Recommended Retreats in Southeast Asia - book 2018 retreats!
Samahita retreat

Soul Seed Travel Guide: Recommended Retreats in Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia is abundant with healing and wellbeing retreats offering the perfect escape, and a chance to relax, practice yoga, meditate and focus on your health. When searching for retreats in Southeast Asia first consider which destination you wish to travel to – the four most popular being Bali, Sri Lanka, Thailand and India.

Then think about your health and wellness goals and what it is that you want to achieve. What kind of environment are you seeking? Would you prefer to be on the beach or somewhere cooler with more solitude in the mountains?. All these retreats in Southeast Asia have excellent spa’s or therapists on hand to provide you with healing treatments and massages. You’ll also be with some of the best yoga teachers in the world who can help you to deepen your practice.

Here’s the Soul Seed Travel recommended guide to retreats in Southeast Asia

THAILAND

KOH LANTA

Fitness Fusion Retreats at Layana Resort and Spa, Koh Lanta Yai Thailand

layana resort

Layana Resort & Spa is a luxurious adults-only hideaway set amidst the azure blue waters of the Andaman Sea, Koh Lanta Yai, an idyllic tropical island located in the South of Thailand with pristine beaches backed by lush tropical greenery and forested hills. Located on 3 kilometers of the white sandy Phra-Ae-Beach and harmonising with its secluded surroundings in a way that is distinctly Asian, Layana Resort & Spa blends pampered luxury with a fresh, open and natural ambience. Translated from the Sanskrit language “Layana” means “a pause in time”; in keeping with this ethos, Layana Resort & Spa is committed to creating an exclusive haven of luxury where the world revolves around you.

To extend our commitment to the luxury of time and rejuvenation power of an island holiday, we have just completed an ambitious upgrade and expansion of our wellness facilities. Guests can enjoy a completely new experience at our “Wellness Zone.” After an invigorating workout in our new and ultra-modern gym facilities or pre/post a soothing massage, refresh or take laps at the new wellness pool. The pool uses saltwater treatment, nature’s very own purifier and cleaning agent, which aids in skin recovery, is great for joint pain, and has far less irritants when compared to chlorinated pools. You will leave feeling revitalized and cleansed without the harsh side effects of chlorine.The half Olympic size lap pool is perfect for exercise sessions or just lounging while enjoying healthy refreshments from the brand new Healthy Juice Bar. Our Fusion Fitness retreat packages are offered for 4, 7 or 10 nights.

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KOH SAMUI

3,5 & 7 Day Spa & Wellness Retreats at Samahita

samahita retreat

Samahita Wellness Retreat in Koh Samui has been a pioneer in healthy programming for the body, breath and mind for almost 15 years. They are a dedicated center with a strong purpose: to provide a place in which to practice balanced and healthy living in all areas of our life! Their aim is to share this way of life with others. Known as one of the most authentic yoga teaching locations worldwide while introducing a balance of practices and activities for both body and mind that includes meditation and breath work as well as full cardio and core strength fitness routines.

Samahita offer 3, 5 and 7 day wellness spa programs offering the full benefits of their facilities including a health spa, yoga, plus your choice of treatments each day. They recommend a 7 day stay in order to get the most of the experience as it takes a few days just to let go. However, busy schedules can mean only a few days are available, so they offer 3 or 5 days to suit. You can also extend one of these program times on a daily basis adding on whichever therapies and health treatments you desire.

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Whilst you are in Koh Samui check out these 4 not to be missed healthy cafes recommended by Zanna Van Dijk. For a romantic evening dine in a Tree Top at Anantara, a treetop restaurant overlooking the incredible Samui coast. For beaches and cool and hip bars in Fisherman’s Village, Hammock Stories gives you the low down.

Absolute Sanctuary

Absolutely Sanctuary is Asia’s top wellness resort for fitness, health, lifestyle, weight management, yoga and yoga teacher training. They set the benchmark for effective wellness programs that will transform you to the best you and centers around your needs.. They are the creators of award winning guest experiences, the benefits of which will last a lifetime. Their crafted programs leverage on their expertise in yoga, pilates, core programs and healthy food programs from being part of ABSOLUTE YOU, the largest health and lifestyle brand in Thailand, to produce effective results.

