Travel gives us a change of scenery and a fresh perspective, a chance to reset and refresh, and expands the mind – much in the same way yoga does, which is why travel and yoga are the perfect pairing. With this in mind, we run several overseas yoga retreats each year to some amazing tropical locations. Costa Rica is one of our faves! This year, Pure Yogi Tiffani Harris got to spend two weeks in paradise, leading two separate retreats…. here’s what you missed!
Can you tell us a bit about where you held this years Costa Rica retreats?
Pure Vida Costa Rica Retreats were held at ‘The Drop In’ located in Santa Teresa, Costa Rica. Santa Teresa is this cool little beach town in the Nicoya Peninsula on the Pacific Ocean. Known for its awesome surfing, great selections of cafes and restaurants and of course the most beautiful sunsets. The Drop In is set up on a peaceful jungle hilltop overlooking ocean. The beautiful beach is located at the bottom of our driveway and you can easily walk to cafes, shops, etc. All rooms offer AC, all houses have pools and kitchens. We practice yoga in our jungle tree house open air yoga shala. We dine on three meals daily prepared by our private chef.
How long does each retreat go for?
I hosted 2 x one week retreats this past January 2019. I like to call them Yoga vacations. You get a beautiful vacation in paradise with optional yoga twice daily then you can customize and add on adventure or simple chill by the pools, the beach or lounge in a hammock. I was joined Week 1 with guest teacher incredible Jenn Stow and week 2 with the awesome Peter Lavictoire
How many people came on the retreat, and do you have to be an experienced yogi to go?
We hosted 14 guests each week ranging from the cutest retired couple, we welcomed solo men travellers, we had best friends, groups of friends, and several women travelling solo. With our wide variety of accommodation we can offer private or shared room options to suit needs and budgets.
I often get asked does someone need to be an expert at yoga to join a Pure retreat. Answer is always NO!! Everyone is welcome, we had different yoga experiences, some never having attended a Pure Yoga Class before. As teachers we can cater to everyone in the room offering modifications to support all levels. With these small class sizes it’s a great opportunity to get extra attention and deepen your yoga practice.
We teachers live and eat with the group one of my favourite elements is connecting with everyone.
What was your daily routine like on the yoga retreat?
We start with breakfast at 7am including fresh tropical fruit, Costa Rican coffee, granola, eggs and more. Morning yoga starts at 8:30am, generally this an active moving class to build up a sweat then bliss out in a magical jungle savasana. You get to enjoy your free time all day then pop in for lunch around noon which is always a yummy variety of our chefs creations. Afternoon yoga is at 4pm and is usually more chill depending on the day, ending in time to catch sunset at the beach. A three-course dinner is served nightly at 7pm.
What other activities are available for people to do there?
I plan a few optional group activities including learn to surf, and an ATV & hike to the Montazuma waterfall excursion. I love watching people fall in love with surfing. We work with the best surf instructors who make sure everyone feels safe and catches a wave. The ATV day is a blast as we get to explore the countryside, the jungle trails and cool off with some swimming and cliff jumping if that’s your thing, it’s not mine lol!!!! Some prefer to skip these activities and would rather choose their own and I have some great recommendation like nature walks, snorkelling, horseback riding and more. We always arrange a massage day for those looking for a more self care treat.
We dine out one night at local restaurant to take advantage of the excellent food scene, I give my list of favourites for people to choose from. Our last night we close with a sunset beach bonfire and taco night dinner!!
Can you tell us a couple of highlights of this years trip?
I feel so lucky to grow the Pure community and make new friends. Highlights are seeing people make new connections and try new experiences, to witness how relaxed everyone is in the first few days and hear “ I love this place, this town” “ I want to come back”. That’s when I know I’ve done my job well :)
Do you have any other retreats to Costa Rica planned soon?
YES!! Late January 2020. find the information here: https://www.pureyogaottawa.com/evolve
Testimonials for our Costa Rica retreats:
I’ve been to other yoga retreats before and this Costa Rica one is by far the best one. Tiffany was an amazing host and made sure all of needs and beyond were met the whole time. The yoga classes were different, original, custom-adapted to our moods, the music and the general vibe did made this retreat unbelievably amazing. We got to discover Santa Teresa, enjoy the sunset after yoga every evening, develop new friendships, forget what stress is and feel la “pura vida”… Book and enjoy 🙂
- Marilou 2019
My trip to Santa Teresa for the Pure Yoga retreat hosted by Tiffani was amazing. It far exceeded my attempts – Tiffani went above and beyond to meet our needs and everything was very well planned and taken care of. The schedule was perfect – not too much, not too little. The houses and yoga studio are superb and cannot be better located in the village. The beach is literally a mere 3 minutes walk and you can even spot monkeys on your way down to the playa! I liked it so much that Im actually going back the year again – hopefully see you there 🙂
-Isabel Charbonneau 2019
This was the yogi paradise I had been seeking. Tiffany and Peter’s practices were a pleasant contrast and together they complimented the daily sessions. The food was stellar, and better than restaurant-quality with a personal chef for the group (coming from a serious foodie). I appreciate the fact that St. Theresa is still low key and has not succumb to over-development for tourism, which makes it an ideal location for a complete physical and mental reboot away from hectic urban life, where you feel part of the community. Highly recommended!
- Mark & Sue 2019
This retreat was the best gift I could have given myself – it was the most relaxing and fun vacation I have ever had. Your biggest decisions were if you wanted to go surfing, relax on the beach, by the pool, or explore Santa Teresa. Everything was very well planned and taken care of. There was time to come together as a group, and ample time to be alone, recharge, and do your own thing. Tiffani & Jenn’s yoga classes were super fun, well balanced, complementing the day’s activities and allowing me to deepen and explore my own practice.
I came home from the retreat legitimately rested and ready to take on the winter!
10/10, would recommend!
-Mary Wild 2019
Tiffani Harris is a regular teacher at Pure Yoga Ottawa, visit her page to discover her upcoming classes and workshops. If you’re interested in taking your yoga practice to a new level, Tiffani and Kate Durie are running a 200hr Teacher Training intensive in Costa Rica later this year