Gayle’s Top 5 Travel Tips & Packing List For An Exotic Yoga Retreat

“When preparing to travel,
lay out all your clothes and all your money.
Then take half the clothes and twice the money”.  

There are packing-nerds (like me) who pack their bags weeks or more in advance of a trip. There are the packing-challenged, who procrastinate digging out the suitcase until late night before travel. And then there are the cool, ‘packing is no big deal’ adrenaline junkies who leave packing for an international trip to just a few hours before the flight. For those of you who fall into the first two categories and would like start your journey organized and stress-free, try these five travel tips — and let me know how it goes!

 

1)   BE LIGHT  —  BRING ONE SUITCASE & ONE SHOULDER BAG

It’s much easier to keep track—and carry—one shoulder bag and one suitcase. As soon as you start having small miscellaneous bags, you are bound to lose track of one!  And if you’re like me and enjoy collecting gifts and treasures to bring home, try starting your trip with a suitcase that is only 2/3 full—leaving room to fit in souvenirs you find along the way!

 

2)   BE ORGANIZED  —  DOWNLOAD THIS APP!

My new favorite travel companion is Trip It – an app that automatically downloads all of your travel information (flights, hotels, rental cars, etc.) into one master itinerary that is accessible on your phone, with or without internet. It also stores important travel documents such as passport information, driver’s license and emergency contacts. As you decide on each aspect of your trip, remember to use the same email address for all of your bookings!

 

3)   BE HEALTHY

Carry a water bottle. Keeping hydrated is key to good health!  Drink a full bottle of water on route to the airport; fill it again once you’re past security; then on the plane ask the flight attendants to fill your bottle instead of using plastic cups—so by the time you’ve reached your destination, you’ve hydrated with at least three full bottles of water!

Carry healthy snacks with you. Consider what kind of snacks make you feel energized and satiated, and are easy to travel with. In my handbag I always carry a packet of unsalted nuts, an energy bar and an apple. When preparing for a day of travel, I include a few packets of instant organic oatmeal, a handful of ginger-lemon tea bags and two hard-boiled eggs for protein (which I politely wait to eat until I’m at an airport and refrain from eating on the plane due to smell!)

 

4)   BE RELAXED

We all get anxious sometimes – how we deal with our anxiety is the true test of our yoga practice. Even with the best of planning, sometimes plans will get off track—this is the nature of travel (and life!)  Remember to “stay in the flow” — and use a bit of humor instead of a complaint! If you feel yourself starting stress out, re-connect with your breath through this simple pranayama breathing exercise, Sama vritti: breathe in through your nose for a count of five, hold your breath for five, then exhale through your mouth for a count of five. This simple “equal breathing” exercise will relax your mind and calm your nervous system.

 

5)   BE GRATEFUL
When travel is delayed or you are that lucky traveler chosen for a special security check, remember how incredibly fortunate you are to be standing in that line, traveling to a foreign destination and on your way to a yoga retreat — you are one of the luckiest persons in the world!  Keep that in mind as you travel, and when a mishap happens, smile and spread your light!

 

 

SAMPLE RETREAT PACKING

 

As you pack for your yoga retreat, think layers – clothing that is versatile, multi-purpose and in the same color family. Choose yoga leggings and tank tops that become part of an outfit for sightseeing or a nice dinner out. Add your favorite scarf or cute shoes to pull it all together. Bring a sweater for cool evenings, a comfy sweatshirt for lounging, and a lightweight compressible down jacket to keep you warm in transit on planes and trains. Make sure you love each piece you bring, because you’ll be wearing it more than once!

Shoes
• flip-flops
• sneakers
• depending on the retreat, a pair of casual & comfy shoes that have a little style

Clothing
• airplane outfit: something warm and layered, a hat or scarf to keep warm, a compressible down jacket
• bathing suit and wrap
• 3-5 tank tops or t-shirts to use for yoga that can be doubled for day wear
• 3 yoga pants: one short, one capri and one full-length
• feather-light, compressible down-jacket or cozy fleece
• a lounge outfit consisting of your favorite sweatshirt and leggings.

