Best Yoga Retreats in the world

No matter what level of yogi you are, there’s just something special about practicing yoga in a brand new spot—especially while on vacation. So, today, we’ve rounded up the best yoga locales in the world for all of our downward-facing-dog-loving Venuelusters out there. Get ready to roll out your mat and say namaste to new places.

1. Private Yoga Retreat at Villa Mareas in Costa Rica

Villa Mareas Yoga Retreat Costa Rica Best Yoga Locales

Located on Costa Rica’s Costa Bellena (or “Whale’s Coast”), Villa Mareas offers an unbelievable natural backdrop for practicing yoga. Situated on 36 pristine acres of rainforest, the 18,000 square-foot estate caters to weddings, group getaways and—you guessed it—yoga retreats.  

villa mareas yoga costa rica best yoga locales

With over nine suites and a full staff, the property is perfect for those looking to zen-out amongst lush jungle luxury. Situated amongst three main villas, each of the nine suites includes its own en-suite bathroom and plenty of space. Guests also have access to an incredible infinity-edge pool, which makes for the perfect place to take a tranquil post-practice dip.

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Villa Mareas offers guests the option to craft their own yoga retreat. Its own “ØKm Cuisine” retreat (offered twice annually) focuses on healing and features international yoga instructors and wellness doctors.

villa mareas costa rica best yoga locales

Among its three main yoga areas is an open-air, all-wood yoga platform that overlooks the both the bright blue waters of the pacific and the lush green lands that surround you. We love the idea of heading to this unbelievable estate for week chock-full of tranquility and reconnection with nature.

2. Small-Group Yoga at Il San Pietro in Positano, Italy

il san pietro yoga positano

Image via IlSanPietro.It

Next, we head to Italy's storybook-like Amalfi Coast for yoga at one of our favorite seaside boutique hotels, Il San Pietro di Positano. Perfect for the Venueluster who wants to dabble in yoga on their vacation without dedicating an entire trip to it, San Pietro offers small-group yoga classes each morning on the property's pristine lawn, right alongside the bright blue waters of the Mediterranean.

Simply sign up with the hotel's concierge a day or two in advance to secure your spot. The hotel provides a mat and towel, and the instructors are world-class. We're not quite sure if it's the towering cliffside that envelops you, the lush green grass beneath your yogi toes, or the invigorating salty seawater mist, but something about practicing at Il San Pietro feels absolutely magical, earning it a surefire spot on our roundup of the world's best yoga locales.

3. Spiritual Yoga at Parmarth Niketan in India

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There's no way a list of the best yoga locales on Earth would be complete without including India, the place where it all started. While there are countless Indian studios, temples and ashrams to choose from, we landed on Parmarth Niketan for today's list, as it offers a spiritual setting like no other place on the planet. As any avid yogi will tell you, the energy of a yoga class has such a powerful impact on on your individual practice, and Parmarth Niketan packs a serious punch when it comes to contagious invigorating energy and palpable positive vibes.

Parmarth Niketan India

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Located in the holy town of Rishikesh, the Parmarth Niketan Ashram is situated on eight lush Himalayan acres and offers 1,000 (yes, 1,000) residential rooms for guests to stay in while they spends days (or even weeks) practicing all of the down-dogs and chaturangas their hearts desire. The area also boasts abundant gardens, modern amenities and stunning views of the mesmerizing Mother Ganga river. So, it's really no surprise that Parmarth Niketan has drawn sages, rishis, yogis, saints and Venuelusters alike for centuries.

Daily activities at the ashram include morning universal prayers, daily yoga and meditation classes, daily satsang and lecture programs, as well as Ayurvedic treatments. Countless different yoga programs are offered, ranging anywhere from 2 to 11 days. Programs focus on everything from beginner intensive yoga to weekend spiritual retreats to yoga teacher training courses. And, for those looking for a truly once-in-a-lifetime immersive experience, we recommend attending Parmarth's annual International Yoga Festival.

