The Ultimate Guide to Yoga Travel: 100 Essential Tips, Tools, & Links

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July 5th, 2010

While you might think a vacation means seeing tourist sites and sipping drinks on the beach, adding yoga into the mix can make it a life-changing and spiritual experience you’ll never forget. There are many ways to engage in travel yoga from structured retreats to scenic trips with a little yoga thrown in and just as many resources online to help make sure you plan a trip that suits your needs and desires. Here are a few great tips and resources to help you get well on your way to embracing a healthy, yoga-filled vacation in a destination that engages your body and spirit.

Trip Planning Tips

Keep these tips in mind when planning out your yoga travel.

  1. Know what to expect. The most enjoyable yoga getaways will be those that are well-planned and explicit about what will happen when you arrive. Always do your research before committing to anything.
  2. Learn about local culture. You’ll get a lot more out of your trip if you study up on the culture of the area to which you are voyaging.
  3. Find out what you’ll need. Different trips will require different gear. Call or email your travel agent to see what you’ll need to bring along so you can come prepared.
  4. Work with reliable companies. Like anything, there are less than reputable companies selling yoga trips. Learn a little something about the company you’re working with before handing over your cash.
  5. Get checked out by a doctor. Depending on where you are traveling in the world, you may need to get vaccinations and medications to ensure you stay healthy while away.
  6. Decide what kind of vacation you want. Do you want to relax on the beach or have a spiritual experience at the top of a mountain? Spend some time really thinking about the experience you want to have before committing.
  7. Read reviews and guidebooks. These can be a great source of basic information on the best destinations, resorts and activities.
  8. Plan for the unexpected. Mix-ups and snafus can and will happen to even the best laid travel plans. Make sure you have backup plans in place so your trip can stay relaxed and fun.
  9. Check up on travel documents. While a passport is all you need to travel to many countries, in some cases you may need a visa or other travel documentation. Always know this before going.
  10. Relax. You’re not going on a yoga trip to stress yourself out so planning shouldn’t be stressful either. Relax and let things figure themselves out at you go. You’ll likely have a wonderful time even if things don’t turn out exactly as you had planned.

Enjoying Your Trip

These tips can help you get more out of your trip.

  1. Travel light. Bringing a bunch of things with you will only weigh you down. Bring only what you need and will actually use.
  2. Roll with the punches. Did your beach getaway happen to coincide with daily downpours? Find ways to have fun on your trip even when it’s not what you expected.
  3. Slow down and enjoy it. You are taking a yoga trip to relax so make sure you actually do that. Don’t get so wrapped up in doing activities, even yoga, that you forget to enjoy the scenery.
  4. Meet others. Travel is a great way to make friends from around the world. Take time to talk to your fellow vacationers and share your love of yoga and everything else.
  5. Learn something. Taking a yoga vacation can be a fun experience but it should also be an educational one. Try to learn something about yourself or the world around you while away.
  6. Find adventure. What’s the point of traveling without a little adventure? Try something new and exciting while you’re on your trip.
  7. Engage your spirit. Don’t just engage your body in yoga, make sure your mind is relaxing and getting the most out of your trip as well.
  8. Turn off the gadgets. While you might need to check in, keep gadget use to a minimum so you can engage with the real world instead.
  9. Practice yoga throughout your trip. Yoga practice shouldn’t just be confined to set times on your tour. Make time for private practice as well.
  10. Make the most of experiences. In some cases, a yoga trip will be a once in a lifetime experience. Make the most of it. Take chances, meet new people and be open to new experiences.
  11. Have fun. While you’ll want to focus on yoga on your trip, make sure you have a great time as well.

Destinations

Not sure where you want to go? These articles and tools can give you an idea of some of the best yoga destinations out there.

