Everyone loves a retreat, to get away from the norm and relax. What better place to look, for Yoga enthusiasts, than India. It is full of shalas and ashrams, some of the best in fact! Don’t forget, you can always use an itinerary planner for your trip.
Purple Valley (Assagao, Goa)
This yoga retreat is spread over two, beautiful Portuguese styled houses with stunning gardens. While there, food will be prepared by an Ayurvedic chef and two international chefs. They will provide guests with buffet meals including soy burgers and crepes.
Not only this, but you will have access to some of best Ashtanga teachers in the world; Alexander Medin, John Scott and Petri Raisanen. If you are a complete beginner to yoga, not to worry, beginners are encouraged to visit.
Himalayan Iyengar Yoga Centre (Dharamkot, Himachal Pradesh and Arambol, Goa)
Well known for his dedication to the tradition of yoga, Sharat Arora started his school of yoga. The centre moves between two centres in summer and winter. In summer, the centre will be in Dharamkot. Dharamkot is a gorgeous village just above the Tibetan refugee settlement. In the winter, the centre will be in Arambol. Arambol is a lovely beach town in the north of Goa.
The one main thing with Sharat’s classes is that regardless of the person’s yoga ability, everyone must take a 5-day course before they can move onto special courses and teacher training.
Mysore Krishnamachar Yoga Shala (Mysore, Karnataka)
One of the original students of Krishnamacharya (the super-guru), BNS Iyengar, has been teaching from his Mysore shala for the past 38 years.
Many classes are taught at the Mysore shala including neti and dhauti, pranayama, kriya, Ashtanga yoga asanas. All of these are breathing and cleansing techniques which are all part of the teacher training course. Meditation and philosophy are also included in the course.
BNS may be known for his brutal style, however, it shows he has a passion in what he teaches and wants it taught at the highest possible level.
Parmarth Niketan (Rishikesh)
Set in the mountains of Rishikesh, the Parmarth Niketan is an amazing place to study the art of yoga. The site features an 8-acre campus with 1000 rooms for students.
It runs multiple programs and beginners are invited. Not only that, but visitors are also able to join in the daily classes.
For those wanting to see something different, there is also a week-long yoga festival that is held at the ashram.
Yoga Institute (Mumbai)
Founded in 1918 by Shri Yogendraji, the Yoga institute is the oldest centre of yoga in the world. It may not be as well known for yoga in India, however the courses and workshops on offer are definitely worth trying.
The biggest point of interest is the therapeutic health camps which can help people with heart and respiratory problems. Not only this but it can help with stress related issues, diabetes and a whole lot more.
Pregnant or have children, not to worry, there are also special programs for those who have children or are pregnant.
Bihar School of Yoga (Munger)
Do you see yoga as a lifestyle over a practice? If so, the Bihar School is for you. It may not sound appealing, but those who have gone, have come back with life-changing qualities.
The mornings start at 4am and lights out is at 8pm. You will wake up and begin seva, otherwise known as service. This can include gardening and cleaning etc. This is all fuelled by the simple diet and cold showers. To finish off the day, you wind down with satsangs or kirtans.
These aren’t the only yoga styles taught though. Raja, Kriya, yoga therapy, yoga nidra and Hatha are also taught.