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8 Days Chi Running and Yoga Retreat Symi, Greece

Spring Yoga Holiday Greece

Join Symi Yoga Retreat for a running and yoga retreat like no other! Travel with a purpose this spring and you’ll have the incredible opportunity to learn from the very talented Sarah Richardson, a bestselling author, running instructor, and integrative health coach. The true essence of running is being in the present moment, connecting with your inner body and quieting the mind so you can let the run flow. Run, hike, do yoga, swim, eat, and explore. Does it get much better than this?

Meet the instructors

Athena & Sarah
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  • Daily evening yoga
  • Daily mindfulness practice
  • Daily running instruction and materials
  • Hiking on the island and exploring famous landmarks
  • Island boat trip and Chorio tour and down the Kali Strata
  • Welcome, midweek, and final dinners and daily breakfast
  • Lunch and drinks on your boat cruise and meze lunch
  • 7 nights' accommodation

Yoga styles

6 days with instruction in English
Spoken languages: Greek, English
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Nireus Hotel is a waterfront accommodation with spectacular views! Most sea-view rooms at the Nireus have private wrought-iron balconies allowing you to sit and enjoy the scenery, including the neighboring island of Nimos. The superb Nireus Hotel, ranked number 1 on TripAdvisor, has been built in the neo-classical style. Enjoy an unrivaled position on the waterfront with commanding views across the entrance to Symi Harbour. Rooms at the front of the hotel have a sea-view, and most of these have private balconies allowing you to sit and enjoy the scenery, including the neighboring island of Nimos.

Taking breakfast, dinner or a sunset drink on the hotel's terrace is a magical event. The fragrance of the charming flowers and the sensational sea view is the perfect combination of your memorable experience. And then, of course, there is a huge swimming pool! You can walk out of the entrance of the hotel and straight into the crystal clear Aegean water!


Experiencing the practice of mindful movement can transform not just your running but your life and lead to a deeper sense of joy and peace, greater awareness of your body, and allow you to live each moment fully. Whether you’re just starting to train for your first 5K or you’re a seasoned marathoner, spending time in the ancient and majestic setting of Symi, focusing on running, guided by expert coaches and in the company of like-minded people can do you good. You’ll learn everything from pacing and nutrition to injury prevention and proper running form. And hopefully, you’ll leave with a renewed sense of motivation and confidence that you can take away with you and fuel your own private practice.

Daily instruction with Sarah

You will spend time alternating between demonstrations, fun exercises and, technique drills. The nature of this time will be relaxed, full, and inspiring.

Exercises and drills

Designed to leave you with a clear sense of what the Chi Running technique feels like in your body.

Posture, lean. and lift

These will transform your running into an effortless activity.

Body sensing

You will gain a huge appreciation for your body and how strong it is!

Shifting gears

You will learn how to use less energy.


Shift the workload off of your legs and into your core and see those injuries melt away.

Injury prevention and efficient bio-mechanics

Use gravity and the force of the oncoming road to help you, rather than hurt you.

Energy conservation

Maximize your posture and alignment to conserve energy with ease.

Video gait analysis and form focus handouts

Video gait analysis and form focus handouts will help you optimize your running form.


This session will include optimal breathing techniques to ease and maintain balance in your body.

Evening yoga and mindfulness

Athena will help you explore runner targeted yoga and mindfulness practices designed to help you develop greater flexibility, fitness, and mental focus.

Notes: Days are structured, not ordained. All activities are optional.

Included excursions

Island boat trip

You won’t want to miss this! You’ll see unique landscapes and swim in crystal clear waters and you spend the day leisurely cruising around the island, swimming, sunbathing, exploring, and eating. Leave Symi Harbour in the morning to enjoy an invigorating walk in the hills, led by a local guide, before arriving at the secluded Saint Emilianos Church. After a morning of walking, you will be greeted by the smells of the BBQ and a freshly prepared feast that awaits you on the private boat that has come to pick you up. You will then be able to relax on the boat or the beach, take a dip in the crystal blue waters or explore the little church of Saint Emilianos. Following a relaxing afternoon, you will be served biscuits and coffee before sailing back to the harbor.

