Traveling for yoga retreats has become very popular. People travel all over the world to retreat, to have a yogic experience of living this life, this moment in this reality.
There are various websites and travel agencies to connect yogis with retreats worldwide. Some people follow their teachers for retreats, some simply search retreats online and make their decision based on destination country and availability in their calendar.
Choose A Yoga Retreats For Everyone
Anyone can breathe, so anyone can practice yoga. Yet, in case you are a beginner, maybe you wish to choose a yoga retreat that is bit more chill and not the retreat for advanced Ashtangis. Choosing a retreat location and teacher that inspires you will carry you a long way and in case you can not find the perfect one, most yoga retreat centers offer private retreats. As in everything in life, there are pros and cons in private retreats: you will benefit from tailor-made program and discussion on your terms, yet you are missing out on the group energy and dynamics which for me is the essence in yoga retreats, connecting with the yogis and learning from them.
If you are hesitant about your level of practice and worried if you can keep up with the rest of the group, don’t be. Whatever yoga retreat you choose, you can always accommodate your practice to be most suitable for you and feel free to skip classes according to your own feelings. Just as in life, also in yoga it is important to listen to yourself and to accept your feelings. That is the blessing in yoga, it is no competition, only you will be the judge of yourself.
Group dynamics build up fast during yoga retreats
Yoga and yoga retreats are a wonderful way to travel. You’ll always meet amazing like-minded people who are easy to connect with in addition to the fact you get to deepen your practice and learn more about yoga. There are themed retreats, such as silent, raw food, food and wine, detox, surfing or themed with yoga styles Iyengar, Flow or Ashtanga. Do some research and see what inspires you.
Check out Blue Osa’s upcoming retreats
So for sure, you can find the perfect retreat for you. Retreats can be expensive and it is an investment of money and time, so you might feel that there are risks involved when you “randomly” book a retreat online without knowing the teacher or the destination.
Yoga Retreat Scam in China
It actually happened to me in China, I went on a retreat which was fake. Luckily I had not paid the deposit because the teacher was unorganized (that should have a signal for me that everything was not right) so there I was, in South China in Yunnan up in the mountains in a moldy barn with Russian potheads who knew pranayama. He was under the impression that I had come to the “sanctuary” as he called the old barn, to teach, whereas my intention, I had arrived for a “luxury retreat called Yoga by the Lake”. After we cleared the intentions of both, I discovered that there was no yoga, and no lake, just a few Russians and Chinese potheads hanging out. The Russian did promise to teach me a few Hatha poses the next morning. He was kind and served me a vegetarian meal which we ate by sitting on the ground. I thanked him for his kindness, asked him to call me a car to pick me up and drive me to the nearest city, where I did my own yoga retreat. So, even in the yogic world, where we are supposed to live by Yama and Niyama, we might get betrayed. So to avoid any disappointments, do some research before booking. After my “The Yoga by Lake” retreat experience, I have become more careful on criteria for choosing retreats.
Here Are 3 Questions To Ask Yourself To Define Your Objectives:
Firstly, define for yourself, what you expect from retreat. It is very essential to be clear about your personal goals and expectations:
1. Why do I wish to go on a yoga retreat?
2. What are my expectations for this retreat?
3. What is my yoga practice?
When you have answered these, ask more questions about the retreat itself.
5 Tips To Help You To Choose A Yoga Retreat:
1. Where do I want to retreat? What is my dream location?
Check the destination surroundings and the weather. Make sure the climate is suitable for you, not too hot and not too cold.
2. Is this my dream facility?
Check the facility where the retreat will be hosted: website, TripAdvisor, Facebook, Instagram.
3. Who do I wish to practice with?
Search the teacher online; check the website, Facebook, Instagram, yoga alliance page.
4. Do our energies meet?
Send your retreat leader an email: introduce yourself and be clear on your goals and expectations for the retreat, see if the reply is what meets your standards, and if you are not sure, do not book. Be clear on the price, the total cost and any additional fees or charges.
5. How do I get there?
Before committing, make sure you can get there. Flights, connections, buses, additional hotel nights, and make sure these will fit into your budget.
Have you found your dream retreat destination?
If you have any special dietary requests and health issues, make sure you communicate these with the place that is hosting the retreat and with the group leader just make sure you are able to enjoy the retreat fully. Read more about what to expect from a yoga retreat.
After making the decision and commitment check out our guide on how to prepare for a retreat.
When you choose a yoga retreat with an established retreat location, with a good website and social media presence you can be quite convinced it will be all good. So trust the universe and trust that it will all be good, you have made a great decision to go for a yoga retreat.
Are there any helpful and valuable tips you would like to share to help fellow yogis to choose their dream yoga retreat? Let us know in the comments below!
About The Author
Inka means literally “The Child of Sun”. This radiant world traveler from Finland is in her thirties has explored in 55 countries and lived in USA, Latvia, and China. For the past decade, Inka has been working in the Global Mining Industry as Marketing Manager, promoting a sustainable technology solution for the world’s metal producers and process industries. While working in China, she truly discovered Yoga and completed her Yoga Teachers Training. Inka is on her amazing adventure through Americas for 3 months which of one-month volunteering in Blue Osa. Her Mantra is: “The Universe is my Home – my yoga mat my temple. We have one life – so live it well. Choose to be happy”. Follow her adventures and take a peek into her photographic memory in Instagram ituononen, #VirtaavaValonVoima.