Lidiya is one of Suryalila’s onsite Vinyasa Flow and Yin yoga teachers. Her classes are vigorous, fluid and energizing with a strong focus on pranayama and mindfulness. Apart from being a tourism management specialist and marketing and manager assistant at Suryalila’s office, she leads and organizes various retreats including wellness retreats, most famously the "Adventure and Yoga Retreat" - dubbed “the retreat of a lifetime” by previous participants.
Yoga Alliance E-RYT 500 (Yoga)
Vidya Jacqueline Heisel, E-RYT 500, SYT, is the director of Suryalila Retreat Centre and the director of Frog Lotus Yoga International yoga teacher training programs. Vidya grew up in England, and lived in India, Bali, and the USA, before arriving in southern Spain in 2011. Yoga has been Vidya’s life-long passion. She started studying, practicing, and teaching yoga in 1975 and since then has taught yoga extensively worldwide.
Conny Muennemann, who keeps her eight beautiful horses on the Suryalila Retreat Centre property, has been riding and leading treks through Andalucía for over ten years. By riding with Conny you will see the real Andalucía, which most tourists miss.
“Adventure and yoga holiday”
I actually think this is a perfect holiday. This was my second yoga and adventure here because i just loved it so much!
Hiking, cycling, canyoning, via ferrata in Ronda, kayaking and trips to gorgeous local towns and villages PLUS twice daily yoga and GORGEOUS food. I recommend a tent because you have easy access to the outdoor showers and composting toilets, which are fabulous. If you wanted more there is a flamenco class, acroyoga, a sauna and a walk to visit a local artist's house. I have no doubt I'll be back for a third time!
“Amazing week of adventure and yoga”
I would highly recommend this retreat to everyone! Or at least those who are up for incredible hikes, amazing canyoning, beautiful bike rides, to just name a few activities. It is an action packed week, but includes a well earned rest day, but I felt incredibly energised from the week. I shared a room in the main house with 3 others, it was very spacious, very clean and had beautiful art work and a big ensuite bathroom... The yoga twice a day was really good. Lidiya is an excellent teacher and group leader. The classes were demanding and challenging but never too much so. The food is really good.. I had read all the good reviews before I left and I wasn't disappointed! ! There is one thing for sure... I will definitely be back. If you have any opportunity to visit this amazing gem of a yoga centre I would do it.
Neil Bradburn United Kingdom
This was my first yoga retreat, and it definitely won't be my last. To say that the retreat was life-changing is not an understatement. I came home from the retreat very relaxed, content, feeling physically better, with a different outlook on life, and eager to practice more yoga. My yoga experience was very limited but I never felt out of my depth in the classes. Lidiya, the teacher, provided very clear instructions and offered varying difficulties of each posture. The morning classes were held in a huge dome overlooking the Spanish countryside, with the glow of the morning sun helping us warm up for the day. I felt amazing after leaving the classes (mentally and physically) and as the week progressed, I felt that my abilities were improving. In between the classes were a collection of outdoor activities that allowed us to stretch our legs and to enjoy the amazing local countryside. They included long hikes in the mountains; kayaking in warm, still, turquoises lakes; canyoning in dramatic gorges, with huge vultures circling overhead; 'via ferrata'ing' (climbing using metal 'steps' that have been 'bedded' into the rock) around the beautiful and historic town of Rhonda. All the activities were hugely enjoyable and massively memorable. Throughout the retreat we were extremely well cared for by Lidiya. She nurtured us through the week as if we were long-term friends. She addressed any issues or questions we had and made the week extremely special. I am a seasoned traveler and I can honestly say the trip ranks right up there in my top trips ever. I'll definitely be doing it again soon!
The most rejuvenating holiday ever! I had an amazing time with the yoga and horses, and I enjoyed the fabulous food and company. I've only been back home for one day and I have already convinced three friends to visit Suryalila! Thank you for a wonderful holiday.
I had a fantastic and very relaxing time in Suryalila. Thea was a fabulous yoga teacher and the retreat offered a great mix of yoga, walking, day trip to Ronda, and time to relax. Food was also delicious. Would definitely recommend it and hopefully will return for another yoga retreat there soon
Spring Yoga retreart
The retreat was everything I could have hoped for. Being guided each day by our loving and kind yoga instructor, Lidiya was revitalizing. Over the course of a week, a crew of strangers became close friends and we have Lidiya to thank for that. Each morning and evening we practiced in the dome, a beautiful structure with a breathtaking view of rolling hills and blue sky. When practicing in the dome, you felt wrapped up in nature as the warm sun and sounds of the outdoors poured in. I strongly recommend this retreat to anyone seeking self care, reflection and a supportive community.
