The Ultimate Yoga Retreat Packing List
Booked your first yoga retreat? Lucky you! Don’t know what to pack? Here are our tried and tested tips. Don’t leave home without them!
by STACY MORRIS
Yoga retreats are all about helping you shed all that excess baggage you’ve been carrying around for years, shrugging off the unhelpful and the unnecessary. You’ll return home with a new sense of lightness and a bounce in your step. So pack light and allow a bit of room in that case for some mementos of what is sure to be the holiday of a lifetime.
Retreat dressing – the rules
Comfort: It’s vital you feel comfortable both on, and off, your mat. Your tried and trusted old favourites will ground you and keep you feeling centred.
Versatility: Choose tops and leggings that can be worn on and off your mat. The vest top and capris you wore for your morning practice will be perfect at breakfast with a tunic top, or oversized shirt (boyfriends beware).
Nurturing: Pack a warm wrap, cosy jumper or shawl to keep off the chill first thing in the morning, and during Savasana and Meditation.
Glam: If you know you like to dress up back home you probably won’t feel any different when you’re away. Bring one or two items that make you feel special – on your mat you don’t need to worry too much but you’ll enjoy yoga clothes that haven’t gone threadbare, and when dusk descends, you might want to don your favourite boho jewellery and and a pretty dress – maybe you can wear it over your capris for dinner at the retreat, or for the night you all go into the local town with your new found besties.
A yoga retreat is the spiritual home of tribal princesses and boho babes. It’s also the place for meditation to meet manifestation. So, whether it’s a stand-out mala, a chunky India amulet, or an elegant pendant, take the piece that invests your practice with meaning.
Take a great yoga-inspired book that you’d be happy to pass forward. Many yoga retreats have small libraries, and are often ‘take one, leave one.’
Whilst most yoga retreats supply equipment such as mats, it’s always nice to pack your favourite – but make sure it doesn’t way you down – Yogaja’s lightweight Mandala travel mat is very fit for purpose.
Journal and pen – some retreats encourage journaling, and even if its not an official activity, it can be helpful to record the ebb and flow of emotions as they occur to you throughout the retreat.
The Check List
2 sports bras and 2 regular bras – one nude, one black.
3 tank tops – for your practice. Choose well and you’ll be able to wear these off the mat too.
3 pairs of yoga pants – consider varying lengths and styles so you don’t get bored.
1 tunic top – great for popping over your yoga pants during the day.
1 pretty dress – for nights out and sightseeing.
1 jumper, shawl or cardigan – for chilly mornings and evenings, and for meditation.
7 pairs undies – who wants to do their laundry in the sink? And what if you’re sharing a room? No one wants to share a bathroom with someone else’s knickers.
3 pairs socks – feet can get cold early in the morning, and in Savasana.
2 bikinis or swimsuits – some retreats have a pool, or are near the beach.
Lightweight long sleeved top – for protection from the sun when you’re out and about.
Lightweight rain jacket – which you can layer under for warmth.
1 slip ons or flip flops – you can’t wear shoes in yoga studios so make sure they’re easy to get on and off.
1 sandals – to go with your going-out-dress. If your flip flops are pretty you might not need sandals too.
Comfortable walking shoes for silent walks and sight seeing.
Ear plugs – in case you have a snoring room mate
Light weight mat
Candle – it’s always nice to create a homey, tranquil vibe, and the right scent can bring you to your senses, helping you to get fully present to your experience.