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Join this yoga retreat in Nepal for a journey of the heart and mind as you explore the living Buddhist pilgrimage sites of Kathmandu and beyond. Explore your own true nature in the spiritual heart of exotic Nepal. If you're a yogi and an adventure seeker, this is the yoga retreat you've been waiting for. Experience the teachings of expert guides and educators while you cover many of the valley's major pilgrimage and cultural heritage sites in depth.
The Vajra Hotel is an authentic Newari-style hotel with some Tibetan touches. During your stay at the Hotel Vajra, you will have everything you need for a comfortable stay. The rooms have parquet floors and all the attached bathrooms have shower and running hot water. The rooms are also equipped with chairs and a writing desk. Some rooms have a coffee table and private balcony, and internet services are located on the ground floor. Hotel Vajra welcomes you to use and enjoy its unique facilities.
The style and structure of Hotel Vajra embody beauty and warmth. Hotel Vajra is built in the typical Nepali pagoda style with the use of locally available materials, which help to create this attractive warmness. Hotel Vajra is jeweled inside and out with wood, terracotta carvings, stone and marble tile, hanging brick gardens, and traditional Tibetan ceiling paintings.
The Siddhi Manakamana Hotel offers simple and comfortable rooms, each with its own bathroom and hot water, flat screen television, a balcony opening out to a pleasant garden, internet access, air conditioning, luxurious cotton sheets, and laundry facilities. The Hotel Siddhi Manakamana is inspired by traditional Newari architecture with exquisite Newari craftsmanship to every room. Handcrafted wood by Nepali artisans and hand-laid bricks from local clay create a majestic and restorative ambience. The hotel also features an eco-Buddhist design. A small stupa filled with relics, mantras, and miniature stupas is in the center of the courtyard.
The Namo Buddha Resort offers a taste of the simple life in the Nepali countryside. Comprised of several small, beautifully built cottages, this one-of-a-kind resort is rich in traditional Nepali style. All cottages feature, adobe walls, decorative niches, stone roofs, colorful textiles, and lots of gorgeous woodwork. The small and cozy houses are beautifully built in traditional Nepali style by carpenters and masons from Kirtipur, including traditional small doors and windows. All of the houses have a private toilet, a stone roof, and lots of woodwork. The Namo Buddha Resort also features wireless internet and a wood sauna.
During this retreat you will spend four nights at the Hotel Vajra, three nights at the Siddhi Manakamana Hotel, and three nights at the Namo Buddha Resort. During your stay at the Hotel Vajra, you will enjoy morning and evening yoga classes in the pagoda room with gorgeous ceiling frescos, overlooking the great stupa at Swayambhu. You will spend three days taking in the best that Kathmandu has to offer with its extraordinary temples and shrines dedicated to Hindu, Buddhist, and local deities. During your stay at the Siddhi Manakamana Hotel, you will practice yoga and receive dharma teachings as monastic life carries on around you.
Boudhanath has dozens of monasteries situated around an enormous, breathtaking stupa where hundreds of Tibetan devotees circumambulate the stupa while reciting mantra and spinning prayer wheels every morning and evening. During your stay at the Namo Buddha Resort, you will head to the valley's edge, to the hills of Kavre. The peacefulness of this stretch of the valley is hard to imagine until you're there. At the Namo Buddha Resort, you will enjoy three days of Himalayan views and lush, green terraced fields. It is the ideal place for yoga practice and the surrounding hills and villages provide beautiful scenery for day hikes.
On arrival day, you will be transported to the hotel, where you can unwind from your journey, rest, enjoy the garden, a meal, and soak up the atmosphere. Once everyone has arrived, you will have a gentle yoga practice before dinner and a brief orientation before turning in for the night.
During the second day, after an early breakfast, you will be guided on foot to Swayambhu and climb the 365 steps required to reach the great stupa. The epic climb is an auspicious way to begin your journey. Also known as the Monkey Temple due to the abundance of rhesus macaques that live here, Swayambhu offers a fantastic view of the Kathmandu Valley. Here, you will learn how stupa architecture reflects Buddhist thought, meet the five Dhyani Buddhas, and join local pilgrims as they circumambulate the holy site. Later, you will enjoy a rejuvenating yoga practice and a delicious lunch back at the hotel. After lunch, you will be able to attend to a fantastic lecture entitled "Understanding Nepal" with the expert guide and mentor, Anil. Then you will head out for a night on the town and enjoy some sumptuous local cuisine.
During the third day, after an early breakfast, you will head to Patan. Full of religious art, temples, monasteries, and communal courtyards, Patan's ornate architectural details are an incredible feast for the eyes. Patan offers a great opportunity to meet the people who give this city its unique beauty. You will also see how spirituality is woven into everyday life and observe this community's morning rituals. After lunch, you will return to the hotel and have some time on your own before an afternoon yoga practice session. At night you will watch a classical dance performance in the Pagoda room followed by a typical Tibetan meal overlooking the stupa at Swayambhu.