I stayed in a Yert with my partner on the Adventure Yoga Retreat Oct 2016 and it was truly the best holiday of my life, and my partner whole-heartedly agreed! The yoga was challenging both for beginners and more advanced Yogi's as the teacher, Lidiya, is a fantastic teacher with a wealth of experience and knowledge. She is so warm and nurturing, she puts you at ease straight away and she guided me to make great improvements in my practice. The food was stunning with a massive amount of variety and gave us great ideas to continue our veggie journey. I felt a general feeling of contentment throughout my time there and made connections with a wonderful group of people. I implore you to book this retreat NOW!!! It was the best thing I have ever paid for and I will remember it forever. I now have my happy place for guided meditations!
Oh my god! This was the most amazing holiday! I can't recommend it enough. My fellow yogis were wonderful, our yoga teacher lidyia was wonderful, the food incredible, the activities just challenging enough. I'm running out of adjectives! The adventure part was organised by Frank and we all loved it, he is a lovely man. The retreat centre is awesome, the volunteers were all lovely. It was just a perfect holiday!
Kerry, C United Kingdom
An outstanding retreat - rising with the sun to enjoy Yoga practice followed by a fun filled day with activities in the beautiful local area and evening practice alongside enjoying fabulous sunsets. The retreat space is naturally stunning and the vegetarian food was delicious throughout the week, catering for my specific needs. I have returned home feeling well-nourished and a sense of being together again. Highly recommend this retreat for people that want to experience Yoga alongside exploring the delights of Southern Spain. The highlight of the trip was the Yoga practice itself - led by Lidiya; a kind and inspiring teacher.
This was my second trip to Suryalila after having such an amazing time last year.. I didn't think it could get any better, but it did!My best pal and I enjoyed 7 days of yoga and adventure excursions in the beautiful Andalusian countryside, organised impeccably by the divine Lidiya. We were blessed with the most wonderful group of people on the trip, all of whom made a lasting impression.. All the people we met at Suryalila throughout our time there were absolutely lovely.
The adventure trips met the abilities of everyone in the group, never feeling too difficult nor too easy. The programme had been tweaked from last year and enjoying a regenerating yoga session after a day's adventuring worked really well. Particular highlight was the spectacular cycle/walk/wild swimming adventure day.. So beautiful!
We stayed in one of the tents which were very comfortable, but get quite hot during the day.. Luckily you're kept busy, the salt water pool is spectacularly refreshing and the main building is always nice and cool.
The food.. Out of this world. I've never eaten so much, or so well. Incredible variety.. There should be a Suryalila cookbook!
Love the introduction of permaculture and the whole centre's approach to sustainability. They are mindful of their impact on the local Eco system and do their best to keep it to a minimum. Make sure you book a massage with Camilla if you get the chance.. Out of this world.
Overall, I can't describe Suryalila as anything other than paradise. Will be back again for certain.
I probably spent the best week of my life at Suryalila. I took part in the Adventure and Yoga retreat, and had an amazing time in all the excursions planned by Lidiya. The combination of physical activities and yoga was amazing, and at the end of the week, I felt really energized - although sad it had come to an end! Suryalila is also in a gorgeous location, and the property itself is very beautiful. For one part, the sunsets and sunrises are magical… Furthermore, the food was always delicious and a great variety of dishes were served. And - most importantly, might I say - everyone I met was a pleasure to be around. I would recommend Suryalila to anyone who wants to have a refreshing holiday, feel healthy and fit, and meet great people.
As for the yoga classes, they were both fun and inspiring. I really enjoyed Lidiya's flow and how she integrated restorative poses even to dynamic classes - everything felt perfectly balanced. She also introduced us to various styles of yoga, which I particularly enjoyed.
Cheryl A Nesbit
Suryalila Yoga Retreat Centre Facebook page
An amazing experience. I did yoga teacher training, yet met many volunteers and private guests whom also enjoyed the nature and delicious veggie cuisine! So gorgeous!!!!!!!!
