GOA

Women's Health (UK) - - WELL TRAVELLED -

WHAT? Chaya Yoga re­treat WHERE? Goa, In­dia WHY? To learn, or de­velop, your pos­ture skills with­out dis­trac­tion

HOW MUCH? Chaya Yoga Re­treats run glob­ally in lo­ca­tions in­clud­ing Ibiza, France and Bali in ad­di­tion to Goa. Prices start at £1,350 for 10 days; chayayo­g­a­re­treats.com

WHO? Amy Hop­kin­son, Dig­i­tal Ed­i­tor

Trav­el­ling solo in In­dia. Re­ally?

I’d be ly­ing if I said I wasn’t a tad ap­pre­hen­sive on the out­bound flight, but once you’re sip­ping a cashew milk chai and chat­ting with other solo well­ness seek­ers, you’ll ques­tion why you were ever ner­vous at all.

I can’t even touch my toes – would I be wast­ing my time?

Ab­so­lutely not – one of the best things about Chaya re­treats is their aim to teach that real-life yoga bears lit­tle re­sem­blance to showy poses on In­sta­gram. Yoga should be a prac­tice unique to you, so you’ll be en­cour­aged to spend 10 days learn­ing how your body moves and what you

need to work on to im­prove. Just how much yoga are we talk­ing about?

Chaya of­fers 10-day well­ness pro­grammes de­signed to help you reconnect with your body, breath­ing and di­ges­tion. One yoga teacher leads a group of around 12 guests and ev­ery­thing is pro­vided, so rock up sans mat. You’ll prac­tise yoga AM and PM, with two ses­sions each day last­ing be­tween 90 min­utes and two hours. It’s vinyasa flow, so pack enough clothes for sweaty changes through­out the 10 days. There’s equal fo­cus on eat­ing mind­fully, and in the hours where you’re not ei­ther om­ming or ah­hing over cur­ried cau­li­flower or cacao ice cream, sign up to the work­shops on of­fer. They dif­fer each day, de­pend­ing on which well­ness gu­rus have pitched up nearby – I par­tic­u­larly loved med­i­ta­tion, an in­tro­duc­tion to crys­tals and breath­work.

Is there some­where nice to sleep at this re­treat?

If eco-lodg­ing is your vibe, then you’re win­ning. Each room is big and airy, with lo­cal in­cense and crys­tals to sat­isfy all your well­ness crav­ings. Out­side, you’ll find your shower and a bar of lo­cally made nat­u­ral soap. What is lack­ing is a de­cent in­ter­net con­nec­tion – both wifi and 4G sig­nal are patchy, which is a sign from the uni­verse, no? So take the op­por­tu­nity, as I did, to to­tally dis­con­nect from tech and reconnect with your­self, par­tic­u­larly dur­ing the few hours of free time you’ll have in the af­ter­noon. Noth­ing beats a good book and a co­conut on Ashvem Beach.

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