The Wellness Traveller’s Guide to Portugal: The Best Yoga Holidays & Spa Break to escape to

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Portugal is packed with striking landscapes, exceptional beaches and surfing, vibrant culture and some wonderful yoga retreats and wellness resorts.

The great thing about going on a retreat in Portugal is that you can first spend a few days in one of the cities. Take some time to immerse yourself in the local culture, explore the historical sights, meander the cobbled streets and enjoy the mediterranean cuisine. Then get ready to head off to a popular yoga & surf retreat on the coast or meditation escape in the mountains?

In this guide we will cover a selection of retreats that are easily accessible from the cities of Lisbon, Porto and Faro. Read our Lisbon Wellbeing Guide here. EasyJet have flights direct from London to all three cities which you can search for and book here.

Retreats

Vale De Moses

Location: Vale de Moses is located in the heart of the Portuguese mountains.

Mood: A tranquil, serene, family run yoga retreat perfect for those in need of a break, rest and relaxation.

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Vale de Moses is a family run yoga retreat in the heart of the Portuguese mountains. Spend a week or more practicing yoga, receiving massage and acupuncture treatments, walking in forests, swimming in natural river pools and eating delicious nutritious food.

Stay in one of the beautifully restored stone cottages, Soulpads or in a Tipi.  Our retreat home is perfect for those in need of a break, rest and relaxation. We are surrounded by nature and forests, peace and tranquility – the perfect ingredients to restore your body and mind.

The combination of good food and sleep, clean mountain air and water, therapeutic massage and acupuncture, hill walking and river swimming, all create a highly restorative context in which to begin, or to deepen, your yoga practice.

Soulfully reconnect with our planet and with your own body. This warm invitation to deepen your love affair with yoga, is open for everyone, travelling alone or with friends, new to yoga or practicing for decades. Most of our retreats at Vale de Moses include morning and afternoon classes, a health consultation, massage/acupuncture treatment, 3 nourishing daily meals and a trip to the nearby Rio Zêzere. Read more.

Digital Detox Retreat

Location: Located just outside of Lisbon Cascais may be the most charming beach town in Portugal.

Mood: Get ready to unwind, recharge and reconnect with yourself and the world without any devices, in order to invigorate, repurpose and balance your personal and professional life.

Feeling overwhelmed, looking for a break from always being on the go, and glued to the digital world? The key to living well in a high tech world is to use much less technology.

Our retreat in Cascais, Portugal provides a solution for busy change makers, decision makers and action takers who seek balance, clarity and peace in their daily life.

We offer an opportunity to unwind, relax in a 5 star environment offering privacy ( max 8 per retreat), an individual approach with daily yoga classes and skill development workshops to nourish body and mind. Our team of experts will lead your digital detox journey for a completely unique and truly holistic wellness experience.

The immersive 4-day experience can be life-changing! If you are into yoga, self- development, enjoy comfortable and relaxing settings, want to develop yourself, and regain inner balance in a company of mindful entrepreneurs this might be the best retreat investment you have ever done.

Get ready to unwind, recharge and reconnect with yourself and the world without any devices, in order to invigorate, repurpose and balance your personal and professional life, all whilst spending quality time in a secluded, luxurious environment in the Portuguese Riviera. Read more.

Beginners Surf + Yoga Retreat

Location: A private villa perched in the hills of the Algarve

Mood: A holistic, nature-based retreat to reconnect you to your heart and spirit

What sets this retreat apart from others is the unique magic of your host, Meaghan O’Herron, a limitless ray of sunshine. She is a Spiritual Awakening Mentor, Reiki Master, yogi, budding-surfer, and joyful being. Simply by being in her presence, you are held in the warm ocean of her arms as she guides you on your path toward healing.

Spend a week in a luxurious setting: an ocean view boutique villa with a pool, just a few minutes walk from the beach. Practice yoga and meditation daily, learn how to surf, enjoy three holistic meals each day, and explore the cobblestone fishing villages by bike.

You’ll practice vinyasa yoga and meditation in the morning, or restorative yoga in the late afternoon. After a nourishing breakfast, you will and your fellow retreaters will be picked up by your surf coaches and head to the best beginner surf spot that day. You will have a long morning session, hang out on the beach, and enjoy a vitalising lunch right on the sand. Then, you will head out for another short session in the afternoon.