Suryalila Yoga Retreat Centre website
I probably spent the best week of my life at Suryalila. I took part in the adventure and yoga retreat, and had an amazing time in all the excursions planned by Lidiya. The combination of physical activities and yoga was amazing, and at the end of the week, I felt really energized - although sad it had come to an end! Suryalila is also in a gorgeous location, and the property itself is very beautiful. For one part, the sunsets and sunrises are magical. Furthermore, the food was always delicious and a great variety of dishes were served. And most importantly, might I say - everyone I met was a pleasure to be around. I would recommend Suryalila to anyone who wants to have a refreshing holiday, feel healthy and fit, and meet great people. As for the yoga classes, they were both fun and inspiring. I really enjoyed Lidiya's flow and how she integrated restorative poses even to dynamic classes - everything felt perfectly balanced. She also introduced us to various styles of yoga, which I particularly enjoyed.
Suryalila Yoga Retreat Centre website
Everything about Suryalila exceeded my expectations. The amazing surroundings, the beautiful facilities (including the incredible yoga geodome), the wonderful food, the hospitality and warmth of the owners and their staff, the community spirit, and of course the yoga. I have never returned from a holiday feeling so relaxed and rejuvenated. Vidya, Harry, and their staff and volunteers have created a truly magical place. I cannot wait to go back!
Anne Bettina R
Suryalila was a truly a wonderful experience! A charming hacienda in a beautiful location. The yoga was excellent and the food was absolutely delicious. Straight from Suryalila's own vegetable patch, the freshness, and skilled chef made it the best food I have ever tasted. The staff and volunteers that worked there were warm and welcoming and it was easy to feel right at home. The five days were tranquil and fun. The other guests were friendly lovely people that were easy to be with. We had visits to local villages, hikes, yoga, meditation, a flamenco dancing class, and still have time to hang out. Vidya is an inspiring yoga teacher and I look forward to future visits to Suryalila.
Tanya B United Kingdom
Suryalila is a beautiful place that attracts beautiful people. The retreat had its own optional schedule with activities at the center and trips to nearby villages. Twice daily yoga was challenging but rewarding and the food was amazing.
Suryalila is a wonderful experience. The venue is in a beautiful, peaceful setting, run by a warm and welcoming team of people. The center itself has been cleverly developed, modern facilities but a traditional feel to it. I love good food, and they offered fantastic food, often picked out of their own fruit and vegetable garden!I came for the Christmas retreat, which was so much fun! There was a schedule for each day and guests just went to what they wanted to, which was great. If you wanted a day to just lie in the hammock enjoying the view you could, or you could go off on an organized visit to a local village and take a walk in the hills. Yoga was available every day, of course, in the fabulous Om Dome - and I ended up going to them all. I think Suryalila attracts nice people - that was my experience on the retreat I would love to go back and do it all again.
I want to thank everyone at Suryalila from the bottom of my heart for the most amazing holiday ever. This place is a little piece of heaven in the most beautiful location, with fantastic people. I spent a week there on the yoga adventure holiday and can't recommend it highly enough. Five stars do not do its justice. Thank you Vidya, Harry, Marcella, Lila, and especially Lidiya, for being an amazing teacher and guide. Also Katya for the fantastic Thai massage. Namaste.
a traveler Canada
We chose the yoga and adventure program at Suryalila for having a week of yoga and activities like hiking, biking, and kayaking in Spain with my wife and two adult children. The result was much better than expected: the place is enchanting, even though it is hot in August in Andalusia we enjoyed every moment, the rooms are simple but nice and tastefully decorated, the property is beautiful, the location, with the pool and the sunsets is just perfect. The activities and the team leading them: Lydia from Suryalila and Fran from Sierra Viva, are wonderful making the experience even more memorable. The added value is that you make many friends from all over the world during that intense week and you get introduced (at least for the first time for us) to a wonderful full board completely vegetarian and organic menu that makes you feel really good and ask yourself whether really vegetarian is better.
