My top 10 yoga retreats
This here is my personal top 10 yoga retreats, that I haven't tried yet but instead have spent hours researching and comparing to other retreats! As you read it keep in mind that I'm a hare core Ashtangi and advenuture lover.
K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute
I pratice Ashtanga Yoga 6 days a week and this is the grandaddy of them all! The KPJAYI is where serious yogis come to deepen their knowledge and practice. This is the place where certification to teach Ashtanga Yoga is granted. Note I said granted, not given because you don’t just take a 200, 300 or 500 hour course and get a certificate. Do not go here expecting to complete teacher training as certificates are only granted when they feel you are ready. You stay at the institute for a one month minimum, maximum 3 months, practicing yoga in the morning at the time slot you are given (can be very very early!!!) six days a week and resting on Saturdays and the day of the full moon. The teacher is R Sarath Jois, the grandson of the late K Pattabhi Jois. On Friday’s and Sunday’s you will do a led practice the other days are Mysore (at your own pace) with Sarath on looking. If you’re looking for alot of personal attention and hand holding the KPJAYI is probably not the best place for you. Mainly people are there to absorb the energy of their fellow yogis and practice with the best. Sarath will give you the next pose when he feels you are ready. After you have completed your time at the institute you are allowed to return no less than 6 months later.
Costs and prices are not listed on their website and can only be obtained by contacting them. If you’re really serious about getting a pure traditional Ashtanga experience check this one out, but be ready to work hard at your practice.
Shreya Yoga Retreat, Bangalore, Karnataka, India
With a location that’s easy to get to and peaceful at the same time this yoga holiday would be tough to beat. Taking a quick look at their website things are uncomplicated and simple. You can stay for with either 3, 5, 7 or 14 days in a garden or pool side cottage. Prices for this type of luxury seem pretty reasonable at 250 to 350 per night per person, but it includes everything. All the meals are carefully prepared to your liking, a massage treatment, a one on one yoga class, plus the group daily yoga classes. The classes take place in a gorgeous open air, but covered building perfect for focusing the mind while relaxing and opening the body. The longer stay includes cooking classes, wellness consultations, and an excursion into town and more. It’s no wonder this tops many best of yoga retreat lists. There are many, many five out of 5 reviews, that had nothing but glowing gratitude towards their stay here. The lowest I found was a 4 out of 5, out of 114 reviews. I can’t wait to go to this one.
At most yoga retreats the Karma yoga (where you willingly and selflessly provide service out of love) you are servicing the retreat center, ie. washing dishes, cleaning etc. Not here, if you wish to partake in Karma Yoga you serve food to the orphans in town. What an amazing experience to connect to a community! Now that’s what I call Karma Yoga.
Type of yoga: Ashtanga style and Hatha
Child minding available: no
Other Activities (other than yoga): cooking classes, excursions, massage treatments, ayurvedic treatments
Cost: $250-350 per person per night, in USD
Non Yogi partners welcome: they might be a little bored if they don’t want to participate. There is a strong focus on yoga and all yoga processes. These people love their yoga and who can blame them?
Food: all inclusive and outstanding! After your detailed consultations with a naturopath and ayurvedic doctor they tailor make your meals based on what needs you have and what your taste buds love! Amazing care and attention here.
Kino MacGregor and Tim Feldmann, Samahita Retreat
This one was a little tough to find believe it or not! Every year Kino and Tim do a two week retreat here and this just became number one on my to do list . The Samahita Retreat is listed on our Ashtanga Yoga Retreats page as they offer ongoing Ashtanga Yoga classes and you can check in for a personal retreat. However, the chance to work with Kino and Tim for two straight weeks in a beautiful setting-wow.
Dates: this is an annual event in April/May
Prana del Mar Retreat & Wellness Center, Mexico
This made my top ten yoga retreats page for the simple luxury and the high ratings. Also I've had the pleasure of dealing with the manager, Eric and he has been nothing but prompt, accurate and extremely helpful. I want to see what all the fuss is about, the rates are reasonable for the quality you recieve and I'd like to meet these helpful people.
"Prana del Mar is a deluxe, beachfront retreat and wellness center specializing in yoga retreats and yoga vacations. We feature luxurious accommodations, delicious cuisine, excellent facilities, and warm Mexican hospitality. Please join us for a relaxing and rejuvenating yoga retreat where the mountains and the desert meet the sea."
Company Name: Prana del Mar Retreat & Wellness Center
Reviews: 100% RATING!!! on trip advisor. Out of 20 reviews they have 20 excellent. Nothing but warm hospitality, great food, and great rooms. Obviously this is the best I've ever seen.
Name of Yoga retreat: Each week we offer different retreats.
Dates: ongoing October through July
Location (city, province/state, country): outside Cabos San Lucas, Baja, Mexico
Instructor Name and Bio: Various throughout the year
Type of yoga? Varies each week
Child minding available?No
Other Activities (other than yoga)? Which are included in the retreat cost and which ones are extra? Surf lessons, horseback riding, kayak & snorkel trip, excursions to local towns, whale-watching (in season), sea turtle hatchling releases (in season), cooking class. Massage and other spa services. All are optional and at an additional cost.
