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Join La Escuela Del Sol for a fire dancing and yoga retreat in Costa Rica and let them ensure you the best quality experience. The intricate moves and combinations when augmented with fire, are guaranteed to amaze. As such, poi has recently transcended cultural boundaries and become popular all over the world. Let yourself experience a dazzling form of performance art!
You can choose a deluxe room with air-conditioning for yourself or with a friend, or request to be set up with a roommate. You may also choose to stay in one of the economical shared rooms with shared bath. No matter which accommodation you choose, you will share a full kitchen. The dining room and lounge with swing chairs, couch, and fans is now complete and available for your chilling pleasures.
If you come alone and choose a shared room, you will normally be set up with one roommate, or if circumstances require, a maximum of two roommates. If for some reason La Escuela del Sol does not have a roommate available for you, you may be upgraded to a private room instead. If you come as a couple or with friends, they will place you in your own room with up to three beds.
The campus offers four deluxe rooms with air-conditioning. Each has one queen bed and a twin bed. All have private bath with hot water, digital safe, mini fridge, and a porch with swing chairs and ocean view.
Also available are three economical shared rooms with shared bath. The two co-ed rooms have a bunk bed and a twin. There is also a room for couples with a matrimonial size bed. Shared rooms with shared bath provide fans and mosquito netting for every bed. They also share a living room, three showers and bathrooms, as well as a changing room downstairs. Bathrooms are equipped with hot water.
Whether you are just starting out in yoga or looking to take the more advanced program, you will have the opportunity to practice with others on your skill level in a very relaxing, intimate atmosphere. In addition to this you will be taught by professionals whose goals are to help assist you in getting to new yoga levels and who want to help you reach the ultimate in relaxation.
Classes are exclusive for La Escuela Del Sol students to ensure the best quality experience. The classes are Hatha Vinyasa based, held in a studio surrounded by nature, and are within earshot of the sweet sounds of singing birds and howling monkeys. They are open for all levels, taught in English, and the space is limited to 15 people in order to keep classes intimate.
Poi originated with the Maori of New Zealand as early as 3000 BC. What was at first a training ritual used to build up strength, flexibility, and coordination has become a dazzling form of performance art. The intricate moves and combinations when augmented with fire, are guaranteed to amaze. As such, poi has recently transcended cultural boundaries and become popular all over the world.
Besides the fact that La Escueal Del Sol is the only vacation fire poi school in Central and South America, there may not be another fire poi academy as committed to individualized attention and growth as they. They keep fire spinning classes to a maximum of five students per instructor. Lessons are individual and begin with your ability when you arrive so that you can progress at your own rate.
Other schools may teach 15 or 20 students at a time, introducing a lesson and moving on before the move is learned by everyone. The instructors at La Escuela Del Sol will teach you personally until you get it. Then you will build from that skill to the next logical step, until you get that too.
Add their teaching philosophy to 90-minute poi lessons each and every day and it's easy to see why the rate at which the students excel is exceptional. Many have come from absolutely no experience to mastering multiple techniques and flow in a matter of weeks.
Some of the skills you can expect to learn from your poi lessons are weaves, butterfly, buzz saw, thread the needle, stalls, behind the back weaves and turns, wraps, fountains, the gremlin, mind meltdowns, straight jacket weave and butterfly, flowers, and many other variations.
If you are a complete beginner, in one week you can learn the basics. It will be a good starting point to build upon with videos, research, and practice when you get home. But if you really want to get good, if you want to find flow, feel it, and be able to incorporate dance and movement with little thought to what the poi heads are doing, you'll need at least two weeks. Come for four weeks and you'll be astonished at how much you learn.
With such talent coming through the area including Nick Woolsey, Alien John, Burning Dan, Zan Moore, Pyrosutra, and a hundred other unknown yet extremely talented street performers and artists, La Escuela Del Sol is constantly studying, evolving, and incorporating cutting edge tricks and concepts into their classes. If they can't keep you busy for weeks, you're probably already performing in the circus.
Some of the more advanced tricks and concepts might include behind the back (weaves and butterflies), quarter turn, half turn, and full turn transitions between behind the back weaves and waist wraps in any and all directions, poly-rhythms on all planes, vertical stalls, one-handed butterflies and weaves, a plethora of tosses, isolations, inversions, air wraps, flowers, hyperloops, orbitals, spiral wraps, mind meltdowns, straight-jackets and crossers, anti-spins, complex transitions, and a whole lot more.
Since La Escuela Del Sol is located so close to the spectacular Montezuma Falls, they can't pass up the opportunity to show off a little bit. Every student will be taken on an easy hike to the local watering hole for a rest and a quick dip. There you can swim or just sit and admire the magnificent 75 foot falls (the largest in the area).
For the more daring, you may continue through some difficult terrain to the second and third falls where you can take the rope swing out for a twirl and maybe even do some cliff diving. It's a great time, guaranteed.