This is the place to reconnect with yourself, recharge, revitalize and re-energize. The retreat boosts a world class yoga center with 2 fully equipped yoga studios. Since opening it has hosted numerous month long teacher trainings and yoga workshops conducted by yoga teachers from around the world including well known names such as Paul Grilley, Desiree Rumbaugh and Amy Ippoliti. ABSOLUTE YOU owns and operates ABSOLUTE YOGA, the largest yoga studio in Thailand with 10 yoga centers nationwide has used its years of experience in running a yoga business and teaching over 100,000 to build the perfect retreat center.

They take a holistic approach to wellness and their programs seek to address individual goals be it to detox, pamper, de-stress, manage your weight, change your lifestyle, indulge in either yoga or pilates on simply enjoy a meaningful holiday. With 12 different programs across 9 categories you will be spoilt for choice. All of the programs at Absolute Sanctuary are essentially about nurturing your mind, body and spirit.

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All Inclusive Detox Retreats at Samahita

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Add not just years to your life, but life to your years! Our all-inclusive detox programs help you to rediscover your vibrant health and well-being. Where necessary, these programs can also help target areas of imbalance in your life. From our range of detox and cleansing programs, to more focused weight loss and de-stress programs, our specially designed blend of treatments, nutrition and support ensure you meet your health goals.

At Samahita Koh Samui, the detox programs have been developed through years of personal experience and research. We do not use common off-the-shelf detox kits. Instead, we have carefully developed an Ayurvedic herbal detox formula, combined it with professional therapies, supplements, yoga practices and an optimal food and juice balance suited to your energy and toxicity level. We do not claim to be medical experts or offer such advice. As a leading Thailand Detox resort, we are, however, deeply immersed in healthy, holistic living and carry with us our experience of detox and balanced living. As a result we offer you a positive, purpose-built, complete and supportive environment in which to enjoy your detox program.

We personalize your detox retreat program taking your needs, goals and preferences into account and balancing them with our professional expertise to provide you with the perfect detoxing retreat experience. To get the most out of the process it is recommended to participate in a detox program for at least 7 to 10 days. One can continue a little longer if need be. However, we do offer program packages of 3 and 5 days also, ideal for a wellness weekend break. We understand people’s time limitations coupled with the desire to fit everything in, so encourage you to plan it out in advance. We offer 3, 5, 10 and 14 day detox retreat options. We also have a complete program that includes colon hydrotherapy sessions and a candida detox program.

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Christmas and New Year Retreat, 23 – 30 December, 30 December – 6 January

Samahita retreat

One of the best retreats in Southeast Asia, this Christmas and New Year holiday at Samahita integrates yoga and fitness to give you a great way to escape the commercial onslaught of the holiday season. Paul and his team will share in the task of teaching and guiding all guests across the range of yoga practices, core strength work and cycle classes. Yoga and its techniques cover a number of practices that include sitting meditation forms, focused breath work that develops into a pranayama practice, and the physical yoga practice of asana.

In addition we incorporate core strength sessions and cycle work outs. The aim is for you to experience and practice yoga across its spectrum, taking care of the mental and emotional side to the different aspects of the physical. Every morning involves sitting and breath work practices. This serves as a platform for all other activities. The physical yoga asana practice will be offered on a number of levels that includes experienced self-practice, guided vinyasa classes, explorative asana classes, and restorative afternoon sessions. Weaved into this schedule are different core classes in the morning and/or afternoon. We alternate the cycle classes between silent-sunrise classes to mid-afternoon fun-cycle classes. As is the case at Samahita, you are free to attend all sessions or choose those that are working for you on a particular day. Our intention is for you to feel uplifted and clear in what to practice by the time you end the retreat.

There will be a Christmas Eve celebration with special gourmet feast and performances and fundraiser for our local charities. On New Year’s Eve there will be a special ceremony to acknowledge 2018 and welcome in 2019 as well as a feast and performances. The special ceremony will help you close and heal the past year, setting the energy and intention for the year coming with an impetus to follow through on it. Come and really enjoy a genuine holiday break from the ‘holidays’.

