The Best Yoga Retreats & Wellness Escapes For 2016

Every year, Epicure & Culture rounds up the best yoga retreats and wellness escapes from around the world. This list compiles a variety of trips that include traditional retreats with more unusual trips, for example, yoga on a windjammer or in the jungles of Nicaragua. All of these trips take place in eco-conscious locations and, of course, serve delicious, healthy food to fuel your practice.

Tip: Don’t leave home without getting travel insurance, especially when embarking on active excursions.

International

Crossing the Threshold Retreat in Nicaragua. Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Brown.

Crossing the Threshold Retreat in Nicaragua. Photo courtesy of Elizabeth Brown.

1. Crossing The Threshold 2016 Retreat (Playa Maderas, Nicaragua)

Celebrate the Spring Equinox in Playa Maderas with Elizabeth Brown of Steeped in Grace’s Crossing the Threshold retreat. Twice each day enjoy outdoor yoga and meditation classes, refining your poses to the sounds of tropical birds and howler monkeys. Afternoons are free for swimming, surfing, snorkeling, shopping in Granada, relaxing in hammocks or visiting the local surf legend for a massage.

Meals feature locally grown, organic produce and fresh fish eaten family style, while accommodations are eco-friendly treehouse bungalows. With no electricity between 9am and 5pm, you’ll be encouraged to power off your devices and enjoy the natural beauty around you.

This 7-night retreat is from March 12-19th at Buena Vista Surf Club and costs $1,200. Click here for more information.

Join Saya in India.

Join Saya for yoga in India. Photo courtesy of the Trip Trotter.

2. A Sojourn of the Soul Yoga Retreat (Southern India)

Travel to India, the birthplace of yoga, and join Trip Trotter and Travel Scope India to return to a life of balance. The Indian philosophy encourages you to treat your body as a temple by consuming the right food and incorporating correct breath, meditation and posture. You’ll also have a number of immersive experiences like shopping at local markets, nature walks, exploring Tibetan settlements, visiting stone carvers in Mysore, and exploring coconut and coffee plantations as you move from Bangalore to Coorg to Bekal. You’ll also learn about Ayurveda — “the science of life” — which is ancient instructions to maintain health through therapy, massage, herbal medicines, proper diet and exercise.

This 11-day retreat costs approximate $3,880 per person. Click here for more information.

Studio at Adler Mountain Lodge. Photo courtesy of Adler Mountain Lodge.

Studio at Adler Mountain Lodge. Photo courtesy of Adler Mountain Lodge.

3. Yoga Retreat At Adler Mountain Lodge (The Dolomites, Italy)

You’ll feel enlightened at soon as you arrive to the stunning Adler Mountain Lodge and its inspiring mountaintop location. The lodge took 10 years to build, consciously using sustainable and organic construction methods to immerse guests in UNESCO World Heritage-recognized natural beauty. The main lodge houses the reception, a cozy lounge with open fireplace, spacious sun terrace, restaurant, wellness and spa facilities, infinity pool and 18 guest suites, all strategically placed to maximize panoramic views of the Dolomites. Higher up the slope there are 12 two-story guest chalets made entirely of spruce wood to give them an authentic mountain feeling. Bonus: room rates includes complementary sunrise and sunset yoga at least three times per week week, access to spa and wellness facilities, and optional seasonal activities such as guided skiing, hiking and mountain biking.

In November, Adler Mountain Lodge presents a special yoga week that includes meditation, mindful walking, gentle physical exercise and candle meditation. Guests can stay three days or for the whole week November 23-30, 2016. Rates for the week start at $1,706. Outside of yoga week, room rates start at $255 per night. Click here for more information.

Tip: Love stylish yoga wear? Click here for free shipping on orders of $125 or more at Manduka!

Paddleboard Meditation. Photo courtesy of La Conquistador.

Paddleboard Meditation. Photo courtesy of La Conquistador.

4. Wellness Retreat (Fajardo, Puerto Rico)

El Conquistador Resort & Las Casitas Village, Waldorf Astoria Resorts in Puerto Rico offers three-night wellness retreats throughout the year in an eco-conscious venue. Choose a theme for your retreat, including activities like beach workouts on the resort’s 100-acre private Palomino Island, twilight yoga classes in the outdoor labyrinth, zip lining in the nearby El Yunque Rainforest, biobay tours through luminescent waters and more. Also included are raw foods, juicing or farm-to-table cooking class and a spa treatment, either a hot-stone massage, poultice massage or tropical bliss scrub and massage.

