Drölkar Ling Hermitage

The land in Castellina Marittima, Tuscany on which Drölkar Ling Hermitage and Sita Tara Villa are situated was purchased by the Santa Barbara Institute in 2019 to become the first CCR. It is overseen and operated by an Italian nonprofit, La Fondazione per la Ricerca Contemplativa (the Foundation for Contemplative Research), and is closely affiliated with the Center for Contemplative Research in the United States and the Centre for Contemplative Research Aotearoa, in New Zealand.

Blessed Land

Solitary cabin and landscape at Miyo Samten Ling

This exquisite parcel of Tuscan countryside was visited by several eminent Tibetan teachers over the years, each of whom has seen it as a special place, ideally suited for practice of the Dharma.

Lama Thubten Yeshe and Lama Zopa Rinpoche both saw this land and the surrounding area as an auspicious place, and at a certain time there were plans to build a hospice there.

When Rangjung Neljorma Khandro Namsel Drönme (Khandro la) first visited the land in 2014, she was very enthusiastic and insisted that, as opposed to another property she had just seen, this would be a perfect place for retreat.

It was based on Khandro la’s enthusiasm that B. Alan Wallace set in motion plans to purchase the land and adjacent villa to become a Center for Contemplative Research for long-term meditators.

Sita Tara Villa

Nada Hermitage in Crestone, CO

Even as plans continue to unfold to build cabins on the five hectares (twelve acres) of undeveloped land, retreatants are already engaged in full-time retreat in Sita Tara Villa.

This beautiful five-bedroom, three-story home will eventually serve as the administrative headquarters for CCR Europe, once the Hermitage land has been fully developed as Drölkar Ling, or Sita Tara Hermitage.

“Sita Tara” is the Sanskrit name for White Tara. The reason for associating the center with this feminine embodiment of divine wisdom and compassion, radiant white in color, symbolizing her utter purity of heart, is that the land itself, with its spacious views of the Mediterranean Sea to the west, vast fertile valleys to the north and south, and craggy peaks lining the northern horizon, exudes a nurturing beauty and grace reminiscent of Tara.


Sita Tara Villa in Castellina Marittima, Italy