By Lubna Hamdan
Some of the ideal places for those needing a downtime
Meaning ‘forest’, India’s Vana is an 82-room hilltop retreat located in the romantic Doon Valley amid mango and lychee orchards. Beyond its main attraction, yoga, the retreat offers ayurveda, Chinese medicine and Tibetan healing.
Headed by yoga master and ayurvedic expert Dr Dhanraj Shetty, it provides private and group sessions, while yoga capital Rishikesh is only two-hours away if travelling by car.
Visitors can experience jivamukti yoga and meditation classes while enjoying Japan’s remarkable nature at this retreat on Kyushu island and in Kyoto. Traditional customs including hot spring baths, temple meditation, tea ceremonies and even forest hikes are among other features at Reclaim Your Self.
An hour away from Bali by flight, Sumba Island is best known for its impressive surfing spots. In fact, it is named after its celebrated wave, the Nihi Sumba, which was reportedly discovered by retreat owner and surfer Claude Graves in the 1980s.
It boasts simple and urban interiors, eliminating distracting luxury interiors to help visitors focus solely on nature, which is not too difficult after enjoying yoga and meditations sessions before trekking to the nearby remarkable Nihi Oka beach.
An ‘eco village’ at the base of Sri Lanka’s Galgiriyawa mountains offers a remote but active yoga experience, with treatments ranging from ayurveda to ‘digital detoxes’ available. The retreat comprises huts scattered across 22 acres of forest, with birds and monkeys as neighbours. Its new season is around the corner and lasts from November to March.