DETAILS & PRICING

The top 3 Healthy Places to eat in Koh Samui by Purely B.

For some tips on the unspoiled Thai Islands that don’t suffer from over-crowding and are ready and waiting to welcome tourists to their empty, untouched beaches, check out this guide.

PHUKET

3, 5 and 7 day Yoga Packages at Amatara Wellness Resort, Phuket

Amatara Wellness Resort is the new benchmark for life enhancing wellness experience in a luxury resort setting. Tucked away in a quiet corner of this idyllic island, Cape Panwa overlooking a secluded bay lapped by the turquoise Andaman Sea, our concept is helping you to reach a new level of happiness through balancing your body and mind through healthy activities, diet and blissful treatments to allow a new level of happiness in and to find the pure joy in every moment. This is the kind of happiness that lasts a lifetime.

This retreat is your own perfect, personalized yoga sanctuary. It’s a wonderful chance to explore and deepen your yoga practice, and is individually customized to cater for both beginners and advanced yoga practitioners. Yoga offers so many wonderful benefits, on physical, mental and emotional levels. Studies have found it to offer real solutions to insomnia, digestive complaints, fatigue and stress, just to name a few benefits. Keeping both body and mind supple, strong and balanced, yoga can truly be called and anti-aging and life-enhancing practice.

In your personalized retreat, we offer a balance of daily physical asana practice, meditation, philosophy, and the tools and means to allow you to continue your practice with confidence when you return home. Your personalized yoga retreat also includes sessions that teach present-mindedness, allowing you to let go of stress and really be in the present moment, listening and observing with an open mind and heart. It is our sincere hope that this serves to enhance your life as you bring your practice off your mat and into daily living.

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INDIA

The Leela Goa, luxury beach resort

Soul Seed Travel Guide: Yoga, detox and meditation retreats in India

The Leela Goa is a fabulous 5 star luxurious beach resort which spreads across 75 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens on the southern tip of Goa. The entire resort, from architectural elements to heavenly gardens represents an intriguing fusion of Colonial Portugal with modern India, giving the guests a cultural experience that is truly Indian.

Located just off the beach, The Spa offers an extensive selection of holistic and Ayurveda spa treatments. Relax, revitalise and rejuvenate. Considered the most natural path to holistic health, Ayurveda is the ancient science of preventive medicine and healthcare that focuses on getting the human body to arrive at perfect harmony with the universe around us.

Ayurveda is based on how the five elements of nature—ether, air, fire, water and earth—organise themselves in our body to form doshas like vata, pitha and kapha. The science attempts to balance the relationship between four of the core aspects of life—atma, the soul; manas, the mind; indriya, the senses; and sharira, the body.

Some of the recommended therapies here include Abhyanga, with one therapist; synchronised Abhyanga, with two therapists simultaneously; traditional full body massage; Sirodhara warm-oil massage; and Ayurvedic back massage. You can also sign up for other localised treatments for various parts of the body.

Get a taste of paradise by staying at this breathtaking resort. Relax in the swimming pool, enjoy a pampering treatment at the spa, opt for a yoga lesson, play some golf, tennis or volleyball and enjoy opulent accommodation amid tropical settings.

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Alila Diwa Spa resort, Goa

Soul Seed Travel Guide: Yoga, detox and meditation retreats in India

Explore in and around South Goa, a land of swaying palms, white sands, sparkling waters, emerald green paddy fields and eternally clement weather.

Picture a fitness boot-camp with creature comforts and seaside views – that’s Bio Resurge for you. It is a private ‘clinic’ housed at the Alila Diwa resort, located on the idyllic Majorda beach in the south of Goa. An exclusive institution that allows just 10 clients at a time, it promotes comprehensive health through its weight-loss programme. Developed by Glen Schirmer, an Australian fitness guru who has trained tennis champs and Olympic athletes, the 28-day wellness/fitness programme at the clinic focuses on helping individuals regain health, and reverse “health pathologies” by gaining as much lean body mass (LBM) as possible while losing maximum body fat via massages, workouts, power walks and healthy eating.

