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6 Days Mindfulness Meditation and Yoga Retreat Luang Prabang, Laos

6 Days Mindfulness Meditation and Yoga Retreat Luang Prabang, Laos

  • Mandala Ou Resort, Nong Khiaw Road, Ban Sop Houn, ​Nong Khiaw, Luang Prabang Province, Laos

Inspiring Yoga Retreat Laos

Join this retreat to a remote fishing village in Northern Laos to slow down and immerse yourself in a complete yoga practice that weaves together asana, personal alignment, breathing, and meditation through a real-world application of yoga philosophy. These immersions are carefully designed to deepen your knowledge and complete your experience of yoga.

Highlights

  • Daily yoga practices
  • Daily meditation sessions
  • Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction workshops
  • Use of pool and natural sauna
  • Breakfasts and buffet dinners
  • 5 nights' accommodation
  • 6 days with instruction
  • English
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Mandala Ou Resort offers 10 spacious clean and comfortable detached bungalows, mixing traditional Lao styles with all modern conveniences you can expect from a home away from your home. The custom-built yoga shala sits directly on the banks of the Nam Ou River, harnessing the energy of life.

You can choose from fountain bungalows and riverside bungalows. There are only two bungalows with twin beds (one fountain bungalow and one riverside bungalow). All other bungalows have double beds.

If you are traveling as a pair and would like to share a bungalow, but do not want to share a bed, fountain bungalows with double beds can also accommodate an extra twin-sized bed for an extra fee per night. Luang Prabang Yoga will try to accommodate your request for single or double occupancy, but this will depend on the availability of the room as well.

In the construction of the raised yoga shala, Mandala Ou Resort worked closely with the teachers at Luang Prabang Yoga to create a space that will fully support your yoga practice. Mandala Ou Resort is also the only resort in Nong Khiaw to offer pool and sauna facilities, a complement to your yoga practice.

This is a program inspired by Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) led by Mira and Julie.

What is MBSR?

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is a group-based program developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn at the UMASS Medical Center Center for Mindfulness for populations with a wide range of physical and mental health problems. It uses a combination of mindfulness meditation, body awareness, and yoga to help people become more mindful.

After a retreat led by Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, Kabat-Zinn adapted the teachings on mindfulness into the structured eight-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction course, which integrates the healing aspects of Buddhist meditation practices with the concept of psychological awareness and healing. Several core guided meditation practices are taught in the course, emphasizing connection with the present moment through expanded awareness of specific aspects of our moment-to-moment existence.

The body scan, a foundational practice of the MBSR course, is derived from a traditional Burmese meditation practice called sweeping, which S.N. Goenka teaches in his 10-day Vipassana retreats. While inspired by the teachings of Buddhism, there is nothing inherently religious about mindfulness, and MBSR is taught independent of religious or cultural connotation, so while its roots are spiritual, the program itself is secular.

In recent years, meditation and particularly the MBSR program have been the subject of controlled clinical research that suggests beneficial effects including stress reduction, relaxation, and improvements to the quality of life.

The program

The program uses various tools of MBSR such as body scans, three-step breathing space (SBS), emotional identification, and inquiry to give you practical and tangible tools to work towards a mindful lifestyle. Together, practice and theory will be delivered in an easy-to-understand format so that you begin to experience your own meditation and movement practices as pathways towards greater self-discovery.

Morning and evening yoga asana classes will be slower and soulful to support the mindfulness practice. During the afternoon workshops, we will explore various aspects of MBSR in more detail through practice and discussion. Topics to be covered include:

  • Defining mindfulness
  • Auto-pilot: discovering how you go through life on automatic pilot and how to shift from the “doing” mode that creates stress in your lives
  • Power of attention, attitude, awareness
  • Triangle of awareness (body, thoughts, emotions)
  • Present-centered practices
  • 8 attitudes: developing the attitudes that will help respond to any situation with curiosity and kindness)
  • Defining stress
  • STOP (space between stimulus and reaction where you can choose a response): discovering how to respond rather than react
  • Practicing looking at thoughts rather than from thoughts in order to help free yourselves from rumination and negative thought patterns
  • Labeling thoughts and emotions: Recognize, Acknowledge, Investigate, Non-Identity (RAIN)
  • Compassion and mindfulness-based joy

Sample schedule

Day 1, October 2

  • 13:30 Arrival and check in
  • 14:00 Individual meetings
  • 16:00 Introductions and retreat overview
  • 17:00 Yoga and meditation
  • 19:30 Organic buffet dinner

Day 2, October 3 - Day 5, October 6

  • 07:30 Guided meditation (applying techniques of MBSR)
  • 08:30 Mindful Flow yoga
  • 10:00 Breakfast
  • 15:00 Afternoon workshops (mindfulness, present-centered attitudes, emotional inquiry, compassion, etc.)
  • 17:00 Yin yoga / special evening program on last evening
  • 19:30 Organic buffet dinner

