View of Playa Escameca from Costa Dulce Beach Bungalows
Deciding on what type of yoga retreat to attend is a big decision. Being clear about what your needs and wants are regarding your yoga holiday will ensure that you book the retreat that is perfect for you right now. I’m hoping these questions will help you choose your next yoga retreat.
Here are some questions to ask yourself before you write the check for your next yoga retreat:
How much time do I have available?
What’s my budget?
Do I want a luxury retreat, a budget retreat, or something in between?
Do I want an active retreat or a restorative yoga retreat?
Do I want lots of scheduled downtime or lots of activities?
Do I prefer to be around all women/men or both sexes equally?
What type of yoga do I currently practice? Vinyasa, hatha, Bikram, Yin, Ashtanga, etc.
Do I want a detox retreat or would I like the occasional wine, beer, cocktail?
Do I need special accommodations? Private room? ADA accessible?
How important are beach and/or pool access?
Am I looking to expand my yoga practice beyond the asana practice?
Do I need a payment plan to afford a retreat?
Where am I comfortable traveling to? Country? Developed or developing nations? Be specific.
Do I need three square meals a day? What other types of needs do I have regarding meals? Vegetarian? Vegan? Gluten-free? Dairy-free? Organic? Juice cleanse?
What’s my honest experience level in my asana practice? Beginner? Intermediate? Advanced?
Am I open to chanting, meditation, sharing circles, spiritual work?
What’s my tolerance for creepy crawlers? Bugs, snakes, birds, etc.
Will I be traveling alone, couple, group of friends?
How do I feel in group settings? Do I prefer smaller groups or larger groups?
Do I have any special sleep requirements?
Do I need WIFI? If yes, how much access do I need?
What add-ons are important to me? Massage? Snorkeling? Hiking? Surfing? Life coaching? Meditation? Etc.
Sincerely wishing you the best of luck as you research your yoga retreat!
Autumn founded Ambuja Yoga in 2014 to share her love of adventure, yoga, and travel with her fellow yogis. Ambuja Yoga has morphed into more than she could have ever dreamed and she is thrilled to have a "job" she loves. She is forever grateful for the opportunity to facilitate personal growth and self love through yoga while taking yogis to off-the-beaten-path destinations worldwide. Follow Autumn on Instagram @autumnadamsyoga.
Yay, you’ve booked your first yoga retreat! But maybe you’re feeling a little apprehensive or anxious. Don’t worry, I think that is a totally normal reaction, especially if you’re going on a retreat with a teacher you don’t know or to an unfamiliar destination. As a retreat organizer this is what you can expect from your first yoga retreat:
You’ll do yoga… and probably lots of it. From my experience you will do a minimum of two hours of asana practice a day and possibly up to four hours for a typical yoga retreat. If you’re attending an asana intensive retreat then plan on doing even more…. with that said 1/2 of your asana practice will most likely be of a gentler or more restorative variety.
You will be challenged… on your mat and off of your mat. It’s inevitable. New location, new people, new food, new routines and possibly a new teacher. Know that you’re being blessed with the opportunity to truly focus on your yoga practice (you may become frustrated and you may come right up to your physical/mental/ emotional threshold… that’s okay). You will have the opportunity to practice with absolute self love and to practice patience with yourself. And don’t worry you will have lots of fun too.
“A gem cannot be polished without friction, nor a man perfected without trials.” Lucius Annaeus Seneca
You will make life-long friends. Each retreat new friendships are made and that is one of my favorite parts about hosting yoga retreats. There is a certain magic about getting a bunch of like-minded people together to do what they love in a beautiful location. Barriers begin to fall and true friendships are created. The friends you meet during your first yoga retreat may just end up being your best retreat-ing buddies
Book that extra massage, colonic, cleanse, surf lesson. You only live once. You won’t regret doing it, but you’ll most likely regret not taking advantage of the opportunity. On my last trip to Bali I booked at least two massages a week and my body never felt better (I was also eating a plant based diet, not drinking alcohol, and doing 3+ hours of yoga each day). My first trip to Bali I had ZERO massages…. and I was kicking myself for it.
Your body, mind and soul will be rejuvenated. When you return home you will feel refreshed. You will notice it and everyone else will notice it too… your partner, your coworkers, your employers, and your fellow yogis. Carry your bliss with you as long as you can.
You’ll immediately start looking to book your second retreat. This I always laugh about, but it’s true. You won’t want to leave and you will immediately want to do it all over again. And why not? I think we absolutely deserve a week (or more) of indulgent self-care at least once year.
Relax, You’re in good hands. You’ll love it. Have fun. Roll with the punches. Enjoy having someone else take care of all the planning so you can focus on celebrating this life you’ve been given.
Love and Light,