What a week! I wish I could fully put into words how enjoyable, fulfilling, and restorative time spent on the Adventure Yoga trip at Suryalila has been. Lidia has put together a balanced itinerary that stretched each of the people whilst respecting their individual abilities. I've been racking my brains to work out my favorite adventure, but I can't narrow it down! Highlights are swimming in the beautiful lake on the kayaking trip, abseiling through the canyon, and conquering the rock climbing in Ronda. I had every confidence in Lidia and our guides (Frank, Tony, and Ibrahim) abilities and local knowledge, which was really reassuring. Suryalila itself is a little slice of heaven. The food was beautifully prepared and plentiful. You'll be amazed what can be done with vegetarian food no matter what your usual diet is. The salt water pool was perfect for cooling off without getting covered in chlorine. I stayed in a bell tent, which was perfectly furnished and had plenty of power outlets. It was particularly nice waking up with natural light in the morning. The rest of the facilities and decor throughout the main building are impeccable and have a calming effect. Yoga practice twice daily worked well and complimented our adventure trips. I learned a great deal about my own technique and alternative styles. The evening's restorative sessions were varied and often intriguing. The Om Dome is a spectacular place to start or end your day. The Shiva studio was a great place for the flamenco dancing, Vidya's incredibly interesting 'Yoga 101' seminar and the magnificent Spanish guitarist. Finally, the people were wonderfully calm, happy, gracious, and welcoming! Harry made sure everything ran smoothly, Tam and the kitchen crew made amazing food, oh, and make sure you book time to get a deep tissue massage from Aoiffe. Never experienced anything quite like it! All in all, no matter what program you're following, you can't go wrong by choosing to spend your time at Suryalila.
a traveler South Africa
Suryalila Retreat Centre Team! I just want to say thank you for one of the best weeks ever! Ronnie and I had such an amazing time. The spirit, energy, and peace are still with us. I have facilitated retreats, taught at retreats, but never had the luxury to immerse myself in one.A must do for everyone. Even my husband who was slightly intimidated about a "yoga retreat" loved every minute. The adventures were a great mix of challenging, relaxing, and an opportunity to experience the lovely nature surrounding the area. Lydia's yoga classes were well thought out and complimented our daily activities and the food, well, I cannot say enough good things. Again, even my husband who is a sworn meat lover thoroughly enjoyed the plentiful, delicious, fresh food.
a traveler United Kingdom
Although I am biased because I did my teacher training at this resort and have been an assistant at teacher training, I have to say this is one of the best places in the world. Although maybe difficult to find if you are going at it alone, the grounds are wonderful and it is truly a wonderful place to relax, do yoga, explore southern Spain, and eat amazing vegetarian diet. See you in a few weeks!
Just at the edge of Europe, there is a magic place where you can rediscover nature, people, and yourself. Suryalila is a center which has pleased all my senses with its amazing scenery, stunning and welcoming ambiance, open-hearted people, and delicious vegetarian food. The place is the perfect opportunity to escape from the daily routine and rediscover the beauty which surrounds us, think about the things in life which really matter. I was lucky to have visited Suryalila, dive into its inspirational atmosphere and meet the people who turn this place into a unique yoga and spiritual experience.
a traveler United Kingdom
Suryalila is a wonderful place. If you're reading this then you are thinking about going; my advice right now thinks no more - just book and go! We spent some days over Christmas here and the experience was memorable; great food, yoga, people, accommodation. The whole experience is the result of Vidya's dream - and here you can see the result of someone that has 'dared to dream'. The rooms are comfortable and furnished exquisitely and personally. The food is prepared with equal love, and the yoga is fabulous; even for someone with little yoga experience like me. We stayed as independent guests (i.e..not part of a retreat) which gave scope for endless exploring of the region; mountains, valleys, castles, lakes; the wonders of Seville and Ronda; Arcos de la Frontera, to name a few. In the striking distance is Jerez and Cadiz on the coast. Have a look at their website for more information on what's available .....and then book it! My thanks to Vidya, Harry, and the team at Suryalila for making us so welcome.
Overall it is a very peaceful and beautiful retreat, with very accommodating and friendly staff. It has been such a wonderful and enriching experience staying at Suryalila for my three-week teacher training, with fantastic vegetarian or vegan cuisine and this beautiful scenery.
Amazing place and beautiful surroundings. Food and friendliness beyond all expectations! Thank you.
I would totally go back there in a minute. I've been in Spain for three weeks and as much as I love the whole entire trip, my favorite part was the time at Suryalila! The food, the facility, and the people! The staff or volunteers, guests, pets, wildlife, the lifestyle, the weather, and of course the yoga all made my seven days there completely blissful. I look forward to future training at Suryalila! Thank you, everyone!
We had a wonderful weekend retreat. It has been like living with a big loving family. Wonderful yoga classes, amazing food, and super cozy houses and bedrooms. I will definitely come back!
Share Suryalila Yoga Retreat Centre's page and retreats with your network
Don't miss our special promotions, exclusive offers, new destinations and inspirational stories!
We respect your privacy. We will not publish or share your email address in any way.