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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 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 our yoga practice, working with the Spleen and Stomach meridians to develop our feelings of stability, building abundance of compassion and care, shedding insecurity and incessant worries. We’ll explore seasonal food with a mindful cooking session and take our yoga and meditation practice to some stunning locations around the island.
You will be accommodated in Explorer's Rest. It is set back on a quiet lane in Argasi at the foot of Mount Skopos. It is a single 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.
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. 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 are 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 too reflect the sense of adventure that Out to Explore like 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 flat screen TV, safety deposit box, free air conditioning, and Wi Fi.
Nomad and Fernweh offer basic accommodation for the happy holiday maker and explorer on a budget. They are accessed via stairs at the rear of the building that lead 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 sun rise 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 kitchen, refrigerator, wet room old style shower room, TV, safety deposit box, and free Wi Fi.
The first excursion will be the West Coast Wonders. Together, we will drive along the untamed West coast of the island, away from mass tourism through the villages seemingly untouched by time. We will explore off the beaten track through rural pockets of Zakynthos, learning a little of the culture, history, and traditions of the island.
After visiting the breathtaking Navagio (shipwreck) viewpoint and seeing the turquoise sparkling sea we will head down the coast to Agalas to take the natural stone steps down to the sea to find the purest white rocks and breathtaking views of the ocean. There, we will have a picnic lunch and spend some time soaking up the extraordinary atmosphere, awakening the body and the mind and reconnecting with nature. From there we head back to Argassi, refreshed and ready for our evening practice.
The second 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 us in our practice. The feel of soft sand between our toes and the warmth of the rising sun on our faces will remain deep in our memories, as will the quality of the fresh sea air as we breathe in our asanas.
We 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 we let it dry on our skin and wash it off in the sea revealing soft skin. Nature's beauty treat!
The third excursion is to a clifftop location for sunset yoga. This time we will drive together exploring the east coast of the island passing the salt flats of Alykes and winding our way to the northern tip of the island, Skinari. Here the panoramic views of the coastline right the way to Kefalonia will capture you. Ocean meditation will linger in your memory along with the colors of the sunset. As the sun finally goes down we will stay and eat together at a taverna on the sea.
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.
Throughout the retreat, you will be served daily breakfast. Breakfast consists of a continental style selection including croissants and local pastries, fresh breads, toast, and accompaniments like local cheese, ham, and eggs. Along with those, you can have fresh fruits from the trees such as apricots, plums, oranges, figs, and melon. There will be yogurt, cereals, and muesli. Gluten free options are available upon request in advance. You will also be served fruit juice, teas, and coffee.
There is also a picnic lunch included on one of the excursions which will feature vegetarian home made goodies, and fruit or sweets etc. After the Greek cooking lesson, you all will eat lunch together. This will also be a vegetarian meal depending on what is in season. When you have evening yoga practice at locations away from Argassi, there will be a suggested and optional venue for meals. The suggested venues are carefully selected in keeping with the desire to support local businesses who share an ethos of care for the environment, local customs, and traditions.
It is always wonderful to eat and share a meal together when the opportunity arises but it is also great to have the freedom to choose exactly what you would like to eat so you are not restricted. For this reason, Out to Explore do not include other meals in the package.
You are welcome to use the swimming pool at Edelweiss Hotel, which is the opposite of 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 peninsular, 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 the 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 a piece pottery using old fashioned techniques at the Spinspot pottery.
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. 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.
Dionysios Solomos Airport
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.