Puerto Rico Hotel and Tourism Association recently honored this resort as the 2015 Large Green Hotel of the Year for its commitment to environmental conservation. Their efforts include using locally harvested ingredients for meals, an on-site green house and herb garden, biodegradable products and more.

Single occupancy rates for the three-night retreat start at $1,600. All retreats include accommodations, airport transfers, nutritious meals, activities, spa access with eucalyptus saunas, waterfall Jacuzzis, an Organic Tea lounge, daily exercises class and a fitness center, one spa service plus 20% off additional spa services or at the spa boutique, and a personalized fitness plan to take home. Click here for more information.

Writing at Breakfast in Costa Rica.

Writing at Breakfast in Costa Rica. Photo courtesy of Pink Pangea.

5. Yoga & Writing Workshops for Women (Alajuela, Costa Rica)

Does yoga help get your creative juices flowing? Pink Pangea runs yoga retreats for women all over the world. Their upcoming retreat in Costa Rica combines hatha yoga classes, writing workshops, rafting and eco-tours. Guests also get to stay at Pura Vida Spa, an eco-friendly and stunning resort in Alajuela inspiring relaxation, and hopefully, writing.

The week long retreat runs from January 30-February 6 and rates start at $1355. Click here for more information.

Training. Photo courtesy of Surf Camps.

Training in Portugal. Photo courtesy of Five Deep Breaths.

6. Yoga & Surfing (Portugal)

Ride351 offers a variety of active travel tours through Portugal. Yoga lovers will appreciate Surf Plus Yoga, a week of playful movement in the best waves of Peniche, Ericeira and Cascais.

Mornings will begin with a surf lesson before interacting with the locals, appreciating the culture and the gastronomy of the local camps in Óbidos, Mafra and Sintra. Each night, wind down with a yoga class. Two of the three eco-friendly camp resorts serve organic food, and local restaurants provide the rest of the meals and incorporate traditional dishes.

The prices start at $1,010 per person for the full week-long retreat, including five surf and yoga lessons, equipment rental, accommodation, meals, cultural visits and more. The next retreat is March 21-27 but many are offered throughout the year. Click here to see all dates and more information.

Superfood at Gracious Living retreat. Photo courtesy of Gracious Living.

Superfood at Gracious Living retreat. Photo courtesy of Gracious Living.

7. Superfood Yoga Retreat (Little Corn Island, Nicaragua)

Join Gracious Living Lifestyle for a superfood-themed week-long yoga retreat in Nicaragua. Each day enjoy organic, clean, fresh foods from the earth to complement yoga classes. The specially designed menu will include fresh juices, green juices, plant based smoothies, plant proteins, medicinal mushrooms, adaptogenic herbs, organic fresh vegetables and fruits grown from the on-site garden and greenhouse. This healthy menu pairs perfectly with daily lectures led by a holistic nutritionist and anti-stress coach. Though, can you really stress when staying in eco-chic cabañas nestled among beachfront coco-palms?

This week long, all-inclusive retreat will take place Feb 20-27, 2016. Rates start at $2,084. Click here for more information.

Retreat leader Soyela Safer. Photo courtesy of Samata Magazine.

Retreat leader Soyela Safer. Photo courtesy of Samata Magazine.

8.  Shantisim & Standup Paddleboard (Jaco, Costa Rica)

For a real change of pace and an enlightening change of perspective, join Samata Magazine and leader Soyela Shafer in the rich, old shanty town of Jaco, Costa Rica.  This Central Costa Rica location will allow guests to experience the old town balance, peace and connection of Shantisism in a relaxing, warm environment. Ten women will enjoy the best of Costa Rica’s warmth, coast and outdoor beauty at Camp Vista Guava, which has an outdoor meditation center and a beachside pool at Playa Hermosa.

In addition to practicing traditional yoga, Soyela will teach attendees SUP yoga and hula hooping.  Moreover, you can take home over a thousand dollars worth of apparel, suncare and organic food products.

