A rice paddy sanctuary, a cliff side studio, and a turtle shaped bamboo pavilion. Yoga in Bali is next level! Prepare to zen out with our list of top Bali yoga retreats.
Ever had that feeling that you just need to escape for a while and focus on yourself? Nearby Bali is a major centre for affordable yoga and health retreats. So if the frazzle is getting to you, pull up an utkatasana and listen closer: From Ubud to Uluwatu and beyond, we round up 7 inspirational Bali yoga retreats with your name on it.
1. THE YOGA BARN,UBUD
eaming out the good vibes from the centre of Ubud’s yoga scene is The Yoga Barn. This purpose built new age yogi-haven runs around 8 classes a day, from Hatha, Vinyasa Flow, Power, and Pranayama, to Restorative, Iyengar, Yin and Anusara. This is also the spot for meditation, Sound Medicine, Kirtan and Ecstatic Dance. Practice take place in 1 of 2 mud-walled, thatched-roofed studios overlooking Ubud’s famed terraced rice paddies. Guests can drop in to most classes, or settle down for a more formalised retreat, with accomodation offered on site at The Yoga Barn Retreat Center. As a pretty cool bonus, Yoga Barn’s Garden Kafe serves ‘living’ vegan foods, raw snacks and juices, and is a hub for like-minded downward dog devotees. Yoga classes are about $15 a pop, while a retreat stay goes for about $80 per night for a single room and $30 for a dormitory bunk.
2. ASHRAM GHANDI, CANDIDASA
Image Ashram Ghandi Candidasa
Leave your Lulumon lycra at the door. This lagoon-side Hindu community follows the pacifist teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and is a bonafide Ashram where guests are expected to participate in community life. With quality yet affordable ‘live-in’ yoga retreats on offer here, travellers also get to experience the Gandhian Ashram’s ‘life of service’, as well as traditional Balinese village life and rituals. Stay in the Ashram’s simple ocean cottages on a 7 day retreat from around $900 or 5 day workshops from $500. Retreats and workshops are run year round.
3. MORNING LIGHT, ULUWATU
Image Uluwatu Surf Villas
Reviews of Morning Light are unanimously gushing. It very likely has something to do with this new studio’s incredible location, perched on the dramatic Uluwatu cliffs with green terraces and sandy white beaches below. All this, plus a lush forest setting, and the very popular, very booked out Uluwatu Surf Villas on site, makes Morning Light a bit of a Bali yoga travel goal. Drop by the open-air studio for classes twice daily at 7.30 and 10:30am for around $12 a sesh. A stay at Uluwatu Surf Villa is considerably more pricey, with the 1 bedroom loft starting at around $150 a night. Uluwatu Surf Villas & Morning Light Yoga host an annual surf and yoga retreat Yoga with Aloha by Gerry Lopez every June as well as cater to other retreats throughout the year. Book well in advance.
4. COMO SHAMBALA ESTATE, UBUD
Image Como Shambala
Sitting pretty in Conde Nast Traveler’s list of top 10 yoga retreats in the world, super luxe COMO Shambhala Estate is not your average Bali retreat, and certainly not within the average Bali holiday budget. But, it is kitted out with the works; yoga and pilates on tap, Ayurvedic doctor, resident dietician, spa, steam room, pool, hiking trails,and their restaurant Kudus House, which serves elite nutrients only. Geared towards 3 to 21 ‘wellness programmes‘, the accommodation on site consists of suites for solo soul searches, and villas for families who meditate together. At around $800 per night, spiritual enlightenment is pretty much guaranteed, right? Celebrities seem to think so.
5. POWER OF NOW OASIS, SANUR
Image Oli Christen Power of Now Oasis
Let’s face is. Chaturanga ain’t no walk in the park. So to the beach of Sanur we go to perfect this asana in the breathtaking surrounds of the Power of Now Oasis. Perched beside the ocean, this purpose built, turtle-shaped bamboo studio, is the real deal for travelling yogis who are serious about improving their practice. The authenticity vibes are strong here, and as they say on their website ‘We are not a restaurant, spa or hotel. We are simply dedicated to Yoga, Meditation and Holistic services.’ Drop in for 3-4 daily classes in a variety of modalities, or stay for a range of teacher training and retreats throughout the year, like the 7 day Surf In 2 Yoga Retreat at around $1800 per person.
6.FLOATING LEAF ECO-RESORT, KERAMAS
Image Floating Leaf Eco Resort
Sometimes the only place to really tune in and become one with the mat is in the centre of a rice paddy in Bali. That’s just how it is. And when this is your calling, all you need to do is make a beeline for Floating Leaf Eco Resort in Keramas. It’s paddy-beach setting is out of control. Its yoga credentials are equally mint: a 2000 square foot ‘Yoga Santuary’ dishes up all your favourite asanas with complimentary views of Holy Mt. Agung and Indian Ocean on the side. Accomodation wise, the resort is a nice blend of eco and luxe, and not overly pricey for a resort, at around $120 a night depending on your room type. Book a retreat, or craft your own!
7. SUP YOGA RETREATS, SANUR
Yes your mat is your sanctuary and all that, but sometimes a girl just has to play the field. By field we mean ocean, and by play we mean SUP Yoga. Aqua babies will be in seventh heaven getting their vinyasa flow on atop a stand up paddle board in the calm waters of Sanur Beach. Aussie outfit Janeewest offer SUP yoga classes twice weekly, in collaboration with the Rip Curl Surf School. For a more intensive experience, book a 6 day SUP Yoga retreat, with villa accomodation thrown in at around $1,500 per person.
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