Shreyas Yoga Retreat: A Journey Of Self Discovery

Will Wilkinson | 3rd March 2015

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VIVA were kindly invited for five days to savour the delights of the Shreyas Yoga Retreat in India approximately an hours drive north west of Bangaluru (Bangalore) and its International Airport. Once we had arrived we were welcomed with garlands of flowers and a light meal before we were shown to our cottage set in palm filled gardens. This retreat is wonderful on every level and will benefit body, mind and soul.
The first thing that you notice is how hospitable all the staff are and with broadest of smiles there is nothing that is too much trouble.  ‘Athithi devo bhava’ is the defining philosophy at Shreyas literally meaning, ‘a Guest is to be served as God’.
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Shreyas (meaning excellence) is very exclusive with only 12 different accommodations set in the 25 green landscaped acres. The luxurious cottages with ensuite bathrooms and tented roofs are scattered about the gardens each with its own relaxing view. This alone you would be forgiven for thinking you were staying in a five star hotel but much better. Shreyas’ timeless luxury cannot help but effect you in this amazing environment.
There are two group yoga sessions, morning and afternoon each day with two styles practised – Hatha and Ashtanga – so you can choose which you would like to do. Your stay also includes a one to one session and Shreyas accommodates for all levels of yoga experience and ability from beginners up.
Shreyas is not just about yoga and meditation you can also swim in the infinity pool or rejuvenate your body with a spa treatment. VIVA particularly loved the one hour ayurvedic massage in the secluded massage cottage and the cleansing steam afterwards. If you have not had one before it is a must as it leaves you feeling totally relaxed and rejuvenated.
VIVA loves its food and there is no better place to experience the amazing flavours prepared by the Head Chef and his staff with produce from Shreyas’ own wonderful organic gardens where the staff are encouraged to respect nature. With a mix of traditional Indian and continental cuisine I have to say that all the dishes were superb and plenty of it.
At Shreyas, a few hours are set aside on one of the days for you to help in the joy of giving (Karma). It involves helping in the lovely organic gardens, for example planting and picking some beans for lunch. We then loaded up the 4×4 and drove 7 miles to the Kaveri Vanita Sevashrama orphanage that Shreyas supports to help with serving lunch to the 30 or so orphans that range in age from 3 upwards. It was a lot of fun and it felt great to help out a little.
Shreyas is unique, spectacular, luxurious and relaxing and VIVA cannot recommend it highly enough. If yoga is your thing, this is the place to book. It is up there with the very best of the worlds yoga retreat destinations.
VIVA travelled with Sri Lanka Airlines to Bangalore and stayed as guests at the Shreyas Retreat, Nelamangala, Bangalore, India.

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