Top 5: Surf retreats

Cleanse your body and revive the soul for the New Year while mastering the art of wave riding

By National Geographic Traveller (UK)
Published 9 Feb 2015, 11:15 GMT, Updated 1 Jul 2021, 16:17 BST

01 Tipi Valley, Portugal
The waves may be on the chilly side but you won't give a hoot once you're cruising atop some of Europe's best breaks beside the beaches of Odeceixe, Monte Clérigo and Amoreira. Book yourself into Tipi Valley, a clutch of eco-friendly, stripped-back tipis offering daily surf lessons plus yoga and massage to soothe aching limbs. Five days from £552.

02 Surf Maroc, Morocco
Saunter back into the office all suntanned and strapping after a week at the Villa Mandala on Taghazout, a top surfing beach just north of Agadir. Combine riding your board with yoga sessions and Moroccan tapas on the beach, as well as trips to Essaouira. Seven nights from £689.

03 Papaya Wellness Retreat, Nicaragua
Tackle Central America's best surf breaks at Popoyo Beach while staying at the hip waterside hangout of Magnific Rock Hotel Popoyo. Master the art of wave riding before a pummelling massage and a sunset yoga session. And detox is par for the course with fresh juices, smoothies and veggie dishes served daily. Six nights from £960. Next retreat 6-12 Feb.

04 Hot Bikram Retreats, Panama
With a clutch of A-list devotees, from Jennifer Anniston to Gwyneth Paltrow, Bikram Yoga claims to tone your body while giving you superhuman flexibility. Head to Carenero Island, within Bocas del Toro Province, for ocean-view yoga classes and surf lessons in between snorkelling trips and lolling in hammocks. Seven nights from £1,020. Next retreat 21-28 Feb.

05 Soul & Surf, Indonesia

Combining surfing and yoga, this pop-up retreat will grace the shores of Banda Aceh for one week only (23-30 March). Its uncrowded waves and white-sand beaches make it a pretty idyllic spot for surfing and serene bouts of yoga at the guesthouse, a short stroll from the beach. Seven days from £430 per person.

Published in the Jan/Feb 2015 issue of National Geographic Traveller (UK)


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