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This late summer, Out to Explore Zen Yoga experience is a unique opportunity to develop your Zen yoga and meditation while having an authentic experience of life in Zakynthos. September is without a doubt one of my favourite months of the year. The hot and hectic tourist season peaks in August, bringing a sense of calm in September. Cooler evenings contrasting with the September sun are perfect for outdoor practice and quieter exploration.
Late summer is the season to engage with the Earth element in your yoga practice, working with the Spleen and Stomach meridians to develop your feelings of stability, building an abundance of compassion and care, shedding insecurity and incessant worries. You’ll explore and take your yoga and meditation practice to some stunning locations around the island.
You will be accommodated in Explorer's Rest or at Elea Hotel opposite Explorer's Rest. Both are set back on a quiet lane in Argasi at the foot of Mount Skopos. Explorer's Rest is a villa divided into four studios set in a small olive grove. There is parking available in the gardens to the front of Explorer’s Rest. Elea Hotel is in the olive grove opposite Explorer's Rest, offering beautiful self-catering studios.
Hiring a car enables you to explore the island in your own way and at your own pace. The studios provide compact home comforts. There are two ground floor studios at Explorer's Rest. They have been refurbished and both can accommodate up to three adults with the option of an extra Z bed for a child.
The first floor studios are basically equipped and can accommodate up to two adults each.
Voyager and Wayfarer studios both bear characteristics of their names, reflected in their color schemes and décor. The spirit of the sea explorer and the wandering wayfarer is invoked in the carefully selected furnishings, pictures, ornaments, and books.
Both studios have full kitchens giving you the freedom to choose whether to eat out or prepare some great home-cooked food. The bunk beds to reflect the sense of adventure that Out to Explore likes to share with their guests.
The balconies have French windows with pull-down mosquito nets for your comfort and convenience and enjoy views of the foothills of Mount Skopos. Perfect for enjoying a sundowner. Both studios have a flat-screen TV, safety deposit boxes, free air conditioning, and Wi-Fi.
Nomad and Fernweh offer basic accommodation for the happy holidaymaker and explorer on a budget. They are accessed via stairs at the rear of the building that leads to a shared terrace at the entrance to the studios.
From here, you have a panoramic view of the sea and coast all the way to Zakynthos town as well as being able to watch the sunrise over the coastline. The balconies on the other side of each studio enjoy views of the foothills of Skopos and the surrounding lush green area.
It is a perfect place for watching the sinking sun, below the horizon. The balcony windows have pull-down mosquito nets. Both studios have a kitchen, refrigerator, wet room old style shower room, TV, safety deposit box, and free Wi-Fi.
Private yacht cruise along coast of Zakynthos (Lunch not included)
The first exploration will be to Alykes for sunset beach yoga. Aykes nestles on the East Coast and has a long sandy beach and seemingly endless sea in one direction and an imposing view of Kefalonia in the other. We will experience the calm at the end of the day and have a chance for a sunset dip in the sea.
This Mindful Walks takes us to Keri village nestling on the mountainside. This is a circular walk taking in the stone lanes and winding paths through the village and along the mountain path to the lighthouse with its extraordinary panoramic views; enjoying this walk with all our senses and returning to the village for lunch. This is a 5k gentle walk and takes just under an hour.
Your next excursion takes us to Crystal Beach for sunrise Yoga. So named because of the vast crystal formations on the beach. The rising sun paints the sky the most stunning colors and the dawning of the day inspires you in your practice. The feel of soft sand between your toes and the warmth of the rising sun on your faces will remain deep in your memories, as will the quality of the fresh sea air as you breathe in your asanas.
You will enjoy a picnic breakfast and take a little time to swim, snorkel, or seek out the mineral mud that deposits around this area. The clay-like mud is renowned to have healing and moisturizing qualities so you will let it dry on your skin and wash it off in the sea revealing soft skin. Nature's beauty treat!
Thursday is your day off so it's time to indulge. This extra special day out is a valuable opportunity to relax and mull things over in the luxury of a private yacht. Watch the stunning coastline of Zakynthos drift by, see the turquoise sea glistening and maybe even catch a glimpse of a turtle or a dolphin! You will make a stop for lunch at a little harbour then set sail again
Your last excursion will include some of the West coast wonders. Together, you will drive along the untamed West Coast of the island, away from mass tourism through the villages seemingly untouched by time. You will explore off the beaten track through rural pockets of Zakynthos, learning a little of the culture, history, and traditions of the island. Finally, you will head down the coast to Porto Roxa. There, you will have your evening practice on the rock platforms besides the sea and stay for your last dinner together at the taverna spending some time soaking up the extraordinary atmosphere awakening the body and the mind and reconnecting with nature. You'll also get a taste of the hospitality and filoxenia (welcoming of all) that the Zakynthians are well known for.
Yoga became a part of Barbara's life in her mid-30s. After practicing yoga for 20 years and teaching for two years, Barbara Clother created the Zen Yoga Studio in Argassi as a base for sharing Zen yoga practice. Barbara has been involved in performing arts since childhood, she always enjoyed the emotional release she got from movement. One of her greatest pleasures is helping others find their path and connect with their joy, enabling them to continue their practice in their own daily lives.
