Formerly a high-flying executive and pragmatic serial entrepreneur in Europe, Asia and Australia, beginning in 2010 Mynoo Maryel (fka Mynoo Blackbyrn) experienced a series of spiritual awakenings and connected with the true mission of her soul. She entered periods of silence, during which what she now calls “downloads” — profound wisdom about restoring miracles, childlike wonder and sublime well-being to our lives — were revealed to her. She then undertook for herself what has now become The Journey Into Miracles, actively applied the received wisdom to her own life and transformed, almost beyond recognition. Her own inner guidance has become her guru and guidestar, and her Journeys, for herself and with others, have been expanding ever since.


Mynoo is now the founder and visionary for The PoEM (The Palace of Extraordinary Miracles), a movement dedicated to making miracles the new norm, restoring dignity and enriching lives. The PoEM’s initiatives include transformational media, vitality and wellness programming, lifestyle products and services, innovation, research and development.


It is Mynoo’s great joy to share what she has learned with the world, inspiring others to discover and refine their own inner guidance and trust that it is their best teacher ever, the “guru” they have long been waiting for. That trust in turn opens the way to a life full of miracles — those beautiful and awe-inspiring experiences that make our hearts sing, fill us with gratitude, and bring us truly alive.


Swimming with the Humpback Whales


Aug 24-Sep 1, 2017 • tonga

with Mynoo Maryel and Kenneth Ballard

From Ken:

Swimming with the Humpback Whales

Awakening Stillness Retreat

August 24-31, 2017 (8 nights)



Staging point pick up/drop off:

The Awakening Stillness Retreat is eight nights and begins August 24, 2017 in Vavau, Tonga and ends in Vavau on September 1.


August 24: Meet at Aquarium Restaurant Pier at 10:30 am

September 1: Drop off at Aquarium Restaurant Pier, 8-8:30 am


Flights to Tongatapu, Tonga are not included:

Participants are required to fly to Tongatapu, Tonga. Tickets to Tonga are not included, and we do not handle the ticketing. Ken is happy to offer guidance for best routes, based on where people fly in from. Main hubs are from LAX (Los Angeles) Sydney, or Auckland.  *As of now (subject to change) Ken and Samphos will fly Virgin Australia from Sydney at 5:50 pm on August 23.


Real Tonga Airlines return flights Tongatapu-Vavau are not included:  

There is a one-hour domestic flight from Tongatapu to Vavau. Current return flight cost to Vavau is approx. $380 US based on December 2016 exchange rates. Tickets are to be purchased online, individually, by each group member.


Additional travel guidance to get to Vavau:

Ken is available to help by email if necessary.


Diving in Fiji:  

It is possible to fly in through Fiji and dive in Fiji before or after our Tonga Journey. Ken has been there twice and loves the islands of Kadavu and Taveuni with its spectacular walls.  (Please note: Our humpback retreat is not a dive journey, it is a snorkel journey. Diving is not part of program.)


Transport to and from the pick up/drop off location is not included:  

Participants are required to get from your hotel to the pier. Key is to meet us at the Aquarium Pier for 10:30 am boat departure.  

Where you will be on the evening of August 23 depends on your flight arrival into the capital city of Tongatapu, and your domestic flight to Vavau.


Late arrivals:

We are not able to wait if your flight or transfer is late. If you are late, you pay a $100 boat transfer fee and may possibly miss meals or activities which are non-refundable.  


Mandatory waiver:  

We require a hold-harmless waiver attached to your passport with signature matching your passport signature to be emailed to Ken 45 days before the journey. It must be signed again in person with a witness upon your arrival. Without this in advance, we are not able to take you on the first boat ride. There are no exceptions.



Meals are included, beginning with lunch August 24 and ending with breakfast September 1. Meals are vegan, plus fish for those who are not vegan.  



Included are water, coffee and tea, plus one fruit smoothie at breakfast. All other beverages are available for purchase. Please note that non-dairy alternatives may not be available.



Eight nights in eco bungalows, based on two people sharing each room.



Internet is not included. If you choose to use it, there is a charge for internet per person. Ken will have an update on the exact charge soon.


Whale swims:

There will be four to five whale swims with Ken and team, depending  on the weather. We are expecting five swims.



Our boat is covered so there is a space that is out of the sun with seats large enough for all. Ken always sits in front with the driver as co-navigator. There is an upstairs space for whale watching. Sam is usually up there and it really requires being covered up.  


Snorkeling gear:  

Limited snorkeling gear and wetsuits are available. It is best to bring your own gear if you have it. The wetsuits that are provided often do not fit well. There is no guarantee of perfect equipment on the island.


Whale swim protocol:

  • Ken and Samphos will be going on each whale swim with our Tongan driver and guide who has been part of the Tongan family since 2009.

  • Whale swim time is 7:30 am to 1:30 pm for early access to whales.

