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Top Yoga Destinations For The Traveling Yogi

Updated on March 3, 2012

Choosing The Best Yoga Destinations


Serious yoga practitioners often travel the world in search of the best yoga destinations wherein they can participate in an advanced level of practice and find ways to enrich their current practice. Those who have experienced the amazing transformation that yoga has done to their lives want to know more techniques that they can use on a daily basis for spiritual enhancement.

But if you are new to the idea of traveling to yoga destinations, finding them might prove to be a difficult undertaking. If you know anyone who has also traveled to a yoga destination before, you can seek recommendation. Or, you can go online and conduct an advanced search. Once you have gathered together some potential destinations, compare your choices based on your own personal goals. You will find that different destinations offer a unique experience, such that they focus on specific yoga styles. Then, you can decide from there where you are headed next for your yoga travel.

Dashama in Rishikesh India - Vinyasa Yoga by the Ganges River

Rishikesh

Rishikesh is a famous yoga destination for serious yoga practitioners and Rishikesh in India is probably one of those on top of the list. It is strategically nestled at the Himalayas, wherein the Parmarth Niketan is also located at the banks of the Ganges river. Those yogis who travel to India never fail to check out the holy city of Rishikesh and pay a visit to this institution. There are also several yoga camps found within the area, which is why foreign yogis flock to this city all throughout the year.

This has encouraged Swami Chidanand Saraswati to offer Enligsh yoga courses at Parmath Niketan to facilitate for the needs of foreign yoga practitioners. There are as much as 1,000 rooms inside the 8-acre facility to accommodate travelers from various parts of the world while they stay here for a certain period of time as they engage in intensive yoga courses.

Trivandrum

Trivandrum is the capital city of Kerala, wherein you will find the 12-acre wide Sivananda Yoga ashram. This place in India is surrounded by the Neyyar dam and lush forests, which make it an ideal place to perform yoga and get in touch with nature's beauty. The Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Dhanwantari Ashram was set up by Swami Sivananda's disciple, Swami Vishudevananda during 1977. Enrollees to this institution will get to experience an advanced form of yoga vacation that is highly structured.

Two week-long vacations are scheduled per month, but the peak period spans between November and April. In addition to teaching the basics and advanced courses on Sivananda yoga, participants are treated to lectures on ayurveda, philosophy, special culture, or get to enter into a fitness camp.

Mysore

Mysore is a city located within Bangalore in India, which is known to be home to several palaces and fountains. However, the main attraction here for yogis is the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute wherein several foreign yoga tourists come here in various times of the year. This institution was first put up by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, which like B.K.S. Iyengar is a disciple of T Krishnamacharya.

Jois postulated the vinsaya-style of Ashtanga yoga, which involved a combination of breathing exercises and dynamic movements in a fast paced routine. If you are interested to enter a course in this institute, it will usually span between 1-6 months. You can also enroll in Sanskrit classes to become more acquainted with the ancient yoga texts.

Chennai

Chennai is located in the south of India wherein you will find the Krishnamacharya Yoga Mandiram. This institution uniquely focuses on the viniyoga style of yoga, which is a gentle brand of yoga. Here, you will find the engineer-turned-disciple for T.Krishnamacharya T.K.V. Desikachar who is one of several proponents to holistic yoga.

If you wish to enter in the courses offered within this institute, there are five elements to the course that will be taught within a four-week period. These elements include physical exercise, therapy, meditation, and breathing. If you are interested, the best times of the year to avail of this yoga course program is during months of February and September. During March, the institution also offers intensive courses on specific meditation and healing using various aspects of yoga.

Pune

If you are a serious yoga practitioner, then this is one of the best places to visit as a yoga destination. The Ramani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute, in particular, is something that traveling yogis mostly check out in this Indian city. It is currently supervised by 90-year old B K S Iyengar, as well as his children, who is also considered the grand old man of yoga. In fact, it also enabled the establishment of the Iyengar school that placed emphasis on a thorough study of asanas and pranayama. This particular school taught students the unique ability to modify your yoga exercises according to the environmental factors, such that you can maximize benefits.

This particular institute has found its home in Pune, which is 155 kilometers away from Mumbai. This is an ideal place to visit for advanced level yoga students. So if you want to make the most of this trip, make sure you have enrolled in a basic Iyengar yoga school to be able to adapt to this practice. There are also courses offered for interested students, which typically cost around $450 and is usually month-long. But not everyone makes it into the class list and if you do make it, you will spend some of your time in Pune dedicating yourself to the learning of this specific yoga technique. There are skilled yoga gurus and masters that will teach students the technique of this style first-hand.

Yoga in Malibu, CA at Pt. Dune Beach Park

Other Yoga Destinations

For more ideas on other yoga destinations outside of India, consider the options listed below for your yoga vacation:

*Mexico – Many yogis have dubbed this as a yoga paradise, such that yoga retreats are commonly held in Mexico. It is rich in natural beauty, which allows one to reconnect with nature and facilitate in your effort to establish your inner self through the practice.

*Costa Rica – The coastal areas in Costa Rica make the perfect setting for your dream yoga vacation, which helps one attain peace of mind and nature's nourishing ability.

*California – If you live in the United States, there is no need to look further since you will find several yoga camps and destination within California. Yoga adventures and camps are typically held at the Grass Valley and Yosemite National Park.

Yoga Books on Amazon

Yoga Destination Video on Amazon

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