Vikasa Yoga Retreat Koh Samui
If you're young and strong and are in for some fun and play in your yoga practice, then Vikasa Yoga Retreat Koh Samui will be perfect for you. This cliff side 'resort' will give you a stair master workout, which i think is great for that perky butt (werk it girls and boys) but may be pretty straining for some but hey, that's why you're going to a retreat right?
After focusing on my Ashtanga practice for a week at Samahita Retreat (read review here), i shifted over to Vikasa Yoga Retreat (because i didn't want to leave Samui and so i extended my stay). Vikasa is a depart from the quietness that is Samahita. Read on to find out the difference.A quick run down on how to get to Vikasa Yoga and what to do.
Vikasa is an all inclusive yoga retreat, which means that you only need to pick your choice of accommodation, and you'll get access to all the group yoga classes conducted, facilities, and 2 daily buffet meals. Creatures of comfort should go with the Superior Ocean View Rooms (the ones facing the pool, near the Big Shala, are the best). Also, they are slightly nearer to the top, which means slightly fewer steps, but it guarantees you a nice ass still. Somehow i didn't book that one and i ended up in a less inferior standard Ocean Room (with balcony and semi outdoor shower). BAH.
My semi outdoor shower, which i shared with my pet lizard which terrorized me every night. Where is the bathtub that i was promised?!
|The Zen bungalows|
The Beach Bungalows are kinda really far out and i think the steps are pretty jagged and dangerous especially when navigating around at night. If you're a fan of A Bug's Life, then the Zen Bungalow would be your thing. College backpacker type can go for the Yoga Caves, which are essentially cubes with shared shower facilities.
Step 2: Go for yoga classes
With 4- 5 classes a day which includes a meditation class every morning and a mix of powerful vinyasa and restorative yin kind of classes, there will be a class suitable for any yogi, from first timers to more advanced practitioners. I enjoyed the guided practice after all that Mysore at Samahita (though i did continue with my own Ashtanga practice on top of the Vikasa classes). Manduka mats are provided at each of the 3 outdoor shalas and they're pretty new and clean (yogis clean them using sanitizing spray after every class). Be covered in strong insect repellent or let the mosquitoes test your yogic concentration. Oh they bit through my Liquido leggings. Yea. If you're looking at becoming a yoga teacher, Vikasa provides a 200 hour Yoga Alliance certification. The crowd? It's mostly 20ish Caucasians looking to have fun, and maybe some purpose in life.
Teachers wise, George and Alisa were great! Both are strong teachers and give tough classes but both are friendly, positive and humble. I was amazed at myself for completing the effortless transition from bhujanbikasana, flying crane, to bakasana, held it there and then jump back to chaturanga during the Vikasa class with Alisa.
George also does a really fun acro yoga class if you managed to try it. I certainly had fun being spun around. It's all about building trust here- trust that your base doesn't drop you, and that your spotters will catch you when you do. For an interesting class, try Simon, a trippy yin yoga dude with a British sense of humor. Sergio did a great guided meditation and i felt myself focusing despite my horrible attention span.
Step 3: Eat
I was rewarded with healthy tasting food at breakfast and dinner (both included in the per night price). Buffet style is done here and maybe i did overeat a little but hey, it's all vegetables and clean stuff which were mostly vegetarian with vegan options.
Breakfast favorites were the muesli, chia seed pudding, mashed pumpkin (because i love), crepes with some of that yummy maca chocolate sauce.
Dinner is a huge amazing spread with 1 seafood (fish/squid) option and 1 serving of dessert (they dont't give seconds). I could not resist that zucchini noodles with pesto sauce, edamame beans, thai stir fry zucchinis and the sourish cold rice vermiceilli. Be prepared to eat very well.
Between meals, if you feel snacky, the Vikasa cafe is a great place to lounge and grab some juices, smoothies, and energy balls (those were amazing). Fuller options like burritos, salads, and Thai food are available too.
Step 4: Chill
There may not be a nice flat sandy beach, but you can lie on the flat rocks if you want to. The view is quite spectacular and it's possible to swim (if you're a strong swimmer). That or laze by the gorgeous infinity pool. You know it's the perfect place to strike your yoga pose in that IG photo because they even have blocks for you to balance on. Yea...
The spa is pretty amazing too with great ocean views by its cliff side location. It's super private as well. I enjoyed my Deep Tissue massage and they even have a special Thai Yoga Massage created specially for yogis.
Step 5: Repeat
I can definitely do this all day err day man. Of course, you can also get out of the retreat to one of those night markets, just so you can say that you actually visited Koh Samui. The convenient location of Vikasa makes it easy to get to Lamai or Chawang Beach on a tuk tuk or taxi.
A tip for you on getting to and from Vikasa from the airport. The taxi/minivan service (approx THB200/way) is much cheaper than the Vikasa transport (THB500/way) so you may want to consider that if the timing is right.
Friends have asked which yoga retreat i preferred. Well.. I liked both actually so it really depends on whether you prefer variety (Vikasa) or serenity (and the punishing Ashtanga- Samahita). But whatever it is, Koh Samui is definitely another yogi heaven.
Phone:+66 77 422 232