Jessica initially came to yoga as a follower of another trend; however, ended up uncovering something so much more valuable than that - the incredible power of being present now and how stilling the mind can provide clarity as you move through your experiences. Now as an experienced 200-hour yoga instructor and a certified Acro instructor, she attempts to bring yogic philosophies to energetic classes while guiding students to maintain a certain lightness in their practices.
Currently residing in Costa Rica, Lindsay Monteagudo began her yoga career in her hometown of San Diego, California. As a mother of twins, yoga provided the balance needed to tackle everyday challenges. Trained under Gerhard Gessner of Prana Yoga, her Vinyasa classes are partnered with a strong focus on alignment. Lindsay's classes aim to center oneself and open blockages. All while her lightheartedness and thirst for life comes through.
With over 15 years experience in the fitness industry, Mandy has offered personal fitness and yoga classes to both individuals and in class settings. She has completed two 200-hour yoga teacher training courses, and is certified to teach both pre-natal and children's yoga, she is currently working on completing her 300-hour certification. Mandy’s students enjoy her easy-going, humorous, and light-hearted approach to yoga during her alignment-based Vinyasa flow classes.
Eli began his performance career at a young age when his parents enrolled him in dance and theater classes. He then spent several years augmenting his skills and talents studying martial arts, juggling, and mastering the unicycle. After years of hard work and training, Eli's skills crossed over to the fire arts when he joined the Costa Rican performance troop Fuego Tribal.
Located in the beautiful and tranquil Cabuya, Costa Rica, La Escuela del Sol is founded on the principle of self-enhancement of the body, the mind, and the soul. La Escuela del Sol's brand new campus is located on five acres of ocean view land, just off the main Coastal road in Cabuya.
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Born and raised in Cabuya some 60 years ago, Doña Nena can tell a story or two! She also makes fresh marmalades and coconut oils from locally grown and collected fruits. Nena also boasts a bird farm of ducks, pheasants and a few rare birds she keeps for company. Be sure to take a walk around to see them all.
La Escuela del Sol provides the use of two bicycles available to all students and volunteers. Biking to Montezuma will take about an hour, but there are so many beaches, rivers, waterfalls, tide pools, and secrets to find along the way. They recommend a full day of biking and exploring to discover and enjoy a few gems you won't find in any guide book.
Five minutes from the school, you will see a mysterious island off the coast. During low tide, you can walk there, but the onset of high tide may leave you stranded, so time it carefully! There are close to 50 head stones on the island. Some were created by local artists and are extremely creative. It's certainly worth a visit or two.
Located just a mere 20-minute walk outside Cabuya's center, Rio Lajas provides hours of free entertainment. The river is shallow but every now and then the rock bed opens up and forms a natural Jacuzzi with cascades sending water into your swimming hole, perhaps over your shoulders for a nice massage. There is a large swimming area close to the river mouth which is frequented by exotic birds, including the large, pink Roseate Spoonbill.
Hike up river for about an hour and head to the right when the river divides by equal tributaries and you will find a small waterfall with a large pool followed by the tallest waterfall in the region. During the dry season, this river can fill up with tad poles and other fun creatures but may not be suitable for swimming. But for hiking, always!
Take a ride on the wild side with a Honda four-wheeler to discover some of the more secluded pristine beaches, waterfalls, and pueblos in the area. One of the better forms of transportation on the mostly bump-laden (a.k.a. adventurous) dirt roads, you can take your quad all the way to Cabo Blanco or Mal Pais and Santa Teresa for some wildlife or an afternoon surf. You can rent an ATV for 60 USD for half a day and 80 USD for the whole day.
Take a bumpy ride for some snorkeling at Las Manchas or Los Cedros beach. Stop for a rest in the beautiful Rio Lajas where natural Jacuzzis form in the shallow rock bed and mini-cascades massage your shoulders from above. Or keep on keeping on to the Cabo Blanco reserve for some great exercise. If you're a mountain biker, La Escuela del Sol can recommend some trails. You can rent a bike for 15 USD a day or 75 USD per week.
In 1963, the nearby Cabo Blanco became the first National Park in Costa Rica. Today it boasts 1250 hectares of lush rainforest, dramatic coastline, and countless species of animals and plants. Monkeys, sloths, toucans, parrots, and a slew of other exotic animals frolic through the forest and fly overhead.
Hike through the mountains, picnic by the river, or stroll along the stunning beach and you'll see things your friends would never believe if you didn't have the proof on your camera. This activity costs 8 USD.
This uninhabited island off the coast of the Nicoya Peninsula provides exquisite beauty and endless fun. You'll work on your suntan and enjoy the views from the deck of a speedboat on the way through the islands. Once you reach Tortuga, you'll disembark, grab your snorkel gear, and head for the volcanic reef to hang in the crystal clear waters with some tropical fish.