4. SUP Yoga at Lake Tahoe

SUP yoga lake tahoe best yoga locales

Number 4 on our list takes us to Lake Tahoe, where famous writers and renowned artists alike have revelled for centuries at the lake’s rare beauty and ability to inspire—which is why our list of the best yoga locales in the world wouldn’t be complete without it. The largest alpine lake in North America—with an average annual clarity depth of 73.1 feet—its fresh, crystal-clear waters make for a super-zen place to practice yoga. We recommend practicing out on the water itself with a solid stand up paddleboard class.

SUP yoga tahoe best yoga locales

While paddle board yoga can seem intimidating at first, we promise it's easier than it looks—especially early in the morning when Tahoe's waters are super calm and glassy. We do recommend taking a professional class before heading out for a SUP yoga session on your own, though, just to ensure you've mastered the basics.

Mountain Lotus Yoga in Tahoe City offers daily stand up paddle board classes that are great for both beginners who’ve never been on a board and advanced SUP yogis alike. The instructors offer pose moderations and advancements, allowing you to customize your practice to the level of ease (or difficulty) you're most comfortable with. We especially love that Mountain Lotus Yoga takes care of the board rental process for you, so you don't have to haul a cumbersome board to the studio yourself.

You’ll simply sign up online the night prior, meet instructors at the lakeside studio where they'll have lightweight beginner boards waiting for you, and take your board on a short path down to a little cove on the water. You'll practice close to the shore and will attach a provided weight to your rental board, so you don’t have to worry about drifting during practice. From there, one instructor will guide you through your practice, while another offers individual help and takes photos (which they'll share with you online afterward if you choose). And—our favorite part—when class is done, you’ll have 30 extra minutes to roam around the lake on your paddle board and explore before the board has to be turned back in to the rental company.  

5. Yoga Wellness Program at Aro Hā in New Zealand

aro ha new Zealand yoga retreat

Nestled amidst 21 beautiful acres at New Zealand’s Southern Alps, Aro Hā is a luxury zen retreat that focuses on balance and wellness, making it a super serene spot for that next practice of yours. The vision behind Aro Hā comes from founders Chris Madison and Damian Chaparro, who dreamed of creating a living solution where luxury came from smart use of the natural elements and strategic design, rather than from opulence. The model they eventually landed on was an eco-friendly (but high-end) property that offers its guests an all-inclusive transformative wellness program.

Aro Hā is particularly great for those who want to take their practice off of their mats—as you’ll have to attend one of its regular retreats in order to visit the property. The retreat has a heavy focus on yoga, but also incorporates mindfulness practices and breath awareness, making it a perfect option for yogis looking to integrate their practice into everyday life. The program fee includes all treatments (including daily massages) and meals (meals are organic, locally-sourced and gluten-free).

Aro Ha New Zealand Best Yoga Locales

Program participants can enjoy an invigorating yoga session at the outdoor studio overlooking Lake Wakatipu or at the state-of-the-art, super serene, eco-conscious main studio. But yoga isn’t the only zen adventure this retreat has to offer—other staples of the program include alpine hiking, daily massages, strength training and spa therapy (yes, please).

6. Power of Now Oasis in Bali

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Bali has quickly become one of the world's leading destinations for yogis everywhere, so it's no surprise it made Number 6 on our list of the world's best yoga locales. We are especially in love with a studio called "The Power of Now Oasis" located seaside in beautiful Sanur.

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Image via Power of Now Oasis Blogspot

Constructed entirely from bamboo, we couldn't have dreamed up a more au-natural place to proactive yoga if we tried. We particular love the property's layout—a top floor shall is dedicated solely to practicing yoga and meditation, while its bottom level consists of an organic juice bar, a teahouse, treatments rooms, a music studio, a yoga shop and a library.

Power of Now Oasis offers customized retreats to fit your budget and schedule, a surf-yoga retreat, and regular yoga teacher training courses, for those looking to share their practice with their peers.

