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Yoga Vacation in Tamil Nadu, India

The Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Meenakshi Ashram was founded in 2002 in Madurai, India. Meenakshi is the name of the divine mother who is in the presiding deity of the most famous temple in Madurai city. The ashram is nestled within 12 acres of natural beauty and lies inside a natural forest approximately, 20 km north of the holy city Madurai in the state of Tamil Nadu. The peaceful forest surroundings, the panoramic views along with the adjacent lotus pond offer an ideal setting for yogic practices. The neighbouring wild forests homes peacocks, deer, many varieties of birds and butterflies.

Yoga vacation in Madurai, Tamil Nadu

Living in the ashram in Sivananda yoga ashram in Tamil Nadu following a simple, structured daily schedule, allows you to focus on yourself for two weeks or more!!! The term vacation usually implies doing nothing, perhaps lying on a beach. Swami Vishnudevananda adopted the term 'Yoga Vacation' because the structured schedule allows you to relax completely in a way a beach or travel holiday doesn't. All you have to do is be here, relax and participate.

Sivananda yoga on your vacation

Give your life a boost, develop positive thinking, radiant health and inner peace through the practice of ancient yogic techniques for balanced living. The yoga vacation is based on the teachings of Swami Sivananda and Swami Vishnudevananda. It is designed to help you develop a strong practice which can be incorporated back into your daily life at home.


  • Practice karma yoga
  • All meals during stay
  • Yoga classes and satsang daily
  • 13 nights accommodation in ashram
  • Beginners are welcome
  • Experience ashram life

Skill level

  • Beginner

Yoga styles

14 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: English
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Accommodation in during yoga vacation in Madurai, Tamil Nadu is simple shared dormitories. Separate dormitory buildings for men and ladies. We have two types of dormitory space. Both are available for men and women separately. Dorm 1 is the original simple, thatched coconut leaf style walls and roofing. Dorm 2 is a rustic red brick style, under flat concrete roof.

For each guest, a bed with a mattress and supports for mosquito net, plus 2 bed sheets, a pillow with cover and a mosquito net are provided. A shared desk and window, with a chair, is provided to each set of two beds. Each guest will have one lockable cupboard, and some concrete shelves, and a luggage storage shelf above.

Shared bathroom facilities are provided with cold water only. There are Indian and Western style toilets. There are basins available for laundry in the bathroom facilities.Generous storage facilities are provided, a window and desk between two guests, plus a private lockable cupboard and above and below that cupboard, generous sized concrete shelving for bags, books etc. There are no shared or single rooms available.


During your stay for yoga vacation, you will be asked to live in a simple way. To get the maximum benefit we recommend the full two-week program. Classes are optional on the day off, once a week usually Friday. Guests are expected to attend morning and evening satsangs on this day. Day trips to places of interest are regularly arranged on the day off.

Basic ashram schedule

  • 05.20 Wake up bell
  • 06.00 Satsang
  • 07.30 Tea time
  • 08.00 Asana class
  • 10.00 Brunch
  • 11.00 Karma yoga
  • 12.30 Coaching class (optional)
  • 13.30 Tea time
  • 14.00 Lecture
  • 16.00 Asana class
  • 18.00 Dinner
  • 20.00 Satsang
  • 22.00 Lights out

The daily schedule may change from time to time according to need. The entire schedule is mandatory. Kindly note, the spoken and teaching language of the ashrams is English.

Retreat location

Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Meenakshi Ashram is located in Madurai in Tamil Nadu, India.

Things to do (optional)

On your yoga vacation in Sivananda yoga ashram in Madurai, you will have a schedule that enables you to relax and really have a retreat. Your attendance in the class is mandatory. However, you will have a day off. During the day off you may do other activities. Sometimes we arrange day trip that you can attend.

How to get there

Arrival by airplane

There are daily international flights into Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram) plus daily flights from Bombay (Mumbai), New Delhi and Madras (Chennai). From the airport, take a prepaid taxi or auto rickshaw directly to the Ashram (32km). The pre-paid taxi booth is situated near the exit as you come through arrivals. You can also take a meter rickshaw or taxi to the bus depot near the Trivandrum train station and then take a bus to Neyyar Dam or the nearby town, Kattakada (see By Bus below)

Arrival by train

Trivandrum Central Station is connected by rail to all main cities in India. When you reach Trivandrum, buy a prepaid taxi/rickshaw from the stand at the entrance to the station. This will save you the trouble of negotiating a price with the driver. The bus station is situated across the street, where there is regular service to Kattakada/Neyyar Dam (see By Bus below).

You are advised to book rail tickets as soon as possible. Trains are usually fully booked near the time of travel.Train e-tickets can be booked up to three months in advance via the internet. Train information can be obtained via Credit card bookings can be made via For reserved tourist quota seats you will need to visit the railway reservations office.

Arrival by bus

Neyyar Dam, where the Ashram is located, is 28km from Trivandrum and the last stop on the route. The Trivandrum Bus Station is located across the street from the Trivandrum Central Railway Station.- the bus for Kattakada/Neyyar Dam leaves from Bay 11. If there is no direct bus to Neyyar Dam, take the bus to Kattakada and get a bus onward to Neyyar Dam. Bus cost is Rs 14. Once at the Neyyar Dam bus stop, it is a 1km (20 minute) walk uphill to the ashram. Look for the signs. You can also take a rickshaw from the Neyyar Dam entrance gate for approx Rs 20.

Arrival by taxi and auto rickshaw

Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Meenakshi Ashram in Madurai is about one hour drive from Trivandrum (28km). Prepaid taxi is available at the airport, and prepaid auto rickshaw and taxi outside the train station. They give government rates, approximately Rs 350 for an auto rickshaw and Rs 800 for a taxi.

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