What are the best yoga retreats for beginners in 2019?

Well, that answer totally depends on you.

You see, yoga retreats are a very personal thing. We all book yoga retreats for our own individual reasons. For some it is the sheer passion of the practice. For others it is an opportunity to get away from the stress of work while focusing on your health. And for others, yoga retreats are an opportunity to meet new yogis and who know, perhaps even spark a little holiday romance.

I took a look online for the best yoga retreat for beginners in 2020 and what I found was a bunch of lists that totally miss the point. Those lists tell you what the best yoga retreats are… but for who? Just because one blogger thinks the retreat they personally went on was the bet one ever, doesn’t mean it’s the best one for you.

You need to take your time when choosing because there are stories about bad experiences.

So, with this guide I’m going to help you find the best yoga retreat for your own individual needs. I’m going to explain how I personally choose so that you can see the best way to pick a retreat for yourself.

You might also like to read my guides to:

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How To Pick The Best Yoga Retreat For Beginners 


1, What styles do you want to do on your yoga vacation?

There are lots of different types of yoga.  And there are resorts that focus on specific types.

For instance, there are Ashtanga yoga retreats like Purple Valley in Goa, and Vipassana yoga retreats. Many retreats of a number of different styles, and some also incorporate traditional yoga meditation methods.

When I pick, I like to first consider what type of yoga I want to be doing on retreat. Sometimes I want a more serious type like Ashtanga, and othertimes I might like to do something more fun, like a place that includes SUP Yoga, which I personally love.

It’s important to make sure that your retreat focus on the right style.

Skill level also matters. There are yoga retreats for beginners and there are advances one too. Then there are yoga teacher training retreats that are usually 200 hours long and will train you to become a yoga teacher.

So, first thing that I like to do this to decide the type of yoga I want to practice on my retreat.

best yoga retreats for beginners
Picking the type of yoga retreat is the first thing I do when I decide.

2. Location

Probably one of the main reasons to book a yoga retreat is for the boost of positivity they give [read: how to use yoga for positive energy].

When I book my yoga retreats, I always consider where I want to be, because my experience will largely be determined by where I am.

For some people it will be the beach, in which case you might like to boost a yoga retreat in California. For others it will be the mountains, and still some may prefer an inner-city retreat in which case you might like to book a retreat in Japan or Dubai. Artsy people like my tend to enjoy places rich with art, such as Barcelona or Paris. Whatever makes me feel positive, that’s my ideal destination for your vacation.

Also consider the style of the hotel. Is it a modern hotel or an older one? Does it have the type of vibe that jives with you?

yoga retreat locations

3. Consider Your Teacher

One of the most important things when finding the best yoga retreats for beginners is to consider the actual teacher.

I want to know that I will get along with my teachers and that they do the style of teaching that I personally enjoy.  I also consider their teaching style and what former students have said about them. If you are doing a local yoga retreat with a teacher you know, ask whether they are the right person to guide you on a long retreat, which is very different to your regular one-hour sessions.

The best yoga retreats for beginners tend to have very friendly teachers who don’t expect too much and know that you’re just getting started on your yoga journey.

Sometimes local groups take retreats in other countries. If this is the type of vacation you’re going on, make sure your teacher knows enough about the destination to make it a good holiday, not just some yoga someplace else.

4. Then I’ll consider my goals

When you’re finding the best yoga retreats for beginners you have to consider what you want to get out of the practice. For me, I might want to just get back in shape or learn more about my yoga practice.

There are lots of different reasons to go on a retreat. Fitness. Health. Soul-seeking. Fun. What is your reason for wanting to book a holiday?

For me my main reason is inner peace because that’s what I’m all about. You might have a different goal in mind. Either way, it’s important to make sure that your retreat is suitable for helping you meet your goal. Is it a retreat that focuses solely on fitness when you really want a spiritual adventure? Is it very advanced yoga retreat when you want something simple and fun? Make sure the philosophy of the treat matches your own individual needs.

5. The cost

You can take a yoga retreat without spending thousands on the ticket. Heck, you can take a yoga retreat at home if you want to, you just need to set up your own studio at home and spend more time in it. Point is, be aware of your budget. And remember that the actual cost of booking a yoga retreat is only a fraction of the overall price of the holiday.

I’m not personally loaded so I tend to look for economically friendly retreats where I can go without worrying about the hole in my wallet.

6. The hotel, the temple, and the trees

There are very cheap yoga retreats and there are very expensive ones. There are 5-star yoga retreats in California that have the fine dining experience, luxury beds, a swimming pool, your own private masseur, and all the bells and whistles you could ever dream of. Then there are retreats in forests where your hotel is a tent and you’re expected to cook for yourself. Which could be perfect for some.

7. What other activities do you want to do?

Some of the best yoga retreats for beginners are the less serious ones that also allow for other activities. Some retreats are for the die-hard yogis. They are dedicated retreats where yogis go to improve their skills and advance their practice. And many of these retreats do not cater for anything else. Because of this, they are not the best yoga retreats for beginners.

If you want to do other activities, make sure they are available. Maybe you want to do some Stand-up Paddleboard Yoga, or swimming. Maybe you want to go hiking or surfing. Maybe you want to visit famous cultural sites while you’re away. Whatever activities you want to do on your yoga vacation, make sure they are available at your retreat.

Some of the best yoga retreats for beginners

Little Cove Yoga Holiday Retreat: “Little Cove Yoga Holiday Retreat Goa is a breathtaking beach-front yoga resort set under the coconut palm trees on Cola Beach in South Goa, India. Our exclusive resort offers stunning single or double cottages , to ensure an optimally tranquil yoga experience for our guests.”More info here

Kripalu Centre For Yoga & Health: “For 48 years, Kripalu has been a national leader in yoga- and mindfulness-based education, and we are dedicated to staying connected and supporting you during this difficult time.” Learn more here

Cala Luna: “Where the ultimate luxury getaway meets comfort, style, nature and the pinnacle of personalized service, Cala Luna Luxury Boutique Hotel is your destination for relaxation and adventure. ” Learn more here


I found the following video very informative and it helped me understand more about retreats.

Yoga Retreats (5 things you need to know!)

And that’s how to choose the best yoga retreat for beginners in 2019. Bon voyage! But before you go, remember to share this page and subscribe.

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Written by Paul Harrison

Paul Harrison is a qualified meditation teacher and writer with more than 15 years experience in meditation and mindfulness. He studied meditation in Oxford, UK, and Hamilton Ontario Canada, and earned his degree at Staffordshire University. Paul has helped thousands of people to discover their true potential through mindfulness, yoga and meditation.