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During this retreat you will develop skills in your nervous system in order to feel and integrate your body, breath, and mind, to move with more ease, and to nurture your lightness and power as you walk through life. This retreat is particularly focused on achieving a balance of stability and mobility throughout the spine which is the central support of the body. And if you are as strong as an ox, then come along and develop a deeper awareness of your spine under Liz Bennett's expert instruction.
Daku Resort is located a mile outside the small town of Savusavu, far enough to be in its own oasis of tranquility, but near enough to be able to get into town easily. The resort is set in lush tropical gardens with the ocean just over the road that runs in front of the resort.
Behind the resort, there are 160 acres of rain forest where guests are free to wander up the hill and enjoy the spectacular views or sit quietly surrounded by the forest sounds. In the front, there is a small reef with some pleasant (but not spectacular) snorkeling whilst the much richer marine life is a little further out and easily accessible in a boat.
The bures (cottage) are situated in lovely tropical gardens and look out over Savusavu Bay. Each single ocean view bure has a bedroom with a double bed and an extra single bed, with a private bathroom and covered deck. There is a bar, fridge, tea and coffee making facilities in each bure, and an overhead fan. All but one have air conditioning.
The yoga shala is a beautiful wooden platform with a roof and open sides commanding a stunning view of Savusavu Bay. It is set slightly up the hill to the side of the resort so it is removed from the day-to-day activity. It measures 10 by 10 meters and will take 25 mats easily and up to 32 if they are arranged more closely. The shala has mats, blankets, bolsters and blocks, and there is also a shower and toilet.
Yoga in Fiji also offers the chance to bring your kids aged under 12 for free, including special kids’ yoga classes. Offer is for children under 12 (children aged 11 years old and under) with limit of two kids per adult.
If you’re on your own with one or two children, you will be charged the single rate and put both kids in with you. They will have all meals and excursions at no extra charge. If there are two adults both doing the course, you will be charged the twin share price each and then there’s room for one child in a bed and one in a cot. If each adult takes a single room, you will be put in a double bure with adjoining bedrooms and you can spread the kids out between you however you choose.
During this retreat, Liz will be working with you on a daily basis to explore your capabilities and develop confidence and understanding of your spine. She will modify the practice for people with injuries, and develop a take-home practice that you can do on your own (she’ll even help you write it down so you won’t forget the minute you leave the yoga shala).
You will drive down the Hibiscus Highway for about 20 kilometers to the sandy beach at Devodara, where you will have a picnic and swim in the warm waters of the ocean and stroll along the beach fringed with palm trees. You will get back to Daku around 15:00.
You will go snorkeling at a nearby snorkeling spot and see some of Fiji’s magnificent marine life.
You will drive about 30 minutes round the bay to a beautiful waterfall, where you can swim in a fresh water pool beneath the cascade. Bring along shoes that you can wear in the water and be ready to enjoy the exhilarating beauty of nature. You’ll get back to Daku in time for a late lunch.
You will have a trip to Savusavu to see local market and shops. You will go with cabs to the town and then you will have time to wander around at your own pace. You can take the cab (3 AUD) or walk back when you’ve had enough.
You will have a visit to a local village where you will see how Fijians live in extended family arrangements and will be entertained with a lively meke dance. Don’t worry, this is not tired old tourist stuff but a joyful embrace of their timeless culture.
Liz Bennett is an experienced physiotherapist and yoga therapist. She has a thorough understanding of what constitutes a safe and suitable practice. In 2004, Liz took a three-year intensive apprenticeship with physiotherapists and yoga teachers Simon Borg Olivier and Bianca Machliss of Yoga Synergy. After teaching full time at Yoga Synergy, she moved to the Northern Beaches and undertook a diploma of yoga teaching with Michael De Maninco. Currently, she runs a yoga school, Yoga Essentia, at Warriewood Surf Life Saving Club and teach students in all stages of life, from 7 to 77 years old.
Savusavu is a quirky little town. It has been hidden away from the main tourist beat for many years, mainly because of that extra leap on the plane you have to do to get there. As a result, it has attracted either the upmarket tourist heading for some of the luxurious resorts, or the adventurous souls who have bothered to do their research and find a special corner of this beautiful land.
You journey will be worth it when you see its beauty and the friendliness of the local community. You will meet lots of locals when you're in town, and after a day or two, you will feel as if you know half the place.
It is home to a mixture of Fijians, Indian Fijians, part Europeans (who are often descendants of some of the early coconut plantation owners), and expats who have built houses along the coast and settled here (Australians, New Zealanders, English, Americans, Germans, Canadians, and Belgians). For all of them, this bit of Fiji is their own little paradise and you are most welcome to join them.
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The retreat includes three meals a day. Meals are taken in the central big bure - tropical breakfasts, light lunches, and a generous buffet dinner with a range of menus that include traditional Fijian lovo, a seafood buffet, Indian curry, a Chinese night, and one night out at the local yacht club and surf and turf restaurant.
Please book your flight to arrive at Nadi International Airport (NAN) and take a domestic flight to Savusavu Airport (SVU). Yoga in Fiji will pick you up from the airport. The pick-up is included in the price.
"I’ve been one week in Daku resort for a yoga retreat, I spent one of my best holidays ever! The staff is fabulous, always looking after your needs, its a friendly and warm atmosphere, they make you feel at home in family. The location is just amazing front of the sea, the ideal place to have a beautiful rest and yoga classes. Everything you need to enjoy Fiji and its culture. Amazing excursion and especially snorkeling and village trip. The owner JJ and Delia are lovely soul people, always smiling and willing to have discussion, lunch or dinner with you. I’ll never forget those holidays and cant forward to come back there. Thanks for all!"
Paradise Courses website, edited
"Hi Liz, just a thank you note about the wonderful retreat you ran at Daku in Savusavu. I enjoyed all aspects of the retreat: the yoga, the other attendees, the resort, the food, the warm friendly people, and their customs, the excursions - the list goes on and on. Most of all was the benefit I received from the yoga. Your teaching was just fantastic. Your gentle, yet lively manner together with your intuition resulted in wonderful yoga classes. I have returned home full of inspiration to continue to extend and deepen my own practices. Liz, your integrity, ecological awareness, and fun-filled attitude carried on from the classes throughout the whole retreat making it all such a pleasure to be a part of. I hope the other attendees gained as much benefit and enjoyment from the retreat as I did."
"Thank you and namaste."
Paradise Courses website, edited