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Take a Moment: Healing Retreats

Take a Moment: Healing Retreats
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BY MARY JANE HORTON

By the time we have reached middle age, there is no doubt, that we have experienced some heartbreak. Whether it is the ending of a marriage, a health issue, or missing kids who have left home, we all have reason to heal. And what could be better than just getting away from the same old routine for a week, or two, or even a month to let that healing begin. Here are some of the best locales in that world to do just that.

Surf Life Bali Yoga and Surf Retreats Even if you have never surfed, but want a totally new experience, this could be the trip for you. More than just surfing or yoga, these retreats, created by Rick Crowley, a surf and yoga instructor and cancer survivor, offer attendees a new lease on life. Crowley, who started with retreats for young adults who had gone through cancer treatment, presents a special combination of yoga, surfing, writing exercises, and thoughtful discussions along with meditation. And, of course, there is the untouched beauty of Bali as a backdrop. Retreats are a week long, and as Crowley says, “You have no idea what will happen. And you will get exactly what you need to grow.” http://www.isurflife.com.

SpiritQuest Retreats, Sedona Known as a location with a great spiritual sense, Sedona is thought to be in the center of a healing vortex. Native Americans have performed rituals here for hundreds of years and still do.  SpiritQuest Retreats will help you plan your own private intensive, or you can join one of their group retreats. Retreats range from one to 14 days and can include healing and shamanistic rituals, yoga, meditation, and spa treatments.  Attendees stay at local hotels and attend sessions with various practitioners at a retreat center that sits atop a convergence of key lines which connect four of the area’s most important power sites: Cathedral Butte, Airport Mesa, Thunder Mountain and Boynton Canyon. Among the sessions offered are: a sacred vortex journey, walking labyrinth meditation, chakra and energy work, massage and more. Treatments combine ancient wisdom with modern techniques, and feature an amazing group of practitioners, healers, spiritual guides and visionaries. http://retreatsinsedona.com/

Atsumi Retreat Healing Center, Phuket, Thailand This is a great place to go for hardcore detoxing and cleansing. Atsumi healing is a multidiscipline approach based on detoxing and fasting; it uses both energetic bodywork and a linguistic approach that recognizes the power of touch, tone and language to heal, prevent and restore harmony to an individual. A stay at the center includes such activities and treatments as: yoga, herbs, shiatsu, reflexology, acupuncture, Reiki, and lots of other healing techniques. The Atsumi Healing Center is situated in a very secluded spot in the south of Phuket Island. Surrounded by tall rubber trees, it is far away from roads, traffic noise, and tourist activities. This environment offers peace and quiet for contemplation, meditation, and connecting with nature. Guests also have the option of attending the healing program here while staying at another area hotel. Phuket Island is Thailand’s largest island; it is connected by the mainland by bridges, but is a world away from civilization with spectacular tropical scenery and warm blue water. http://www.atsumihealing.com/

A subtropical rainforest in southern state of Karnataka, India, is the setting of Vivanta by Taj – Madikeri, Coorg. It is a five-hour drive from the major city of Bangalore, at an altitude of 4,000 feet. Coorg is one of India’s famous travel destinations and has been called the Scotland of India for its misty mountainous atmosphere. With exotic treatments by local practitioners, guests feel like they have left the stress of the “real” world physically – as well as mentally. The retreat’s ancient Indian Ayurveda Panchakarma Therapy cleanses the body of toxins, while relaxing the mind. Treatment suites all have a treetop view, each with a steam room and shower. Jiva’s signature offering, a wood-fired Gudda bath (hot water poured over the body in a picturesque outdoor pavilion), is a traditional healing practice in Coorg households. The optimum stay is two weeks, which includes consultation with an Ayurvedic physician and rituals of yoga, chanting and meditation. http://www.tajhotels.com/

The medical director of Natur-Med Hot Springs and Health Resort in the Samsom Mountains of Turkey, about four miles away from Aegean Coast, went to medical school in Germany, studied traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture. Under his tutelage, this venue – the first health retreat in Turkey — offers an amazing number of treatments including: ozone therapy, colon therapy, massage, magnetic therapy, infrared sauna, and – of course – Turkish baths. Detoxing is the theme here, and the treatments are said to be helpful for anti aging, weight loss, pain, smoking cessation, depression, and skin diseases such as eczema, psoriasis, and acne. Two to three weeks is the optimal stay and guests replace red meat with seafood, vegetables, fruit, grain and dairy. They learn new ways to exercise and breath for optimum health, they do extensive exercises that make them sweat in the sea and the expansive national park nearby. And, finally, they relax in thermal pools. Other downtime activities include yoga, facials and nature walks. http://www.natur-med.com.tr/defaultEN.aspx

Called “a refuge for the soul,” Hollyhock, a non-profit center for learning and wellbeing, in Cortes Island, British Columbia, is a great place to go if you want intellectual stimulation on your retreat. The gorgeous natural setting is an ideal backdrop for people who want to heal and transform. The island sits at the entrance to Desolation Sound, and is one of the Discovery Islands. It is filled with placid lakes, beaches and rugged gorges and is one of several islands that form the north end of the Strait of Georgia, between the glaciers of Vancouver Island and the Coast Mountain range of the Canadian mainland. The center, which was founded in 1983, offers intellectual and spiritual speakers along with organic food, writing workshops, and bodywork sessions. There are lots of ways to keep active as well, such as hiking, kayaking, and yoga. Some of the upcoming sessions include: mindful movement, yoga therapy, dream work, tools for transformation, energy medicine, and digital story telling. And there are practical sessions as well, including effective grant writing. There is literally something for everyone here. Accommodations are varied and range all the way from a private, beach facing room to dorm-style lodging. http://www.hollyhock.ca/cms/index.cfm

 

 

 

 

 

 

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