“India always changes people, and I have been no exception.” - Ruth Prawer Jhabvala
Nowadays, yoga is becoming increasingly popular due to our busy and stressful lives. In these stressful times, there’s always room for meditation, relaxation, breathing exercises, and letting go.
This is why many of us are tempted to travel to India, the home of yoga, to take some time for ourselves. In the heart of Asia, India is the perfect place for anyone wanting to do traditional yoga, Hatha Yoga, or Vinyasa Yoga. This is an open-air yoga centre and the perfect destination for a yoga retreat.
Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister, designated the 21st June as the International Day of Yoga. Since 2015, both yoga teachers and budding yogis have had a day dedicated to it.
So how can you go to India on a yoga retreat? Where exactly should you go?
In this article, we're going to look at a few of the country's best retreats and ashrams.
Little Cove Yoga Retreat, an Indian Yoga Retreat in Goa
Before you go to India, you should know that India is home to hundreds of yoga courses and retreats and many people go to India to learn yoga. However, Goa, a state in the west of India, is considered to be the historical home of yoga and hosts many yoga retreats.
This is where you can find Little Cove Yoga Retreat. Located on the seafront in a beautiful part of the world, this yoga retreat looks exactly how you’d imagine one to be.
- Vegetarian menus adapted to each person’s dietary requirements (including gluten-free).
- Complimentary cooking classes
- Ayurvedic massage.
- Your choice of care.
- Swimming with dolphins and fish.
There are also a variety of daily yoga classes designed to help you find inner peace, harmonise your body and mind, and reconnect with nature.
What else would you expect from one of the country's best yoga retreats?
The environmentally-friendly cottage (with 17 rooms) also offers something for those who'd like their stay to be as green as possible.
Managed by Mahendra Pardeshi, this is a complete retreat that heals externally and internally and there are yoga lessons tailored to the attendees offered by some of the best yoga teachers around.
As a resort, there are a variety of packages available to guests. Of course, of all the packages available, the yoga package is obviously the one that we’re interested in. Lasting between 10 and 15 days, this retreat welcomes groups and professional yogis for a very competitive price. For more information, don’t hesitate to get in touch with them.
Shreyas Yoga Retreat, a Complete Yoga Retreat
Perfectly located, this yoga retreat is just an hour car journey from Bangalore, the capital of Karnataka. This place is very popular among fans of yoga Nidra, including those who are looking for something full board.
Underneath the frangipani flowers, this yoga retreat has everything you could want: secrecy, everything with arm’s reach, a charming location, and an ashram that takes the practice of yoga very seriously.
For those who don’t want to leave the Western world too far behind, this is the perfect retreat as it’s home to many modern comforts (spas, ayurvedic treatments, etc.) and tradition (meditation, vegetarian meals, etc.).
In this retreat, there are two options available in terms of the type of yoga you’ll do:
Ashtanga: a dynamic yoga which focuses on your body and poses.
Hatha: yoga for relaxation and opening your mind.
This means that you can enjoy a complete yoga retreat. It should be noted that you can also head into the region and join in with the local lives of the farmers. Let the local lifestyle into your heart!
The only problem is that the cost for a week isn’t within everyone’s budget.
Shreyas Yoga Retreat offers several packages:
- There's the Panchakarma Package for those looking for purifying and rejuvenating the body which is available for 14, 21, or 28 nights.
- The silent retreat is available for 7 nights and is designed to help you take a step back, calm your mind, and perhaps reprioritise your life.
- The Ayurveda Rejuvenation package is available for 7 or 14 nights and aims to purify the body by removing toxins.
- Yoga retreats are available for 3, 5, 7, or 14 nights and focus on the discipline of yoga itself.
- The Joy of Giving package lasts 7 nights and aims to restore inner balance through the joy that arises when you share.
- Wellness for the Soul is a 3-, 5-, 7-, or 14-night package that includes yoga for physical strength, balance, and flexibility.
- There's also a Weight Management package available for 14 or 21 nights for those wanting a healthier life.
- The Culinary Package is a 7-night package that focuses on the cuisine of India.
- The Detox package is designed to cleanse from the inside.
Kalari Kovilakom, an Ayurvedic Yoga Paradise in India
Hosted by The CGH Earth Group and certified by the NAHB (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals and Healthcare Providers), this retreat takes place in an ashram in the south of India.
There are 19 rooms, different treatments available, and yoga at the forefront of every retreat and there are also various programmes focusing on detoxing, weight loss, diet, etc.
What do all these programmes have in common?
The ayurvedic approach, yoga practices that are designed to heal. Between musicology meditation and traditional yoga, the goal is to bring harmony into your body and mind.
This yoga retreat is the property of the descendants of Prince Dharmavar and is designed to rid your body of toxins. It should be noted that this is a yoga retreat, pure and simple. It’s not recommended that you go here if you also plan on doing some tourism.
Yoga Vana, a Complete Yoga Retreat
On the slopes of the Himalayas, there’s a yoga retreat nestled in the forest: Vana. It’s based on three parts aspects of yoga: meditation, emotional intelligence, and conscious living.
The retreat takes place in modern buildings where you can get ancestral ayurvedic yoga treatments. Acupuncture, cupping, and Tibetan massage; there are plenty of treatments you can get alongside yoga sessions just a few miles from Haridwar, a popular Hindu town.
It’ll do you the world of good!
India is the perfect place for peaceful yoga retreats, even though it does take some time to fully understand the discipline. Be it mindfulness, mantras, kundalini, etc., there are so many terms you need to learn about as well as working out where to go, how long for, and what your budget is.
However, there’s something for everyone. Whether you want to do Ashtanga Yoga, Ayurveda Yoga, Iyengar Yoga, etc., the best yoga and meditation is available in the home of the practice, India. Furthermore, if you want to teach yoga, there are plenty of yoga teacher training courses available in the country, too.
If you'd like to get started with yoga, try the talented tutors on Superprof. There are plenty of tutors offering plenty of different types of yoga. Similarly, there are three main types of yoga tutorial available, too: face-to-face tutorials, online tutorials, and group tutorials. Each type of yoga, tutor, and tutorial has its pros and cons so you need to think carefully before you pick your tutor.
Face-to-face tutorials are between you and your tutor, allowing you to benefit fully from the tutor's expertise every second you're with them. They'll put together sessions and courses that are tailored to you. Of course, this bespoke service tends to come at a cost but since it's all done with you in mind, it makes this type of tutorial the most cost-effective you can get. If you've got the budget for them, these are the ones to go for.
Online tutorials are also between just you and the tutor but your tutor won't be there in the room with you. Thanks to the internet, anyone with a decent webcam, microphone, and internet connection can get tutoring from anyone, anywhere. With fewer expenditures for travelling and the ability to schedule more tutorials each week, online tutors tend to charge less per hour than face-to-face tutorials. You may even get a tutor from India!
Finally, group tutorials are available for those that are happy to share their tutor's time with others. Whether you and a group of friends opt to practise yoga together or you start attending tutorials with a group of strangers, these tutorials tend to cost less per person per hour since the whole group is paying for the tutor's time and expertise.