  • If Guidance tells Mynoo she is to stay ashore for workshop or meditations, Mynoo and Ken have agreed that Ken/Samphos will be going on each whale swim day at above time, even if they are the only ones going.

  • There are no whale swims on Sunday, and we will enjoy a day together on our private island.

  • Due to unpredictable conditions and because there are no Sunday swims, we go on August 25-26 & 28-29-30. This leaves August 31 as a reserve day to ensure we have the best opportunity to have five full days.

  • This may sometimes mean late lunches, so we suggest bringing your favorite snacks from home.

  • Groups of four plus the Tongan guide rotate with the humpbacks as we find them. Sometimes your group will end up with a shorter time in the water, and protocol is the next group goes in. It is scheduled on a rotational basis and dependent on nature and the humpbacks.

  • In past years we have often found pods of pilot whales and spinner dolphins as well as humpbacks and calves from above water and this too is exhilarating.


Required fitness level:

  • To be in the water with the humpback whales, this journey requires a minimum level of fitness and mobility to get off a dive platform in the back of the boat in a relatively quick manner, due to the timing required to meet the humpbacks in sweet ease.

  • You must to be able to swim and snorkel as well as be comfortable in deep water (50 feet or deeper) with 40-50 foot humpback whales and calves around you in the water.  

  • There is a ladder we climb to get back on the boat and sometimes there is a small swell. Sam and our Tongan crew will help people.



If you get sea sick, Bonine is a must!  You buy it over the counter in advance, before our journey. Also ginger crystals or candies to suck on are a must. *The boat does not go back when people are seasick and sometimes we are far in the wilds. If you know you get sea sick this is not the journey for you.  Sea sick bands do not always work well. Most people do not get sea sick and if you are one that does it is rough. One in 8 have been seasick the last 2 years. Bonine, taken 45 minutes before the boat ride and a second dose during the day took care of it, plus sucking on ginger.  It does not make one drowsy. Any questions about this, please speak to Ken before you commit to this journey.


Humpback environment:

We do not disturb the humpbacks by being in their environment. This activity has brought welcomed consciousness forward around humpbacks and the hunting of them. If a humpback chooses not to swim or be with us, with a flick of the tail they are hundreds of meters away. We follow close and parallel in a manner than has been employed for over 20 years. We do not order or direct the boat captain what to do; that is protocol.  


Humpbacks are massive wild mammals:

We are swimming with whales in the wild. We follow a safety protocol that the captain and our Tongan swim guide are in charge of.  In all our journeys there and speaking to many Tongans and regulars who come every season, we have never yet heard of an accident or injury. That being said, there is never a guarantee with any wild mammal encounter. If this is a concern for you, this is not the journey for you. Our mandatory waiver states clearly that we and our Tongan counterparts are not responsible for any injury. You can observe from the boat if you have safety concerns, witnessing the close encounters of others in the group before choosing to enter the water.


Ascended Master and whale song healing sessions with Mynoo:

  • Workshop with Mynoo

  • Singing Bowl journey with Ken

  • Invocation and activation of ocean restoration project

  • Miracle Waters workshop

  • Three ocean restoration ceremonial blessings with Ken, Mynoo and the whales

  • A photograph for posting and sharing with friends

  • A booklet of the whale songs received to mark this journey

  • A signed limited-edition print of a Mynoo Maryel painting from this retreat



We are on a small island and dress is casual. Our Island is barefoot, unless you feel you must wear flip flops or sandals.   

  • Shorts, T-shirts, sleeveless lightweight pants, sarongs, island wear

  • A good, wide-brim sunhat is necessary as the sun is intense. SPF sunhats are great for times on the boat

  • Strong sunscreen

  • 2 bathing suits, so one is always dry

  • Aloe gel for after sun

  • Sunglasses

  • A snorkeling mask that fits well, prescription mask if you need it (for mask defogger, I use the small bottle shampoos/gels from hotels I have stayed at. Dive shops in USA have their version as well if you prefer it to bringing shower gel)

  • Daypack for days on boats

  • Windbreaker for on boat, waterproof is best

  • Ziploc baggies are great for packing and also for keeping things dry on the boat

  • No hair dryers on island

  • Natural soap, shampoo and gel are supplied in each room.



Possible at small fee. Island-style drying, which means in the sun and 2-3 days to get back.


Credit cards:

Mastercard and Visa can be used for internet, extra drinks and any other incidental expenses. No other cards are accepted (including American Express). Cash can be used in Australian or US dollars only.



Included in cost and Mynoo brings to Samphos on day of arrival and considered final payment.



There are no shops on the island and it is too far away for runs to the mainland which cost about $100 and even then is not always possible. Please bring anything necessary with you.

Your contribution: 

There are three contribution options to secure your place on this journey: 

1) a single payment of USD$7700, 

2) two payments of USD$4044 each, one upon registration and one in 30 days;  or 

3) three payments of USD$2833 each, one upon registration, the 2nd in 30 days, and the 3rd in 60 days.

