This is an ideal week to let go of the stresses and strains of everyday life and ease into a very peaceful and tranquil environment with a gifted teacher and share some time with likeminded people. Astrid, your teacher, uses a mindful sensitive approach to bring you to a calm and peaceful state and help you to connect to a deeper level of your true self. Come and join this life-changing retreat in Ireland!
At the Burren Yoga and Meditation Centre, you have a choice of accommodation of shared room, single room, twin room (only if two of you are booking together), and double room (only if two of you booking or you want to treat yourself to the room for yourself).
The accommodation contains one room for six, two rooms for four, three single rooms, and two double rooms. The accommodation can sleep up to 21 people but Burren Yoga only ever takes a maximum of 15 people on any of the retreats. The men are sharing the room in one of the dorms and women in the other.
The mattresses are very high-quality orthopedic mattresses with a top layer of memory foam, ensuring one of the most comfortable sleep. The bed linen is high thread count Egyptian cotton and lovely to slip into after a full day of yoga, meditation, outdoor activities, eating amazing vegetarian food, and laughing and socializing with like-minded people. All the beds are freshly made up before you arrive and there are also fresh towels laid out on your bed.
There are four shared bathrooms (each with a shower, hand basin, and toilet) and an extra toilet shared between the 15 retreat participants. The accommodation doesn't have any en-suite bathrooms at the yoga center. One of the bathrooms has a bath where you can soak and relax.
The shared accommodation has bunk beds. These are not “the usual bunk beds” and the top bunk is hand carved and suspended from the ceiling. The lower bunk is completely independent of the upper bunk with plenty of headroom in between. Please be aware that the bedrooms are very small and there are no wardrobes. There is very little shelf space to store your belongings.
Burren Yoga is trying to have a maximum of four people in the room for six, and three people in the rooms for four, but this all depends on male-female ratio on the retreat. The beds are not normal “bunk beds”, one bed is suspended from the ceiling and the other is a freestanding divan underneath it. Most of the beds are individually carved “works of art” by Johnny Ray who carves spirals and curves into all his work.
The rooms do not have any wardrobes. There is limited shelf space for storage. All the rooms are spotlessly clean with underfloor heating, timber floors, and hotel quality mattresses and bed linen. You will be supplied with a bath and hand towel.
There are only three single rooms so you may need to book well in advance in order to secure one of these single rooms. The rooms are very small and do not have any wardrobes. The door does not open fully as it opens against the bed. There is limited shelf space for storage. All the rooms are spotlessly clean with underfloor heating, timber floors and hotel quality mattresses and bed linen. You will be supplied with a bath and hand towel.
The twin room is actually a small single room with bunk beds. There are only two single rooms with bunk beds so you may need to book well in advance in order to secure one of these twin rooms. The beds are not normal bunk beds, one bed is suspended from the ceiling and the other is a freestanding divan underneath it. Most of the beds are individually carved works of art by Johnny Ray who carves spirals and curves into all his work.
The rooms are very small and do not have any wardrobes. The door does not open fully as it opens against the bed. The room is so small it is only advised for a couple or very good friends, but at least you will have it to yourselves. There is limited shelf space for storage. All the rooms are spotlessly clean with underfloor heating, timber floors and hotel quality mattresses, and bed linen. You will each be supplied with a bath and hand towel.
The double room has one standard sized 4.6-inch wide double bed. The room is very small and does not have a wardrobe. The door does not open fully as it opens against the bed. There is limited shelf space for storage. All the rooms are spotlessly clean with underfloor heating, timber floors and hotel quality mattresses, and bed linen. You will each be supplied with a bath and hand towel.
Each day begins with a short mindfulness meditation practice and pranayama (breath work). Beginners will be introduced gradually to mindfulness and meditation, and Astrid will give you clear instructions for the practice. Astrid’s teaching is very clear and easy to follow and her experience with both mindfulness meditation and physical yoga and also yoga Nidra deep relaxation will guide you to practice at your own pace at whatever level is right for you at this moment.
