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. Stay tuned for dates :)
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