Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Top 5 Health & Wellness Retreats

In an increasingly busy world, spas & health retreats are fast becoming one of the most popular vacation choices for the health conscious and burned out traveller.
From indulgent spas attached to luxury hotel resorts to the complete health retreat experience, there are plenty of accommodation options to pick from when choosing where you want to take time out. While you may be fixed on a particular location or retreat, take time to consider which of the many wellness options might help you to de-stress. Whether you need daily yoga and a hammock by the river or a complete daily fitness and weight loss program there’s a health resort waiting to help you achieve your goals.
Chiva-Som Health Resort
Chiva-Som Health Resort, Thailand
Here’s our Top 5 of the world’s most enticing health & wellness retreats.

1. Kamalaya Wellness Sanctuary and Holistic Spa, Koh Samui, Thailand
What do you get when you combine tailor-made wellness, yoga and detox programs, elegant accommodation, healthy and delicious cuisine and a divine location? You get Kamalaya – a wellness Shangri-la, situated on a tropical island in Thailand’s Andaman Sea.  Consistently voted one of the world’s best health and wellness retreats. Its heavenly location alone (on the beach and around a cave temple once used by Buddhist monks) is enough to make you never want to leave. It certainly tops our list.

2. Chiva-Som International Health Resort, Hua Hin, Thailand
Also in the land of smiles, The Chiva-Som Health Resort takes pampering to a new level. Its accommodations are the ultimate in luxury and indulgence, and guests can avail themselves of no less than 70 treatment rooms offering everything from physiotherapy, iridology, and electro-dermal screening.  The resorts award-winning cuisine includes ingredients sourced from the resort’s own organic garden.

3. Gaia Retreat & Spa, New South Wales, Australia
On Australia’s east coast, in the magical hinterland region of Byron Bay is Gaia, another award-winning retreat & spa. Founded by Olivia Newton-John and Gregg Cave, Gaia is a boutique 20-room property set in Australia’s spiritual heartland. It’s day spa and retreat packages have won worldwide acclaim and it’s the perfect place to rest, relax and reconnect.

Gaia Retreat and Spa
Gaia Retreat and Spa, Byron Bay, Australia
4. Rancho la Puerta, Baja California, Mexico
Voted the world’s best destination spa in a 2010 Travel + Leisure reader’s poll, Rancho La Puerta has a long history in delivering health and wellness programs and has oodles of rustic charm. Make fitness or food the focus of your stay with a packed schedule of daily activities, a cooking school and an organic farm. You can still retreat to one of three health centers to soothe your soul.

5. Parrot Cay, COMO Shambhala, Turks and Caicos, Caribbean
The COMO group has a chain of stylish hotels and resorts around the world with an emphasis on luxury and pampering. Parrot Cay, in the Turks and Caicos offers the ultimate experience in getting away from it all on a private island in the middle of the Caribbean. Meditate by the clear, aquamarine ocean or enjoy Asian-inspired spa treatments and yoga. Messing about in and under the water is positively encouraged.