7 Things to Know Before You Go to a Yoga Retreat

11 Jun 2018

Attending a yoga retreat for the first time can be extremely rewarding, life-changing even, but if you have never experienced a yoga holiday, it helps to know what to expect prior to departing. This way you will know what to pack, how much money you’ll need and how to prepare for your wellness break. With this in mind, here are seven things to know before you go:

Check out the food in advance

While yoga will be your priority for the duration of your trip, fuelling these workouts is just as important as the fitness aspect of a retreat. Arriving at a yoga retreat only to find that the menu is limited or doesn’t complement your particular dietary requirements can be disappointing and it can also put a dampener on your experience. Think about your own personal goals for the trip. Are you going on a yoga retreat to lose weight, to be healthier, or are you looking to inspired by recipes and demonstrations and create them when you return? Always look on the retreat’s website to find a sample menu or drop them an email to discuss your dietary needs. It is likely that you will have limited access to coffee, chocolate and wine during your stay so it is wise to drop your caffeine, alcohol and sugar intake in the weeks running up to your retreat to prepare your gut in advance. 

Research the schedule 

Knowing what a typical day will be like is a great way to decide if the retreat in question is a good fit for you. This will tell you how much of the day will be taken up with yoga practise, how much of the day will be dedicated to group activities and how much downtime you can expect to enjoy. Knowing how much flexibility there is in the daily schedule can help you to set expectations for the trip and ensure that it complements your goals.

Consider the group size 

Another factor to take into consideration before you pack up your yoga essentials and sign on the dotted line is the number of people attending the group. If you are a sociable person, you may appreciate a bigger group, but if you want a more one-on-one approach to learning yoga, a smaller, more intimate group might be better. 

Take the time to choose your location

Always research the location of the yoga retreat carefully. If you have the option to leave the retreat to explore the area, it makes sense to have a good lay of the land and general awareness of the local points of interest. Do a quick internet search for destination-specific tips such as dress code, visa requirements, jabs and cultural differences.  

Keep an eye on the weather 

Lastly, before you depart, do a last-minute weather check to ensure that you have packed correctly. This is especially important if you are travelling abroad to a yoga retreat and will be facing extreme warm or cold temperatures. Doing as much research about the weather at your chosen destination can put you in good stead. Travelling during monsoon season, for example, can present a variety of travel complications, from delayed flights to missed connections. 

Know the rules regarding technology 

Another important factor to understand before you attend a retreat is their policies regarding technology. Many retreats have strict guidelines about mobile phone usage, so this is something to think about when choosing a retreat. If you can’t tear yourself away from your phone or laptop for a week, a tech-free retreat may not be right for you, but if you love the idea of a digital detox, feel free to wander where the Wi-Fi is weak. That being said, if you were planning to fit in some work around your yoga classes, it is wise to ask about Wi-Fi connections prior to arrival. 

Learn the yoga basics first

While you aren’t expected to be an expert when you attend your first yoga retreat, it helps to know a few basic poses, principles and phrases. This way you won’t feel out of your depth upon arrival. Something as simple as knowing what to wear will ensure that you blend in with the other guests at the retreat and will help dispel any beginner’s nerves you might be experiencing. 


Chat to a Travel Expert about tailor making your holiday to incorporate a health and wellness retreat.


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Remie Lund

Remie Worrall is a freelance writer, luxury lifestyle blogger and Huffington Post contributor with a degree in English Literature from York St John University. Remie writes about beauty, lifestyle and travel. Follow me at @remsluxuryblog