  1. 12 European Yoga Destinations: From Austria to the Canary Islands, you’ll find great yoga travel ideas for Europe in this article.
  2. 6 Destination Ashrams: If you’d like to visit an ashram for your trip, get some suggestions for destinations here.
  3. Top Yoga Destinations for the Traveling Yogi: This article provides the scoop on some of the best yoga destinations out there.
  4. ABC of Yoga Holiday and Travel Services: Use this site to search for the type of trips and destinations you’d like.
  5. Top 5 Affordable Wellness Retreats In the World: Tend to your body and soul with the trips talked about in this post.
  6. Four Great Yoga Retreats: If you want to stay in the United States, consider one of the retreats written about here.
  7. Top 10 Yoga Retreats Worldwide: Get the best of the best with these recommendations.
  8. Yoga Vacations in the Bahamas: These vacations will give you fun in the sun and yogic practice.
  9. Great Travel Getaways for Yoga and Mediation: Find some inner peace with these trip ideas.
  10. 10 Relaxing Yoga Destinations: You’ll be able to relax and practice yoga anywhere in the world, from France to Polynesia, with help from this article.
  11. Top 10 Yoga Destinations: Find out what this article deems to be the best of the best when it comes to yoga travel.
  12. Lotus Position in a Backpacker’s Town: Check out this New York Times article on visiting Nepal to practice yoga.
  13. Zen Dens: Yoga Retreats: Looking for the perfect yoga retreat? This post offers some suggestions.
  14. Study Yoga in Mysore India: Seek out yoga practice in the land of its origins with retreats in India.
  15. Unwind On a Luxury Yoga Retreat in Italy: Italy might not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of yoga retreats, but this article will show that they have plenty to offer.

Blogs

Read up on yoga travel on these blogs.

  1. Yoga Journal Travel: You’ll find a great collection of posts and articles on travel and yoga here.
  2. Yoga Travel: This blog is a great source for information about vacations and retreats.
  3. Matador Network Yoga Travel: Read the best articles from across the web on travel yoga through this site.
  4. Anandway.com: Plan out your own roadmap to inner peace with a little help and inspiration from this blog.
  5. MahaMondo: Find news on yogic practice around the world through this site.
  6. Mysore Ashtanga: On this blog, you’ll find posts on a wide range of yoga topics, including travel.

Articles

Check out these articles for a quick education on the major aspects of travel yoga.

  1. Planning Your Dream Yoga Vacation: Get tips on how to plan your perfect yoga getaway here.
  2. Yoga Travel: Around The World In Eighty Poses: This post will teach you that you can practice yoga anywhere and will inspire you with the travels of yogini Christine McNab.
  3. The Grounded Traveler: Learn how to get the most out of your yoga routine on the road from this post.
  4. 16 Tips for Yoga Travel Bliss: This post will show you that yoga and travel make great companions.
  5. 100 Studios in 100 Days: Follow along with these bloggers as they travel to 100 different yoga studios.
  6. Yoga Travel: Ashrams: Read through this post to learn the benefits of traveling to an ashram for yoga training and practice.
  7. Top 25 Yoga Studios Around the World: Plan your trip around some of these great yoga studios.
  8. Have Asana, Will Travel: Yoga on the Go: Get a better idea of how to practice yoga on the road from this post.
  9. Yoga and the Increase In Yoga Travel: Here, you can learn more about yoga travel in general.
  10. Life Changing Travel Tips: This post will teach you how to get the best experience out of your trip.
  11. What Is a Travel Yoga Mat?: Why buy a travel mat? Learn the differences between it and a regular mat here.
  12. Traveling to Yoga Destinations: This Squidoo lens will explain yoga travel and offer some ideas of places to go.

Equipment

Be prepared to do yoga anywhere with these equipment essentials.

  1. Gaiam Reversible Travel Yoga Mat: Try out this Gaiam mat for a reliable travel mat to practice with.
  2. Barefoot Yoga Travel Mat: Here’s another great mat you can take with you anywhere.
  3. REI Jade Yoga Travel Mat: If you like green, get a great quality mat from this site.
  4. Yoga Paws: If you want grip without a mat, consider these gloves and socks.
  5. Stonewear Designs: Get some comfy yoga gear to wear on this site.
  6. Prana: Through this site you can find all the yoga gear you could need.
  7. Agoy Yoga: Pack up your yoga equipment in style with the amazing bags featured on this site.
  8. ToeSocks: Here you’ll find some footwear that will give you a little extra grip.
  9. Yoga to Go Travel Deck: Keep a yoga routine with you at all times with these travel-sized workouts.
  10. Crescent Moon: This site is a great resource for yoga bags and equipment.

Companies and Trips

Those looking to book a yoga trip will find numerous resources through these links.

