From India, Costa Rica, St. Lucia and even at home in Byron Bay, these couples health and fitness retreats will connect you with mind, body and soul – and with your partner.
2020 is the year of self-love, finding one’s health groove and getting the most out of life. That mantra doesn’t have to stop on Valentine’s Day, ideal for couples and love, yet not so much for the waistline, when the usual diet consists of chocolates and champagne.
This year, instead of a traditional wine and dine date, why not opt for a healthier alternative, that still ignites the flame?
Health and fitness retreats, designed especially with couples in mind, are some of the best ways to not only reconnect with a partner, but to reconnect with one’s self and maintain a wholesome dose of self-love, fitness and health.
With activities such as spa and detox days, local sight-seeing to diverse temples, and intense workouts, these global retreats are an ideal way to make a Valentine’s Day to remember.
Ideal for: Adventurous couples who want to experience local culture
A country steeped in tradition, India is an ideal getaway for those looking to get off the beaten track and experience local culture far different from what is at home.
This ten-day wellness tour will take couples on a walking adventure through Northern India, with a large focus on yoga and healing practices to nourish and revitalise the body and soul.
Daily walking tours include visits to sites such as the Bharat Mandir Temple, Golden Temple and Dalai Lama Temple, as well as a Nalagarh Fort and Village walk. After days of discovering, connect and ground with ‘recovery moments’ including Hatha yoga, Ashram Yoga, Dharamshala Yoga, as well as Rishikesh Ashram meditation and an Aarti ceremony, a Hindu religious ritual.
Accommodation is in the form of local hotels in Amritsar, Delhi, Rishikesh, Nalagarh and Dharamsala, steeping in Indian décor and inspiration. An Ashram stay provides the ultimate exposure to tradition; a spiritual hermitage or monastery that truly allows one to connect with their inner selves while hearing the stories and lives of the locals.
Prices start from $3,360 per person and include accommodation, breakfast and arrival transfer.
Ideal for: Fit couples who love a challenge
The Caribbean island of St. Lucia is a lush tropical escape, the island marked by volcanic beaches, reef-diving sites and luxury resorts amongst traditional fishing villages.
It’s the perfect place to engage in a fitness holiday, where beach laying is swapped for kettlebell swinging.
The FitnessFusion program offers either 4, 7 or 10-day all-inclusive escapes, tailored to fitness desires and abilities. Start the day with a morning meditation or bike ride around the island, before opting for more cardio, strength-based classes or mind & body restorative work.
Kettlebell training, core strength work, TRX suspension training and private abseiling are just some of the options from the “strength” category. To build up the heat with a partner, create a fun challenge of the most reps per session– not only does this benefit fitness, it also creates a healthy dose of competition – choose a sensual prize for the winner and truly connect.
End the day with tai chi, Pilates, reiki or Hatha yoga, connecting with the mind and body. A swim or snorkel in the Caribbean waters is the perfect way to relax and unwind together.
Accommodation ranges in the form of Standard Garden View rooms, to luxury ocean view, to grand luxury oceanfront suites, to the Villa Aurora; a two-storey villa.
Opt for the luxury suites to revel in indulgences such as mahogany king size beds and marbled bathrooms with Kohler Body all-over jet showers. All rooms include air conditioning, high speed internet and furnished balconies or patios to enjoy the St. Lucian sunsets.
Prices start at $2,315 per person for a four-day retreat with a shared room.
Ideal for: Nature-loving couples looking to connect and unwind
Closer to home, Byron Bay is always a tropical oasis of calmness and relaxation, the perfect place to unwind and connect with a partner.
Located in the Byron Bay Hinterland, Gaia Retreat & Spa is submerged in the lush green of Mother Nature, a luxurious getaway to rejuvenate the mind, body and soul.
Reviews state “Shangri-La is no longer a fictional place. It resides at Gaia Retreat”, others fondly naming it as their “soul sanctuary mother [to] step away from the maddening world and rebalance.”
It’s not hard to see why, with the luxurious bungalow villas, pristine swimming pool and sub-tropical serenity.
Partake in couples’ massages and spa treatments in the award-winning Wellness Facilities, which was voted Best Luxury Destination Spa and placed in the Wellness Travel Category Awards for 2015. Treatments can be tailored directly to the individual, from energetic and active, to serene and tranquil.
Daily morning yoga, Qi Gong and Meditation is practised alongside cardio training, Pilates and Body Balance classes, allowing one to get a sweat on with their partner.
Refuel with organic, fine dining meals made from fresh produce from the resort’s own garden, or opt for a diet specifically catered to weight loss, detoxing and diseases.
The chef here is qualified in Ayurvedic, macrobiotic and raw cuisine preparation, creating a stress-free approach to healthy meals – simply sit back, eat and enjoy.
A two-night couples escape starts at $2754 per couple in a Layana Room, complete with a complimentary bottle of champagne, rose petals and gourmet chocolates, all gourmet meals and daily retreat activities.
Ideal for: Couples looking to give back while connecting
From dipping into natural hot springs in La Fortuna, to treating the skin in a volcanic mud bath, this wellness tour spans Costa Rica’s coastline into the inland cities of San Jose, Rincon de la Vieja and La Fortuna Arenal.
Staying in luxurious hotels and beach style retreats, unwind and rejuvenate with meditation, mindfulness and yoga.
There is even an option for a Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga class, ocean kayaking and snorkelling and canyoning adventures to get the heart racing.
What sets this wellness tour apart is its focus on giving back to the local Costa Rican people, with a philanthropic project to support over 200 local farmers at a coffee plantation.
Connect here with locals and hear about their diverse life to truly gauge a clarity of both mind and soul of what is most important in life.
For an utter reconnection, use this as an opportunity for a digital detox and focus on strengthening relationships and love – there’s no other better time than on a Valentines’ Day getaway.
Prices start at $3120 per person for seven days.
Before you head on a health and fitness retreat, here’s everything you need to know to be prepared.