Lose yourself in a world of sheer indulgence at Spa Alila. Revel in an array of treatments and therapies at the hands of our expert staff and emerge completely relaxed and energised! Inspired by the age-old healing traditions of Ayurveda, Spa Alila also offers bespoke programmes crafted to your body constitution and wellness requirements.

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Ananda in the Himalayas

Soul Seed Travel Guide: Yoga, detox and meditation retreats in India

Ananda is an award-winning luxury destination spa resort in India situated at the Himalayan foothills in Northern India. Located on a 100 acre Maharaja’s Palace Estate, Ananda is surrounded by graceful Sal forests and overlooks the spiritual town of Rishikesh and the Ganges river valley. Ananda, one of the best luxury ayurvedic retreats in India, integrates traditional Ayurveda, Yoga and Vedanta with international wellness experiences, fitness and healthy organic cuisine to restore balance and harmonize energy.

An expansive spa spread across 25000 sq. ft. with its 24 treatment rooms, state of the art gymnasium, outdoor temperature-controlled swimming pool and luxurious hydrotherapy facilities is the centre of attention at Ananda. The spa featuring more than 80 body and beauty experiences integrates traditional Indian wellness practices of Ayurveda and Yoga with the best of international wellness experiences at the best destination spa in India. The personalized therapy and activities program are designed to meet individual needs and health goals – de-stress, detoxification and cleansing, deep relaxation, anti-ageing, weight & inch loss, while also offering guidance in the areas of nutrition and active fitness. A team of qualified nutritionists, Western & Ayurvedic physicians, spa therapists, Yoga and Fitness experts all gently guide towards a better lifestyle at this Himalayan spa and wellness retreat.

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Search for the best vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Kerala on the Happy Cow app.

Travel advice and inside knowledge of travelling to India from the Telegraph. 

Read our guide to the Best Retreats in India.

BALI

21 Day Assist Chronic Disease Retreat

retreats in southeast Asia

This 21 day assist chronic disease retreat program is for anyone with health challenges and may be especially helpful for those with chronic symptoms that have not been improving or need some nutritional and other complimentary input. 21 days is enough time to change a habit, including the habit of what we eat. You will be assisted with this by 15 days of juicing and elixers only, then slowly reintroducing foods, starting with a raw food platter, then daily vegetarian meals. Allowing you to detoxify your body in a safe and gentle environment where they are aware of your specific health needs, you will learn new eating habits that you can continue with back home.

Some examples of health issues that have been improved are pre diabetes, type 2 diabetes, thyroid issues, stress of mind and body, post-surgery, adrenal fatigue, chronic pain and sleep issues. This program includes daily yoga, far infra red sauna, colonic hydrotherapy, practitioner consultations, meditation and breathing, plus some great excursions.

DETAILS & PRICING

You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to healthy eating in Bali. Check out the HEALTHY EATING GUIDE from The Fit Traveller.

UBUD

Re-Discover Balance Retreat – Yoga and Ayurveda, Ubud 15th – 22nd September

Join Justin Robertshaw and Caroline Pontual as they hold a 7 day Yoga and Ayurveda retreat in lush and beautiful surroundings of Swasti Eco centre in Ubud, Bali. The retreat has an amazing content as well as plenty of free time to relax and will include daily led yoga classes, ayurveda treatment package (1 massage and 1 treatment), meditation and Pranayama workshops, a traditional Balinese water ceremony and waterfall visit and ayurveda consultations for each student so they know their Prakriti (biological and mental constitution) and vikriti (current state of health) and from there knowing how to balance their lifestyle more effectively through yoga asana (having better knowledge on which postures are better for them based on their individual constitutions), meditation, right diet and lifestyle. This knowledge can be then used during the retreat and also once the retreat has finished and empowers the participants to integrate into their daily lives going forwards.

This exclusive retreat will only have limited spaces available to allow a high level of teacher attention and support for all students. The peaceful retreat venue is ideally located just a short walk away from the magical arts and crafts village of Ubud with its well known market and the famous Monkey Forrest. Beautiful rice paddy views are close by with the Balinese volcanos in the backdrop. Justin and Caroline are two highly experienced yoga teachers with over 13 years of teaching and 21 years of practice experience between them and they welcome students of all levels from all around the world to their retreats and workshops.