Snacks and drinks are available back at your private villa each afternoon, and there are many opportunities to wind down and hang out. In the evenings, at your communal table looking over the ocean, your private chef serves you all a delicious dinner together with the freshest ingredients and local catch.

Everything, of course, is always optional. You could skip everything and just take a towel, a piece of fruit, and your book to the beach across the way. Group workshops, moon circles, and journaling activities hosted by Meaghan will also be available. Read more

Raw Food Summer Yoga Retreats

Location: These raw food summer yoga retreats in Portugal are located on the edge of the Sao Bartolomeu de Messines/Silves nature reserve in the Algarve.

Mood: This is the perfect chance for you to relax into nature, unplug from the world, restore and reset.

Are you ready to retreat to a place where you can completely rest, reset and let go and enjoy chef prepared plant based cuisine at its finest with a splash of yoga, and more? These raw food summer yoga retreats in Portugal are located on the edge of the Sao Bartolomeu de Messines/Silves nature reserve in the Algarve.

Expect a nourishing, exclusive, intimate and unique week of restful bliss. With my experienced team of yogis and therapists, I will guide you through a beautiful week. This is the perfect chance for you to relax into nature, unplug from the world, restore and reset.

We’ll create some wonderful dishes together and indulge in the preparation of incredible foods. Being an experienced yogi is not a prerequisite, all you will need for this stunning week of yoga is the will to explore and embrace a high vibrational flow.

There will be daily kitchen classes on raw food, yoga and holistic sessions. They are completely at your leisure, so if you just want to relax by the plunge pool and wait to be fed, that’s ok too. It’s your holiday!

Dine al fresco by the river each night and be ready for spectacular sunsets, evening workshops, meditation sessions, incredible food, cacao ceremonies and much more. Leave feeling rested, rebooted and filled with a new zest for life! Read more.

Yoga, Meditation and Relaxation Retreat

Location: The Azores … an archipelago in the middle of the Atlantic, consisting of 9 volcanic islands.

Mood: Spend time healing the body, mind and soul with meditation, nature and yoga

Join us on this special retreat in Azorean nature. This all-inclusive vacation at São Miguel Island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean will bring your body, mind and soul into peace and harmony. With daily yoga, different kinds of meditation, energetic treatments, coaching, awareness, personal growth and delicious meals.

The retreat are led in small groups of a maximum of  7 people. During the week you will stay in a private house with ocean views and a large garden where the yoga and meditation classes take place and delicious meals. Our private driver will bring you to the most beautiful nature spots of the island where meditations will be offered along with several walks and trails in silence.

During the week there will be enough time for yourself: to go for whale and dolphin spotting, to visit the capital Ponta Delgada, to take a swim in the ocean, to go to the beautiful beach or to do whatever you like to do. Read more.

Yoga Surf Holidays

Location: Quinta do Vale da Lama is an Eco retreat centre where nature and her needs have taken main stage. It’s located a 20 minute drive away from Lagos.

Mood: For those who want to express this joy through their relationship to nature, open spaces, wind and yes, a surfboard!

surf yoga retreat portugal

This retreat will offer you the opportunity to combine the wonderful surf of the Portuguese South West coast with a healing and insightful yoga practice.

Surfing is awesome, everyone will tell you that, whether you are a beginner or a seasoned surfer, the ocean doesn’t care; it will play with you and remind you of the child inside.

The famous surfer Clay Marzo says it very beautifully: ‘Waves are toys from God’. What not so many people will tell you is that it is also a hard art. The ocean is extremely powerful and we are small creatures, so we do take a bit of a beating every time we get out there. A small price to pay, but a price non-the less.

Yoga will give you the opportunity to enjoy this week without breaking your body. We’ll stretch and warm you up for the ride in the mornings and take care of your happily exhausted bodies at the end of the day with a wonderful restorative and relaxing session. You’ll come back home with a giant smile, a tan and a new understanding of how amazing this yoga stuff really can be. Read more.