7. Italian Countryside Yoga at Monaci delle Terre Nere in Sicily

monaci delle terre nere yoga

If there’s a more serene place to practice yoga than the Italian countryside, we haven’t yet found it. For the next yoga locale on our roundup, we head to Sicily, where we get ready for backbends and forward-folds at Monaci Delle Terre Nere, a historic 19th-century estate. Everything about the locale and the estate itself is unbelievably quaint, and we love that the yoga classes it offers are no different.

monaci delle terre nere sicily

Guests can enjoy small group yoga sessions under age-old trees on the property’s private gardens during summertime—making for a practice secluded, peaceful and chock-full of charm. Plus, we happen to think there’s no better place to practice yoga than one where you’re surrounded by lush greenery, historic stonework and fresh, fragrant, Italian blooms. After yoga, don’t forget to head inside for one of the best organic farm-to-table breakfasts you’ve ever had.

8. Yoga Retreat at Rancho La Puerta in Tecate, Mexico

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Located in Baja, Mexico, Rancho La Puerta is a wellness retreat that offers a world-class spa and health facilities. We are especially fans of its pristine yoga studio—which has been drawing yogis from all over the world for an impressive 70 years (its claim to fame is that its the world’s first eco resort).

Rancho La Puerta Yoga Retreat

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With over 3,000 acres of mountains and meadows, 32 acres of lush gardens, countless hiking trails, an organic farm, and individual fully-adorned casitas for its guests, Rancho La Puerta offers a wellness program like few others on Earth.

Rancho la Puerta Yoga Retreat

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We especially love you can tailor your experience to include: mindfulness training, nutrition, spa treatments and/or yoga. Rather than having to follow along with a specific program, you can simply book your stay and choose which activities you’d like to participate in. There’s no set schedule that guests have to stick to, though it is typically required that you stay Saturday-Saturday (with shorter 3- and 4-night stays occasionally optional). A family-operated property, service is one of Rancho La Puerta’s strong suits, so we definitely recommend reaching out to resort staff to secure your spot and customize your perfect yogi retreat.

9. Aerial Yoga at the Island House in The Bahamas

Island House Yoga Bahamas

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A 30-room boutique hotel and gathering space located in West Nassau, Number 9 on our list takes us to pure paradise, where we get our om on the Island House. A contemporary, colorful property that offers perfectly appointed guest rooms, quaint cottages and expansive apartments, we feel our energy aligning with every aspect of this boutique Bahamas hotel—and we couldn't help but name it one of the best yoga locales we've seen to date.

Hotels guests are privy to a number of on-location perks, including the property's luxurious cinema and its rejuvenating Bamford Spa, but our favorite perk of all happens to be the movement studio, which features aerial yoga classes, which the Island House has dubbed "antigravity yoga."

10. Morning Yoga Classes at the Post Ranch Inn in Big Sur

post ranch inn yoga big sur

Number 10 on our list takes us back to the states, where we head to beautiful Big Sur California for morning chock-full of sunshine, ocean mist, and invigorating yoga sessions. Towering high above the serene waters of the Pacific, The Post Ranch Inn is one of our all-time favorite spots in northern California, as it offers uninterrupted relaxation, unparalleled luxury and unobstructed views of the lush lands that surround it.

With a modern design and high-end amenities, the Inn manages to offer both the luxury of a high-end hotel and the boutique charm of a quaint oceanside cabin—making it the perfect option for the yoga-dabbling Venueluster who wants to get away from it all, without leaving modern-day comforts behind. We recommend taking a daily morning yoga class during your stay. The Inn offers yoga at 8:30 a.m. every day, while restorative yoga (with a focus on breath work) is offered once weekly on Tuesdays.

 Your Turn...

Have any om-worthy yogi locales worth sharing? Tell us about the best yoga locales you've ever come across in the comments section below. We'd love to hear from you.