WELCOME to the peaceful and friendly atmosphere of a Thai forest Buddhist monastery in the Southern Highlands, NSW, Australia. This is a place where you can learn and apply Buddhist teachings to add inner peace in your daily life.

We offer many Dhamma programs and activities for all levels of interest, from serious meditators to students or just curious visitors.


Monks and volunteers have created teaching tools to simplify the complicated Buddhist teachings into modern day language. Plants in the monastery gardens are carefully chosen to link with Buddhist history and add more peaceful and pleasant feelings to both meditators and visitors.  


We constantly carry out in depth research of Buddhist history, by visiting many archaeological sites and museums, and by meeting with experts in many universities around the world. The knowledge that we have acquired from this research helps us to extract the spiritual values of Buddhist teachings from the veil of cultural practises.


Our monthly meditation retreats are highly attended by people from all over Australia. We combine the beautiful rural location, archaeological history of Buddhism, ancient artefacts, stone carvings, visual arts, Buddhist chanting, and yummy Thai vegetarian food, with many outdoor activities i.e. Tai Chi Qi Gong, walking & sitting meditation in the gardens. Many people attend up to 6 retreats per year.


Monks from Sunnataram Forest Monastery have been regularly invited to talk on various topics of Buddhism and teach meditation in many local and Sydney schools. The monastery is a favourite place for local school excursions.


Sunday is a very suitable time when individuals, couples or the entire family can enjoy the beautiful view and art work around the monastery. Visitors are welcome to participate in our programs without changing their religion!! Parents and young children can experience offering vegetarian food to monks, listening to Buddhist blessings, short sitting meditation, Dhamma talk, and can feel free to ask questions to the monks. Every Sunday 11am-2pm.

Please read more from the above tabs.



For more enquiries, please contact us by email.

Every Tuesday


6  - 8 PM  Buddhist Chanting, Guided Meditation & Dhamma talk by the monks.  All are welcome.

Every weekend

Open Day for all visitors (good for the entire family) between 11 AM - 4 PM. 

Please read 'Guideline for Visitors' below.


Buddhism for HSC Students


After experiencing teaching Buddhism in many high schools, we have decided to include a section in our website to help those students studying Buddhism in HSC. Read more in 'Dhamma Teachings/Buddhism for Students'

The Principal Teachings of Buddhism

Buddhist teaching is always beneficial and practical for everyone even in this digital age. Once we practise Dhamma righteously, we can achieve inner peace without being involved in religious rituals and supernatural stories.  Read more in 'Dhamma Teachings/ The Principal Teachings of Buddhism Part I, II and III by Ven. Ajahn Buddhadasa, Suan Mokh, Thailand.


Activities for August 2014



Fri 8th - Sun 10th Aug 2014

Weekend Meditation Retreat : Empower and Prepare for Blossom

Such a peaceful, open-minded & cooperative meditation group ! We are so dilighted to have them in the monastery. Our monks and volunteers are so impressed by thier keeness and will power in practising mindfulness and meditation. 

Please see more photos and feedback in Gallery / 2014 / August 8-10, 2014 Weekend Retreat. 



Sat 15th  - Sun 17th Aug 2014

Thai Student Association Retreat 2014

On 16th-17 August 2014 the Thai Student Association held their retreat at Sunnataram Forest Monastery. The very successful retreat was attended by 23 Thai University students, and was kindly sponsored by the Royal Thai Consulate.

The Thai Youth participated in several Dhamma Activities, including Dhamma games, walking and sitting meditation, Tai Chi mindful breathing exercise, and collecting firewood.

The retreat was supported by Sunnataram Forest Monastery’s weekend Thai volunteers and Khun Jaep and Khun Tong.

Mon 18th Aug 2014

 Students from Chevalier College, Bowral visit the monastery for Dhamma talk and meditation.

Sat 23rd Aug 2014

Buddhist Youth Group from Lankarama monastery visit the monastery for Dhamma talk and meditation.

Activities for September 2014


Sat 6th & Sun 7th Sept 2014

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Sat 6th Sept 2014

7.30 PM Phra Mana gives Dhamma talk to Buddha Dhamma Fellowship, Strathfield, Sydney.

Wed 10th Sept 2014

The last class of U3A: Cross Road of Buddhism and Culture 2014.

Fri 12th - Sun 14th Sept 2014


Spring Weekend Meditation Retreat

The spring has sprung.  The temperature is right, the water is plenty, and the garden bed is ready. It’s the time to regrow and regenerate our inner qualities. We will learn to enhance our mindfulness meditation so we can proceed to Vipassana meditation much easier. Smile and be peaceful.

Sorry, the retreat is full.

Please send application form up to 7 days in advance for other retreats.

