It’s a tale that’s (nearly) as old as time now—New Year, New Me and the promise of a re-envisaged focus on health and fitness. But if you’re really looking to give yourself a fighting chance to hit those goals early on, stepping out of your comfort zone and into a fitness-focused environment might prove to be just what you need. So if you’re ready to kick-start your 2019 resolutions a little early, these are our top picks for the best wellness retreats around the world to countdown into the new year…
For the 15th consecutive year, Samahita in Thailand is hosting a Christmas and New Year’s retreat—two back to back weeklong programmes that begin on December 22nd and 29th, respectively. Retreats are led by Paul Dallaghan, and are inclusive of accommodation, buffet meals, yoga and meditation sessions as well as numerous core strength and cycle workouts. Designed to restore both body and mind, there’s still more than enough time to celebrate, with festive treats in store ranging from live music performances to tea ceremonies, and more.
Price available on request | samahitaretreat.com
On Indonesia’s Sumba Island, Nihi Sumba has been earning quite the reputation, topping awards lists for its equal parts beauty, luxury, and attention to detail. Off the well-trodden tourist path, this exclusive resort offers a seven-night Yoga experience unlike any other. Immerse yourself in the resort’s wellness offerings, which include unlimited yoga classes (and the option of one-to-one sessions). Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, all meals and snacks, a daily complimentary mini-bar restock, and your choice of paddle boarding, snorkelling and other seaside excursions.
Prices start from $5,250 | Book now on Compare Retreats
Nestled high in the hills overlooking Ubud’s striking rice terraces, Fivelements is a wellness resort that combines traditional Balinese healing philosophies with all the modern amenities any wellness traveller could hope for. The resort’s seven-night Relaxing Holiday Retreat is just that—a gentle, relaxing retreat designed to calm frenetic minds and energise visitors looking to recharge and put their best foot forward in the year ahead. Retreats are inclusive of riverside accommodation and healthy, nutritious meals prepared by the resort’s on-site chef.
Prices start from $2,884 | Book now on Compare Retreats
For something a little different, this intimate retreat in Oaxaca, Mexico, is a carefully curated programme of wellness-orientated New Year celebrations. From December 29th to January 3rd, relax in a luxurious modern boutique bungalow, or get back to nature with a luxe glamping experience. Guests can enjoy chilling by poolside, spa treatments, daily yoga and meditation, workshops with wellness instructors, a traditional Zapotec sweat lodge, and delicious organic dining. From fire ceremonies to New Year’s Eve parties to intention setting, Restival is sure to start your new year the right way.
5-nights inclusive glamping accommodation starts from US$1,950 | restivalglobal.com
Situated in a pristine national park and with a protected turtle nesting beach just a short distance away, the Sen Wellness Sanctuary makes for the perfect, restorative New Year’s holiday. Its Festive Retreat takes place from December 23rd to New Year’s Day and is led by the resort’s founder, osteopath Sam Kankanamge. Celebrate the season of giving without giving into excess, and opt instead for leisurely nature walks and guided meditation sessions. Retreats are also inclusive of one-on-one Ayurvedic consultations, daily sunrise and sunset yoga, and more.
COMO Uma Canggu
Surf your way into 2019 at COMO’s Uma Canggu property which opened earlier this year. From December 21st until January 4th, the new beach-side resort will be hosting a special programme of wellness-orientated activities for the festive period, from yogalates to detox workouts. Offering incredible week-long surfing packages with Tropicsurf, the luxury resort is also throwing a killer New Year’s Eve party at the new COMO beach club. And if you enjoy yourself a little too much on your way into 2019, never fear—you can pick yourself up in the morning with a fresh juice from the Glow bar, sunrise yogalates, and a COMO Shambhala wellness cuisine feast in the evening.
Prices start from US$250 per night | comohotels.com
With its name translating to ‘forest’ in Sanskrit, Vana Retreat is the archetypal eco-resort, situated in India’s Uttarakhand province, utilising biodegradable and compostable materials wherever possible. The seven-night Decide Later retreats offer undecided guests their choice of activities including wellness, food and cultural focused endeavours. Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, all meals and drinks. In the winter months, temperatures run decidedly low, so the resort’s woollen accessories (provided to each guest during their stay) make for the perfect winter warmers.
Prices start from $3,495 | Book now on Compare Retreats
Known as a popular haunt among A-list celebrities, a quick look at Italy’s Lake Garda, and it’s clear to see why. Situated in the midst of the region is Lefay Resort, a wellness clinic that draws upon a wealth of scientific knowledge to leave its guests in the best shape possible. Its five-night, six-day Brightness of the Spirit Retreats are tailor-made to treat guests’ specific ailments and to help them start the new year with a new lease of life. Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, meals, beauty and medical consultations, and more.
Prices start from $4,105 | Book now on Compare Retreats
Set among 200-hectares of land overlooking Queensland’s Moreton Bay, Gwinganna Health Resort offers an intimate retreat experience to guests looking to step away from their everyday lives. The seven-night Gwinganna Detox is the ultimate body reboot, and a great way to start the new year if you’re looking for a new beginning. Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, organic cuisine, two massages, one facial and access to scheduled health and wellness seminars throughout your stay.
Prices start from $2,796 | Book now on Compare Retreats
On the island paradise that is Maui, the Lumeria Maui resort offers the quintessential Hawaiian hospitality experience and is the perfect retreat destination for those looking for an uninterrupted, immersive yoga experience. The seven-night Custom Yoga Retreats are inclusive of accommodation, organic breakfast throughout your stay, and access to the resort’s scheduled fitness and wellness sessions, while those looking for an adrenaline-fuelled experience to ring in the new year can opt for zip-lining and helicopter experiences, at an additional cost.
Prices start from $1,820 | Book now on Compare Retreats
The luxury villas and water cabins in this Maldivian resort need little by way of introduction. If you’re ready to swap your winter wonderland experience for an altogether warmer climate, there are few better places to choose from. The resorts Festive Offer – available between December 21st and January 12th, grants guests access to a range of spa, meditation and yoga classes and workshops, cooking classes, and a seat at the much-lauded New Year’s Eve Food Journey. This is one retreat experience best shared with loved ones.
Price available on request | soneva.com