First to tell: When doing a yoga trip, I’m not all about incense sticks, playing drums or doing yoga naked in a circle of strangers. Because that’s what many people have in mind when I start talking about yoga retreats. Maybe those exist, but well, they are not my cup of tea either.
I’m rather looking for nice trips – alone or with some friends – to get away from the city, eat some healthy stuff and do some exercises.
Since I learned Yoga in India in 2009, I escape Germany to find a nice place to improve my skills at least once a year. My last destination: Morocco. A friend of mine, who I met when I studied in Bangalore, worked there for a few months and recommended that country to me.
But before you start planning the trip, I have some advice for you – which definitely shouldn’t keep you from visiting this country and it’s great yoga spots. It’s just one more reason why you should choose your retreat wisely and make a good choice.
Morocco is a vivid and colorful country with great beaches (where you can have a nice surf of course, too), incredible deserts and good oriental food with Tajines and Hummus. But as a girl: Don’t travel there all by yourself or to the countryside just with a bunch of blonde, obviously foreign girls – as I did. Most people there, especially when you go to the less touristic places, were not too welcoming to foreign women. Don’t get me wrong: I also met many nice and kind people in Morocco. But if you want to travel around and use local transportation, make sure there is a local or a travel guide with you to avoid annoying confrontations.
So better plan your trip carefully. And find here my list of beautiful yoga ressorts and destinations – from cosy houses to exclusive riads in the city – to go to:
1. A house on your own: Surf Maroc Villa Mandala – Taghazout
This town is very small but crowded with surfers, creatives and yoga people. It’s located in the north of Agadir where you also find the amazing “Villa Mandala”. This Villa has space for 21 people, so think about renting it with your friends and spend some time together there. But no worries, it’s also available for booking single or double rooms. From the Villa you can enjoy the view on the sea and enjoy great sunsets.
The yoga exercises are amazing (my picture above was taken there), because the international teachers are giving their lessons either on the balcony facing the sea or directly at the beach. Twice a day there are yoga lessons – in the morning and during the sunset – which you can join or go to have a surf lesson instead. Surf Maroc is very pleased to help you getting around Taghazout and find nice spots.
And one important thing for me: good food. Besides the local restaurants (which can be sometimes a bit packed), next door you find the nice restaurant ‘Cafe Mouja’ which also belongs to Surf Maroc and serves healthy dishes, superfoods and amazing fruit shakes.
Adress: Centre Ville, Taghazout, Taghazout, Morocco (surfmaroc.com)
2. The perfect resort: Paradis Plage – Morocco Coast
When you want to be totally on your own and spend some time apart from a town: A little bit more north up the coast you find the Paradis Plage Villa. It’s not just offering great suites or bungalows with a view on the sea, you also find there a spa and yoga facilities directly located at the beach. You can join the regular classes or book private yoga lessons which are taught by professionals or the resident Yogi Karim.
Another great thing at Paradise plage: The restaurants offer very healthy and also vegetarian food. They use local products, vegetables, fruits or for example honey, which they get from the local hives, to do their famous moroccan pancakes. And if you want to do something fancy for dinner, you book the nomad tent which is located at the beach.
Adress: Km 26 route d’Essaouira, Imi Ouaddar, 8000, Morocco (http://www.paradisplage.com/)
3. A calm yoga hideaway in the city: ZamZam Riad in Marrakesh
When you rather prefer, to not be fully isolated in an yoga resort, and you’re keen on also visiting the vivid city of Morocco: One of the beautifulest Riads in the Marrakesh is the ZamZam Riad. It is located in the Old Town Medina and is an exotic place but still a magical hideaway from the crowded streets.
The suites and rooms interior is as you dream of, when you think of Morocco. And the service there is great. Because the mixture of traditional and healthy food in the restaurant of the Riad is amazing and you also find a relaxing spa here. As you might know, the climate in Morocco is always nice, so you can use the rooftop terrace with it’s amazing view the whole year.
But coming back to the main focus of the article: At ZamZam Riad you can book your private yoga teacher who gives you lessons in the quiet atrium of the house. They offer full packages and know local professionals, who they recommend to you – suited to your yoga experience and interests.
And also very tempting: Here at ZamZam Riad they also take care of great food. Not by offering organic, local marmelades, sweets, fruits and dishes – they also do great cooking classes.
And if you want the opposite of the vivid city of Marrakesh and rather to try something really fancy, ZamZam Riad also has a great desert camp to visit. It is located 4 hourse drive from Marrakesh. Especially if you are a group this camp experience and you want to travel to Morocco between October and May (that’s when the camp takes place) – the Camp Adounia is totally worth booking, because you can also book an exclusive yoga teacher for your group during your stay.
Adress of ZamZam Riad: 107 Kaa El Mechraa, Marrakesh 40000, Morocco (www.riadzamzam.com)
Have a great trip.