Astrid’s week focuses on a mindfulness and yoga practice within a supportive environment, easily accessible to both newcomers and seasoned yoga practitioners. Astrid will teach you a flowing series of postures known as sun salutations which involve some forward bends, back bends, lunges all coordinated with deep inhalations and deep exhalations.
The sun salutations are a great way to warm up the body, remove stiffness and prepare oneself for the classical yoga postures following the Sivananda yoga sequence. This sequence is a great one also for you to practice each day when you return home after the retreat. Astrid also brings her knowledge of Iyengar yoga to her teaching, will check your alignment, and give you guidance on how best to practice with your own particular body.
Each posture will increase strength, flexibility, and balance. Yoga is not competitive and it is very much a personal practice. Each student will work with where he or she is within their body and the practices will remove energy blockages and energize the whole being. The classes will be relaxing, yet challenging and students will be guided at their own level at all times.
During the classes, your mindfulness will gradually increase as your mind settles down as a result of the practices. This is a great week to learn new skills and yoga techniques, to let go of your cares and worries and to spend time with like-minded people in a truly inspirational setting.
Each person practices to their own ability and there is no comparison between retreat participants. These classes are suitable for all ages and all levels of abilities. As the week progresses, you will be given guidance on how to bring this mindfulness from practice to the rest of your day. Dave has a meditation CD available which you can take home with you after the week to help you become more firmly established ion your own meditation practice at home after the weekend yoga retreat.
Yoga is not about being flexible or becoming more flexible, it is about connecting body and mind. This is supported by breathing exercises and yoga postures. Each day after breakfast, Dave will lead the group on a guided outing and you will either do a hill walk in the Burren hills or a walk by the sea.
Every second afternoon, when you return to the yoga center after your guided outing, Astrid will teach another Sivananda yoga class. Astrid will demonstrate some of the postures and also provide individual guidance on how to adapt the postures for each person. There is no competitiveness or comparison between people and Astrid will ensure that each person is practicing comfortably within their own limits.
It is important to have an experienced yoga teacher to guide you through the practices, and she will keep an eye on your alignment and ensure that you are practicing correctly. One goal of the retreat is to teach you a core set of practices that you will be then comfortable and competent to practice on your own at home after the week.
Astrid constructs her classes with counter poses so that the whole sequence of practices during the class work together as a whole to open the body, remove energy blocks, and energize you, while also improving your mindfulness and awareness. During the week, Astrid will guide you through a practice of deep relaxation yoga Nidra. This is a very powerful practice for both relaxation and also releasing any inner conflicts.
Through spending time in the tranquil and peaceful settings of The Burren and Astrid’s heartfelt instruction, you will become more conscious of your inner awareness. This practice teaches how to let go of the constant chatter of the mind to rest peacefully in the present moment. Mindfulness on the yoga mat is taught to prepare the body and mind for meditation.
Astrid is a very caring sensitive teacher assisting you to let go of stress, worries, and cares, and her classes are very enjoyable and exhilarating. The style of meditation she will guide on this yoga retreat is a form of Mindfulness breath focused meditation. This is ideal for anyone who has done or interested in a mindfulness course or looking to deepen a meditation practice.
Every second day, as well as the usual classes listed on the typical day’s timetable above, you will have an additional afternoon class at 5:00 - 6:30 p.m., a Sivananda yoga class.
All classes and activities are optional and as there is room for each individual to go at their own pace this course is open to both beginners and experienced yoga practitioners.
These guided outings are an important part of each eco yoga retreat and it is a lovely way to see some special places in the Burren well away from the usual tourist places. An ideal week in May to let go of the stresses and strains of everyday life and to let go into a very peaceful and tranquil environment with a gifted teacher and share some time with likeminded people.
The secret forest has been described by one visitor as the type of place that fairies and elves live, and when they heard us coming they hid out of sight, but did not have time to take away their fairy veils and magic feelings which fill the air.