Sat 13th & Sun 14th Sept 2014

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Wed 17th Sept 2014

Teachers and Year 4 students of St. Michael Catholic Primary School, Mittagong visit the monastery for Buddhist talk and meditation. 

 Fri 19th Sept 2014

 7 PM Phra Mana will give a Dhamma talk 'Power of the Mind' and meditation to students of UNIBUDS at UNSW, Sydney

Sat 20th -21st Sept 2014

The 5th Special Assistant Dhamma Teacher Training Program for our Thai volunteers.

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Sat 27th Sept 2014

5 - 8 PM Phra Mana will give a short Dhamma talk in Maitri Nite at Sydney university.
Sat 27th & Sun 28th Sept 2014

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Activities for October 2014

Fri 3rd - Mon 6th Oct 2014

Long Weekend Labour Day Meditation Retreat

'The Buddha was born in the garden, attained Enlightenment in the garden, taught in the garden, and passed away in the garden.' 

Come and experience Buddhist awakening in the beautiful garden of the monastery. We will practise sitting & walking meditation and exercise mindfulness of tai chi in the garden like the time of the Buddha. Places are still available. Please send application form up to 7 days in advance.

Sat 4th Oct 2014

Monks, nuns and 50 lay people from Phouc Hue Buddhist monastery visit the monastery at 2:30 PM
Sun 5th Oct 2014

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

 Wed 8th Oct 2014  Monks' Rain Retreat finishes.

Sat 11st Oct 2014

Memorial Service for Ann Jardine

Phra Mana gives a Dhamma talk on 'Important of Mindfulness' at the Sunnataram Forest Monastery.

Sun 12th Oct 2014

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Sat 25th Oct 2014

Phra Mana and monks will participate in Kathina Ceremony for Vejjasala monastery, 219 Forest RoadWingello, NSW 2579. Ph: (02) 4884 4443

Sat25th -Sun 26th Oct 2014

Thai Volunteer Retreat

11 AM  Vegetarian Food offering to monks and lunch for all.

12:30 – 2 PM Dhamma talk & short meditation for all visitors.

Activities for Noverber 2014

Sat 1st Nov 2014

Ven. Phra Mana will lead a one day Meditation  and Dharma retreat at Krawarree, Braidwood. Please contact Clare  <[email protected]> for more information.

Fri 7th - Sun 9th Nov 2014

The Last Weekend Meditation Retreat of the Year 2014 for general public and beginners :  Gift of Peace and Love

The giving season is coming. One of the best gifts to ourselves and our beloved ones is love and peace. Before the whole world turns to be busy with shopping, let us spend this peaceful weekend to produce our own joy and fun by listening to Buddhist teachings and practice calmness and insight meditation. Then wrap your beautiful gift with a smiley face and put on the table to surprise yourself and family in the coming X-mas & New Year.  Places are still available. Please send application form up to 7 days in advance.


 Wed 12th Nov 2014

6 PM  Phra Mana gives a short Dhamma talk at Interfaith Dialogue Conference: A potent tool to promote social harmony and multiculturalism and expunge racial discrimination, organzied by Deepavali Festival Committee of NSW at the Parliament House of NSW, Sydney.


Activities for December 2014

Fri 26th Dec 2014 - Thur 1st Jan 2015

Boxing Day & New Year Retreat: Awakening Transformation - Only experienced and serious meditaion people. 

The most popular time of the year for long & serious meditation practise is always fully booked.  We accept only people who have experienced some meditation retreats,  and are very serious in learning Buddhist teachings and meditation. This retreat is a hard work of mindfulness and concentration. It is not a holiday oppurtunityPlease send application up to 14 days in advance.


About Us

Sunnataram Forest Monastery is a Theravada Buddhist monastery in the Thai Forest Tradition.

Meditation Retreats

The Buddhist teachings in the retreat will include Pali chanting, breathing technique (Anapanasati), Loving-kindness (Metta), ...

Guideline for Visitors

Visitors are welcome to the monastery between 1- 4 pm Mon-Fri, and 11 am - 4 pm on weekends...

Meditation retreats for the year 2014 start from 6pm on the first day, and finish at 2pm on the last day. Please apply online at least 7 days in advance, and see Meditation Retreat Rules and Guidelines for more information.

Retreat Dates 2014

Jul   4th—6th

Aug 8th  -10th

Sept 12th—14th  

Oct  3rd — 6th  (Long Weekend & Labour Day)

Nov 7th—  9th

Dec  26th –Jan1st 2015 ( Boxing Day & New Year- only experienced people )

All enquiries email: [email protected]

Thank you.

All retreats run by donation. We recommend a donation of $50 per night to cover monastery expenses.  The monastery makes no profit from your kind donation. If you wish to donate more, your generosity is greatly appreciated, and will ensure the retreat programs continue to help many more people.