Due to the nature of this particular event, there are only 5 places total. If you are called to join us, please do not hesitate!

Payments may be made online via our website, via PayPal to, or via bank wire transfer to The PoEM. We are happy to send you an invoice. 


Cancellation policy:

Because this is an exclusive trip, with restricted access, your payment secures your place. You may cancel within 7 days for a refund (less a small administration fee). Thereafter, please understand that if for any reason you cannot join us, you may either send someone in your stead, or credit your contribution forward to a future journey with Mynoo Maryel. 


From Mynoo:

I am reaching out to you with a private invitation, which is only going to a very small, very select group of people. 


I am delighted to share that we are hosting our first Awakening Stillness Retreat in Tonga in August of this year, swimming with the humpback whales in their natural habitat! These beautiful beings are not only breathtaking to see and experience in person; they also carry ancient wisdom and life-changing healing energies.


This journey in particular is so special. First of all, the number of people allowed to swim with the humpbacks in Tonga each year is strictly limited, and the available trips are already fully booked out until 2019. So we are absolutely blessed to be allowed in this year at all. And secondly, our boat captain and the islanders who are hosting us all come from a long lineage of whale-whisperers. It is a true privilege to be meeting the whales with them.


I am deeply grateful to have been offered this opportunity. I had made the request to activate a powerful experience for those who are already doing significant work in service to our planet, and Spirit answered me with this glorious adventure! Along with my dear friend Ken Ballard, who has brought people and whales together in sacred journeys over the last 30 years, I and just 5 others are invited to participate this year. We don't have to wait until 2019! Our dates are 24th August-1st September, 2017.  


Two people have already registered and now there are just three places remaining. I believe this may be something for you, and wanted to get the details to you right away. 

The Location


We are staying on a small, picture-perfect private island, one that has been stewarded by generations of whale-whisperers. The island is situated in a natural "in the wild" nursery for the humpback whales, right where they come to birth and nurse their young ones. It is indeed a transformational experience to be guided into their presence by Ken and our gracious local hosts.

The Program

For this expedition, we are to activate a deep, transformative healing by using the whale songs that are being transmitted to me with the new cosmic codes. These not only reverse obstacles and blocks, they also revive and replenish us. Together we will open the way for the the resurgence of our own wellbeing, as well as that of the oceans, the environment and all the earthly beings here. 


Thus far I have received three whale songs and we will have as many as nine to guide us along this journey, as we actively engage in transforming the quality of life on our planet. As we lift our own vibrations and those of the ocean that surrounds us to the highest levels, we will holographically spread the healing effect.


The Opportunity

Once again, as there are only five spaces available to us in total, I have chosen to invite my most soul-centered, Earth- and ocean-loving friends to participate in this experience. I am thrilled to share this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity with you. The contribution per person is US$7700, the proceeds from which go to support the humanitarian and environmental work of our NGO, The PoEM Foundation.



Please reply and let me know if this calls your heart. Only a few spaces remain... I would so love to have you join us!


With love and warmest regards,


You may also set a time for a call to discuss this further. 

Want to know even more? Looking for specifics? Read on...

See you in Tonga!

Love and blessings,

Mynoo and Ken

Leaning in? We encourage you to dive right in with us, the water's fine! We are happy to answer any further questions you may have... if you'd prefer to discuss this a bit further, just set a time for a call with us. There are only a few places left, so if you feel one of them is yours, please trust that guidance. It's an amazing opportunity for a small and mighty group. :)


As a guide, Ken Ballard's heart is called to bridge cultural, geographic, and spiritual for beings seeking more than travel, they desire the experiences of which once-in-a-lifetime memories are made.

Originally from Florida, Ken followed his heart, leaving behind pre-law studies, and arrived in Southeast Asia in the 70s. Thailand and Bali have remained “home” ever since. Though he has traveled the entire world, Asia is where he has most deeply studied and embodied the cultures, customs, and spirit of the lands.


Mentored by Dr. W. Brugh Joy, Ken is guided by “unconditional unconditioned love,” inner peace and harmony.  These values are foundational to everything he creates, from journeys to photography, from relationships to memories.

His love of life, nature, and exploring are radiant within him. He has led numerous groups over the past 30 years. He was a partner in Sacred Mountain Sanctuary, a fine eco retreat center in Bali, for over 8 years. He is the author of Tibet: 100,000 Prayers of Compassion and a forthcoming book on Bhutan. He is also an accomplished photographer, having captured rock performer Alice Cooper’s most engaging images for decades, as well as capturing the beauty of the lands he visits. Photography is the lens through which he gains new vision into himself and the planet.


Diving with humpback whales, dolphins, sharks and manta rays; traversing oceans, mountains, and jungles; and getting up close and personal with orangutans and elephants make his heart sing.

His truest passion remains sharing the depth and breadth of his decades in Asia with fellow travelers, from roads less traveled to bustling cities. He delights in first-time experiences.

swimming with the humpback whales in tonga