Yoga first began in India in 5000 BC, but only within the past decade has this practice become mainstream in the West. Our Instagram feeds are full of yoga influencers and poses of all sorts, making the once-fringe yogi crowd now the height of what it is to be cool. Yoga teachers offer enticing yoga retreats around the world, with India at the forefront. Yoga retreats in India are exotic, cool and quite trendy these days.
With this recent influx of people joining in on the yoga movement, an overwhelming demand for wellness-minded holidays in India has been noted. And as the “birthplace” of yoga, why wouldn’t you want to check out some of the amazing yoga retreats in India? But with this increase in yoga holidays, it’s also made it difficult to find legitimate retreats. There are plenty of scams and fake ashrams in India who promise to offer traditional “yoga retreats” but don’t really deliver.
On the other hand, there are many places in India that do provide authentic experiences. They’ll certainly teach you all about wellness, yoga, Ayuderdic medicine and the philosophy behind it all. We’ve gathered up the five most magical (and legit) yoga retreats in India, including luxury retreats, spiritual retreats and some that are perfect for anyone on a budget.
1.) For The Spiritual Seekers
Located an hour outside of the bustling streets of Bangalore, India, lies Shreyas Retreat, a quiet oasis for those looking to recharge. Recognized as one of the top yoga retreats in the world, Shreyas offers a plethora of packages ranging from yoga workshops, weight management, full detox and silent retreats, to Ayurvedic focused packages. Although the property here is quite luxurious, the work required here is not all plush.
With 12 exclusive cottages spreading itself over 25 acres of landscaped greenery, guests have a rare chance to commune with nature and benefit from its healing power. But the real spiritual awakenings happen through their courses on the ancient spiritual traditions of the yogic lifestyle. Providing private yoga classes, Pranayama and yoga nidra sessions, meditation, group chanting and sound meditation classes, guests’ days are full.
Yes, the work is tough but with Shreyas opulence and five-star services, as well as their newly opened Anaha Spa, guests can spend time unwinding with restorative and relaxing therapies that include Western massages, Ayurveda and Panchkarma treatments, naturopathy and more.
Location: Santoshima Farm, Gollahalli Gate, Nelamangala, Bangalore
2.) For The Beach Lovers
At this exclusive yoga retreat, guests meditate their days away surrounded by ocean views and India’s purest natural surroundings. Just a short walk from Om beach, this lavish escape is perfect for those looking to combine luxury and the ancient practice of yoga. Schedules are filled with different styles of yoga teachings, all practiced near the beach with a focus on inner silence.
Through the art of holistic teachings and treatments, guests cleanse their bodies and reconnect with earth’s elements as they surround themselves with ocean air and the warm, Indian sun. SwaSwara Retreat provides the perfect blend of historic and modern, where guests stay in classical Konkan villas with their own personal yoga deck and staggering views of the Arabian Sea. This space is perfect for those seeking rejuvenation, healing and the desire to learn the path to self-discovery.
Location: Om Beach, Donibhail, Uttara Kannada, Karnataka
3.) For The Traditional Students
The laid-back retreat of Shri K Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute gives way for those seeking a break from the routines of their life back home through discovering the traditional lineage of yoga. This retreat/institute practices the real Mysore way of yoga through the ancient teachings of Ashtanga/Vinyasa. Known to have a mythical past, this place encompasses some of the most ancient secrets to health and holistic living.
Through a variety of different practices, guests fully immerse themselves in the Indian culture. There’s practicing in a traditional Ashtanga Shala, learning to sing Patanjali Yoga Sutras and visits to the Mysore Palace. Here, one experiences all of Mysore’s charm while embarking on a spiritual journey through the art of holistic living. This institute combines an enriching experience of yoga with a spiritual and relaxing retreat. Get ready to pamper your inner self completely.
Location: #235 8th Cross, Gokulam, 3rd Stage, Mysore-570 002, Karnataka
4.) For The Luxury Traveler
Situated at the foot of the beautiful Himalayas, the ultimate luxury retreat is that of Ananda Yoga Retreat. This lush property helps those looking to de-stress while focusing on one’s well-being through the art of luxurious aesthetics. With five-star services and grand amenities, guests find themselves living the high-life with a spark of that spiritual yogic touch.
This healthy and peaceful retreat showcases unparalleled surroundings throughout one’s stay. Anada offers personalized yoga sessions, group meditation classes and mystic exploration through ancient teachings of yogic exercises. It’s perfect for those seeking a relaxing holiday with touches of luxury throughout the property.
Location: The Palace Estate, Narendra Nagar Tehri – Garhwal, Uttarakhand
5.) For The Budget-Conscious Yogi
Many people assume that yoga retreats are expensive but in India there are plenty of affordable ones to go on. Rishikul Yogshala is a tantalizing example for those seeking a yoga holiday on a budget. With Rishikesh as one of the top places in the world for yoga, guests surround themselves with other like-minded travelers. Classes held on one of India’s holiest rivers (the Ganges River) allows retreat goers to truly get a sense of the practice of yoga.
The teachers at Rishikul are all of Indian descent with their qualifications found directly on their website. The retreat includes daily chakra and color healing treatments, Ashtanga and Hatha styled yoga classes and meditation sessions. Although affordable, comfort is certainly not sacrificed. The property boasts plenty of spacious rooms, modern facilities and ensuite marble bathrooms all designed to provide a comfortable stay. Rishikul Yogashala also has an on-site Ayuderdic spa with the option to choose your treatment of choice.
Location: Jonk Village, Swaragashram, Rishikesh (they also have locations in Kerala, Nepal, and Thailand)
As this new travel trend rises in popularity each year, many are finding it difficult to find authentic yoga experiences. Have you ever been on any yoga retreats in India? How did you find the perfect one for you? Leave us a comment below!