The latest Life Awareness Project Yoga Retreat in our Yoga Villa in Vila do Bispo in Portugal was again a truly amazing and unique experience. No retreat is ever like the one before since every new group has its own special vibe and dynamic. We thought we'd share a little recap and some fotos of our last retreat with you.
Last Saturday we welcomed a perfect sized group of nine wonderful yogis from five different countries in Europe – Norway, Denmark, Netherlands, Germany and Romania. We love this size of group because it is just big enough that smaller groups with the same interests can break off and do activities together during the free time, and small enough to connect with every single person throughout the week.
The Yoga Villa is set in the beautiful national park Costa Vicentina, only 3 km from the stunning unspoiled coastline of the south-west Algarve and right next to the picturesque town Vila do Bispo. It features a lush garden with a swimming pool and a 50 m² wooden yoga deck. The cozy interior offers plenty of space to practice yoga by the fireplace, in case it is rainy or a bit too cold outside.
We started each day with a 90 minutes yoga class for all levels, including meditation and pranayama. Some of the morning classes were taught by our new guest teacher Erika, who joined the LAP team a few weeks ago. After the morning class we had our breakfast together in the garden of the Yoga Villa, where we also came together for lunch and dinner. Most of the healthy and delicious vegetarian meals were prepared with love by our good friend Mel, who is an amazing cook! We want our retreat guests to fuel their bodies with food that is wholesome and vibrant with energy, so we always get fresh fruits, vegetables, herbs and other ingredients from the local farmers’ market, if possible organic.
Between the meals everyone could choose whether they simply wanted to relax at the Villa and read their book by the pool or in the hammock, walk to the beach (or get a shuttle), go hiking in the beautiful Costa Vicentina National Park, do an organized Stand Up Paddle Board tour, take surf lessons or treat themselves with a wonderful massage.
At 6 pm we would meet again on the yoga deck for another group practice – either yin yoga, pranayama, Qigong or meditation. Since the day might have been quite active for some of our retreat guests, we kept the evening practice slow and restorative. Highlights were the sunset meditations at the beach as well as the chocolate meditation.
After evening class we enjoyed a beautiful home cooked dinner together and had some really good conversations. One great thing about yoga retreats is that while every guest is very individual, they usually have many interests and core values in common. So by the end of the retreat you have made a bunch new friends and some of those friendships can last a lifetime. It’s these connections with people that we really love about holding retreats!
Overall, it was such a beautiful retreat and we are so grateful to each and everyone who was part of it! We believe our guests had a blissful and relaxing experience, deepening their connection with nature as well as with the core of their true self. Practicing mediation, pranayama and mindfulness every day, they learned various techniques that they can incorporate into their own practice as well as into their everyday life to maintain a healthy body and mind.
We are already looking forward to our next Life Awareness Yoga Retreat in Portugal on August 26 to September 1. We only got a few spots left, so make your reservation today! We are looking forward to meet you!