How many times have you returned to Singapore from a holiday feeling like you need another vacation to get over your vacation? Although many would beg to differ, a holiday away doesn’t necessarily mean you have to eat and drink everything in sight or push yourself to the limit with an excess of sightseeing, shopping, socialising, and sleepless nights. If you want to come back feeling refreshed, recharged, healthier and fitter than before you left, a wellness retreat is a perfect solution. So without further ado, let us introduce you to some of the best in Southeast Asia where you can catch some zen and strengthen your mind, body, and soul. Can you say relax?
Barberyn Reef Ayurveda Resort
Flush out toxins and promote good health at the Barberyn Reef Ayurveda Resort, where daily hatha yoga classes are combined with traditional ayurvedic health treatments like herbal medicines, acupuncture, and massage. When you’re not cleansing the body and de-stressing the mind, bliss out on the golden sandy shores of the resort beach, we can’t think of anything we’d rather be doing than swinging on a hammock underneath swaying palm trees **sigh**. Alternatively head into the nearby town of Galle to take in some fascinating Sri Lankan culture and arts.
Barberyn Reef Ayurveda Resort, Beruwala, Sri Lanka, p: +94 34 22 76036
Surf Goddess Retreats, Indonesia
Sorry guys, but this one’s just for the ladies. Designed with active gals in mind, Surf Goddess Retreats is a week-long health and well-being program in Bali that includes daily surf lessons, yoga sessions, unlimited spa treatments, organic meals, and accommodation in a gorgeous sanctuary in the heart of stylish Seminyak. Plus you get a slew of extras like access to the Bali Fitness Centre, digital photos of you riding the waves, the Surf Goddess Retreats cookbook, a one-day excursion of your choice, and much more.
Surf Goddess Retreats, Seminyak, Bali, Indonesia. p. +61 8 9467 9887
The Farm, Philippines
There’s a real back-to-nature vibe going on at The Farm, a gorgeous holistic wellness retreat in the middle of the rainforest in Batangas, Philippines. The resort consistently wins accolades for their medically-guided programmes that cover everything from detoxing to de-stressing, weight management, and sports recovery. Each programme begins with a consultation and check-up by a holistic doctor and includes accommodation in a luxe villa, vegan and raw food meals, and healing treatments like therapeutic baths, detoxifying body wraps, and massages.
The Farm, 119 Barangay Tipakan, 4217 Lipa City, Batangas, Philippines. p. +632 884 8074
With daily yoga and pilates classes, evening meditation sessions, spa treatments, healing therapies, and workshops, The Sanctuary offers the entire health package at its beautiful beach resort on Koh Phangan which can only be accessed by boat. Get your downward dog on three times a day or join other workout sessions if you’d rather; the amount of classes you choose to take is entirely up to you. For those who want something a bit more disciplined, The Sanctuary also offers intensive retreats and yoga teacher training courses
The Sanctuary, Koh Phangan, Thailand, p: +66 012 713 614
Fivelements, Puri Ahimsa
Nestled on the banks of the Ayung River just a few kilometres outside of Ubud, Fivelements is a holistic healing centre where the focus is on ancient Balinese therapies like massage and chakra cleansing, sacred arts like yoga, meditation, and somatic therapy, and healthy eating with raw living foods. The yoga classes here take place in a massive bamboo structure that is open to the breezes, and after class, you can stroll through the gardens, take a dip in one of the water healing pools, or chill out in your private riverside suite and listen to the wind rustle through the coconut trees. Sounds dreamy to us!
Fivelements, Mambal, Bali, Indonesia, p: +62 361 469 260
This peaceful beach boutique resort offers intensive yoga classes, retreats, workshops and teacher training programs. However, you don’t have to be an experienced yogi to join in; there are plenty of options for beginners, amateurs, and experts alike. Each program is personalised to your unique needs, and you can combine your daily classes with healthy cooking classes, meditation, reiki, healing spa therapies, and excursions to the Buddhist temples nearby. As an added bonus, the resort has many eco-friendly initiatives in place like rainwater harvesting and solar power. Be warned: smoking and alcohol is forbidden on site.
Samahita Retreat, Koh Samui, Thailand, p: +66 77 920 090
Hariharalaya Retreat Center
Get in touch with nature as you find your balance on a five-day retreat at Hariharalaya Retreat Center in the Khmer countryside just a short drive from the ancient temples of Angkor. The retreat includes 10 yoga classes, two meditation sessions per day, three healthy vegan meals a day, accommodation, and course materials like the Hariharalaya Vegan Cookbook and the Foundations of Stillness by Joel Altman. Although you have a set daily schedule for practice, there is still plenty of free time to explore the surrounding area, lounge by the pool, or do some painting or sketching in the art studio on site.
Hariharalaya Retreat Center, Siem Reap, Cambodia, p: (855) 071 463 6028
Mandala Ou, Laos
It may not be as glam as some of the other resorts in this roundup, but Mandala Ou is a perfectly pleasant bungalow resort set on the banks of the peaceful Nam Ou River, which flows past dramatic limestone karsts. On set weeks throughout the year, they offer comprehensive yoga retreats that include daily practice in the yoga sala overlooking the river, meditation sessions, philosophy discussions, dinner buffets that cater to all diets, and plenty of free time to chill out in the infinity pool and explore the natural surroundings.
Mandala Ou, Nong Khiaw, Laos, p. +856 30 537 7332
The award-winning Kamalaya on Koh Samui is centred around an ancient cave that was once used by Buddhist monks as a spiritual meditation retreat. Here you’ll find a range of wellness programmes that focus on the foundations for a healthy lifestyle, detox, stress and burnout relief, emotional balance and yoga. You can also get in touch with them to have their experienced naturopaths design your own personal programme based on your unique health and fitness goals.
