Yoga Retreat with Susan
$2999 per person
RETREAT SOLD OUT!
Susan Clarke and I are delighted to let you know that all of the spots for our yoga retreat – planned for Mindo in November 2023 – are now full.
Two new yoga retreats are being planned for April 2023 (April 1 – 9, 2023 & April 15 – 23, 2023), so please get in touch if interested in exploring one of those.
This information is for the benefit of those registered for the yoga retreat in November:
Here is a recap on some of the most important information:
- Mindo is one of the world’s top birding destinations — a “megadiverse” zone that is also on the map for its amazing butterflies, orchids, chocolate, waterfalls, and adrenaline sports – all of which you will have the opportunity to explore.
- The safe little off-the-beaten-path village of about 3,000 inhabitants is located in a deep valley just two hours’ drive from Quito.
- Mindo offers a few small pharmacies that have most of what you might need, as well as some little shops to pick up souvenirs.
- There is no ATM in Mindo (although there used to be), so best to take some cash for any personal spending.
- Mindo is set at just the right altitude (1,250 metres above sea level) to offer a lovely climate and yet still remains high enough to be free from tropical disease. That means that unless you are planning to do travel in Ecuador beyond the retreat itinerary, no extra shots or medications (such as for malaria prevention) are necessary – beyond your Covid vaccinations.
- There are limited medical services offered at a small health centre right in Mindo, a small hospital 25 minutes away, a hospital with more sophisticated care levels located an hour away, and excellent medical services (all specialties/diagnostics/levels of care) available two hours away in Quito.
- My humble little retreat centre is set almost right on the Equator line, alongside a rushing river high up in the Andes where the temperature is perfect all year round (22-24C during the day and mid-teens at night).
- Our only neighbours are the artisanal chocolate factory on one side, the river on the other, and lots of birds!
- Our simple yet comfortable lodgings are quite removed from Mindo’s hustle and bustle, even though it is only a short walk (just a few minutes) to the village’s central park and main street. If for any reason that short walk is too much, a car can easily be arranged to take you where you need to go.
- Wildlife abounds on the property, including varieties of hummingbirds at the feeders, different species of tanagers hanging out in the fruit trees, occasional Mountain Toucans, geckos, and a resident family of ‘guatusas’ (beaver-like mammals with a tiny tail).
- For those who have stayed in Mindo before, I should note that my sister-in-law, Paola, has made some lovely upgrades to some of the rooms.
- If you have issues with stairs or otherwise, I will do my best to accommodate your needs with an appropriate room selection – we even have a few rooms that are fully accessible.
- Our Wi-Fi connection throughout the property is usually excellent (strong enough for Zoom calls, etc.).
- All meals will be privately catered on site by my dear friend, Chef Tim – who is extraordinary in the kitchen. This allows for the preparation of fresh options, such as salads, and for you to choose your portion size.
- One dinner will be off site – right next door at the chocolate factory – as that is a special meal we don’t want you to miss out on.
- Any food allergies or other food intolerances can be easily accommodated by Chef Tim. Just reach out to me privately to discuss.
- The covered open-air dining space where your meals will be served sits just a short walk from all accommodations. Sand flies love bare ankles there… (I will have repellent options).
- From the moment we pick you up at the airport in Quito to the moment we drop you off again, every detail will be taken care of for you.
- The various activities will be arranged around your timeline and energy level – always as an invitation to participate or not.
- Susan will teach two sessions of yoga daily – in the morning and again late afternoon.
- In addition to Susan’s yoga classes, it is my pleasure to teach some meditation sessions.
- Other activities included in the retreat:
- An overnight stay at the lovely hotel, Casa Montero, upon arrival in Quito. The family-owned hotel is a short walk to all the best parts of the city. Quito was the first city in the world to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.
- A guided walking tour of some of the historic centre’s most beautiful squares and buildings (day two).
- A stop to visit Intiñan – an open-air museum on the Equator – to try out some fun experiments that only work there, and to learn about Ecuador’s diverse cultures.
- A tour of the Mariposario – the local butterfly sanctuary. Butterflies naturally thrive in the Mindo Valley and are imported to butterfly gardens worldwide. The only thing better than watching them dry off their new wings is having them land all over you.
- A tour of an Orchid Garden to see some of the over 4,200 species found in this country – a magnifying glass is included for the really tiny ones.
- A visit to Mindo Lindo – Pedro and Heike’s private nature reserve to learn all about the life of trees growing in the cloud forest, ending in spectacular hummingbird watching.
- A visit to a more distant nature reserve higher up in the cloud forest, where owner, Vinicio, has trained the hummingbirds to eat from your hand – literally. The best feeling ever…!
- Two chocolate tours at our next-door neighbour, El Quetzal, the local artisanal chocolate factory. On the first tour, you get to see chocolate produced from bean to bar. On the second tour, you will have the opportunity to make it yourself, roasting the beans over an open fire, as the ancient Mayans did. Both tours include yummy sampling.
- Other optional activities during your free time include different birding trip options, hiking options, spa services, and adrenaline-pumping activities. All of these can be booked while there, but feel free to ask for more information on anything that may be of interest (such as trying out the new bicycle ride on a wire perhaps….perhaps not?).
- 9-Day all inclusive yoga retreat cost = 2,999 CAD*
- *includes all taxes, accommodations, airport transfers, three meals a day all privately catered on site, all yoga classes and other activities detailed above, validated carbon offsets of your return international flight, and an English-speaking retreat leader who will help to ensure it all goes smoothly (me).
- *price does not include your return international airfare, alcoholic beverages or expenditures of a personal nature.
- A lifetime deposit* of $500.00 CAD per person is required at time of booking to reserve your spot (*lifetime deposits can be used for any EarthTreks travel offerings, and be shared with family or friends to use at any time in the future).
- Balance of your payment will be due two calendar months prior to retreat start date.
- Payments can be made by credit card or e-transfer via PayPal (I will send you an invoice to pay – please wait for that).
- There is no single supplement for this trip, and rooms will be distributed appropriately, on a first-come-first-served basis.
- Your return international flight will likely cost between $800 – 1,000 CAD and I will be happy to help you make those arrangements when the time comes.
- Although you are welcome to bring your favourite yoga mat, yoga mats will be available for your use, noting the outdoor yoga studio is right on site.
- Ecuador makes a lot of things easy – it is in the same time zone as Ontario (from Nov-Mar), they use the same electricity/plugs, and their currency is the $USD.
- I will provide a comprehensive packing list and am happy to answer questions any time about any aspect of the retreat not covered above.
- A traditional Ecuadorian blanket will be provided to you upon your arrival in Mindo to keep you warm during savasana – and to take home with you as a souvenir at the end.
I look forward to spending time with you in my home in Mindo next November!
IncludedAccommodationsActivities (detailed in itinerary)Airport Transfer (Arrival)Airport Transfer (Departure)All TaxesAll Transportation (including internal flights, when applicable)English-speaking Tour LeaderMeals (detailed in itinerary)
Not IncludedDrinks, Alcoholic BeveragesPersonal ExpendituresReturn International Airfare