Photo From: Theblissstudio.com

Photo From: Theblissstudio.com

The health benefits of yoga are unending—increased flexibility, muscle strength and tone, improved respiration, energy, and the maintenance of a balanced metabolism—just to name a few. Not to mention the array of mental health benefits, especially stress reduction. Believe it or not, yoga and travel go hand-in-hand. Traveling is the best way to get out of your comfort zone in order to enter into a retreat of yoga bliss and self-awareness. Don’t believe us? Take your practice abroad and test it out for yourself. Here is a list of 7 inspiring yoga retreats across the globe.

7. Alicante Yoga Breaks, Spain:

www.yogabreaks.org.uk

Breathe in some deep breaths of fresh air and relax at this yoga retreat in the Costa Blanca region of Spain, which happens to have been named one of the healthiest climates on Earth, according to the World Health Organization. This is the perfect retreat for new yogis who just want to dip their toes into the yoga waters at first. Guests will stay in gorgeous seaside hotel, and practice is geared toward people at beginning and intermediate levels of yoga. This retreat allows for plenty of free time to do other site seeing during your trip, as well. It isn’t a strict, back-to-back yoga practice—definitely fit for a first-timer.

6. KwaZulu-Natal and Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve:

www.andbeyond.com

Become one with wildlife, and explore your inner self beside Africa’s famed “big five” game. This retreat is said to cover seven different eco-systems in South Africa, from sandy beaches, to acacia bush-land, and even the wetlands. Guests will stay in ‘the Homestead,’ a private villa in the safari, for four days, and will be assigned a ranger and animal tracker to take them on a tour to see lions, elephants, Cape buffalo, leopards, and even the rare black rhinos. What an incredible experience to go on a spiritual adventure, and see these incredible creatures in their natural habitat.

 5. Om Retreats, Bali:

http://www.ommretreats.com/

Bali truly is yoga paradise. Well it’s paradise with or without yoga, but Bali has remained a mecca for yogis from all over the globe since ancient years. One of 17,000 islands in Indonesia, Bali is the only one where Hinduism is the main religion. This trip is not for the faint at heart because yoga is what you’re going to get, and lots of it. Guests will test their mental and physical abilities surrounded by rice paddies, temples, and many spiritual ceremonies. The site of the retreat is just a short walk away from the monkey-forest sanctuary, so you really will be one with nature.

 4. Clermont La Grausse, France

http://www.yogafrance.com/domaine-de-la-grausse.asp

Experience that chateau life—even if only temporary—on this luxurious yoga retreat in France. Guests will stay in the Domaine de la Grausse, an abandoned Chateau Fort from the 12th century, “built on a rocky bluff to defend the narrow pass into [the] valley.” The modernized fort stands on a 17-acre-estate. This is a great retreat for any travelers who love the outdoors and want to spend their afternoons walking by the creek, or swimming in the lake.

 3. Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat, Bahamas:

http://www.sivanandabahamas.org/

A true ashram experience on “Paradise Island.” This is for true yogis at heart—the kinds that want to rise before the sun, meditate through dawn, and spend hours chanting and practicing yoga before breakfast at 10am. Guests will then repeat, and follow a similar routine in the afternoon. This retreat truly is yoga all day, every day, and we don’t think there is anything wrong with that. Besides, spending a week in paradise really makes it worth it. Side note, guests will be expected to complete chores, or “ashram duties”—all part of the yogi experience.

2. Shreyas Yoga Retreat, India:

http://www.shreyasretreat.com/

Simple, luxurious, and secluded—these are the three words that come to mind when we think of this yoga retreat in India. Guests will spend half of their time practicing personalized Hatha and Ashtanga yoga, and the other half rejuvenating at the spa. This is the perfect opportunity for anyone who has been looking to try out some Ayurvedic therapies. Of course, the spa also offers basic massages and relaxing facials. Keep in mind when planning: while on this retreat guests will be expected to adhere to a strict vegetarian diet, and there is absolutely no smoking or drinking. You will live the lifestyle of a true yogi in India.

1. Maya Tulum Retreat, Mexico:

http://www.rrresorts.com/

Located 90 short minutes outside of Cancun, this is an excellent side trip for any yogis who are already in Mexico. This particular retreat is held at a seaside wellness venue, complete with: a spa, a beach, and even stand up paddle boarding. It is a total mind, body, and spirit retreat. The spa offers everything from massages and facials, to a traditional sweat lodge run by a real shaman, and Mayan clay wraps. This celebrity destination is perfect for rejuvenation and revitalization.