Yoga Vacations

Combine fitness with a holiday as you exercise and unwind at these five stunning retreats across the globe.

Yoga getaways are a great way to de-stress and rejuvenate. Here’s our pick of unique retreats that include activities like sports, dance and cooking along with spa packages, tours and cruises.

Where: COMO Shambhala Estate, Bali, Indonesia Why: COMO Shambhala Estate—set in a jungle—houses a spring on the property providing healing water treatments, and four treatment and relaxation areas. Personal programmes are created to suit individual needs like fitness, weight loss, detoxification and stress management. You can take advantage of the daily hatha yoga classes (private sessions can also be arranged), pranayama sessions, meditation, Pilates and Tai Chi classes. Don’t miss: The retreat’s world-class spa that offers massage therapies, hydrotherapy, acupuncture, reflexology, shiatsu and ayurvedic therapies. Packages include ‘Arrive, Breathe, Relax’, the Vitality Package and Wellness Programmes for three, five or seven nights. For the more adventurous lot, river rafting, canyoning and rock climbing are offered as part of a holistic approach to wellbeing. And if that’s not enough, they also offer guided hikes and meditation, biking and exploration of the surrounding river and forest. Stay at: COMO Shambhala Estate offers rooms, suites, private villas and residences. COMO Shambhala Estate, Banjar Begawan, Desa Melinggih Kelod, Payangan, Gianyar, 80571, Bali, Indonesia (+62 361 978 888;www.comoshambhala.com)

Where: Maya Tulum Resort, Tulum, Mexico Why: Maya Tulum Resort, nestled between a beautiful ocean and a tropical forest, offers a range of rejuvenating programmes that include anahata yoga, hatha yoga, yoga flow, alchemy yoga flow, power yoga, restorative yoga, kundalini yoga, ashtanga vinyasa, anusara, moon salutation and sunrise walking meditation. You can choose from close to 50 retreats and classes, including psychotherapy, writing workshops, dance, nutrition, Pilates and Qi Gong.  Don’t miss: The Temazcal Ceremony, which includes a 150-minute physical and spiritual cleanse in a traditional Mayan sweat lodge along with four guided meditations.  You could also check out their tours of the surrounding landmarks. Stay at: Any one of the resort’s 45 garden, ocean and beachfront cabanas or villas. Maya Tulum Resort, Carretera Boca Paila Punta Allen, Km 7, Zona Hotelera Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico 77780 (+521 984 116 4495; www.rrresorts.com)

Where: Shreyas Retreat, Bengaluru, India Why: Dedicated to traditional yoga practices, Shreyas Retreat makes use of the surrounding natural resources and organic farming. On offer are ashtanga and hatha yoga, nidra or deep relaxation, chanting classes, pranayama, silent retreats, yoga workshops and ayurvedic treatments like abhyanga and shirodhara. Don’t miss: The experience of living like a yogi—you can learn to cook, work in the organic garden, volunteer at the local school or plant trees here. Try out the retreat’s popular packages including the Culinary Experience, Wellness for the Soul, Ayurvedic Rejuvenation, Weight Management and Joy of Giving. The Rejuvenation Massage Centre, which offers ayurvedic, Thai, Balinese, Swedish and aromatherapy massages, exotic scrubs and beauty treatments by well-trained therapists, is also a must-visit. Stay at: Shreyas offers various garden and poolside cottages as well as rooms with tented canopies. Shreyas Retreat, Santoshima Farm, Gollahalli Gate, Nelamangala, Bengaluru 562123, India (+91 80 2773 7102; www.shreyasretreat.com)

Where: Kaliyoga, Granada, Spain Why: The dynamic yoga classes amidst a backdrop of majestic mountains, organic vegetarian cuisine, holistic therapies, cooking workshops, cultural excursions, horse riding and treks are just a few reasons that make Kaliyoga a great place to detox and unwind. With perfect weather almost year-round, this yoga retreat offers you the chance to explore the relationship between your body, mind and consciousness. Don’t miss: Kaliyoga’s assorted range of programmes like Dynamic Flow, Juice Fasting Detox, Super-food Cleanse, Yoga and Hill-walking, Creative Empowerment and Spiritual Alignment. Also check out the retreat’s naturally heated plunge pool, hydrotherapy hot tub, infrared sauna, several treatment rooms for holistic therapies and shaded pergolas for massage treatments. Stay at: Kaliyoga’s Spanish-styled double and single rooms and tipis. Kaliyoga, Apartado de Correos 171, 18400 Orgiva, Granada, Spain (+34 858 995 890; www.kaliyoga.com)

Where: Yoga Health Retreats, Byron Bay, Australia Why: Founded by Sue Halkins, Yoga Health Retreats offers programmes like Self-Discovery, Rejuvenation and Creating Happiness at Byron Bay. You can enrol in yoga sessions, meditation, pranayama, dance, chanting and yoga nidra sessions. Morning sessions include the vinyasa flow yoga while the restorative yoga sessions are held in the afternoons. Don’t miss: Yoga Health Retreat’s Pilates, colon hydrotherapy treatments, detox sessions, cleansing programmes, naturopathic consultations, reiki, remedial massages, walks, surfing, tennis and bike riding. Stay at: Tallow Beach Houses (www.tallowbeachhouses.com.au).Located next to the beach and facing Bryon Bay’s lighthouse, this property is surrounded by 30 acres of secluded bush-land. Yoga Health Retreats, 5 Bay Vista Lane, Byron Bay, NSW 2481, Australia (+61 2 8007 5128; www.yogahealthretreats.com)

Where: The Island Experience, Ilha Grande, Brazil Why: This programme involves adventure, yoga and fitness over seven days (from March to December) in the midst of the beautiful surroundings of Ilha Grande, which has be designed for de-stressing and detoxification. The wellness spa programme includes hiking in the rainforest, kayaking, snorkelling, holistic massages, meditation and a detox diet. Don’t miss: The opportunity to learn about Brazilian art and culture through the painting, samba and capoeira classes offered along with the daily yoga and meditation sessions. Stay at: The Blue Lagoon Lodge (www.theislandexperience.com/locationOurLodge.htm), a secluded eco-lodge located next to the ocean with a swimming pool, sauna and jacuzzi as well as a glass-walled yoga studio. Transfer from the Rio de Janeiro airport or your hotel to the lodge at Ilha Grande and back is included. The Island Experience, Ponta do Bananal S/N, Ilha Grande, Angra dos Reis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (+55 21  9925 9756; www.theislandexperience.com)

Where: Yoga Cruise, Finike, Turkey Why: To enjoy a ‘yoga experience’ while cruising the Turkish Mediterranean, you simply must sign up with Yoga Cruise. You can practise the Sivananda hatha yoga on the yacht’s sundeck, snorkel, kayak, visit cultural landmarks, ancient ruins and even a Turkish hamam while on this programme. Don’t miss: The excursions, which include a visit to the Lycian tombs of Myra, St Nicholas Church, the antic city of Xanthos and the ancient city of Arycanda, a hike through the Saklikent Gorge and a boat trip to Mais. Stay at: The ten-cabin traditional Turkish sailing yacht—The Atlantis. Transfer from Antalya airport to the marina at Finike costs Rs 2,400 per person each way. Yoga Cruise (+90 534 020 6726; www.yogacruise.net)

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