Kamalaya, Koh Samui, Thailand, p: +66 (0)77 429 800
Situated just steps from the South China Sea in Da Nang, Fusion Maia was created with healthy lifestyles in mind. This all-villa resort includes complimentary spa treatments in the nightly rate, as well as daily activities like morning workouts, yoga classes, meditation sessions, beach walks and wellness consultations. They also offer vegan wellness retreats with bonuses like fresh plant-based cuisine three times a day, a dedicated spa concierge, three spa treatments daily, cooking classes, tai chi sessions, and excursions to historic Hoi An nearby.
Fusion Mala, Da Nang, Vietnam, p: +84 236 3967 999
Sukhavati Ayurvedic Retreat & Spa, Indonesia
Built into the side of a steep hill that slopes down to a gently flowing river, Sukhavati Retreat is a tranquil spot to bliss out and find your balance. The Ayurvedic programmes make use of natural methods to alleviate health problems, purify the body, and clear the mind. Start each day with meditation, yoga, and a healthy vegetarian meal before meeting with the resident Ayurvedic doctor to plan soothing spa treatments and herbal medicines tailored to your constitution. Programs range from the one-day Taste of Ayurveda programme up to the 22-day complete rejuvenation retreat.
Sukhavati Ayurvedic Retreat & Spa, Banjar Bebengan Tangeb, Abianbase, Mengwi, Bali, Indonesia. p. +62 (0)361 900 6128
COMO Shambhala Estate
COMO Shambhala Estate call themselves a ‘Retreat for Change’, which is a pretty apt slogan considering it offers entirely immersive well-being experiences in a serene jungly garden setting just north of Ubud, Bali. Its wellness programmes include nutritious meal plans created by the resident dietician, holistic spa treatments, ayurvedic and oriental medicine, and fitness activities like daily yoga and pilates classes, cycling trips through the rice fields, and hiking trips up the slopes of volcanoes. Whether you’re looking to let go of stress, lose weight, or find a better mind-body balance, the wellness experts at COMO have got you covered.
Como Shambala, Ubud, Bali, p: +62 361 972448
Langkawi Yoga, Malaysia
Set in the midst of emerald green rice paddies, Langkawi Yoga takes a relaxed and down-to-earth approach to their yoga retreats, so there’s a great mix of energising yoga classes and much needed ‘you’ time. The three and five-day programs feature yoga practice twice daily, luxurious massages, tours into the jungles and along the coast, and delicious vegetarian fare that doesn’t skimp on the flavor. The retreat centre offers charming cottages set in the rainforest, but you can also choose from a range of alternative accommodations to suit your budget.
Langkawi Yoga, Jalan Pantai Tengah, Langkawi, Malaysia. p. +60 196 520 683
Chiva Som, Thailand
Once a humble family home, Chiva Som is now a sprawling wellness sanctuary spread across seven acres of tropical greenery next to the Gulf of Thailand. Choose from an array of retreats including yoga, cranial relief, and cell vitality, then add on treatments and activities that align with your goals. Accommodation options include luxurious Thai pavilions and oceanside rooms and suites with private Jacuzzis. The resort also boasts a gym, dance studio, yoga sala, tai chi pavilion, kinesis room, and a Watsu pool.
Chiva Som, 73/4 Petchkasem Road, Hua Hin, Thailand. p. +66 (0) 3253 6536
Six Senses Krabey Island, Cambodia (slate to open 1 Feb 2019)
Spread over 12 hectares of lush jungle and oceanfront property on its own private island, Six Senses Krabey Island has everything you need to rest, recharge, and recalibrate. Each stand-alone villa has its own private pool and offers plenty of privacy, while the outdoor fitness circuit, oceanfront boardwalk, and state-of-the-art fitness centre make it easy to get out and get moving. Delve into the Six Senses Integrated Wellness programme for healing spa treatments, nourishing cuisine, yoga classes, and even a sleep programme.
Six Senses Krabey Island, Koh Krabey, Preah Sihanouk Province, Cambodia. p. +855 69 944 888
REVIVO Wellness Resort, Bali, Indonesia
Just opened earlier this year, REVIVO Wellness Resort has been gaining rave reviews for its bespoke wellness programmes that cater to each guest’s individual needs. Set in the seaside enclave of Nusa Dua in south Bali, the resort features luxurious suites and villas, a gourmet restaurant serving healthy, organic cuisine, and endless opportunities to rejuvenate the body and mind. Take for example the luxurious spa with infrared saunas, hydro jet Vichy shower beds, and a saltwater pool and the hybrid fitness studio for yoga, pilates, boxing, and martial arts.
REVIVO Wellness Resort, Jl. Desa Sawangan, Nusa Dua, Bali, Indonesia. p. +62 (0)361 301 1011
Hilton Shillim Estate Retreat & Spa, India
Escape to the hills at Hilton Shillim Estate Retreat & Spa, a luxurious hideaway on a mountain overlooking a lake. Each of the Forest View Villas has its own private treatment room, but you’ll definitely be spending time in the world-class spa as well. Here Ayurvedic doctors will help you put together a personalised wellness programme featuring a selection from the 80 holistic treatments on offer. You can also take part in tons of fitness activities like aqua aerobics, horseback riding, and pilates classes.
Hilton Shillim Estate Retreat & Spa, Village Shilimb, Pune, India. p. +91 2114 712 468