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Embracing Your Self: A Sacred Journey to Bali Yoga Retreat, 17th – 24th June

We invite you to join us in a sacred journey dedicated to the spirit and grace of Bali as we embrace our Self, our deepest beauty nature. In that embrace, mystery and transformation quicken and dance! Bali herself is a sensual feast, filled with wonder and light. She has been called by many names, including the “dawning of the world.” Let us ask her to illuminate us, so that we may walk in our beautiful nature and reflect our light into the world.

Imagine soaking in this lush emerald green land of Bali, full of majestic volcanoes and terraced rice fields. Experience the sacredness of Balinese daily rituals and traditions, colorful ceremonies and daily devotions, reflecting their deep reverence for life and spirit. We will partake in these celebrations and they will awaken in you the beauty and possibilities in your life. Embrace your self in this land steeped in the energy of transformation and joyful connection.

Together we will create a circle of abundance, compassion and support as we weave together our stories, wisdom and experiences. By learning to listen and discern our inner landscape, we deepen intuition and clarity and learn to find balance and harmony in our lives.

Circle and yoga class are in a beautiful circular pavilion with 360 degree views of bamboo forest. Our retreat center has a fresh water pool, spa treatments, Ayurvedic massage, nature walks, treks in the jungle, meditation, Balinese dance lessons and more if you so desire. Or take the time to sit in meditation, tranquility and silence on your private veranda where you will enjoy stunning views of the beautiful landscaped gardens and forest during unstructured time. From your veranda you might glimpse monkeys in their natural habitat and hear the chirping of a thousand birds or frogs composing a melodious symphony of natural sounds.

We are planning three half-day journeys all close to the retreat center. One trip is to a traditional Balinese village, home of sacred white cows, where we will visit a temple, meet local artisans and see the countryside. Another day we will travel to Ubud, the cultural and spiritual center of Bali. Our last day, we will learn how to make traditional flower offerings and participate in a Balinese purification ritual and blessing ceremony at a nearby temple and waterfall where we will immerse ourselves in the purest water in Bali.

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Simply Juicy Detox Retreat

bali vitality

The Simply Juicy Detox Retreat is a great introduction to juicing and detox for improving your health, taking time out for you, and reducing some weight. Let the wellness team at Bali Vitality take care of you! With their special detox cold pressed organic vegetable juices throughout the day, some wheat grass juice and in the evening warm alkalizing vegetable broth, your body will start to cleanse and release toxins, excess weight, and in general you will start to feel more energetic. Their Balinese Hindu guide will take you to partake in the special Holy Water Cleansing at Tirta Empul, where you will be able to enter the holy waters and cleanse in the traditional way. There are plenty of daily spa treatments to choose from to pamper and relax you, and far infra red saunas – fabulous for detox and feeling a deep sense of relaxation.

The retreat centre is located a 10-minute drive from Ubud in the charming Balinese village of Pejeng. Bali Vitaly are a boutique style retreat with a maximum capacity of 7 guests, ensuring your comfort at all times.

DETAILS & PRICING

For Healthy Eats in Ubud, check out the 13 healthiest cafes from Stella Muse.

Read our guide to the Best Retreats in Bali.

MALDIVES

COMO Maalfushi Luxury Spa Hotel

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COMO Shambhala Retreat at COMO Maalifushi is the embodiment of a philosophy for healthy living that COMO Shambhala has successfully refined at its award-winning retreats all over the world. The COMO Shambhala experience combines Asian-based therapies, nutrition, exercise and yoga with a results-driven agenda managed by experts in holistic health. For yoga lovers there is an indoor studio and outdoor pavilion which hold classes daily.

COMO Maalifushi is an island resort from COMO Hotels and Resorts. Located in the sparkling turquoise waters of the Maldives’ southerly Thaa Atoll, featuring a mix of 66 land and over-water suites and villas. Created by Japanese architect Koichiro Ikebuchi, the design references indigenous architecture, but its sophisticated, understated style reflects the island’s tranquil setting. COMO Maalifushi is the perfect combination with COMO Cocoa Island, COMO’s original property in the Maldives, providing the opportunity to island-hop between the two resorts.

