It’s that time of year when you may be looking to book your family Summer Holiday, but have you ever thought of a Yoga holiday?
There are thousands of Yoga holidays available, from intense and spiritual 2 month Yoga Retreats in India, to the more fashionable Yoga, Health and Wellbeing holidays in Ibiza that the likes of Millie Mackintosh venture on.
However if you don’t have the luxury of leaving the kids with your other half/parents for a week and jetting off, then you’ll need to find a specialist family Yoga holiday or simply a family holiday destination which offers Yoga classes.
Whilst looking for our Summer Holiday this year, I found a number of hotels that offer Yoga classes and I was actually quite surprised at how commonplace this seems to be now. And when looking at villa rentals, it also seems to be a standard footnote that private massage or private Yoga instructors can be booked on request.
I have selected my top ‘Six Pick’s’ for a family holiday incorporating Yoga. (My suggestions are all within Europe, so that travelling with the children won’t become a stress!)
This unique Yoga holiday is designed just for Mamas and their children. You’ll be supported in this female environment by the team with childcare, Yoga and delicious food.
Following a fresh green juice or power smoothie for breakfast, the childminders arrive and you can hand over your children for the morning where they’ll have fun painting, trampoline jumping and dressing up, while you can enjoy a Yoga class outside. You’ll then get some free time for a massage, relaxation, or a chat with the other Mums before being reunited with your little ones for the afternoon. Also on Tuesday and Thursday evenings the babysitters come to look after your children so that you can join in an evening meditation session. The aim of Holy Mama is for you to come away inspired, renewed and energised.
The beautiful accommodation is close to Santa Gertrudis, on the edge of a mountain. It’s set up for Yoga with a huge outdoor yoga platform by the orange trees, as well as an indoor Yoga workshop with wooden floor. You can also enjoy the pool or relax on the terraces and garden.
Even though the main focus is on Mothers and their children, there are occasional weeks when Papas are also welcome.
Prices range from 1700 euros to 2500 euros for a week, which includes all your food and non alcoholic drinks.
This is a luxury hotel brand from Thomson Holidays, designed to ‘fuel the senses’. This choice is more of a classic family holiday destination, where Yoga is available. It’s classed as a 5 star hotel and is All Inclusive, which can be very useful when the kids want a drink and an ice cream every 10 minutes! There are 5 main pools in the resort, plus a stunning infinity pool in the spa, where you can book a whole host of treatments (at an additional cost) to help you relax, while the little ones can be entertained in the kids club or nursery.
As well as a host of sporting activities from water aerobics to Golf and Football, the resort also offers Pilates and musical candlelit Yoga, which takes place on a large platform overlooking the sea.
All-inclusive prices start from £460 per person.
If family camping is more your bag, then why not head to Eurocamp in Italy. With a range of pre-pitched tents with all the comforts, you can enjoy the relaxation of sleeping under the stars. The site location is less than 40km from many buildings of architectural interest, as well as Roman ruins. Further afield is the artistic city of Perugia, and further still – but definitely worth the trip – is the majestic city of Rome.
Eurocamp sites are designed for families. As well as a daily children’s club for 3-12 year olds, providing arts, crafts and sports activities, there are two adult swimming pools and two splash pools for children. There is a range of activities available to entertain the whole family, from Tennis, Football and Boules to cooking lessons, painting lessons and Rafting. During July and August, the campsite also plays host to regular Yoga and Pilates lessons which can be taken before venturing out on a hiking excursion to enjoy the beautiful Italian scenery.
If you can manage the drive with the kids in tow, then a Eurocamp holiday can be very reasonable in price (alternatively you can ‘fly-drive’.). A week at Il Collaccio campsite in August (in a six man tent) will cost £567.
If you’re looking to holiday within the UK, why not gather some friends and holiday together? Forest Holidays have 9 stunning locations across the UK from Deerpark in Cornwall to Strathyre in Scotland. They offer unique Fitness Retreats for the body and mind, to help relieve the stresses of everyday life. You can book as a group and create your own fitness programme (or let them create one for you), which can combine Cycling, Climbing, Walking and Running. The forest will become your outdoor gym using fallen logs and forest trails. Yoga and meditation is also on offer, which can be taken in the comfort of your luxury wooden cabin, or out in the lush green forest to enjoy the sound of the morning birdsong.
