Head to Sri Lanka for Island Spirit’s immersive yoga and surfing retreat. // © 2017 Island Spirit
Feature image (above): Practice your yoga flow in Koh Samui with Flowtastic Yoga. // © 2017 Flowtastic Yoga
There’s nothing easier in this world, it seems, than falling into the abyss that is the humdrum of daily life.
Because of this, clients are clamoring for a reprieve that might give their bodies, minds and souls a much-needed pause from hectic day-to-day routines. This mindset has led to an increasing demand for holidays that focus on healing, rejuvenation and self-discovery.
The most common of these are yoga and Pilates retreats, but spiritual pilgrimages and trips that incorporate prayer and meditation are flourishing as well — especially in Asia. Here are a few of our favorite wellness-focused vacations in the destination.
Yoga and Surfing in Sri Lanka
Nurture a weightless existence — at least for seven days — along the verdant southern coast of Sri Lanka, where clients can practice mindfulness and hone their surfing skills.
Island Spirit’s weeklong Yoga Flow And Surfing adventure focuses on practicing yoga both on a mat and on a surfboard, with two yoga sessions daily and several days that incorporate a two-hour surfing lesson.
In between surf and yoga sessions, guests can sample local cuisine, visit a local market, ride a tuk tuk, visit a Buddhist temple, attend a beach barbecue and more. Plus, clients can squeeze in a bit of volunteer work by helping with beach cleanups throughout the trip.
The rate for the weeklong itinerary begins at $1,050 per person and includes homestay accommodations, daily meals, yoga and surf sessions, airport transfers and itinerary-specific excursions.
Prayer, Meditation and Yoga in Northern India
Imagine an adventure that seems right out of indie film “The Darjeeling Limited,” except with fewer mishaps and much more opportunities for prayer and meditation. With Learning Journeys’ Spiritual Northern India itinerary, clients will get just that.
The 12-day retreat’s focal point is finding spiritual serenity and renewal, which includes participation in local prayer ceremonies, meditation and yoga sessions. Additionally, guests will have the opportunity to travel by rail to visit temples, ashrams, pilgrimage sites and small towns in Northern India.
An added bonus is a trip to the Taj Mahal — because, frankly, no visit to India is complete without it — as well as a visit to a community organization that supports local youth. Other highlights include time to indulge in shopping for a saree (a local women’s garment), an appointment at a spa and sampling the local cuisine.
The rate begins at $2,450 per person, based on double occupancy, and includes accommodations, meals, land transportation, guided services and excursions, along with yoga and meditation classes. Multiple departures take place until November 2018.
Chillasana Yoga and Meditation in Koh Samui, Thailand
It’s best to ring in the New Year with good intentions and a great practice. Flowtastic Yoga, spearheaded by Nathania Stambouli, can help clients do just that with its Chillasana Yoga & Fitness Retreat in the popular vacation spot of Koh Samui, Thailand.
For seven nights, guests will be submersed in daily vinyasa (flow) yoga and meditation sessions as well as fitness classes, delicious veggie-heavy meals and workshops on how to maintain a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle. This retreat is all about resetting the mind and body, and the tropical paradisiacal setting does its best to reenergize the soul.
There’s plenty of time during this retreat for other activities, too. Optional excursions include ziplining, paddleboarding, surfing and massages, all of which are available at an additional cost. Hiking, lounging by an infinity pool and afternoon naps are, of course, free.
This tour begins at $1,290 per person, but the rate varies based on accommodation preference. The price includes accommodations, daily meals, yoga and meditation sessions, classes and workshops, private beach access and airport transportation. The tour runs from Dec. 29, 2017, to Jan. 5, 2018.
Pilates in Siem Reap, Cambodia
Daily Pilates in a Cambodian “sala” (pavilion), workshops, healthful vegan and vegetarian meals and accommodations in an idyllic cottage — all just a stone’s throw away from the Angkor Wat temple complex — await clients who book Lesley Logan Pilates’ Pilates Temple Retreat in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
During the six-day trip, clients will stay at a retreat center and learn the art of control, flow and breath. During free time, they’ll be immersed within the locale. They’ll have the opportunity to explore the temples and secret spaces of Angkor Wat with a private tour guide, eat at a popular local spot and sightsee in Siem Reap.
There are many optional activities on hand at an additional cost, including aerial yoga, in-room massages, cooking classes, trips to museums, shopping and visiting the local night market.
The Pilates retreat begins at $1,500 per person. The rate includes cottage accommodations; daily meals; Pilates classes and workshops; a three-day, all-access pass to Angkor Wat; two guided tours; four optional yoga and one optional aerial yoga class; and any group meals included in the itinerary. The tour takes place Feb. 18- 23, 2018.