Travel kit for the plane or train
• eye pillow
• ear plugs
• immune booster (Vitamin C or Source Natural’s Wellness Formula)
• scarf to use as blanket or wrap to stay warm on flight
• water bottle, tea bags and healthy snacks

Essentials
• 2 international power adaptors
• a back-up ATM card to get cash
• copy of your passport, keep it in a separate bag from your passport

 

“When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money.
Then take half the clothes and twice the money”.  – Unknown

 

 

 

EYR Teacher Feature: Rhubin Herceg

March 23, 2017
0 Comment

Our Exotic Yoga Retreats teachers are incredible – and we would love for you to know more about them! As such, we have decided to create a series of features for each teacher. In addition to their general bios on our website, they have answered a few fun and thoughtful questions so that we know.. read more →

Now Is The Time, Now Is Sacred

February 12, 2017
0 Comment

 It is hard to know what to write these days. It is difficult to find meaning in what feels like madness. As we are bombarded with distraction and uncertainty, it feels natural to want to connect with our inner stillness. A yoga practice can help guide and give purpose to this turning inward – in.. read more →

New Year, TRUE You.

January 8, 2017
0 Comment

It’s a brand new year, full of promise. And as usual, this first week has been full of messages about creating a new you. Often, you receive this message subconsciously and accept that you need to reinvent yourself. You feed the impulse to change who you are. You convince yourself that you will be happier.. read more →

MEXICO HOLIDAY RETREAT DECEMBER 2016

December 29, 2016
0 Comment

. Xinalani   Once we were Gods Immortal, perfect and bored We longed to play We longed to feel deeply So we created Earth Filled with trees, rivers and mountains Birds, animals and fish And many such wondrous gifts The game was ours to play And to love and struggle through When we came down.. read more →

Poem by Hafiz ~ There Are So Many Gifts

November 6, 2016
0 Comment

Inspired by a great conversation with a wise young gal on a plane this morning, I share with you this poem by Hafiz. We spoke about God, divinity and the act of stepping into unknown territories (geographical, heart and mind)… the gifts that are always, ALWAYS here, simply awaiting us to receive them.    .. read more →

What Is Meditation | Meditation & Poetry

October 23, 2016
0 Comment

People on retreats often ask if I meditate daily. The question makes me pause and ponder, “what is meditation”? For nearly twenty years I had a formal 2-hour daily practice. Now it’s very different and I imagine my ‘meditation’ will keep changing and evolving as I evolve. I like the idea of the beloved late Irish theologian.. read more →

Ireland Yoga Retreat – 3 Things To Know Before You Go

September 23, 2016
0 Comment

Our luxury Ireland yoga retreat begins in just a few weeks and we are so excited to explore the lush countryside of this quaint European island. Since Irish culture has been exported to many countries around the world, most of us are familiar with at least a few aspects of life in Ireland. You will.. read more →

Life As An Ocean; Yoga and Meditation As Your Steadfast Vessel

September 8, 2016
0 Comment

Every once in a while, life is just plain overwhelming. In sweet times, it feels like you are floating gently on calm seas – totally in the flow of life. Other times, it feels like you are holding tightly onto a slowly deflating life raft – battered by the storm and praying that it lets.. read more →

Find Us The Perfect Retreat Venue — Win A Free Retreat!

September 5, 2016
0 Comment

We would love your help!   We host Exotic Yoga Retreats in phenomenal locations all over the world—but would love to explore the diverse beauty of the United States!  Do you know of the perfect venue to host an Exotic Yoga Retreat here in the USA?  If you introduce us to a venue—and we host a.. read more →

Yoga Retreats, Mediterranean Style

August 17, 2016
0 Comment

Most of our Exotic Yoga Retreats are designed to promote the Mediterranean style of living and overall health. In fact, we strive to offer our participants an experience in both good health and good living! We achieve this experience in a number of ways – some that are unique to each retreat and others that.. read more →

An Exotic Yoga Retreat: Not Just For Yogis!

August 14, 2016
0 Comment

Have you been looking at an Exotic Yoga Retreat, but want to go on a trip with your non-yoga-practicing partner? Are you excited about and committed to your yoga practice, but your partner wonders what you find so alluring about it? Perhaps he has never tried yoga – or tried it and didn’t care for.. read more →

Bhutan, A Truly Exotic Yoga Retreat

July 27, 2016
0 Comment

The small, isolated nation of Bhutan was closed to tourism until 1974. Considered by some to be the world’s last Shangri-La, this Himalayan kingdom has intrigued and charmed its visitors for over 40 years now. Our Bhutan yoga retreat is truly exotic, taking place in a natural wonderland that few people will ever visit. In.. read more →

The Yoga Journey, A Journey Home

July 24, 2016
0 Comment

Home is where the heart is. Yoga is a journey. Each individual practice brings you from one state to another in your body, mind and heart. In such a lovely way, the evolution of your practice over time will continue as long as you continue to show up on your mat. The beauty of yoga.. read more →

Independence, Interdependence, Yoga, Travel

July 14, 2016
0 Comment

Yoga travel affects us and everyone around us. Last week, we celebrated Independence Day here in the United States. We declared our freedom from Great Britain 240 years ago – not a long time, in the overall timeline of this planet and human history. As one of the founding principles of this nation, we greatly value.. read more →

Switzerland Yoga Retreat — How Cool Is This?

