You know that feeling when one more issue that lands on your desk will push you over the edge, when tackling even the smallest problems just feels too hard, for me feeling like this is a sign that I need to take action and the best way I’ve found of combating stress is of course to travel. But not just any travel; a yoga retreat is perfect to realign the body and soul and where better to take your retreat than in Siem Reap. Lying in northwestern Cambodia, the town of Siem Reap is the gateway to the ruined temples of Angkor. The ideal time to visit is during the winter months to avoid the rainy season; November and December are the most popular months but the rain doesn’t get too intense until about July. Tourism numbers have doubled in the past three years, with Siem Reap recently being announced as the #2 tourist destination in the world by TripAdvisor and with Angkor Wat as the #1 destination according to Lonely Planet. The inspiring ancient historic sites at Angkor make the perfect excursions as you delve into soothing yoga. Read on for our review of the best yoga retreats in Siem Reap…
Just minutes from Siem Reap in a wonderfully quiet location, you’ll find the chic Green Leaf Boutique Hotel (pictured above). The facilities here are excellent, there is an inviting swimming pool and all the amenities you would expect at a top hotel and the staff are simply marvellous. A hearty breakfast and delicious dinners are served in the restaurant with Khmer, Thai, European and North American dishes. The Green Leaf Boutique Hotel offers excellent yoga facilities and tuition and their new zen tropical Yoga garden will open in November 2017. This new Yoga garden will allow the hotel to host much larger retreats and to expand into other health and spiritual activities and classes aside from Yoga, including: Medical Qigong and Mandala Dance Meditation. As well as daily Yoga, daily Qigong and regular Mandala dance meditation, don’t miss the poolside foot massages! The retreats here are perfect if you enjoy yoga and want to cultivate holistic health and happiness. By the end of 2017, the hotel will also be opening the first internationally certified Yoga Teacher Training School in Cambodia!
The story behind the hotel is fascinating, they are non-profit and are owned and operated by Canadian humanitarian workers and the profits go towards a very unique and revolutionary water purification program, which will be using seeds from the Moringa tree in order to provide free and clean drinking water to the less fortunate around the world. Guests staying at Green Leaf Boutique Hotel have the chance to be educated on the Moringa tree and the water purification methods from this natural and renewable resource and can also take part in several volunteer projects locally if they wish.
Located just 3 km from the heart of Siem Reap town in a stunning exotic garden the centre offers a variety of Meditation, Yoga, Massage, Reiki and vegetarian food in a unique environment. There are 7 large thatched wooden bungalows that are simple but comfortable, plus 2 with air conditioning, a dormitory with 3 beds and a studio; our advice would definitely be to opt for Le Studio as this is the Deluxe accommodation and includes a large private terrace overlooking a fish pond. Meals are served in The Dining Room, breakfast and dinner are included, the food is vegetarian, Asian style and deliciously cooked by their Khmer staff. As well as yoga and meditation, they can offer a guided tour of the Angkor temples or of Siem Reap itself and when you want some downtime, there’s also a huge salt-water swimming pool.
The facilities here are excellent but it’s perhaps one for a more serious retreat, they observe a digital detox as well as silent mornings. Practicing Integral Yoga & Meditation, they offer 6-day retreat programs which include daily classes, health & wellness, Dharma talks, community activities, and free time. As for those facilities, well there is a Spa & Wellness centre, a relaxing lounge pool, a library, an open air cinema, an art studio, a gym and a rock climbing gym! The centre is located in a traditional Cambodian farming village, 16 kilometres from Siem Reap. Accommodation varies from a dormitory, to Bamboo Retreat huts, to Open Air Bungalows; if you don’t mind being exposed to the elements, the Open Air Bungalows are stunning, set aside in private gardens along a wooden bridge, but if you want a little more protection, the Bamboo Retreat Huts are lovely and have private balconies.
This stylish resort is located just outside Siem Reap in beautiful gardens, their pool areas are stunning. The focus here is on whole body health and healing, and they have accomplished this thanks to their masseuses and wellness experts. There is a hotel-standard restaurant here too and your room benefits from a private courtyard.
This serene yoga centre is located centrally, just 10 minutes from downtown Siem Reap in a quiet garden space. There are 4 shalas, for Yoga, flying yoga and meditation Theravada and are daily yoga and meditation, acro and aerial yoga and Pilates sessions, you can attend 6 sessions a day as a guest here as well as being able to book additional excursions or massages. There is shaded garden restaurant space for tasty, healthy breakfasts and lunches. The accommodation isn’t the most luxurious, there are dormitories and rooms but we’d definitely recommend the charming wooden cottages.
Disclosure: Most of our property, service & product reviews are sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced by any sponsor.