Hiking the island and exploring famous landmarks (Chorio tour and down the Kali Strata)

The magnificent neo-classical mansions of the island, especially of the Chorio and Yialos district, date back to the 18th century. Unfortunately, at the finish of World War II, the Germans destroyed much of the capital when they retreated. Today, while some buildings remain in ruins, others have been beautifully restored as private residences and a walk among these winding alleyways is a wonderful experience. You’ll begin your tour by climbing the Kataraktis - the original staircase connecting Yialos to Chorio - and breath in the scent of the mountainside full of wild oregano. You can even collect some to dry yourself. Chorio is the oldest inhabited area with many narrow lanes and picturesque houses predating the neo-classical which predominates on the Kali Strata and in Yialos.


Athena is a certified professional leadership, health, and wellness coach as well as an energy leadership master practitioner, personal trainer, and yoga instructor. Her integrative technique to total mind and body health facilitates rapid, sustainable results for those she works with and her approach has been described as life-changing. Athena makes it her focus to understand your unique desires, motivators, and challenges to help you set appropriate, achievable goals.
Sarah Richardson
Sarah Richardson, M.S., M.Ed. is a certified educator, distance running coach through RRCA, and Chi Walking / Chi Running instructor certified through Chi Living. She is also the best selling author of From Sidelines to Start Lines: The Frustrated Runner's Guide to Lacing Up for a Lifetime. Her business, Rise And Shine, designs customized training programs that provide both the external components vital to running efficiently and safely and the internal components that address the emotional and internal roadblocks.

Retreat location

Often described as the "jewel of the Aegean", Symi is a small Greek island noted for its peace, tranquility and fabulous architecture. As you round the headland, you'll be greeted by the breathtaking sight of yellow and ochre coloured buildings built amphitheatrically around the charming harbour and offering breathtaking views to the sea from any spot. What better back drop to enjoy your magical retreat!

This retreat will take place in Symi, Greece. Symi has the most beautiful harbor in Greece. On either side of a steep-sided fjord rise tier upon tier of houses, some white, some pastel yellow, but virtually, all with neo-classical pediments, a reminder that 100 years ago this was one of Greece's most prosperous islands. There has been virtually no modern concrete construction here, and now, these fine old houses are being resurrected for visitors. The spirit of the island remains intact.

Unique features


  • Boating
  • Hiking
  • Massage
  • Mountain walking
  • Reiki
  • Stargazing
  • Swimming


  • Air-conditioned rooms
  • Concierge desk
  • In-room safe
  • Multilingual staff


  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Hair dryer


You will be served Greek food to nourish your body and soul! All of your breakfasts will be prepared on site for you. There are only a few meals not included in your retreat package; Symi Yoga Retreat thought you might like the ability to have some private dining time. Symi Yoga Retreat can cater to specific food requirements, celiac, vegetarian, etc.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Drinks

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Vegetarian
  • Other dietary requirements on request
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

Things to do (optional)

Massage and Reiki sessions are available upon request for an additional fee.

What's included

  • Daily evening yoga and mindfulness practice
  • Daily running instruction and materials
  • Excursions and activities
  • Daily breakfasts
  • Welcome dinner
  • Midweek dinner
  • Final dinner
  • Meze lunch
  • Lunch and drinks on your boat cruise
  • 7 nights' accommodation

What's not included

  • Alcohol
  • Travel and transfers to Symi

How to get there

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Rhodes International Airport (RHO). Transfer from and to this airport is available upon request.

Symi is part of the Dodecanese Island group. There is no airport on Symi and it can only be reached by boat. Symi Yoga Retreat recommends flying to Rhodes Island before taking the ferry to Symi which takes around 1.5 hours. Both Aegean Air and Ryan Air operate multiple daily, direct, inexpensive, non-stop flights from Athens to Rhodes and there are direct flights available from many UK airports to Rhodes. Although you will be responsible for your own travel to Symi, Symi Yoga Retreat is happy to help advise you on your travel plans and help you to manage your transfer from Rhodes to the island.

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 14% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 60 days before arrival.
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