Travel Blog - Shreyas Yoga Retreat in India
Natalie, our Marketing Manager, went to check out Shreyas Yoga Retreat near Bangalore in India and thought it was truly fabulous in every way! If you love yoga, meditation and healthy eating then we just know that you will love it too - read on for her full insights:
What were your first impressions when you arrived?
The welcoming and friendly vibe - I was greeted with huge smiles, a cooling drink and a beautiful garland of fresh flowers which really set the tone for my stay. There's a large team so your every need is anticipated and they really go out of their way to make sure that you are enjoying your stay and have everything that you need. There's also a sense of space as the grounds are vast and include an on-site vegetable garden, orchards and 3 resident cows which you can help to milk in the afternoon...
What do you think makes the retreat so special?
I would say it's the sociable atmosphere - it's like being at a 'house party' (that's if your friends' have an estate!) as everyone tends to eat at one long, communal table so there's lots of swapping stories and laughter. There's a relaxed, inclusive feel and I met people from all walks of life. You can, of course, choose to sit separately if you are looking for time out. Many people return to Shreyas time and time again and it's really no surprise - it could easily be home away from home.
I also really liked the stylish accommodation - there are brick cottages dotted around the grounds with canvas tented canvas roofs so it feels very 'Out of Africa'. They are chic inside with soothing colours and a semi-outside bathroom plus a deck so that you can sit and watch the world go by. There are also 4 bedrooms centred around the gorgeous infinity swimming pool which have 'normal' roofs - these are also stylish but have an indoor bathroom.
What was your favourite aspect of the retreat & why?
It would have to be the spa which was newly built in 2017 and is very modern - it looks like a Corbusier building and there's polished concrete and soaring spaces everywhere. That said, it's light-filled and welcoming inside and the treatment rooms are very spacious. They each have their own changing room and shower so it was lovely to have complete privacy before and after treatments. You can also sit in the airy spa lounge afterwards and relax with a refreshing juice or warming tea.
I must also mention that Shreyas has a strong 'giving back' ethos and supports a local orphanage. You can visit the children and are sure to find it very uplifting - they adore visitors and will delight you with their cheeky grins! They have a new library that could do with some books so if you have space in your luggage then it's a lovely touch to take some as well as colouring books and pencils etc for the little ones.
What was your favourite treatment & why?
I have to say that all my treatments were top-notch and the therapists are clearly very well trained. I particularly loved my hot stone massage where I was massaged with warm oil and then pre-heated volcanic stone were placed around my body to ease tension and improve energy flow. It certainly worked as I felt re-invigorated as well as soothed afterwards. I also really enjoyed my Ayurvedic Abhyanga massage which aims to release stress and improve sleep - that also did the trick nicely as I felt like I was floating on air afterwards!
What was your favourite activity & why?
I thought that the yoga classes were excellent - well I guess Shreyas is a yoga retreat after all! The teachers were gentle and encouraging and I could feel myself progressing as the days rolled by. The open-sided yoga sala is set in the gardens and the 6.30 am class was a glorious way to 'wake up' as the sunlight slowly warmed my face. The promise of the delicious breakfast right afterwards was also very motivating. There's a yoga class at 4.00 pm too and you can, of course, dip in and out and join whichever classes you wish.
How was the food?
The food is vegetarian and so delicious that you won't even notice that you aren't eating meat, fish or eggs. There's a set menu for each meal - you are served at the table and the presentation is exquisite - a true feast for the eyes. 70% of the organic ingredients come from the on-site garden (no fertiliser is used either) so you can image how flavoursome all the dishes are. There's no alcohol at the retreat and as a rule there is no coffee either but if you ask nicely, they will bring you one!
Who would you recommend the resort to?
Anyone who loves yoga, meditation and healthy food. It's ideal if you are a solo traveller but would also like some company and it's also perfect for friends and couples alike - you can follow a programme to suit your individual needs and are pretty much guaranteed to feel rested and restored by the time that you leave. It's fabulous in every way so book soon - just call us on 020 3735 7555 and we can tell you more.