Myth-Busting 101: Going on a yoga retreat


Over the several years that Exotic Yoga Retreats has been running successful travel yoga retreats around the world, our team has picked up on a few commonly touted misconceptions about yoga retreats. As we gear up for a glorious summer of sunshine, yoga, food, wine and luxury in Europe – where we run a number of much loved and quality holidays – we thought it prudent to clear the air and bust some of these yoga retreat myths.

1 | Only women go on yoga retreats.

Whilst the majority of our guests on retreats are women, it is not the case that there are only women on retreats. We frequently have male yogis and partners joining in too. This is particularly the case for our retreats over the Festive Season and New Years. In fact, in the past we have run couples retreats in glorious, romantic locations like the Greek Islands.

2 | Yoga retreats are for advanced yogis only.

This is probably the most commonly heard misconception, and it is so far from the truth. It is very normal to have people on retreats who are trying out yoga for the first time, or who have only done yoga a handful of times in their lives. It is also common for us to have people join in on our yoga holidays who are older, and less able bodied. The point is that our yoga instructors are skilled and accommodating. They are able to create a safe environment for yogis of all different levels. This means that those who are advanced and seeking to deepen their form and find new strength and poise, are accommodated for just as much as those who are building their foundations and exploring experiences for the first time.

Exotic Yoga Retreats on safari in Africa!

Exotic Yoga Retreats on safari in Africa!

3 | On yoga retreats you have to do several hours of yoga a day.

Yoga is fabulous for mind, body and soul – but we believe that too much yoga makes you miss out on all the other incredible experiences of life and travel. For this reason, after many years of experience, we have designed programs that have the perfect balance between yoga daily, and plenty of time to thrive in and discover the beauty of the world around. Some of our most loved retreats and holidays aredesigned for adventurous travellers – they include frequent cultural and nature excursions with expert local guides. Moreover, our yoga programs come with no strings attached – you join in when it suits you. If you wake up in a stunning suite overlooking the ocean in one of our top class luxury destinations, and fancy a lie in rather than a morning Vinyasa flow, this is completely fine and actually encouraged. We foster a ‘come as you are’, non-competitive vibe on yoga retreats and holidays, so you can do all the yoga sessions, or some, or none.

4 | Yoga retreats always entail fasting / detox / vegan only diets.

Whilst there are many yoga retreat organisers that do make rigid diet plans for retreats, this is not at all part of the Exotic Yoga Retreats ethos. We adore nourishing, balanced and delectable cuisines from around the world. Our handpicked locations are chosen with remarkable chefs and cuisine as a requirement. We make no rules or ‘diet plans’ for our guests, and all tribes, from carnivores, to gluten free, to vegan are welcome. As we select premium locations, we are able to meet your dietary requirements and ensure you get the food that makes your heart sing! Furthermore, we adore wine, and we curate experiences that include a ritual of toasting the beauty of a passing day with a glass of fine wine, or cocktail of your choice. This embrace of all things vital and divine is part of our philosophy of ‘healthy hedonism’.

La Bella Vita in Tuscany – our annual pilgrimage to Italy in summer!

La Bella Vita in Tuscany – our annual pilgrimage to Italy in summer!

5 | Yoga retreats are for deep personal journeys, not something for family and friends to join in.

We believe that a yoga retreat is an opportunity to recharge your batteries, gain vitality and ‘joie de vivre’, explore and taste the beauty of a stunning destination, and connect with like-minded cosmopolitan people. If it is important for you to do this as a solo journey, with plenty of calming alone time, then perfect, you will find our retreats accommodating of that desire. However, our holidays and retreats are very much about having fun and connecting with people, so it is absolutely appropriate and encouraged that couples, friends and families embark on our retreats together! 

6 | On a yoga retreat you are forced to adopt a certain degree of spirituals, or religious practices.

This myth is easy to bust! Whilst there are plenty of yoga retreats out there that adhere to particular lineages of spiritualism, Exotic Yoga Retreats is owned and run by a team of vibrant and divergent women who have no singular spiritual or religious adherence. We are all open-minded humanists, and we project no dogmas or beliefs on any of our retreat programs or guests.

Savour the joie de vivre of travel, vitality and yoga with us! View our retreat portfolio here.

Follow us and keep up with what’s hot on the Exotic Yoga Retreats horizon through our Instagram page.