During the fourth day, you will put on your walking shoes, and after an early morning practice and breakfast, you will venture to Nagi Gompa, a Tibetan Buddhist nunnery tucked away high on a hilltop in Shivapuri National Park. You will see how the nuns live, experience a genuine place of retreat, and enjoy sweeping views of the valley. From Nagi Gompa, you will head out on foot down the steep hillside past local villages and through pine forests to Pullahari, one of the most stunning Tibetan monasteries in the Kathmandu Valley. You will visit the young monks, observe the monks evening puja, and witness an incredible Kathmandu sunset. During the night you will enjoy a hearty meal back at the hotel.
During the fifth day, after an early morning yoga practice and breakfast, you will head to Boudhanath with the expert guide, where you will explore the Boudha stupa, a massive, three-dimensional mandala, one of the largest in Asia, and a world heritage site. After lunch you will check in at the Siddhi Manakamana Hotel and have some free time to wander a few of the many Tibetan Buddhist monasteries in the area and check out the countless shops selling Buddha statues and other ritual items as well as textiles and other local handicrafts. You will have an introduction to Buddhism talk at a local monastery, and after the talk, you will have a chance to circumambulate the stupa with the local community and find some tasty eats on your own.
During the sixth day, after an early yoga morning practice and breakfast, you will head to Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery in Boudhanath and meet Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, the Abbot and spiritual head of the monastery. After meeting Rinpoche and offering the traditional katag or ceremonial scarf, you will attend his dharma talk in the monasterys main prayer hall. Receiving teachings in this space, with giant golden Buddha statues gazing out at you, is a powerful experience that you will never forget. After the teaching and lunch at a local favorite restaurant, you will have some free time in the afternoon to explore the neighboring monasteries before the second teaching of the day with Venerable Drokpa Tulku, a senior teacher at Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery. You will join the group at night for a rooftop feast overlooking the great stupa.
During the seventh day, after morning practice and breakfast at the Siddhi Manakamana, you will head to Namo Buddha Resort. Upon arrival during the late afternoon, you will settle into your cottage, and soak up the scenery. After an early evening yoga practice in the main hall, you will have a hearty dinner and free time afterwards to catch up on journaling or just hang out with fellow yogis.
During the eight day at the Namo Buddha Resort, you will enjoy a morning and evening yoga and meditation sessions, and visit the nearby Thrangu Tashi Choling Monastery, perched on a steep ridge overlooking the valley. The beautiful and sprawling Thrangu Monastery was built on the hillside where, in a previous life, the Buddha is said to have offered his own body to a starving tigress in order that she could feed her cubs. The site celebrates this fearless act of compassion. Thrangu Monastery is one of the principal pilgrimage places for Tibetan Buddhists.
During the ninth day, after an early morning yoga practice and breakfast at the resort, you will take a three hour hike through local villages and rice terraces to see and experience life among the Himalayan hill communities. Back at the resort, you will enjoy some free time before an evening meditation and a healthy meal.
During the tenth day, after morning yoga practice at the monastery, you will head back to the Vajra Hotel. For the final day at Nepal, after checking back in at the hotel, you will have the chance to visit the Thamel market for some last minute shopping. Here, you can pick up any gifts you want to bring back with you from the hundreds of colorful shops and handicraft sellers that line the streets. After the visit to the Thamel market, everyone will meet for a very special farewell dinner.
During the eleventh day, after the final morning practice in the pagoda room, you will have breakfast and some final goodbyes. Your airport transfer will be waiting just outside of the hotel to take you back to the airport.
The Jivamukti yoga classes are an energetic fluid form of yoga practice in which movement is connected with inhalation and exhalation. The classes are intermediate level with optional pose variations offered for those who are newer to the practice as well as for those who are more advanced. The classes are vigorous, yet grounding. The Jivamukti method was created by Sharon Gannon and David Life and draws upon the teachings of their gurus, Sri Pattabhi Jois, Sri Brahmananda Sarasvati, and Swami Nirmalananda. The five core practices form the foundation of the Jivamukti method are ahimsa, non-harming of all beings, bhakti or devotion, nada or sacred sound, meditation, and yogic scriptural study. To help bring them into your everyday experience, the classes are infused with chanting, motivating sound, pranayama, meditation, and breath-focused asana.
Excursion to Boudhanath
Excursion to Ka-Nying Shedrub Ling Monastery
Excursion to Nagi Gompa
Excursion to Patan
Excursion to Pullahari at Kathmandu Valley
Excursion to Swayambhu
Excursion to Thrangu Tashi Choling Monastery
This retreat will be held at three different locations in Nepal.