The natural outdoors will allow you to soak up not just the physical health benefits of a forest fitness retreat but also the psychological and spiritual benefits, giving you a truly holistic experience.
Prices vary depending on which location, how many people in your group, your accommodation type (some have hot tubs) and the time of year. But as a guide, a standard 7 night holiday at the Forest of Dean site, for a family of four in a Copper Beech accommodation during August is £1,365.
Amanzoe, Peloponnese, Greece
This is the crème de la crème of a luxury holiday encompassing Yoga. Amanzoe is an ultra-luxe hilltop hideaway hotel on an unspoilt coast of Greece, near Porto Heli. With 360-degree views taking in the Peloponnese countryside and rocky coves, Amanzoe’s accommodation offers beautifully designed Pavilions and Villas all with private pools.
The holistic healings of Hippocrates are the inspiration for Amanzoe’s very stylish Spa, combining diet, gymnastics, exercise, massage and sea bathing with modern natural products and treatments. Along with a gym, there is a Yoga pavillion which hosts a range of sessions for all levels from its tranquil hillside setting. Body alignment and breath awareness are the focus of the Hatha, Vinyasa or Ashtanga practices, while full-moon yoga sessions are set in the Amphitheatre. Watsu is also available, which is an aquatic therapy session involving floating in warm water, supported by a therapist’s arms. Watsu’s gentle stretching and movements are known to support muscle rehabilitation and relieve stress.
Children aren’t overlooked at this resort. Both individually and in groups, Children’s Yoga sessions are available to increase mindfulness, confidence, balance and strength as well as positive thinking. Children are also treated to specially crafted menu’s and entertained by a children’s host who organizes daily activities aimed to hone motor skills and educate on the history of Ancient Greece.
All of this doesn’t come cheap! Prices start from 850 euros per night in April, rising to 1800 euros per night in August. Better go and buy that lottery ticket now!
So this is my ‘Wild Card’ and technically not Yoga focussed. However &Breathe retreats focuses on postnatal wellbeing and organises fitness and relaxation retreats for families, set in the gorgeous Manoir La Croix de La Jugie, close to Limoges in France. They focus on parents of newborn babies (whether it be your first or second child). The week long retreat will encompass two fitness classes per day by a Personal Trainer, to help Mums and dads get back into exercise or up their game. The personal trainer will tailor your exercise throughout the week to your abilities, fitness level and birth experience; classes are mix of cardio, strength training and toning classes as well as stretching. They will also take care of the little ones during your fitness classes so you can exercise in peace!
As well as a 60 minute massage for each adult and healthy food and diet planning advise, the retreat also has a Happiness Coach and meditation sessions, plus a Maternity Nurse and Baby Coach on hand for consultations.
The aim of the retreat is to get you relaxed and confident as new parents.
The retreat prices start from £2,350 for a family of four, which also includes all food and drink.
But don’t forget that if you end up going to a hotel where there are no Yoga lessons or facilities, why not find time to practice yoga by yourself (or with the kids) by the pool or on the beach? And if you’re new to yoga or just a little shy, you don’t need to attempt Sirsanana (Head Stand) on a packed beach, just try some less challenging poses and enjoy the warm sunshine!
Let us know if you’ve been on a Yoga holiday, or if you’ve managed to take time out to practice Yoga when on a family holiday. Also, let us know of any holiday recommendations!
*All information and prices correct as of 17/03/17
We’re two Mums who are getting through motherhood one day at a time whilst enjoying Yoga and other ‘me time’ activities. We don’t profess to be experts in Yoga, Pilates, exercise, meditation, the human anatomy or medicine and we’re certainly not experts in parenting. We are simply sharing our experience and opinions and occasionally those of people who’s advice we value, and we’ll always reference them. If you’re unsure of starting any new exercise or practice, please consult your GP. And if you’re unsure of purchasing any products we suggest, please consult your bank balance!