The retreat will take place from April 3rd-9th, 2016. Price: $2,500 including all meals, 1 night out for dinner in town, transportation, accommodations, surfboards, SUP’s, sun & skin care, apparel, swimwear, foot and head wear. Click here for more information.

Tip: Is your yoga mat really clean? This yoga mat wash spray gets the job done — and it smells like citrus!

Domestic

Yoga class on the boat. Photo courtesy of Angelique.

Sailboat yoga. Photo courtesy of Angelique.

9. Yoga On A Sailboat (Camden, Maine)

For a unique yoga getaway, try stretching and strengthening aboard Windjammer Angelique, an eco-conscious boat offering serenity at sea. The Yoga & Wellness cruise aboard Angelique is designed for guests who want to combine a Maine sailing vacation with yoga instruction, with all levels welcome. Bonus: organic vegetarian or fish meals help support the great work they will be doing for their body and soul.

The three-day retreat on August 7-10, 2016 costs $750 per person with all meals, activities, accommodations included. Click here for more information.

Group yoga at Wanderlust 2013. Photo courtesy of Ali Kaukas.

Group yoga at Wanderlust 2013. Photo courtesy of Ali Kaukas.

10. Wanderlust Festival (Oahu, Hawaii)

This four-day festival celebrates mindful living with workshops on meditation, vegan cooking, sustainable living and spirituality. Yoga classes are the main focus of the retreat, but you can also try paddle boarding, hiking and horseback riding. Choose from an assortment of traditional and innovative yoga classes like standup paddleboard or aerial yoga. Play around with a variety of settings by checking out their various venues: feel the energy of hundreds of yogis practicing together outdoors, practice on a mountain top at 6,000 feet, or drop into an small, indoor class and move to live music.

Wanderlust 2016 will take place at Turtle Bay Resort in North Shore Oahu, Hawaii, from Feb. 26th-28th for $99 per day. Click here for more information.

Recommended:

Top 10 Yoga Adventures For Thrill Seekers Around The World [Blog Inspiration]

1000 Ultimate Adventures by Lonely Planet [Great Reads]

Narrative Clip Wearable Camera [Travel Gear]

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Katie Foote may be a physicist by trade but she travels the world any chance she can get. After four years of semi-nomadic life as she finished her PhD, she's recently moved to Auckland, New Zealand. Despite beginning a more traditional life, she has insight on how to travel the world on a graduate student budget (cheap!), explore off-the-beaten-path destinations and authentically experiencing new places by connecting to locals. When she's not doing physics or globe-trotting, she likes to swim, do yoga and hike (or "tramp" as they say in New Zealand). Check out Katie's blog to follow her adventures around the world.

9 Comments

  1. Love this blog post!
    We have an upcoming yoga retreat you may be interested in.

    Join me in Hawaii July 28th – August 1st 2016 at the magical Kalani Retreat Center on the Big Island.

    All prices include 4 nights lodging, 3 deliciously prepared meals a day, yoga classes and 2 surprise excursions! Kalani Oceanside Retreat is a magical, laid back, hippie haven with beautiful accommodations and the freshest food I have ever tasted.

    https://www.facebook.com/events/1139145619429207/

  2. Soooooo Cool, the list is great, but you missed one of luxurious yoga retreat in the world i.e Shreyas Yoga Retreat – They are listed in all top 10 yoga retreats in the world by every travel site & magazine e.g Gayot, Foxtravel, CNtraveller, Theguardian, .. & receiving continuously 100% 5 stars ratings on tripadvisor by customers. I would suggest you visit http://www.shreyasretreat.com and I am sure you will add them in this list.

    Love- Samira 🙂
    Samira recently posted…May NewsletterMy Profile

  3. Cool…Yoga gives users short sessions that they can fit in anytime. Each pose includes an animated illustration plus instructions, make sure you’re training safely.

  4. Improved flexibility is one of the first and most obvious benefits of yoga. During your first class, you probably won’t be able to touch your toes, never mind do a backbend. But if you stick with it, you’ll notice a gradual loosening, and eventually, seemingly impossible poses will become possible.
    300 Hour Yoga Instructor Course NYC recently posted…Hello world!My Profile

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