Mexico means many things to the imminent traveller: be it tropical coastline, cactus-strewn plains, or the smell of chilli and lime cooking in urban city streets. But beneath its colourful image, Mexico is an immensely spiritual country, and not just because of its ancient monuments and beautiful colonial churches. An increasing number of retreat-style holidays are available here, from yoga on the shores of the Pacific to an artistic adventure through the jungle.
The best approach to finding the right retreat for you is to identify what you’re looking for from the experience. Do you want to feed a creative passion, or are you looking for a clearer sense of your own spirituality? Perhaps you just want to provide some TLC for body and mind while you’re away?
For those interested in tapping into their unused creativity, the resort of Puerto Vallarta is a good pick, owing to its reputable art scene. There are plenty of live-in retreats in this region where you can use media like painting and sculpture to seek your own creative expression, as well as improve your skills. If writing’s your passion, nearby villages like Yelapa offer combined yoga and writing holidays and many other retreats also offer things like nature-appreciation in the local rainforests.
If you’re looking for a more of a physical journey, Mexico holidays are an inspired choice for the classic yoga retreat. Try tiny fishing settlements like Zihuatanejo, where retreats have attracted international instructors like L.A.‘s Tom Morley and classes are accompanied by the sound of the ocean waves.
The Riviera Maya is often associated with teeming seafront resorts, but in smaller destinations like Tulum, it’s possible to find your own space. The idyllic setting of cliff-top ruins and white-sand beach is perfect for a meditative retreat. Using everything from massage therapy, astrological teachings and ‘journaling’, retreats here can help you re-discover what’s important to you.
As with all retreat holidays, make sure you research the teachers or guides beforehand, so you get an idea of their experience and what they’re hoping to achieve. Some retreats are designed to be more sociable, while others allow you to make your own timetable, so bear this in mind when searching. This said, the eternally-warm climate and remote rural settings of Mexico provide the ideal conditions for escaping the daily grind, so wherever you head to, relaxation is guaranteed.
Bio: Sarah Hepburn has been a travel writer for over ten years. She loves writing about sunny holidays with a focus on cruises and all-inclusive packages.