July 10, 2016
0 Comment

There is something about Switzerland – perhaps the ruggedly beautiful landscape or serene alpine lakes – that simply exudes relaxation and inspiration. Add a touch of luxury, daily yoga, and ample opportunity to explore the mountains and our Switzerland yoga retreat becomes a deeply rejuvenating experience. Our 2016 Switzerland Yoga Retreat begins in just a.. read more →

Tuscany Yoga Retreat — 3 Interesting Things

June 28, 2016
0 Comment

The Tuscan countryside brings many pleasant things to mind: fresh pasta, roasted meats, farm-grown produce, and of course, the playful palette of Chianti. What better place to fully enjoy these Italian pleasures and deeply connect with yourself than on a soulful Tuscany yoga retreat? As you may know, our Exotic Yoga Retreats are about much.. read more →

Yoga and Wine – They Go Together!

June 21, 2016
0 Comment

The first ever Exotic Yoga Retreat was a yoga and wine holiday in Puglia. “Yoga and, uh, wine?” When Exotic Yoga Retreats was launched over four years ago, it seemed that everyone I told about it responded with this question — as if yoga and wine did not belong in the same sentence. I expected.. read more →

Gayle’s Top 5 Travel Tips & Packing List For An Exotic Yoga Retreat

“When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money”.   There are packing-nerds (like me) who pack their bags weeks or more in advance of a trip. There are the packing-challenged, who procrastinate digging out the suitcase until late night before travel… read more →

Tales From a Tuscany Yoga Retreat

June 13, 2016
0 Comment

UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN I will admit, I signed up for the Tuscany yoga retreat on a whim. I had been feeling frazzled and overwhelmed by life’s demands — work life was in no way balanced with my personal life and a recent health scare had taken its toll. As I scrolled through my Facebook.. read more →

Travel Light — Yoga Travel Tips

June 13, 2016
0 Comment

Travel light, Live light, Spread the light, Be the light. –Yogi Bhajan We are on the road a lot here at Exotic Yoga Retreats, so it is no wonder we have learned some travel tips and tricks along the way. People have all sorts of thoughts and feelings about traveling – and a multitude of.. read more →

Want to Travel Solo on a Yoga Retreat?

May 17, 2016
0 Comment

An Exotic Yoga Retreat is the perfect yoga retreat for the solo traveler! Have you been wanting to go on a yoga retreat, but can’t quite seem to coordinate schedules with your friend or partner? There are many reasons people travel solo (and love it!) – and a yoga retreat is the perfect opportunity to.. read more →

Croatia Yoga Cruise • 3 Reasons to Jump In!

May 15, 2016
0 Comment

3 Things to Make You Jump On Board Our Exotic Croatia Yoga Cruise! In recent years, Croatia has become the hot spot to visit! With turquoise blue coastlines on the Adriatic Sea, pristine national parks, historic landmarks and quaint island villages, there is no wonder this Eastern European country was recently recognized as the Mediterranean’s fastest-growing travel destination… read more →

3 Things You Never Knew About Morocco • In Preparation For Your Morocco Yoga Retreat

May 3, 2016
0 Comment

Blending the magic of the Middle East with the traditions of the Berber people, distinct images often come to mind when you hear of the North African country of Morocco. Maybe you imagine the colorful markets, snake charmers and layered scents of spices – or perhaps you picture a sandy ride atop a lumbering camel… read more →

10 Reasons To Make Meditation a Part of Your Life

February 23, 2016
0 Comment

Meditation is essentially any practice that focuses your awareness to a degree that the busy mind quiets down, and you become simply aware of the present moment. Why is this simple act of presence so profound?  It’s not easy to explain in words—like other profound experiences in the life—it’s only in the experiencing that you understand meditation’s.. read more →

Yoga & Happiness — Boost Your Mood With Yoga!

Yoga relieves stress and boosts mood While all forms of activity are beneficial for your mental wellness, there is something special about yoga. If you find that you can’t relax during other forms of exercise, yoga is the ideal choice of activity. Stress often contributes to depressed mood, but research shows that yoga can effectively reduce.. read more →

Exotic Locations • Morocco Yoga Retreat

March 8, 2015
0 Comment

My sister Katherine and I visited Morocco recently to scout the perfect exotic location to hold our first Morocco Yoga retreat—that special kind of place where simplicity and luxury meet in natural harmony. When we venture into a new location, it’s with a lot of thought and inquiry as to whether it has that ‘magical.. read more →