Raw Food Detox & Fitness Bootcamp

Location: Set in the beachy hills of Portugal’s gorgeous Vale do Lobo with its green and lush landscapes

Mood: Run on the beach. Rest by the pool. Dine in style. Discover clean eating and learn how to prepare some of the finest raw foods dishes available.

Join a well-known raw food chef on this Algarve raw food detox and fitness retreat in Portugal. This is an incredible beach-side experience that will quite literally take your breath away. Set in the beachy hills of Portugal’s gorgeous Vale do Lobo with its green and lush landscapes.

With an experienced team of experts and therapists, you will be guided through a full raw food detox. This is the perfect chance for you to relax into nature, unplug from the world, restore and reset.

Feeling fit and bendy is no entry qualification here. In fact we encourage those with a range of fitness levels. Haven’t seen your toes in years? Welcome. Preparing for your next marathon? No problem. We encourage inclusivity and our training style means that we ALL finish the program together.

Run on the beach. Rest by the pool. Dine in style. Discover clean eating and learn how to prepare some of the finest raw foods dishes available.

Picture yourself exploring raw foods while staying in a wonderful villa in the sunshine of Portugal, safe in the knowledge that your fitness is in the hands of experts as they challenge you to move towards your own personal goals. Read more.

Classic Yoga Retreat

Location: Quinta do Vale da Lama is an Eco retreat centre where nature and her needs have taken main stage. It’s located a 20 minute drive away from Lagos.

Mood: This retreat is an overview of all that yoga has to offer. It can be considered a crash course for the beginner or curious new comer or also an opportunity to develop depth for the seasoned practitioner.

yoga retreat Portugal

Hatha flow, alignment, yin yoga, pranayama, meditation and yoga psychology. A classic yoga retreat for those of you with a regular practice or with the intention of starting one. A week’s course that will give you the base to build your spiritual practice on or, if you already have one, the perfect opportunity to go deeper.

Our classic yoga retreat is where all the elements of the yoga practice will be explained and explored in a simple yet profound way. This retreat is an overview of all that yoga has to offer. It can be considered a crash course for the beginner or curious new comer or also an opportunity to develop depth for the seasoned practitioner.

We have two daily practices, morning and evening, where asana, meditation and breath are explained slowly and thoroughly, both in moving and still sessions, giving you the perfect chance to establish a solid foundation for your future practice.

We will also include assisted self practice sessions along the week to help you design your routine for when you are back home and inspiration to carry on with a meaningful yoga practice for the months to come. Read more.

Open Mind Yoga & Mindfulness Retreat

Location: The retreat centre is located in the midst of Portugal’s most beautiful nature, within the Natural Reservation Park of Costa Vicentin

Mood: A mindfulness-based retreat integrating heart and compassion practices

You may know the feeling of your mind being open, fully present, and full of possibilities while letting life flow through you…those moments of fun, succeeding in something, or being on vacation.

But what about the other moments? The ones in which life doesn’t go as planned or in which you get caught up in an automatic doing mode, thoughts, or feelings? How do you tune in on a space of openness and clarity, watching the waves of life, without being thrown in the sea? This is what the Open Mind Retreat is all about.

Opening to an observational space that doesn’t try to change stories, opinions, judgments, and feelings, but simply – and more profoundly – cuts through it.

During this retreat you will also learn to unravel the mechanisms of your subconscious, so that you can gain a deeper insight into the true causes of suffering and happiness instead of combatting symptoms or search for quick fixes.

This retreat is not just a vacation. It’s also not a yoga vacation in which you will have two hours of yoga and some occasional meditation, it’s a journey within yourself with meditations, different practices, context theory, sharings and reflections. This allows you to get in touch with an open awareness for all layers: brain, mind, body, and heart. Read more.

Mindfulness and Yin Yoga Retreats

Location: Quinta do Vale da Lama is an Eco retreat centre where nature and her needs have taken main stage. It’s located a 20 minute drive away from Lagos.

Mood: For those going through a stressful life period or work situations who need to rest, heal and recharge their batteries.

Living in the world, balancing love, work, family, finances and health is not an easy feat. There are always incredible moments to be enjoyed but they are usually sustained and financed by long days of hard work. To maintain our health in such busy rhythm is often challenging and there are moments when one needs to take a break, a wholesome break, both for the body and the mind.

