Yoga in Costa Rica
With its natural wonders and focus on ecotourism, Costa Rica is a perfect place to experience beauty, adventure and health. The motto “Pura Vida,” means “pure life” and what better way to embrace this lifestyle than through wellness and yoga retreats. From the Caribbean to the Pacific Coast, there are limitless opportunities to balance mind, body and spirit. Yoga is about pampering your soul through breathing, meditation and stretching. Costa Rica’s idyllic setting is one of the best places to practice these physical and mental disciplines.
Today, many entrepreneurs have capitalized on the holistic lifestyle – from massage and yoga to ti-chi and palates. A benefit to this increased interest is that wellness programs are offered in most luxury hotels. Below is a list of some of Costa Rica’s leading yoga destinations.
Seven day retreats can cost as much as $2,000 but include accommodations, meals, yoga courses, massage, canopy tours, horseback riding, transportation to/from San Jose and hiking excursions. These relaxing and healing programs feature two daily yoga classes – one at sunrise and one at sunset. Although there are various teaching methods, licensed instructors here focus on Vinjasa and Hatha Yoga, which is ideal for beginners and intermediate students. Most teachers in this area are certified with the Yoga Alliance Association and have over ten years of experience.
Set on a lush hillside, local retreat centers have private bungalows with individual yoga classes starting at $12 per hour. Meditation courses are free of charge, and individual massages, outside of package deals, run about $50.
The more popular centers include free tours to the Braulio Carillo National Park followed by a relaxing massage and a Jacuzzi soak. The beaches on the Caribbean side are also great for diving, snorkeling and fishing.
Certified instructors offer a wide variety of approaches including Iyengar based Hatha Yoga, Power Yoga, Vinyasa Flow, and Anusara based classes. Courses take place at various settings including waterfalls, gardens and beaches. The leading yoga centers in Jaco also offer excursions for deep-sea fishing, sailing, river rafting, horseback riding, and canopying for no extra charge.