Nepal borders with the Tibet Autonomous region of the People's Republic of China in the North and India in the East, South, and West respectively. Nepali is the national language of Nepal. Yet the average people whom travelers have to deal with will speak and understand English and various other foreign languages. Nepalese people are mainly divided into two distinct groups, the Indo-Aryans and the Mangoloids. Kathmandu valley, which is also the capital city of Nepal, is the spiritual and cultural meeting point of all these groups. Nepal is the only Hindu Kingdom in the world. Hindu temples and Buddhist shrines are scattered all over the kingdom. Nepal is the birth-place of Buddha, the light of Asia. You will find a complex blending of Hinduism and Buddhism in Nepal, which is unique.
The Vajra complex is situated on the foothills of the Swayambhunath Stupa and its age old pilgrim road, also near the Bijeswori temple complex, two of the power places of the Kathmandu Valley. The Vajra is surrounded by trees and flower trail gardens, creating a place of serenity and beauty, overlooking the entire Kathmandu Valley up to the snow peaks of the Himalayas. The location of the Vajra also permits you to overlook the entire Kathmandu Valley.
Boudhanath, one of the most sacred Buddhist pilgrimage sites and one of the largest stupas in the world, is located four kilometers from Tribhuwan International Airport and 11 kilometers from the center of Kathmandu city. Today, the Boudhanath Stupa is also referred to as a wish-fulfilling stupa because of its powerful ability to make wishes come true.
The Namo Buddha Resort is situated 45 km south-east of Kathmandu, at the top of a hill 1800 meters above ground, and when the weather is clear, the guests can see awesome views of the Himalaya. The panoramic view stretches across the Annapurna and Khumbu range. During the main tourist season, views are the best early in the morning.
For this retreat, almost all of your meals are included. Yoga Nepal provides a vegetarian menu, and you will also have a couple of chances to go explore Kathmandu's culinary offerings on your own. Each morning, after yoga and meditation practice, you can enjoy a healthy breakfast with a selection of breads, fresh fruits, muesli, porridge, local yogurt, eggs made to order, and potatoes, along with juice, tea, and coffee. The traditional Nepali staple dish, dal bhat tarkari is simple, yet flavorful. Similar to Indian fare, lentils are often cooked with tomatoes, onion, chili and ginger, along with a variety of herbs and spices such as coriander, cumin, cloves, mustard seeds, bay leaves, and turmeric. It is served with steamed rice and vegetable tarkari, a spiced curry side dish made from local vegetables in season. Tibetan dumplings are another local favorite, prepared by hand and filled with fresh, finely chopped, and seasoned veggies.
The Explorers Restaurant offers a complete menu of well-prepared Nepali, Tibetan, Indian, and Continental dishes. Many of the vegetables, salads, and spices are hand-picked from Vajra's own organic vegetable gardens. In the morning, you can enjoy a healthy and well prepared breakfast buffet with a selection of home baked breads.
The Ananda Restaurant offers an eclectic combination of Indian, Nepali, Chinese, Continental, and Tibetan cuisines, and highlights the best local and seasonal produce available with cereals, fresh produce, and dairy products locally sourced. Relax and indulge in friendly atmosphere at the dining and garden sitting areas and be sure to enjoy the setting sun from the open spaces of the rooftop lounge.
The Namo Buddha Resort cuisine serves vegetarian food, prepared in a wood-fired oven, like sour dough breads, pizza, and other bakery items. The kitchen staff makes meals inspired by Europe, as well as typical Nepali style foods.
Other activities to enjoy at the Namobuddha Resort include visiting Dapchha Bhakunde Besi, Kushesshower Mahadev Temple, the town of Panauti, the village of Phulbari, the Sunkosi River that is a famous Hindu holy site, and the Thrangu Tashi Yangtze Monastery.
The East-West library contains the basic Tibetan texts, Sanskrit texts, Western scientific and management works, literary works, atlases, art books, and Nepal ecological studies. Writers, artists, and scholars use the library for their research.
The Vajra is surrounded by trees and flower trail gardens, creating a place of serenity and beauty. The gardens are really beloved for those relaxing hours after a mountain expeditions or bazaar sorties.
The Naga theatre has a seating capacity for 110 people. This is the main venue for the annual drama performances of Studio 7's Avant-Garde productions directed by Sabine Lehmann. The Naga Theatre also provides a venue to the October Gallery East with its traditional and contemporary art exhibitions.
During this retreat, you may enjoy an Ayurvedic massage at the Vajra Hotel for an extra cost.
Pass Bhaktapur and Banepa, continuing to Dhulikhel 23 kilometers from central Kathmandu.
When you reach Dhulikhel, turn right to take the paved Sindhuli-Highway for eight kilometers to reach the village Kavre Bhanjyang.
The village of Kavre Bhanjyang is not visible from the road, only by a bus stop on your right.
Immediately after the bus stop turn right onto the rough road, the Namo Buddha Road.
Continue on this road for approximately five kilometers to reach the hill.
The entrance road to Namo Buddha Resort will be on your left.
Please book you flight to arrive at the Tribhuvan International Airport (KTM). Traveling Yogis will pick you up from the airport. The pick-up is included in the price.