Feeling overloaded and stressed-out? Energy worn down by your daily professional and personal responsibilities? Then it's time for a holiday break where you can heal both mind and body. Perhaps you are also dealing with an illness and you are keen to explore holistic healing methods.
A yoga holiday may be the solution for you.
Those who practice yoga on a regular basis already know its benefits. But even if you are new to yoga, don't let that stop you. Most retreats have programs for beginners.
Imagine arriving to a tranquil natural setting where you can soothe your mind with meditation, ease muscular and joint stiffness with yoga, enjoy clean eating with organically-grown fruits and vegetables, and even take forest hikes or cultural tours.
To stimulate your thinking, here are five sample eco-friendly yoga retreats, each with a unique appeal and country location.
Located in the lush Osa Peninsula on Costa Rica's southeastern Pacific Coast, this eco-lodge offers breathtaking views of a tropical rainforest. You can reserve a bungalow, a hacienda, or a platform tent depending on your budget and comfort needs.
Yoga sessions for all abilities include Vinyasa, Core, Yin, Restorative, Kundalini and Ashtanga. There are massage and energy treatments available to stimulate your immune system and detoxify your body.
The on-site restaurant serves both local and international fare with an emphasis on home-grown organic fruits and vegetables. You can request vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free and raw meals.
Luna Lodge is next door to the Corcovado National Park, and you can opt to take a guided tour during your stay. The park is home to wild animals that include the harpy eagle, tapir, and endangered jaguar.
There are other amazing nature activities to consider, and you can learn more here:
A renovated olive farm surrounded by fields of sunflowers, rolling hills and mountains in the distance is the setting for this holistic getaway. In typical Spanish style, eight guest houses form a courtyard filled with orange and lemon trees. The daily yoga classes are given in state-of-the-art facilities. Meals are served banquet-style with gourmet veggie and vegan options. Gluten-free is also available upon request.
Dedication to sustainable living is evidenced by Suryalila's organic farming methods and an on-site project to educate both local residents and guests about permaculture.
Daily yoga practices include Vinyasa Flow, Yin, and Restorative with options for all levels. For adventure-seekers, there are additional canyoning, bicycling, and hiking opportunities. You can even register for Spanish-language lessons!
For more information:
On a sunny island near the mainland, Suncokret is found in a small village which dates back to the 12th century. Surrounded by vineyards, olive groves and lavender fields, guests have their own rooms but share communal lounges with a "rustic chic" vibe.
Daily Sadhana sessions are suitable for all levels, including guests with physical, mental, or emotional challenges. Prior basic exposure to yoga or body-mind-spirit practises will help you benefit fully from the yoga immersion program.
Organic spa treatments, holistic energy and healing therapies, and life empowerment programs are also offered. Meals are vegetarian and use local organic ingredients. In the spirit of community living, guests can help pick garden produce!
Optional off-site tours bring guests to art galleries, museums, churches, or beaches.
For more information:
Located about 1-1/2 hours south of Cancun, Tulum is a quiet resort town on the Caribbean side of the Yucatan Peninsula. At this secluded retreat you stay in thatched roof cabanas with immediate access to a beautiful white sand beach and a turquoise sea.
Classes in Hatha, Vinyasa, Iyengar and SUP yoga methods are available from beginner to advanced.
The resort's restaurant serves authentic Mexican dishes - mostly vegetarian – with a few fresh seafood dishes added.
Unique spa treatments based on centuries-old Mayan healing practices begin with a purifying ritual using copal, a Mayan sacred tree resin, to harmonize body, mind and spirit. Bodywork includes holistic massage, Reiki, and Shiatsu.
You can swim, snorkel, or visit the impressive Mayan ruins at Tulum and Coba.
Find out more:
Here in southern California, in a forested canyon location, is a classic retreat where guests enjoy fresh air, spring water, swimming holes, and seclusion for silent meditations.
White Lotus primarily serves as a training center for yoga instructors, but it is open to anyone who wants to begin a lifelong yoga practice. Programs encourage an earth-friendly and world community perspective.
The majority of students share on-site yurts. Alternatively, you can bring and pitch your own tent under the bay trees, near the waterfall, or overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Gluten-free vegetarian and mainly vegan meals are served.
For more information:
Based in the UK, Tracy Brighten is a freelance writer, copyeditor and blogger specialising in nature, sustainability, and health. www.tracybrightenwriter.com I www.natureinmind.net I @TracyBrighten1
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