Afterwards, you can wade in the ocean or explore the island while your guides cook you up some fresh fish and local cuisine. But save some gas in the tank 'cause the ride back often turns into a dance party. This activity costs 55 USD.
Costa Rica is also the top fishing destination in all of Central America. Take a three-hour tour into the Pacific Ocean, cast your rod, and start reeling in blue marlin, giant yellowfin tuna, roosterfish, red snapper, dorado, and wahoo among others. Whatever you catch, bring on home and for a few more colones, a local chef will grill it up for a mouth-watering, happy ending to a fantastic day. This activity ranges from 250 USD to 800 USD.
A speedboat will take you straight from Montezuma beach to a prime dive spot near Isla Tortuga. Visibility ranges from 30 to 80 feet where you may spot angel fish, sea horses, octopus, manta rays, spotted eagle rays, dolphin, whale sharks, and countless tropical fish. Trip includes lunch and drinks, full diving gear and professional, English speaking, dive master instructors. This activity costs 100 USD for one tank dive or 140 USD for two tank dive.
There are two companies which offer a 30-minute flight from Juan Santamaria International Aiport (SJO) or Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR) to Tambor Airport (TMU), 45 minutes from Cabuya. From Tambor, you'll need a 50 USD, 45-minute taxi. Please allow La Escuela Del Sol to arrange your taxi to make sure you get the fair price from a trusted driver who knows where to drop you off. Also, if their surf van is available, they can pick you up for 40 USD instead.
Sansa Air and Nature Air leave directly from Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) as well as Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR). La Escuela Del Sol recommends that you arrive at least two hours before your connecting domestic flight.
There is no direct bus from Liberia to Cabuya but there are local buses. Connections are not timed so it may take you all day (or two). If you don't speak fluent Spanish, this is not a recommended way to travel.
There is daily, direct service between San Jose and Montezuma through Transportes Rodriguez. The trip takes approximately 6 hours, including a 1.5 hour ferry ride from Puntarenas to Paquera. The cost is approximately 15 USD.
Once in Montezuma, there are buses to Cabuya (1.50 USD) every two hours until 4:15 p.m. If arriving later, you will have to take a taxi (14 USD) from the center of town to reach the campus. Having a fair handle on Spanish is essential or you may miss a changeover and get lost.
"My husband and I spent two weeks with LEDS: We studied Spanish together, I did daily yoga and he got his scuba diving certification. We highly recommend the courses as the instruction for everything was excellent."
TripAdvisor website, edited
"Love La Escuela! Gabriel, Dennis, and Jeremy were so helpful and Wendy was a great teacher. The yoga classes were also awesome. I signed up for three weeks at the school but only ended up staying for two only because I wanted to see the rest of the country. I am a skeptic with a lot of things I do, but I am soooo glad I found La Escuela Del Sol. Go with them you won't be disappointed."
TripAdvisor website, edited
"Decided to do something different for travel this year and headed down to LEDS in Costa Rica for a week of Surfing and Yoga (I have never done either). Wow! I should have come sooner! The location is great! Jeremy and his team made sure everything went super-smooth. We made friends quickly with other students and did many activities as a group. The classes and instruction were awesome. Pablo quickly (and safely) got us riding waves and the Yoga instructors were very helpful to me just starting out. Really looking forward to a return trip!"
TripAdvisor website, edited
"I would definitely recommend La Escuela Del Sol to anyone looking to learn Spanish and/or do yoga classes in Costa Rica. I was told that the surfing and the poi were also great, but I didn't take those classes so I can't speak from personal experience. The teachers were fantastic and the location in Montezuma is fabulous - the beach and plenty of great restaurants are within walking distance. The rooms are reasonably basic, but comfortable."
Jan 2014. Tripadvisor website, edited
"I spent a week surfing and at Spanish school here in early December and had the best time. The teachers are great, really nice with good English, I had Pablo and Wendy and both were very professional. My room was ok, quite noisy on the ground floor, but I was pretty busy with activities and enjoying Montezuma to spend a lot of time there, just don't expect to have many lie-ins if you're in room 4. Other facilities were nice though, lounge area great for some hammock-time and kitchen well stocked for cooking, etc. Staff also very friendly and welcoming, it's just a great place to spend time learning new skills!"
Dec 2013. Tripadvisor website, edited
"Amazing? Wonderful? Magical? I can't find one adequate adjective to describe my month at La Escuela Del Sol. Jeremy Levine has created an environment where you can learn to surf, learn Spanish, practice yoga and get scuba certified while being supported by kind, gentle, loving, caring people that have nothing but your best interest at heart. Everyone from housekeeping to management knows you by name, what classes you're taking and they are all genuinely interested in hearing about your latest surf adventure or to help you out with your Spanish."
October 2013. Tripadvisor website, edited