Things We Need

We are grateful for your kind support to the monks, but in the past 24 years the monks have received too many unnecessary things, and they have a ‘big’ problem to store them. We feel responsible for your good Kamma and the waste of your money. For example, many kinds of food expire before the monks can eat, too many towels, toothpaste, soaps and monk’s robes are eaten by mice etc.

While other necessary things that the monks use more often, but not included in the ‘traditional monk gifts’, are not known by supporters. 

Since 2008, monks of the Sunnataram Forest Monastery, realizing people’s need for peacefulness of mind, focus their mind and dedicate their energy on teaching Dhamma and conducting monthly and special meditation retreats, for both youth and adults. The result is wonderful, inspiring  and brings much rejoicing. There is so much positive feedback that will gladden your heart, so please read the feedback and messages from our website.

To continue these worthy activities, we need many other necessary items which can be used either for the Dhamma study program or to maintain the monastery.

To support fulfilment of your wishes, to value your kind gifts to the monks, and to help other people learn Buddhism we would humbly like to suggest the following items:


Gardens:  the following plants- Waratahs, Rhododendrons, Pieris Temple Bells, Hellebores, Euphorbia. Chicken Wire, Garden Stakes, and bags of potting mix.

Office: Epson 82 printing ink: all colours

Building Materials: 

1. Mineral Turpentine 4 Litres X 5 bottles

2. Multipurpose Thinner 4 Litres X 5 bottles

3. Marine Grade Clear Timber Varnish, Gloss or Satin, Exterior, Bondall

4. Leaf Beater Rain Head to prevent leaves and debris entering water tank, fits 90 mm round downpipes X 16 pieces

5. Gutter Protection, Screwless,  Aluminium Gutter Guard 1200 mm long, 1 pack contains 5 pieces, X 20 packs, GumLeaf

6. Glass Silicone Sealant, Clear, X 5 tubes, Gelleys

7. Mattresses for single bed.

8. Screw, Countersink Rib Head, Exterior Use, 8-10 X 30 mm / 40 mm/ 50 mm, QTY 500 per box, Buildex

9. Screw, Hex Head with Seal, Timber Type 17, Exterior Use, 12-11 X 60 mm, QTY 100 per box, Buildex

10. Pillows

11. Hot water bottles (to keep the body warm at night)

12. Decking timber, hard wood, any sizes & length.

13. Or just Bunning Gift Cards  or Home Hardware Gift cards and post to the monastery.

Thank you very much.

Things not to bring to the monastery

-Bags of rice , bags of sugar, dry noodles (we have too much and hard to store them and rat & mouse problems)

-Bath towels, toothpaste, tooth brush, soap, monk's robe, socks, shoes and medicine (we have no store room and they always expire)



- ข้าวสารถุง, น้ำตาลถุง, เส้นหมี่แห้ง(เพราะมีมากจนไม่มีที่จะเก็บ มีปัญหาเรื่องหนูตามมา)

- ผ้าเช็ดตัว, ยาสีฟัน, แปรงสีฟัน, สบู่, จีวรพระ, ถุงเท้า, รองเท้า, ยารักษาโรคชนิดต่างๆ (ไม่มีที่จะเก็บ และหมดอายุเร็ว)



กรุณาดูจากรายการข้างบน สาธุ ขออนุโมทนา



- สุภาพสตรี กรุณานุ่งห่มผ้าให้เรียบร้อย ยาวปิดข้อศอกและยาวปิดหัวเข่า ห้ามนุ่งกระโปรงหรือกางเกงขาสั้นจนเปิดถึงต้นขา ห้ามใส่เสื้อรัดตัว หรือคอกว้างลึก หรือ เปิดแผ่นหลัง


- ประตูวัดเปิดบ่าย 1 โมง และปิดบ่าย 4 โมง ระหว่างวันอังคาร -วันศุกร์   หากจะถวายเพล เวลา 11 โมงเช้า ระหว่างวันอังคารถึงศุกร์ กรุณาช่วยโทร หรือ อีเมล์แจ้งก่อนล่วงหน้า เพราะบางวัน พระต้องไปสอนธรรมนอกวัด

- ปิดวัดทุกวันจันทร์ เพราะพระต้องเข้ากรรมฐานปฏิบัติธรรมตัวเอง

- เสาร์อาทิตย์เปิดตั้งแต่ 11 โมงเช้า ถึงบ่าย 4 โมง

- เหตุที่ต้องมีเวลาเปิดปิดวัด เพราะเคยมีขโมยเข้าวัดยามค่ำคืน เพื่อป้องกันอันตรายต่อพระสงฆ์และผู้มาปฏิบัติธรรม

- ขออภัยในความไม่สะดวก และขออนุโมทนาในบุญกุศลเมตตาของทุกท่าน