Cost? Varies depending upon teacher. Starts at about US$1600 per person for double-occupancy for 1 week.
Are Non Yogi partners welcome? Yes
Food, what’s included, what type of food is it? All meals on-site are included. Delicious, healthy cuisine, primarily vegetarian with seafood serve several times per week Dietary restrictions accommodated.
Do they serve or allow alcohol?Yes, an option for alcohol is available.
Accommodations?(Luxury, basic, 5 star, eco retreat) Deluxe accommodations
Size? How many participants will there be (minimum and maximum) We have 16 guest rooms and can accommodate up to 32 guests. Our minimum reservation is 4 rooms, for groups.
Instructions for Getting there (which airport and airport transfers): Fly into San Jose del Cabo airport (SJD. Sometimes also called Los Cabos International Airport. We arrange airport transfers.
Harmara Retreat, Near Sayulita, Sayulita, Mexico
What to do I love about this place? I love that it was all built by hand, they are extremely environmentally friendly and simple which goes along my personal value system. The love and care that went into the construction blows me away and I want to submerse myself into a surrounding that goes the distance on the details. Luxury in the jungle without harming the planet- I can't wait:)
I would definitely say this is a luxury yoga retreat, I would not say it’s a luxury resort .The difference? The focus here is health, wellness and kindness to the environment as well as it’s people. The whole place was built without machinery and all by hand, thus-it’s rustic but extremely comfortable. You are basically in the middle of the jungle yet it’s only an easy 40 minute drive from the airport in Puerto Vallarta. They have accommodations for 44 people, some are dormitory style, some are very private and romantic cabana’s. There is no electricity in the cabanas making it a holiday from not just your daily grind but also a break from anxiety inducing technology. The bathrooms are open but private facing the jungle, have flush toilets and are beautiful. The cabanas are lit by candle making it even more romantic and earth friendly. After reading all the reviews, the main draw of the place is the view. It’s been called breath-taking and amazing. The yoga shalas are covered open air with a 360degree view of the mountains and the ocean. The retreat centered is situated just a quick walk along a private walking pathway to a private secluded beach. It has been noted that hiking shoes are required for making your way to the restaurant and the yoga shala’s. It is not a place for mobility challenged people. Haramara retreat caters to teachers wanting to bring their group here. I would suggest choosing one of their retreats listed on their site to attend and not just going there on your own, but they do offer ongoing classes and packages. The staff is warm and helpful, especially to yoga retreat participants. It has a very good rating on tripadvisor and I’m looking forward to doing this one.
Reviews: Only 19 reviews on tripadvisor has 15 excellent, 2 very good, 1 average, 1 poor, and 0 terrible. Take good walking or hiking footwear as you'll be doing alot of it to get to the dining hall. The main complaint was the lack of electricity- so know what you're getting into- candle lit rooms and open air bathrooms. This place was built to challenge your reliance on the comforts and covenience of home.
Type of yoga offered: varies depending on instructor
Child minding available: no
Other Activities (other than yoga) just a 20 minute hike into town for touring and exploring, swimming, relaxing on the beach, surfing, horseback riding, you name it the staff can organize it for you!
depends on which retreat you choose! But just to give you an idea:
personal retreat for 3 nights: $989.00-$1419.00,
and other retreats: $1100 triple occupancy- $1745 single occupancy in highest standard suite. (7 nights)
Non Yogi partners welcome Yes
food: mostly vegetarian, but also fish, cheese and eggs
dates: a retreat almost every week
Molino Del Rey
Andalucian Nature Reserve, Spain
Wow! This one made our Top 10 yoga retreats , simply by looking at the photo of the pool... They boast on their site that they are the best yoga retreat in Spain and it’s not just them bragging. They are listed on many top ten lists of the best Yoga Retreats in the world, and they have been featured in the book Great Yoga Retreats. I wonder if it’s because of the caves- yes caves. Their mediation room is a cave and their pool is inside a cave too. The facility is built into a rock side, surrounded by Spanish countryside. Interesting to note this, is not a hotel. It is strictly rented to instructors for hosting retreats and not open to the public.
All the booking is through the individual instructors, as Molino del Rey doesn’t do any bookings. They have a retreat listed for every week until the end of October.
Please see here for more info on the different retreats and instructors.
Casa De Carrasco, Spain
How rare is this? A retreat with extremely high ratings and priced so low it made our cheap yoga holidays page! This is such a unique find I had to put it on my “Must try!” list.
25-85 euros per night or about $35USD to $115USD
This is considered a small yoga retreat as they only take a max of 16 guests at one time. There are tonne of extra activities on this Yoga retreat in Spain! Non yogi partners are welcome and certainly won’t be bored - hiking, mountain biking, castle tours, massages, etc etc! I believe this is an ongoing Yoga retreat and you can book in on any day and leave on any day.
Reviews: They’re doing extremely well in this regard! With 34 reviews they have a whooping 97%!!!! Warm and knowledgable hosts/ instructor Sarah and Martin. The setting is beautiful, an old converted farm. Extremely high value for your money.
dates: ongoing but I’m not sure from when to when??