During your guided outings, you stop off for lunch at one of the best local restaurants or cafes. One favorite is the Ballyvaughan tea rooms where Stephen Spielberg flew in especially to order the cheesecake.
This retreat is located at the Burren. The Burren is a magical area on the Wild Atlantic Way located on the west coast of Ireland and most of it is located in County Clare, with a smaller section inside County Galway. It is comprised of spectacular shaped limestone hills which plunge down into the Atlantic Ocean.
It is famous for its unique range of wildflowers, ancient archaeology, breath-taking geological features, and many internationally known places such as the Cliffs of Moher, the traditional music location of Doolin where one catches the ferry to the Aran Islands, the Aillwee caves, and much more.
The Burren is about 50 x 25 kilometers in an area running along the west coast of Ireland starting at the picturesque seaside village of Kinvara and running down through Ballyvaughan, Black Head, Fanore Beach, and to Doolin.
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You will be provided with daily vegetarian breakfast, lunch, and dinner. All meals are included except lunch as you stop for lunch at a local cafe or restaurant during your guided outings. The food at Burren Yoga and Meditation Centre is a combination of the best healthy vegetarian ingredients combined carefully with fresh herbs and spices to produce amazing vegetarian food.
The vegetarian food is only is a delight to the taste buds and the enjoyment of eating, but one feels good afterward as all the ingredients have been carefully combined together to be good for one’s health and well-being.
Burren Yoga can cater for any special diets including vegan, wheat and dairy free, coeliac, or any special diet to cater for allergies or intolerances. Please make sure you let Burren Yoga knows about any special diets when you fill in your booking form. During the guided outings, Dave will bring you to one of the local restaurants or cafes for lunch. Dave knows all the best places in the area and the restaurant owners look after you very well, giving you the best table and making sure you are well looked after.
Although all the food prepared within the center is vegetarian you are welcome to try whatever catches your fancy on the menus of these excellent places to eat. The places you go include the Ballyvaughan tea rooms where Stephen Spielberg flew in especially for the cheesecake, Linnane’s seafood restaurant, and much more.
There is real tea and real coffee at the yoga center and a huge range of herbal teas. The water comes from Burren Yoga's own well which is 160-foot deep into the Burren rock and comes out crystal clear with many natural elements which are very good for you. All the water is filtered and you are welcome to bring your own bottle to top up during your stay. You are also welcome to help yourself to tea or coffee in the kitchen at any time during your stay.
Please book your flight to arrive at Shannon Airport (SHN), Dublin International Airport (DUB), Cork Airport (ORK), Ireland West Airport Knock (NOC) or Kerry Airport (KIR). Transfer information to Burren Yoga is available upon request.
The nearest bus stop is in Gort village which is 6 miles from the Burren Yoga Centre. The recommended bus companies (faster, cheaper, toilets on board) are Go-Bus or Citylink. Do not take a bus to Kinvara. The Burren Yoga Centre is 5 miles from Kinvara. From Dublin International Airport (DUB), it is recommended to take the bus direct from the airport to Galway city rather than traveling into Dublin city. From Shannon Airport (SHN, if your flight arrives very early, it is recommended that you take the Bus Eireann number 51 bus direct to Galway city and to spend the day there.
Although the train is slower, more expensive, and much fewer times to choose from than the bus, some people prefer to travel by Irish Rail Train. From Dublin take the Galway train as far as Athenry, and then change trains. From Athenry take the Limerick train as far as Gort.
There is only one taxi driver in Kinvara, and he often has his phone turned off, so it is possible to get stranded in Kinvara. Go to Gort instead, as Gort has many taxi drivers and a taxi from Gort costs approx 12 EUR.
From Shannon Airport (SHN), the reduced fare taxi costs 60 EUR and the taxi driver will team you up if anybody else is flying in close to your arrival time. You need to book this taxi yourself at least 24 hours before you arrive.
From Galway city, the reduced fare taxi costs 40 EUR and the taxi driver will team you up if anybody else coming from Galway close to your time. You need to book this taxi yourself at least 24 hours before you arrive.
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