Ecotherapy Program

Brought to you by the Chico State Ecotherapy Program through a partnership with the CSUC Ecological Reserves, Chico State Basic Needs, and the WellCat Counseling Center.

Chico State Ecotherapy Program(opens in new window)

Forest Therapy is inspired by the Japanese practice of Shinrin-yoku, or "Forest Bathing." Forest Therapy is simply a guided, immersive experience in a natural environment to promote the well-being of both people and the land. Forest Therapy is an opportunity to slow down and experience the natural world through your senses.  During your guided immersion, a certified guide will offer a series of invitations to deepen your sensory experience and assist you in finding your own authentic way of interacting with the land. There's no right or wrong way to do it; just come and be yourself. It's all welcome in the forest. 

  • Full Forest Therapy experiences are 2.5 to 3 hours.  
  • "Taster" Forest Therapy experiences are 1 to 1.5 hours.

Proven health benefits include:  

  • Reduction in cortisol and adrenaline levels. 
  • Enhanced immune system function by increasing the production of natural killer cells. 
  • Improved respiratory and cardiovascular function. 
  • Decreased anxiety and depression. 
  • Improved mood, focus, academic performance, and creativity. 

We hope you join us and experience valuable tools for mental, emotional, and physical health and well-being!

Contact Ecotherapy Program Manager Blake Ellis at for more information or to schedule a walk for your CSUC class or organization.


forest therapy