Day 6, October 7

  • 07:30 Meditation
  • 08:30 Mindful Flow yoga
  • 10:00 Breakfast
  • 11:00 Closing ceremony
  • 12:00 Check out and departure

Note:

  • Luang Prabang Yoga recommends that you arrive in Luang Prabang before the retreat date so that you can arrange your transportation with a travel agency the day before you leave for Nong Khiaw.
  • When planning your trip, please be sure to arrive in time for the introductions and opening ceremony on the first day.
  • Julie Moksim

    Yoga Alliance International (Hatha Yoga, Power Yoga, Nidra Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga)

    Julie is a Yoga Alliance registered teacher. She incorporates all of her past experiences into her teaching style. She teaches Hatha, Power, Vinyasa Flow, and Nidra yoga styles. Julie began her yoga practice in 2003 in USA. She studied at the Baron Baptiste Power Yoga Studios where she practiced Power Vinyasa yoga, a dynamic flow which synchronizes breathing and movement. She trained as a teacher in Bali, Indonesia at Shakti Spirit Yoga with Rachel Hull along with a strong Ayurvedic component.

  • Mira

    (Yoga)

    Mira is a 500-hour certified yoga teacher, trained in India in classical Hatha and holistic yoga. Her teaching style focuses on slowing down each asana to reconnect with the body and quiet the mind in order to reap the therapeutic and transformative benefits of the practice. She has been practicing meditation and studying Buddhism and mindfulness in the Theravada and Mahayana traditions under several great teachers in Asia and the West since being introduced in Sri Lanka in 2011, and became a certified teacher of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) in 2017.

This retreat will take place at a premier bungalow resort that is situated high on the banks of the scenic and tranquil Nam Ou River, offering spectacular sunset views over the virgin rainforest and karst limestone mountains of Nong Khiaw.

Nong Khiaw

Nong Khiaw is a sleepy village, nestled in the highlands of Northern Laos. Located approximately 150 kilometers from Luang Prabang, Nong Khiaw is easily accessible by road and river. Travel by road to Nong Khiaw from Luang Prabang takes approximately 3 hours, although many travelers opt for the longer, 6-hour boat ride as the views along the river are spectacular.

Life in Nong Khiaw takes place primarily along the banks of the Nam Ou River. A main street and bridge run through the center of town, connecting the two sides. From Nong Khiaw, day trips to Hmong villages, rock climbing, and visits to caves and waterfalls can be arranged, but the village is best experienced at leisure.

Ultimately, Nong Khiaw's draw is its impressive landscape. The Nam Ou River is flanked on both sides by rolling hills and stone massifs. The river cuts through the mountains, opening spectacular views into the distance. It is a destination not to be missed.

  • 5 nights’ accommodation
  • All yoga and meditation sessions
  • Bicycle available for each participant
  • Healthy breakfasts
  • Organic vegetarian and non-vegetarian buffet dinners
  • Use of pool and natural sauna

Arrival by bus

Buses are available from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang but expect a long and uncomfortable ride as roads are unsealed part of the way. If you are coming from Vientiane, overnight and day buses are also available (approximately 10 hours) and the view is spectacular.

Nong Khiaw is easily accessible by road from Luang Prabang. Nong Khiaw is approximately 150 kilometers from Luang Prabang and minibuses run regularly between the two. Minibus tickets can be purchased from various travel agencies in Luang Prabang. Minibuses depart Luang Prabang at 09:00, 11:00, and 13:00. The journey takes approximately 3 hours.

If you are traveling either from Northern Thailand or Northern Laos, you can travel to Nong Khiaw either by public or VIP buses. Depending on the route, you may have to stop in Pak Mong and hire a tuk-tuk to take you the rest of the way to Nong Khiaw.

If you are traveling by road and river from Vietnam, regular buses run from Hanoi to Dien Bien Phu in Vietnam. From there, you can connect by bus to Mueng Khua in Laos. From Mueng Khua to Nong Khiaw is a lovely 6-hour boat ride.

Arrival by ferry / boat

From the northern border with Thailand, several boat options are available including a slow boat from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang (2 days with overnight in Pak Beng) or the speedboat (7 hours).

For a more comfortable trip, opt for the Luang Say river boat, departing from Huay Xai to Luang Prabang and takes 2 days with an overnight at the Luang Say Lodge in Pak Beng. The price of the Luang Say Riverboat trip includes meals and overnight accommodation in Pak Beng.

From Luang Prabang, you can go to Nong Khiaw by minibus. If you are from Mueng Khua, you can go to Nong Khiauw with a lovely 6-hour boat ride.

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 100% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.

Luang Prabang, Laos

Luang Prabang Yoga is a cooperative of independent yoga teachers that offers yoga retreat in some of the most beautiful locations in Luang Prabang, Laos.

  • Availability: The Yoga Retreats of this organizer are available 56% of the time.

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