Melanie has been a specialist leader and consultant in education for several years in the U.K. As part of her strategic role she has been fortunate to coach and mentor leadership teams and individuals. Gaining professional accreditation at the Master coach level has enabled Melanie to develop, introduce, and embed tiered coaching systems into multiple organizations. Melanie’s motivation for a pure coaching model is to empower individuals to tackle sometimes tricky situations and enable them to find their own pathway.
This retreat takes place in Agarssi, Zakynthos, Greece. Argassi village is situated in the southern part of the island, on the east coast, three kilometers southeast of Zakynthos town and 5.8 kilometers from the airport which is about 10 minutes by car.
Argassi is an ideal base on the coastal road between Zakynthos town and the Vasilikos peninsular. During the summer season (May to October), Argassi resort, based along the sea front, enjoys the benefits of a tourist resort.
A small but good selection of excellent and varied tavernas, restaurants, beach bars, and shops. The narrow sandy or shingle beach has a lively water sports center and also harbors the remains of a Venetian bridge built in 1805.
The breakfast buffet consists of freshly baked croissants or pancakes (gluten-free), various cereals, and muesli. As well as oats seeds and dried fruits to mix your own muesli. Greek Yoghurt, milk, almond milk. Toast (wholemeal or white), Wheat free crispbreads and a variety of other crispbreads, as well as pumpernickel.
There are also butter, homemade marmalades, and jams and preserves. Locally produced honey. Feta cheese. Breakfast bars and traditional Greek paxamathia cookies. Boiled free-range eggs from our farm. Fresh seasonal fruit including plums, watermelon, pears, bananas. Fresh orange and apple juice. Smoothies with frozen forest fruits. lemon and mint squash. Variety of teas (including green and Matcha tea) and cafetiere coffee.
The picnic lunch includes vegetarian quiche with gluten-free pastry, chickpea patties, pomegranate and tomato salsa, feta cheese dip, fresh fruit, and sesame bars.
You are welcome to use the swimming pool at the Elea Hotel, which is opposite Explorer's Rest. If the beach is more your thing, then Argassi Beach is a 10-minute stroll away. There are regular buses that can take you to Vasilikos and the gorgeous beaches along the Vasilikos peninsular. Gerakas Beach, at the tip of the peninsula, is one of the main sites under the protection of the National Marine Park for the conservation of loggerhead turtles.
You can find out more about National Marine Park's work by visiting their observation station at Gerakas. During your free time, you may like to explore some of the more creative activities that Zakynthos offers. Argassi is the home of Afrodite, a local potter who will teach you how to make piece pottery using old fashioned techniques at the Spinspot pottery.
Learn to cook like the locals and a little food history with a Zakynthian cookery class.
Kayaking and paddleboarding trips available
You can also ride a horse on an unspoiled beach beside the ocean, or explore by sea, or enjoy a kayaking trip to the blue caves organized by them. There is also the opportunity to join a Zakynthian cookery class and learn the secrets of the local cuisine. They can also organize bicycle and car hire for you. They are always on hand if you need any tips or advice.
In this retreat, one massage session is included in the price. You can choose from sports massage therapy, reflexology, Swedish massage therapy, Indian head massage, and onsite massage. Additional massages can also be booked upon request at an additional cost.
Zakynthos International Airport (Dionysios SolomosAirport)
Please book your flight to arrive at Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH). Transfer from and to the airport is included. Out to Explore will pick you up from the airport.
There are all year round flights leaving every day from Athens which take approximately 45 minutes. There are also regular flights to and from Kefalonia, Corfu, Kithira, and Preveza.
During the tourist season, April to October, there are direct charter connections between Zakynthos and a number of European cities. Some of the larger charter airlines, Ryanair and EasyJet, fly to Zakynthos. Transfer from the airport can be done by taxi, costing approximately 16 EUR. Alternatively, you can collect a hire car from the airport either by booking online in advance or you can hire a car when you arrive.
Please book your ticket to Kyllini. The national bus company (KTEL) runs a daily coach service with direct connections to the cities of Athens, Patras, and Thessaloniki via a short journey on the Zakynthos-Kyllini ferry. The trip from Athens to Kyllini lasts roughly four hours and 30 minutes. From Kyllini, there is a direct ferry boat link to Zakynthos. The ferryboat ticket is included in the price of the bus ticket.
From the bus station in Zakynthos town, you can either take a bus to Argassi or a taxi costing approximately 8 EUR.
All year round there are daily ferry routes from the port of Killini, on the Peloponnese coast, to Zakynthos. Two companies operating are Ionian Group and Kefalonian Lines. During the tourist season, May to October, there is a ferry connection which is Ionion Pelagos between Pesada in Kefalonia and Saint Nikolas port in Zakynthos. %All year round, there are daily car-ferry routes from Venice, Ancona, Bari or Brindisi (Italy) to Patras (Greece). Then, by car or bus (KTEL) to Killini's port, and by ferry to Zakynthos.
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