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An unforgettable wellness journey in the Maldives – 12 nights Spa and Wellness Experiences in 5 resorts

CAMBODIA

SIEM REAP

Navutu Dreams Resort and Wellness Retreat

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Tucked-away in a village within 5 minutes from the Old Market in the colonial French Quarters of Siem Reap, is the beautiful oasis that is Navutu Dreams. With 28 rooms and suites housed in low slung chalet on a hectare and half of gardens speckled with 3 swimming pools, it is the only upscale resort and wellness retreat in Angkor. This is where detoxing or a mini-break can easily be a part of a relaxing holiday highlighted with a visit to Angkor Wat which is a mere 30 minutes driving distance from the resort. Well regarded for its private retreats; whether it be for a detox of the mind, a detox for the body or a yoga mini-break. Retreats for individuals or couples can range from 1-7 days. The resort is also able to bespoke retreats for individuals or small groups.

Navutu Dreams has a core team of seasoned wellness practitioners who have crafted programs designed to detox the body, the mind or both. Yoga classes are available three time a day, each day of the week. Private bodyworks, breath-work, yoga, meditation or even partner yoga sessions can easily be arranged. Traditional Chinese medicine is also available at the resort. Within its menu are services for acupuncture, shiatsu, cupping and auriculotherapy. Alternative healing is also readily on-hand. Reiki, Crystal Healing, Tibetan Bowl Sound Bath and the resort’s signature BreathLightBliss which is a combination of these plus breath-work.

Destination-inspired activities also include forest bathing or the practice of ‘’Shinrin-yoku’’ in a selected path at the Angkor Archaeological Park and sunrise meditation within the grounds of 9th century temple on a hill over-looking the Tonle Sap Lake.

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SRI LANKA

Sen Wellness Sanctuary

sen wellness sri lanka

The Sen Wellness Sanctuary is a small, peaceful and modest retreat in a nature reserve set between a lagoon and the ocean in the south of Sri Lanka. It is the perfect place to immerse yourself in natural beauty and relax and rejuvenate your body and mind. The Sanctuary offers Yoga and Ayurveda retreats all year round and hosts detox retreats and special Signature retreats a few times a year. Founder Sam Kankanamge, is a world-renowned Osteopath who runs a clinic in London as well as hosting the signature retreats at the Sanctuary himself.

The Sanctuary offers Kundalini Yoga and other yoga styles in twice daily classes that mark sunrise and sunset. The gentle rhythm of the sanctuary and the pared back approach and architecture of the place allow for a genuine retreat. The focus here is on rest and connection with nature and oneself. The eclectic and fascinating selection of books available are perfect to fill your time between yoga, treatments and walks on the beach. You’ll be encouraged to put away your devices as much as possible and allow for a digital detox too.

Meals at the sanctuary are genuinely healthy, in keeping with Ayuverdic principles and delicious. A mostly vegetarian offering, the dairy and wheat free menu enables you to transform your body from the inside during your stay. Guest leave feeling lighter and clearer from the effects of the diet, the teas and the fresh coconut juice served daily. Breath of Life Retreat sanctuary in Sri Lanka welcomes you to come and experience fantastic yoga instruction in a stunning Sri Lankan setting.

We tailor our retreats to your needs, allowing you to have more control over how you enjoy your time. We offer twice daily yoga, meditation, Ayurvedic consultations and treatments, as well as osteopathy. Our retreats allow you to relax, rebalance and rejuvenate in a peaceful, healing environment in our natural sanctuary. With our retreat sanctuary in the mangrove forest by the beach, we invite our guests to reconnect with nature and feel the vital energy of Sri Lanka.

DETAILS & PRICING

If you’re vegan then check out The Vegan Guide to Sri Lanka by the Vegan Quest

 

Flights to Southeast Asia

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For the latest travel inspiration follow us on Instagram @soulseedtravel. Get in touch with our of our wellness travel advisors to help you find, discover and book your perfect retreat. Namaste!

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