9 Of India’s Most Serene Yoga Retreats To Escape To

9 Of India’s Most Serene Yoga Retreats To Escape To

For all those already immersed in the practice of yoga, it takes little convincing from our side to bring your practice into the folds of mother nature. While yoga is completely fulfilling in itself, no matter where you do it, being out it nature simply amplifies it. Whether it’s by the ocean, deep in a forest, or on a mountain top - getting away from the hustle and bustle of urban life only helps you immerse yourself deeper into the subject. Enter yoga retreats - the perfect opportunity for you to make time and dedicate it to your practice. We’ve listed some of India’s best retreats for this year, and you don’t need us telling you why you need to roll your mat up, and book yourself for one of these retreats immediately.

I. Purple Valley Yoga Retreat

Where: Assagao, Goa

This retreat is set in landscaped, tropical gardens with plenty of spaces for inner reflection and meditation. The style of yoga mainly practiced at this retreat is Ashtanga. Meals are vegetarian, served buffet style on our open-air terrace and eaten in the company of the other students. Breakfast is a feast of exotic tropical fruits, homemade breads with toppings, local nuts and porridge. Dinners are a mix of Indian and Western food and all ingredients are bought fresh daily at the local market, organic wherever possible. The meals are completely vegetarian. To stay at, there are three houses you can choose from - Ganesh or the main house, cottages and the Savasana House that is more modern than the others. Students can either share rooms or request private double rooms.

For a list of retreat dates and costs, visit their website.

Where: Mandrem, Goa

Translating into “Home” from Hindi, Ashiyana is a retreat village designed to help you connect with yourself and nature, and comes highly recommended. It’s unique in that the accomodation options range from beach huts to luxury suits, and everything in between. Ashiyana has an extensive retreat list for 2017, with details about the teacher and the style of yoga along with the schedule for each week. For complete details on the 2017 calendar and costs for each retreat, go to their website. Make sure to plan in advance as their retreats fill up very quickly!

III. SwaSwara

Where: Gokarna

A 7 night “Swa” Program at this gorgous property includes daily group yoga sessions for both Wellness as well as Intermediate or Progressive practioners. There are daily sunrise and evening meditations that include chakra/tratak/mind sound resonance tchniques and chanting. A daily special focus group Yoga session will be conducted - this coud be Yoga nidra, pranayama, art yoga, laughter yoga or Mandala meditation. There are also two private yoga sessions per villa. You can also have a Yogic Kriya session - this is where Jal Neti is used to cleanse the nasal passages and sinuses. This program also has an Ayurvedic element to it which includes a detailed consultation with an Ayurveda doctor, a dosha/prakruti analysis and a full body ayurvedic massage. If you choose to extend your stay, you may do so. The villas all have modern amenities, and are stunning with inside-outside decor styles.

Image Source: Spirit of Kerala

For retreat dates and costs, visit their website.

IV. Ananda Spa

Where: Narendra Nagar, Uttarakhand

This is undoubtedly one of the most luxurious and beautiful spa resorts in India. Ananda Yoga nutures and enhances the physical, mental, emotional and spiritual qualities in a simple, effective and practical manner through the practice of Hatha yoga, Raja yoga and Kriya yoga. Packages are available in time frames of 5,7 and 10 days. Standard inclusions in any package includes individual wellness consultations, personal fitness consultations, spa cuisine meals, morning signature tea and fruit, and yoga, meditation, cooking demonstrations and treks into the mountain. Guests can also use all the hyderotherapy facilities available

For full details on accomodation options and package deals, click here.

Where: Auroville

This retreat is great for those looking to get an introduction to Yoga, and full individual attention. The practice focuses on guiding you through the postures, breathing techniques, relaxation and meditation. The retreat is conducted by Kerstin who has practiced in the tradition of Swami Sivananda Saraswati. The retreat is mainly for individuals, but couples are welcome. It involves a minimum of 4 sessions of 120 minutes each. Upon contact, accomodation, travel and food will be organized at extra costs.

For full details, visit the website and contact them.

Where: Bangalore

Shreyas is a luxury yoga resort, with facilities and amenities designed to take your practice to the next level. You can choose to go from April - October, November - March and this will determine the price of the retreat and package. The Yoga Retreat packages are structured to allow you to experience not just the physical aspects of asanas but also various Pranayama,Yogic Kriyas, Yoga Nidra, Sound meditation, Chakrashuddhi (chakra meditation) and Trataka (candle meditation).

In addition, you can get massages and the chance to practice Karma Yoga (selfless work) by serving a meal to the children of the local orphanage. They offer Ashtanga as well as Hatha yoga retreats. While at Shreyas, you can choose to stay in a cottage by the pool, tented garden cottages or their 3 bedroom cottages fit for bigger groups. The food served is Indian, continental, Mexican and Oriental - but completely vegetarian, and the resort is alcohol free. Come here only if you are deeply committed to your practice!

Cost: The price changes with the season, so check the website for a price at a time best suited for you.

Where: Ashvem Beach, Goa

Located right on the beach, Anahata spells barefoot luxury with ease. There are a host of accomodation options to choose from: Sea view suites, beach front, sea view and garden eco-cottages. The suites are designed with the typical goan-portugese influence, while the cottages are recycled wood cabins with palm-thatched roofs. Anahata is very active with their retreat schedule, and have atleast one on the lit for every month. This property is simply stunning - and depending on the style of yoga you practice, we recommend giving their retreats a look, and see if it’s up your alley. Go here for the complete list.

VIII. Nikaya Yoga

Where: Bhutan

This yoga studio is run by Namrata Sudhindra based out of Bangalore. She is a Hatha yoga teacher with incredible grace, strength and intuition, who has been practicing for over 15 years. She will be leading a 7 day retreat in Bhutan, hosted by Terton Travel Bhutan. Apart from the yoga, the retreat offers a hot stone bath treatment, traditional healing processes, free entry to Museums and monuments, visa permits, picnics, local meals, and an interactive session on mandala art. Through the week, the retreat will travel through Paro, Thimpu, Punakha and will take you through the Dochula Pass, Chhimi Lkakhang (terraced fields), Punakha Dzong (home of the Chief Abbot of Bhutan and the monk body of Thimpu), amongst myriad magnificent sights.

Dates: 11th - 18th September 2017

For more information on costs and bookings, feel free to message Nikaya Yoga on their Facebook page. You can check out their pictures from the previous retreat in Bhutan here.

IX. Yoga By Diksha

Where: Kerala

A one week long yoga immersion retreat amidst the beauty that is Munnar, Kerala. The complete retreat includes accommodation for 6 night, all daily meals, 10 yoga classes, meditation sessions, daily detox routine (jal neti and kapalbhati), a guided plantation walk, and riverside soft hiking. It is primarily the hatha-vinyasa style of yoga, with a little bit of yin yoga and restorative yoga combined. So a beginner friendly- intermediate class would consist of surya namaskar flows, core stability, balancing postures, seated postures and inversions in the end. The venue itself is a place called Kaivalam that is a serene family run retreat known for serving satvic food in the lap of nature.

Dates of the retreat: August 13th - 19th, 2017. If you are looking for more information on the retreat, about Diksha herself or to book the retreat, feel free to message Diksha on her Instagram.

Cost: INR 27,000 inclusive of all of the above