What’s on your travel wishlist? For yoga lovers, the answer might be a getaway that blends relaxation and rejuvenation – a place with calming scenery, vibrant energy and the possibility for adventure that invigorates your mind, body and soul.
From exotic locations like India and Greece, to local retreats like Byron Bay and Mt Baw Baw, there are plenty of stunning destinations to choose from that will give you just that. Whether you’re seeking a yoga retreat, a wellness getaway or an outdoor adventure, travel and yoga fit hand in hand quite nicely.
Over the past decade the number of Australians who practice yoga has more than doubled, from 910,000 to 1,836,000 people. And when it comes to choosing travel destinations, these yoga participants are often attracted to different places than the average Australian, Roy Morgan Research has found.
“Travel doesn’t exist in a vacuum: our holiday choices are determined not only by practicalities such as budget and time constraints, but by our interests,” says Angela Smith from Roy Morgan Research. “Yoga is an interesting example, going beyond exercise to encompass spiritual and cultural traditions, and inspiring great devotion among its many participants.”
Top yoga travel destinations
Here are the top places yoga enthusiasts say they would like to holiday, compared to the population average:
As the birthplace of yoga, India is a natural attraction for those with a liking for sun salutations. With a colourful blend of chaotic cities and gorgeous scenery, India has something for travellers from all walks of life.
2. Victoria’s alpine region
Soak up the stunning surrounds of Mt Buffalo, Mt Baw Baw and Lake Mountain. The river valleys, snow-dusted peaks and crisp mountain air make the perfect backdrop for your warrior poses.
3. Victoria’s Spa Country
Rest and relaxation are calling – Daylesford, Hepburn Springs and the Macedon Ranges are home to Australia’s largest concentration of natural mineral springs. Breathe in the purifying air, wander through serene forests, and indulge in rejuvenating spa treatments.
4. Gold Coast Hinterland
Find some real peace and quiet among the mountains, valleys and waterfalls of South East Queensland. Discover the tranquil beauty of this pocket of nature and enjoy bushwalking, bird watching, and other outdoor activities.
Away from the parties of Kuta Beach, there’s a wealth of serenity to be found across Indonesia. Whether you want to bask on the sand or focus on your practice, there are plenty of yoga retreats and eco-resort villages to choose from. Tip: try Gili Trawangan, a quiet island sanctuary between Bali and Lombok.
6. Northern New South Wales
For a relaxing beach retreat with loads of vibrant local energy, escape to the Far North Coast, Byron Bay, Tweed Heads, Lismore or Grafton. The vibe is chilled and the coast is breathtaking.
There’s nothing like pure white sands and brilliant blue water to get you feeling inspired and at peace. Explore the islands and practice your tree pose while looking out over charming towns and colourful coastal scenes.
8. Latin America
With an alluring blend of sparkling beaches, lush jungles and vibrant city life, Central and South America have plenty to offer any traveller. Feel the rhythms and beats, wander through charming towns and soak up all the rich colours and flavours.
9. Cradle Mountain
Lose yourself in the World Heritage Tasmanian wilderness, full of glacial lakes, rugged mountains and calming streams. Relax in cosy lodge accommodation, or set out on the Overland Track for a real adventure.
10. Dandenong Ranges and Yarra Valley
Whether forests or vineyards are more your style, this pocket of Victoria offers a charming escape from city life. Summer or winter, explore quiet villages and secluded natural valleys, full of wildlife and greenery.
(Images: Mt Baw Baw: Alex Cohen; Lake Daylesford: Roger G; Gold Coast Hinterland: Justin Dunn; Byron Bay: Matteo Bondioli; Tulum: Bjorn Christian Torrissen; Cradle Mountain: Lc95; Dandenong Ranges: Nick Carson.)