Yoga is considered to offer, spiritual nourishment as well as a fit body and healthy mind. One should master the art of practicing Yoga in their daily routine to create equilibrium in body, mind and soul and to live a physically and mentally balanced life. The discipline of Yoga originated in ancient India and India is home to many traditional yogic and meditation techniques. Today one may witness that yoga has become one of the main attractions for tourists visiting India from world over. The ministry of tourism is now drawing out a roadmap for Yoga Tourism with emphasis on Yoga retreats, as yoga is the most sought after cultural or wellness practice gaining popularity on a global stage. Off all the happening places in the country, places like Mysore, Goa and Kerala attract the highest number of tourists who come for yoga courses and yoga retreats. Meditation being the major constituent in yoga, is often guided by a Guru or is practiced in a simple dwelling that is preferably amidst nature to experience calmness and peace. Thus visitors will find an array of courses and retreats situated in the lap of nature such as forests or beaches, guided by spiritual Gurus and yoga teachers, varying from five-star to basic accommodations. Such retreats and courses provide an escape from the daily chaos and helps one completely immerse in the theory and practice of yoga.
Yoga in Kerala
In the southern corners of India is the God’s own land- Kerala, where there is an amalgamation of nature’s blessings and soulful retreats. Kerala is considered as the heart for yoga, meditation and Ayurveda. It is a place where the mind and body are idolized in a temple of health and the religiosity, with beauty giving it a retreating balance and its atmosphere acting as a catalyst to learn the art of yoga and meditation. In recent past, there has been a marginal increase in the yoga and meditation centers that have helped people to relive stress both physically and mentally.
There are numerous yoga centres in Kerala. Abhijna Yoga Centre is one of the famous yoga centres which conduct 200 hour Ashtanga Yoga Teacher Training courses and Ashtanga Yoga retreats in Kerala. Another main attraction for yogis in Kerala is the Ayurveda Yoga Villa, which is situated on the banks of the beautiful Kabini River in Wayanad. This is the place where one can experience a fine combination of Ayurveda and Yoga- the two major Indian traditions of healthy living. The villa is located in the middle of a lush green forest, which spreads across thousands of acres. During yoga season, one can witness wide number of tourists flooding the place for its yoga retreats and ayurvedic benefits.
The International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre for Yoga is also another attraction for tourists in Kerala for its yoga retreats and classes. Founded in 1959 by Swami Vishnudevananda, the aim of the centre is to promote the ancient science of Yoga for physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well-being and to thereby create a more peaceful world. The centre is set in 12 acres of tropical splendour in the foothills of Kerala’s Western Ghats. The natural beauty of Neyyar Dam, the surroundings with forests, greener coconut tree groves and colourful flower-filled views offer an ideal atmosphere for practice of yoga and meditation.
The ashram program also covers classical yoga techniques, taught in a warm and friendly environment, helps to instill in guests a deep awareness of the spiritual essence of life.
Yoga in Goa
Almost every possible form of modern yoga is practiced, taught and relished in Goa. Palolem, Agonda and Patnem in the south of the state, and Arambol, Mandrem and Anjuna in the north, are the most happening places to take manifold forms of yoga courses. There are also many yoga retreat centres for longer yoga courses. Goa is most notable for modern yoga techniques like Beach yoga poses, paddle yoga, aqua yoga and many other yoga forms with natural elements. Most of the beach centers in Goa, offer various courses and classes and one may find large number of visitors, yogis and trainers taking up these courses.
The months of January and February is said to be the peak of the yoga season. Many yogis visit to enroll in teachers training program, yoga classes, courses, retreats and teacher certification from many of these centres and yoga retreats. Some of the most happening yoga retreats in Goa are Little Cove Yoga Holiday in South Goa. Located amidst a palm grove near Agonda beach this beachfront yoga resort offers two yoga classes per day with a range of other interesting options to do.
The Ashiyana Yoga Centre in Mandrem Beach is well known for its finest spas in the state. The centre also offers a range of certification programs for yoga instructors including yoga retreats and yoga classes. The centre also offers other recreational yoga activities like chanting, meditating, music concerts, pujas and yoga workshops.
Another similar yoga centre offering these services is the Bamboo Yoga Retreat centre. The centre offers a range of yoga holidays, retreats and teacher training programs. It also offers a variety of meditation, philosophy sessions, spa treatments and flexible yoga classes for beginners as well as advanced yogis.
With many beaches, lush green cover and its relaxed pace of life, Goa is a uniquely calm and soothing location to partake in a yoga retreat and the place is an established home to several yoga retreat and holiday centers offering beginner to advanced level programs for Yoga.
Besides Kerala and Goa, other major cities in India that offers massive yoga retreats and workshops are Mysore and Rishikesh. Rishikesh being the Yogic Capital attracts yoga practitioners from all around the world during the month of March.
You can now get your collection of eco-friendly yoga props from Ambal Fort, Kochi and TheSpace, Goa