The Happiness Nation
Prepare yourself for something entirely different . . . High in the Himalayan mountains between India and Tibet, Bhutan is the only country in the world that measures its progress by Gross National Happiness! On this 11-day luxury Bhutan Yoga Retreat, we journey through mystical mountains, sacred temples and a richly preserved culture, exploring Bhutan alongside the local people, discovering their unique perspectives and enjoying the light of their inspiring spirits!
Temples, Festival & Treks
PARO • HOT STONE BATH & PARO VILLAGE
Site of the Bhutan’s only international airport, Paro has a population of just 11,500! We stay at a charming former Bhutanese royal retreat, where we begin with a gentle unwinding yoga practice outside under prayer flags, with a view to the Paro Valley below. Meet your fellow yogis at our welcome dinner of Bhutanese food in its finest traditional expression! In the following days, we dig into history and culture at the National Museum and a massive dzong (monastery-fortress), but there’s also plenty of time to wander Paro, take a siesta or enjoy a hot stone bath. We end our days with a rejuvenating restorative yoga and pranayama practice followed by a healthy dinner, served family-style.
THIMPHU • CITY & TRADITIONAL LIFE
From our base at Terma Linca Spa Resort, a few miles outside of Bhutan’s capital, we have an opportunity to learn about how Bhutanese people have adapted their culture to the 21st century. Make an exciting two-hour trek into pine and rhododendron forests to reach a hilltop monastery, where we join the monks in their chants and meditation. The Thimphu festival activities an absolute must; Imagine stunning cultural dress, dance, music, food and colour! Before leaving Thimphu, we pay homage to the world’s largest golden Buddha, Dordenma: 169 feet tall and filled with 125,000 small Buddha statues.
PUNAKHA • WILD TEMPLE OF THE DIVINE MADMAN
We cross a 10,300-foot pass to the lush Punakha Valley, famous for rice cultivation. Our base is a family resort set among the green rice paddies, with beautiful views from our yoga shala. We trek to the so-called Temple of the Divine Madman, built in 1499. It is one of Bhutan’s most sacred temples — and, as you will see, also a bit funny! On day 7, we explore the dazzling Punakha Dzong, a massive complex that is one of Bhutan’s architectural treasures.
5-Star ZHIWA LING • TREK TO TIGER’S NEST
If skies are clear, we trade our usual morning yoga for a river adventure! Then we travel back to Paro town, where we spend our final three nights at the stunning five-star Zhiwa Ling Heritage resort, set on 11 acres of meadows and mountains. Luxuriate at the hotel spa, practice yoga in the fully equipped studio, meditate in the temple or pick any beautiful spot, indoors or out, to relax and enjoy your retreat time as you wish! Weather permitting, we also trek up to Paro Taktsang, the famous Tiger’s Nest Monastery, clinging to a mountainside 2,700 feet above the valley. On our last evening, we have our closing yoga practice and farewell group dinner, celebrating our new friends and new perspectives from this sacred time together.
October 1—11, 2019
Paro • Thimphu • Punakha
Bhutan Retreat Features:
- 10-night / 11-day fully escorted tour
- Learn: from our beloved local guide, Dorji, and private driver, Tenzin
- Connect: meditate with Buddhist monks
- Rest in beauty: four unique hotels blend Bhutanese craftsmanship and modern amenities
- Deepen your practice: one or two daily yoga classes, with beautiful views
- Ascend: hike up to historic temples
- Explore: go dancing in Thimpu and rafting on Bhutan’s “mother river”
- Celebrate: Join thousands of locals in a world-renowned cultural festival
- Experience: a culture of joy, kindness and beauty!
The retreat begins in Bangkok, where we meet to catch our flight to Paro, Bhutan. We will travel on the same flight as a group, which can be booked though our Bhutanese guide. Your visa requirements will also be taken care of in advance by our guide.
OCTOBER 1 – 11
All internal travel and transfers will be organised by our trusted guide, who will meet the group upon arrival at Paro Airport. Sit back, de-stress, and soak up the gorgeous scenery and cultural journey.
We will be transported back to Paro Airport, where we will board our return flight to Bangkok. You are then able to catch your onward travel from there.
OUR BHUTAN YOGA HOLIDAY INCLUDES:
- Bhutan visa
- Bhutan guide and driver
- All internal transfers and transport
- 10 Nights luxury accommodation
- All meals
- 1-2 yoga classes daily with Nina Butler
- All entrance fees and excursions
- Gratuities for guide and driver
- International flights, to/from Paro, Bhutan
- Alcoholic beverages
- Spa services in hotels
RESERVE WITH $1,000
DEPOSIT – $1,000
Reserve your spot with a $1,000 deposit. The deposit is non-refundable, however should you cancel your reservation 90 days or more in advance of the start of the retreat, you may apply your deposit toward another Exotic Yoga Retreat occurring within 12 months from the date of the initial retreat that you registered for.
FULL PAYMENT DUE 90 DAYS IN ADVANCE
Full payment is due 90 days prior to the start date of the yoga retreat.
Please note that there will be no refunds or discounts for arriving late, leaving early, flight cancellations, travel delays or illness. If you cancel your participation in a retreat for any reason, the cancellation policy below will apply, with no exceptions. We wish we could compensate people for unforeseen circumstances (injury, family emergency, etc), but we have costs already incurred when reserving retreat centers and hotels. We have designed our cancellation policy to be as compassionate as possible in the case that your plans change. But to protect yourself further, we strongly encourage you to purchase travel insurance.
IF YOU CANCEL YOUR RETREAT
–90 days or more prior to the start of the yoga retreat, you receive: 100% credit of the cost of the full retreat toward another Exotic Yoga Retreat within 12 months.
–31-90 days prior to the start of the yoga retreat, you receive: 50% credit of the cost of the full retreat toward another Exotic Yoga Retreat within 12 months, and will forfeit the remainder.
–0-30 days prior to the start of the yoga retreat, you receive: no refunds or credits will be given.
To officially cancel, you must send an email TO EYR stating that you wish to cancel to.
IF WE CANCEL THE RETREAT
We have never had to cancel a retreat, however, if we do cancel a trip due too few participants, we will refund to you all deposits and payments you have paid. We cannot however compensate you for airfare or travel costs incurred. In the unlikely event that Exotic Yoga Retreats must cancel a yoga retreat due to weather, natural disaster or political upheaval, we cannot guarantee a refund – it will be depending on receiving a refund from the venue / tour operator we work with. To cover these risks, we highly recommend you purchase travel insurance.
The best way to protect yourself from any unforeseen circumstance is to purchase trip insurance. Depending on the type of Travel Insurance, it can protect you in case of:
–you cancel your participation in the yoga retreat
—the retreat is cancelled due to weather, natural disaster, or not enough participants to run the trip
–medical expenses and the cost of repatriation should you become ill or injured