Let’s be real: there are a LOT of yoga retreat options out there.
I’ve seen three in my Instagram feed today alone and they are all so different. Every yoga retreat is great in its own way, just like each of us. So, how do you find one that’s going to be great for you?
Here are five questions you can ask yourself before booking a retreat – or before even starting to look at retreats.
- Does your favorite yoga studio or yoga teacher offer a retreat? This is a great place to start! Consider whether you’re open to retreating with someone you haven’t met or taken class with, or if you want to have a certain level of familiarity with the retreat leader(s). You will want to consider whether you’re the type of person who likes to know what they’re getting into, and what style/vibe of yoga will be taught, or if you’re the type of person who can go with the flow and is more excited about a specific location.
- What’s your budget? This is an important one, in terms of both your money and your time. There are all different lengths of retreats – from a weekend to 10 days or more. Chances are, a shorter retreat will cost a bit less, and it also will cost you less in terms of time off of work, childcare or pet care, and the like. You’ll also want to consider the location when you look at your budget – a retreat in Bali is going to have a higher total cost (due to plane tickets) than a retreat driving distance from you.
- What does the retreat price include? This goes along with helping you determine your budget. Are all meals included? Are there special day trips that cost more? Will you need to pay for special experiences, such as access to a spa or healer, or are those included? If you’re flying to a location, do you need to pay to get from the airport to the retreat location, or is that included? You might realize that retreat that seemed expensive comes with some pretty sweet perks once you break it down!! (Or on the flip side, that affordable retreat may not seem so affordable once you add up all the additional costs you might incur.)
- What kind of experience do you want to have? Do you want to explore a new place with some yoga on the side, or do you want to focus on a specific learning outcome for your yoga practice? Do you want a strict workout schedule and clean eating or do you want to both work hard and play hard? And then there are just the simple logistics of travel. If you’re going overseas (or even just out of the country) you’ll need to think about things like making sure your passport is all set, time changes, travel time, currency changes, visas, and appropriate electronics if needed. You could also use your retreat as a jumping off point (or end point) for a longer vacation/exploration of the region too! Think about your travel style – if flying/long trips/layovers stress you out, then maybe that’s not the best thing to do on your way to a retreat.
- How many people will be going? Do you want to be part of a big crowd or have more of a family feel? Retreats can be as small as a handful of people and as big as 50 or more. A smaller retreat may feel more intimate, but a larger retreat allows you to meet more people and potentially break off into smaller groups based on your interests. On that note, is it just women, just men, or a mix of both? Couples or a mix or just singles? Those might be factors to inquire about before you book if they matter to you.
All of these questions come down to knowing yourself and thinking about what you want. At the end of the day, what matters most to you? The location? The studio or retreat leader? The types of experiences and extras you’ll get? Getting some continuing education credits for your yoga certification? Relaxing and unwinding? Your budget? There is no right answer, which is why there are so many awesome yoga retreats out there! You can find super specific retreats, such as a women’s empowerment full moon manifestation, or general large retreats run by a well-known studio.