One thing that is definitely high on my list of things to do in life is go on a yoga retreat in some beautiful and potentially new to me destination. For me, this adventure would combine my love of travel, my desire to see new places and experience new events, foods and cultures, and of course, deepen my yoga practice and do something good for me. So it was fantastic news for me over the last year when The Mat Yoga Studio announced it was beginning to hold retreats abroad. This summer, the studio’s retreats continue with a return to Costa Rica’s Tierra de Suenos Retreat & Wellness Center. This was where The Mat hosted their first two retreats last year, and I recently had the opportunity to hear more about the retreat from Samantha Martin, Melanie Butz and Alex Gandy, three of my teachers who will again host this summer’s retreat.
First and foremost, the teachers noted, “every day can be your day.” For a community and practice that values self-care, this was a good note to start with. As part of the retreat, there will be opportunities to practice yoga – twice each day – and meditate, and time for excursions. However, if there is something that you want to do, you can certainly work with the lodge to arrange for your own excursions. For me I think this is great to hear, because while part of going on such a retreat is to have these experiences, sometimes one may need some more alone time or maybe there is something you know that you really want to experience.
Some of the excursions include kayaking, learning from the wisdom of the BriBri Tribe and how they use so much from the land around them, which will also include the experience of learning how to make chocolate from start to finish. There are also opportunities for adventure with zip lining and scuba diving, and a nearby animal rescue sanctuary. Along with the yoga and meditation opportunities, the center also offers massages.
As part of a yoga retreat, what does the yoga look like? There is a session in the morning, followed by meditation on the beach (what a gorgeous soundtrack, I can only imagine!), and then a vegetarian breakfast. Then there is a yoga class in evening, this one about an hour and a half long, that is expected to be more of a workshop style of class and can sometimes involve journaling. I expect there will be quite a bit of time for reflection.
One piece of advice was for the yoga classes, that breezy clothes to move in would be good to bring along. But as the time draws near, it’ll be good to keep an eye on the weather to help with packing. When I travel, especially internationally, it’s a good idea to continue research on the country where I’m going. I will sometimes start with a reputable brand’s guidebook, and I’ll also take a look at the Department of State’s travel information.
And of course, for more information on the retreat, contact The Mat Yoga Studio or visit: https://www.thematyogastudio.com/retreats/costa-rica-2020
This is the part of a series of posts for The Mat yoga studio, sharing my thoughts and observations as a student only. The views and opinions are my own.