  1. Yoga World Tours: Visit this site to book tours that will let you enjoy yoga and meditation.
  2. Lux World Travel: This company offers yoga tours in places as diverse as Bali, South Africa and Arizona.
  3. Awareness Adventures: Connect spirituality and adventure in the trips offered by this site.
  4. Patagonia Yoga Adventure Week: Head to the beautiful South American mountains of Patagonia to practice yoga with this trip.
  5. Amazing Yoga Travel: This site specializes in helping you find a great yoga retreat.
  6. Inward Bound: Explore the outer world and your inner self at the same time with these great tours and retreats.
  7. Vajra Sol Yoga Adventures: With this tour, you’ll head to Costa Rica for your yoga vacation.
  8. Leela Travel: Try out this company’s yoga retreats in India, Thailand, Belize and more.
  9. Samasati: Practice yoga in the peace and beauty of nature with the packages offered by this retreat.
  10. Yatra Yoga International: Find retreats, eco-tours and more from this company.
  11. Yoga Travel: Find the best yoga holidays out there in places like Morocco and Egypt through this UK-based business.
  12. Raw Shakti Yoga Retreats: There are a wide range of yoga retreats offered through this site.
  13. Journeys of the Spirit: Engage both your body and mind with the help of the trips offered by this company.
  14. Destination Yoga: Here, you can find yoga trips to Morocco, Italy and India.

Books

Add one of these books to your library to learn more about brining yoga into your travel.

  1. Travel Yoga: Stretches for Planes, Trains, Automobiles, and More! by Darrin Zeer: Learn how to do yoga while on the way to your destination from this book.
  2. Great Yoga Retreats by Kristin Rubesamen and Dr. Angelika Taschen: This book will show you some of the most beautiful yoga destinations in the world.
  3. Yoga to Go: A Take-It-With-You Guide for Travellers by Paula Carino: Read this book to learn how to do yoga on the road.
  4. Yoga Escapes: A Yoga Journal Guide to the Best Places to Relax, Reflect, and Renew by Jeanne Ricci: Not sure where to take your yoga trip? This book abounds with great places to practice yoga and reflect on life.
  5. Yoga Vacations: A Guide to International Yoga Retreats by Annalisa Cunningham: Get some help planning your yoga trip from this book.
  6. The Light Within: A Travel Log of India by Joseph L. Anderson: Follow along with this author as he practices yoga and travels through India.
  7. Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert: This well-known book isn’t exclusively about yoga and meditation but it could inspire your own spiritual journey.
  8. Best Yoga Centres and Retreats by Stafford Whiteacre: This guide will point you in the right direction when it comes to finding a reputable and comfortable yoga retreat.
  9. Head In the Clouds by Marc Kaplan: Try out this book to learn how to do yoga on a plane.
  10. From Here to Nirvana by Anne Cushman: Senior editor at Yoga Journal magazine Anne Cushman has put together this book that is a great guide to taking a yoga trip to India.

Videos

These videos will show you the large variety of yoga travel options that are out there.

  1. Costa Rica Yoga Retreat: See what practicing yoga on the beach and in the rainforests of Costa Rica is like from this video.
  2. Yoga Road Trip: Get inspired to take your own yoga road trip from this video.
  3. Yoga Vietnam Tour: Hear one yogini tell her tale of yoga inspiration and practice in Vietnam from this video.
  4. Yoga Holidays in Egypt: Learn how much fun a holiday in Egypt with a little yoga thrown in can be.
  5. Mountaintop Yoga in Banff: This video shows you a yoga trip possibility with amazing yoga practiced on a pristine mountaintop.
  6. Yoga in Bali: If you want to head to Bali, check out this video of a yoga retreat.
  7. Scenes from Joyful Heart Yoga Class on Retreat in Puglia, Italy 2009: Get an idea of what these kind of retreats are all about here.
  8. Luna Lodge: Looking for a great yoga getaway? This destination could be just the place.
  9. Yoga Retreat Assisi: Hear more about what goes on at the bi-annual yoga retreats in Assisi from this video.
  10. Semperviva Yoga Retreat – Galiano Island, BC: This video will show you the basics of a yoga trip with Semperviva in BC.
  11. Yoga Retreat in Maya Tulum, Mexico: Here, you’ll get to see one woman’s yoga experience in Tulum.
  12. Ayurveda Health Retreat and Yoga in India: This video provides a tour of the facilities and activities found at this retreat.

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