As a meditation teacher, a lot of people ask me what the best meditation retreat in the world is.
In 2019, meditation retreats are a hot topic.They are one of the most popular types of wellness retreats.
You can find meditation retreats in America, in Canada, in Europe, and of course in the places we traditionally associate with the practice, such as in India.
Below, you can find the best meditation retreats in 2019. But first I’d like to explain how you can go about choosing the best meditation retreats for you.
You see, meditation retreats are personal.
When we take a vacation usually we are happy to just visit a country, relax, have some fun, eat some nice food… You know, the typical holiday.
Meditation retreats are different.
When we book a meditation retreat we are booking some time away specific to relax, to purify the spirit, and to reconnect.
And here’s the deal with that: People find different things relaxing. And people find different things uplifting. That’s why the best meditation retreat for me is not necessarily the same as the best meditation retreat for you.
So, how to choose a meditation retreat.
You might also like to consider booking a beginners yoga retreat.
Answer these questions to find your best meditation retreat
1: What kind of meditation?
Are you going to be doing serious meditation on your meditation retreat? And if so, what kind of meditation woud you like to do?
There are two types of people who book meditation retreats. There are people who book meditation retreats simply for some relaxation. If this is you, you probably don’t mind what specific types of exercises you will be doing on the retreat just so long as you relax.
Then there are more serious practitioners. If this is you, you will want to know what specific type of practices the retreat caters for.
For instance, there are Vipassana meditation retreats such as the 10 day silent Vipassana meditation retreats in Rikashesh India or the 5 Day Transcendental Meditation Retreat run by Gaia Retreat Center in Bali.
There are 31 major types of meditation and they all have various benefits. You will find good meditation retreats for most major types of practice. So be sure to choose the type of meditation you want to do before you book a meditation retreat.
2. What retreat-destinations fo you find most peaceful?
What is the best spiritual vacation destination? [I personally recommend a spiritual trip to India]
Obviously, when it comes to booking a vacation one of the main decisions is: Where? Booking meditation retreats is the same albeit with a twist.
The key question to ask when choosing a meditation retreat is: What locations and features do you find relaxing and uplifting?
The best meditation retreat for you is the one that’s in the type of location you find peaceful.
Do you find beaches relaxing? If so you might like to book a meditation retreat in California, where the beaches are truly beautiful. Or do you find a forest relaxing? In which case you might like to book a meditation retreat in Thailand.
Consider the types of places you find most peaceful.
3. Make sure the type of meditation matches your religion and philosophy
One huge question you need to ask is: How does the meditation retreat reflect your own spiritual beliefs?
The practice itself is traditionally a religious practice, even though today it is more accepted as simple wellness exercise. If you are religious you will want to make sure your meditation retreat is the same religion as you, and if you are an atheist you might like to book a retreat that practices non-religious exercises.
Many retreats cater specifically to Buddhist meditation techniques, such as Anapanasati and Vipassana. So, make sure that your retreat is not in conflict with your own beliefs.
Beyond this there is the question of what vibe you personally like. Do you want a more serious retreat or a chilled out, fun one? These are all important decisions to make.
4. Advanced or beginners meditation retreat?
Make sure you book a meditation retreat that is suitable for your level of experience. If you have only been meditating for a few months it would be unwise and unhealthy to book a ten day Vipassana meditation retreat. A serious retreat like that is more suitable for someone with years of experience meditating.
For most people it’s a good idea to pick a more simple and fun retreat the first time around. Something that invites you to explore the practice and to discover new things. That way even if you’re an absolute beginner you will have fun getting to learn about meditation.
Then there are meditation retreats for teacher training. [READ: Free Meditation Teacher Training Course]
When you’re booking meditation retreats you want to set your intention first. For instance, are you going on a vacation for some serious meditation time or just to have fun and relax? You will find mindfulness retreats that cater to both those things. Either way, make sure your retreat is designed for the type of vacation you want to take.
6: Other considerations
There are numerous other important considerations to make. For instance, if you are vegetarian or vegan you will definitely want to make sure that your mindfulness retreat caters to your dietary needs.
Also, do you prefer meditation retreats that cater to both genders or just men? There are lots of women-only meditation retreats available if that is what you prefer.
Group sizes vary too. Are you happy meditating in a large group or do you prefer smaller groups?
Also consider the other activities you would like to try. For instance, do you want to do yoga, swimming, biking and other activities? If so you may be better off booking a wellness retreat instead of a dedicated meditation retreat.
Answer these questions will help you find the best meditation retreat for you.