This retreat offers exactly that, quality yoga and mindfulness teachings, therapeutically holistic treatments, healthy food and lots of time and space for you to disconnect and reconnect.

A way that includes words like forgiveness, compassion, acceptance or empathy and at the same time the capacity to decline other people’s abusive behaviour.

Welcome to this unique opportunity to heal and open your heart, supported by the softest side of yoga and the loving guidance of Jenny and Igor. Read more.

Personal Yoga Retreat at a four star boutique hotel

Location: Boutique Hotel Vivenda Miranda is a beautiful small hotel perched atop the scenic coastline of Lagos in the West Algarve. The nearest airport is Faro which is approximately 50 minutes drive.

Mood: Re-balance mind, body and spirit, at the edge of Atlantic Ocean and return home feeling reconnected and totally relaxed.

Spend a week in tranquil surroundings to recharge and reconnect with your true self. Immerse into daily, instructor lead yoga sessions (all abilities welcome) before breakfast or towards sunset in the hotel’s mature Mediterranean cliff top gardens above Porto de Mós beach. The week’s focus being on meditation, breathing, purification, relaxation and study.

Experience the pleasures of the organic spa and enjoy complete relaxation with a Royal Ayurveda massage (90 min). In the evening enjoy tempting food choices that include vegan and raw options with sunset views. Re-balance mind, body and spirit, at the edge of Atlantic Ocean and return home feeling reconnected and totally relaxed. Read more.

Spa Hotels and Resorts

Algarve Spa and Health Club, Quinta do Lago Algarve

Located in the stylish Quinta do Lago, set within two thousand acres of the Ria Formosa National Park and just five minutes from the unspoilt beaches of the Algarve coastline, the Conrad Algarve Spa & Health Club is one of the most luxurious and desirable spas in Portugal, if not Europe.

A haven providing holistic therapies, combining meditation and relaxation, as well as special body treatments. This oasis of calm adopts a contemporary approach to rekindling your energy and rediscovering your spirit.

Forward-thinking and seductively opulent, the Conrad Spa is all about you, embracing and blending a holistic approach to your wellbeing using cutting-edge treatments and personalised treatment programs, delivered by intuitive therapists with expert hands.

Treating each individual as a whole; the treatment menu uniquely combines high touch and high tech disciplines that specifically target each guest’s individual needs and goals. Their Australian Intraceuticals brand is fantastic, try out on their oxygen-infused facials or uplifting Aromatherapy Associate oil massages.Outside the treatment rooms lie cabanas, ice fountains, experience showers, infinity pools and a world of natural sunshine.

Check availability

Longevity Luxury Spa and Wellness Resort, Armação de Pêra Portugal

Located on cliffs overlooking Praia das Gaivotas and the Atlantic Ocean, with direct access to a golden sand Algarvian beach, Vilalara Thalassa Resort features a luxurious spa, 6 outdoor pools and 2 restaurants. Spacious suites are surrounded by extensive landscaped gardens and 4 tennis courts.

Vilalara Longevity Thalassa & Medical Spa is a unique fusion of Thalassa, Spa and state of the art wellness and anti-ageing solutions. An integrated experience to help you relax, revitalise, reenergise and rejuvenate.

The resort has one of the best thalassotherapy centres in the world and offers a roster of fitness, detox, stress-management and weight-loss programmes. There are group-friendly boot camps and a hardcore 15-day Fast Slimming and Detox plan.  A fleet of doctors, nutritionists and fitness trainers is at your disposal.

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Four Seasons Spa Hotel Ritz Lisbon

The Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon is one of the most regal hotels in the city with private terraces, elegant restaurants and a giant gym on the roof with a wraparound view. It was built in 1959 by the dictator Salazar to prove that Lisbon could do luxury as well as any other European capital. More than half a century later it is still setting the bar.

The spa is undoubtedly the best in Lisbon, with an 18-metre lap pool as its centre piece. Products are from Sodashi, Swiss Perfection and ESPA; manicures use Spa Ritual’s vegan nail care products. Four treatments rooms offer treatments such as honey and almond scrub, the four handed “Symphony massage” and facials from Swiss Perfection, which deliver effective anti-ageing treatments.

