Hosted by Ivy League scientists, Odyssey is the first centre in the US to legally host therapeutic magic mushroom retreats. Jenny Southan reports

After opening in September 2023, Odyssey has announced the dates of its 2024 psilocybin retreats, which are hosted at licensed service centres in Oregon after a recent change in the law.

Costing from US$3,500 to $6,500 per person, Odyssey’s four-day group retreats take place in a “beautiful, natural setting” under the guidance of licensed facilitators who “support you every step of the way”. This year there will be retreats in April, June and July.

The company says that while psilocybin journeys will be “inwardly focused”, sharing the retreat experience with other people can be a “unique opportunity to lean into the joyous and connective aspects of psilocybin”. (You can read about competitor InnerTrek‘s offering in Oregon here.)

There are individual and group preparation processes professionally designed to ensure people get the most out of your experience, as well as “delicious healthy meals” by a private chef.

To ensure precise dosing, the psilocybin is sourced locally from licensed manufacturers, ensuring its quality and potency. Participants must also undergo a health screening before taking part.Drop Thesis service center in Bend, OregonOdyssey recommends that people take time and space to “deeply reflect” on their intentions and core reasons for undertaking the journey. Once the sessions are complete, there is a day of reflection and sharing, with activities designed to “harness the post-journey neural plasticity and begin the process of integration”.

Services are available to anyone looking for profound personal growth, as well as people seeking modalities to supplement their current treatments for mental health issues like depression, PTSD, OCD, grief or existential distress (for example, in palliative care).

Odyssey plans to launch specialised retreats for grief, bereavement and palliative care, as well as for healthcare professionals and clinicians.

Private sessions with Odyssey’s statewide network of highly vetted psilocybin service providers, who are matched with clients based on individual needs and goals, range from US$3,000-$5,000 and can be booked here.

Odyssey founder, Gabe Charalambides, says: “If we want to make these experiences accessible to millions of people – many of whom have never interacted with psychedelics or adjacent communities – we need to offer experiences that feel approachable and professional.

“When I was looking for my first professionally guided experience, I was nervous. It was essential to find a place I trusted and could feel safe. As an engineer and researcher, I was naturally drawn to the centers with close ties to credible research institutions.

“With Odyssey, I wanted to create an organisation legally in the US for the millions of people like me who are influenced by science and may be wary of alternative healing modalities. Odyssey was born with a firm grounding in science and a neutral approach that is careful to not explicitly or implicitly push religious or spiritual views on our guests.”

Founded by a former Stanford and NASA-trained aerospace engineer and advised by Harvard and Stanford psychiatrists, Odyssey is committed to science and evidence-based practices for its retreats, which utilise lab-tested psilocybin and precision dosing.

Odyssey says that end-to-end experience is “heavily influenced by clinical trial protocols and existing psychedelic literature”. Odyssey’s extended team also consists of psychedelic experts from MAPS and UCSF clinical trials, Stanford trained physicians, palliative care physicians and highly experienced underground guides.