The 11th floor fitness area features an outdoor running track overlooking Lisbon and the indoor swimming pool overlooks the hotel gardens and Lisbon’s Eduardo VII Park. Not a bad place to work out from and be inspired and motivated by the views! Highly qualified trainers are available to help guests explore the latest trends in exercise.

Featuring three floor-to-ceiling glass walls, the exercise room has a total area of 157 square metres (1,690 square feet), and offers up-to-the-minute equipment including treadmills, bicycles and elliptical machines. With an area of 52 square meters (560 square feet) each, one of the studios is a fully-equipped Pilates room, and the other provides stands for resistance training.

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Altis Belém Hotel & Spa, Lisbon

Altis Belém Hotel & Spa is a 5 star design hotel in Lisbon, located in Belém overlooking the Tagus River, representing a contemporary view of the Golden Ages of Portugal during the discoveries in the 15th and 16th centuries. The hotel wows you with its striking architecture

The theme of the discoveries is intricately threaded throughout all of the hotel’s 50 luxury rooms (including 5 suites) absorbing and tempting you to embark on an exotic journey displayed in a series of illustrated wall panels, giving each room a bespoke atmosphere. A design hotel in Lisbon that allows you to go on a journey from Mauritania on the West coast of Africa, through Arabia, India, Siam, Osaka and across to the tropics via Brazil.

Here you can also find the Spa by Karin Herzog, an awarded signature spa that is unique in Portugal and where oxygen therapy and ancient oriental traditions of relaxation ensure the ultimate wellness for body and mind. As you dive into the rooftop pool with amazing views of the white city, feel the chilled out Iberian vibe drive out every last trace of worry.

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Private Villas

For ultimate privacy, stay is a luxury villa and we can assist you in creating your own bespoke experience.

Luxury Villa in Lagos

Experience contemporary luxury in the setting of a charming, traditional beach town at Villa Alegria. Set on a cliff over the village of Salema, this breathtaking vacation rental boasts views over one of the prettiest landscapes in the Algarve and a location just steps from the beach. Share a sun-splashed holiday with up to eight friends and family at this four-bedroom haven—or a honeymoon-style escape with your beloved.

Terraced gardens set into the hillside offer sea views at every level. At the rooftop, you’ll find an expansive outdoor living area with a pool, lounging and dining areas, and a barbecue. Inside the villa, high-tech amenities range from a satellite TV and DVD player to Wi-Fi. Read more.

Portuguese Resort Villa near Beaches with Pool & Spa

Indulge in a stay at one of the Algarve’s most exclusive destinations at Vila Atlântico II. Part of the luxury Vila Vita Parc resort, this stylish retreat is close to golf, great dining and the golden-sand beaches lining the Portuguese coast.

Savour the Mediterranean sun from the villa’s expansive private terrace, which features a pool, al-fresco dining area and an ample supply of loungers. Inside the residence, you’ll find a satellite TV, DVD player, sound system and Wi-Fi. Guests are also welcome at the shared health club, putting green, tennis courts and spa at Vila Vita Parc. Read more.

Casa Fortunato, Lisbon

 

Hear the city-sounds of Lisbon from this eclectic and trendy building made for large groups. Start your morning with a yoga class. Then, a delicious breakfast. The dedicated villa staff will take care of everything.

At dinner, there’s formal seating for 20, and the option to bring in a private chef. Rather dine out? Head to the waterfront, Cais do Sodre, one of the best neighbourhoods for seafood.

Balancing contemporary with the traditional, Casa Fortunato shows off Lisbon’s rich history and cutting-edge style with its impressive versatility. Handwoven carpets from the markets of Morocco add pops of colour to the hardwood floors. Vibrantly textured walls make sure every room is exciting and unique. The property is decorated with original furnishings; some pieces are even family heirlooms. Read more.

Wellness Travel Tips

Happy Cow have an extensive list of vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Portugal.

Read Timeout’s article on the healthy restaurants in Lisbon and for those visiting Porto, the best Vegetarian and Vegan restaurants from the Culture Trip.

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Author: Editor