I was immediately drawn to this retreat after finding Amanda on Instagram and then reading this description on their website of what this retreat was all about - it was totally up my alley.
'Our days on THE VACATION are the perfect balance of inspiring and awakening yogic practices, soothing meditations, sacred sound journeys, mystical ceremonies spiced with a high dose of fun, chill and siestas by the pool. Drink the coffee and hang with the sweetest and coolest crew of women or roll solo for your afternoon naps, reads and journaling. All morning are spent in silence to give room for a greater intimacy and reflection to arise. At night we dine, wine and dance under the stars or sit around the fire while the shooting stars greet us goodnight. Life well-lived. Life well-loved. This is THE VACATION. '
Fast forward 4 days I am feeling more alive, energised and inspired than ever, after embarking on this journey.. It all started a few weeks ago when I flew from London to Portugal for a long weekend to experience ‘The Vacation’ retreat hosted by Amanda Norgaard.
The retreat was held at the beautiful Marqi hotel which is 40 minutes out of Lisbon located in Sintra, right near the coast. I had wanted to stay at Marqi for quite some time, after following them on Instagram for a few years. The hotel was magical and it was everything and the perfect space to hold an intimate retreat. We had a lovely welcome dinner for our first night and we got to meet all of the other guests. All up there was around 12 ladies from all around the globe and everyone was so beautiful and sweet (and very like minded).
The next morning we woke to a morning Kundalini practise which is something I had practised in the past and had always really enjoyed and often felt called to Kundalini Yoga but for some reason I don't normally practise this. After the weekend I fell in love with Kundalini and I am definitely going to implement this into my everyday routine. We spent our first full day with a beautiful sound healing bath, more delicious food, swims in the pool, relaxing afternoon reading and a little siesta. I tried to stay off my phone for the 4 days, as I always love to immerse myself in the whole experience and find I get more out something like this if I am not distracted. It is also just such a great excuse for a little digital detox.
We had another delicious meal under the stars outside and made sure we were in bed at a reasonable hour as the next morning we rose at 4:00am for a long sadhana meditation to celebrate the fall equinox that went for 2.5hours. Surprisingly this actually went by pretty quickly as we were so in the moment and focused on the mantra and the breath.
By 7:15am we were finished and I went back for a little nap and felt so energised and amazing the entire day. Later that day we went on a little hike to the beach and swam (with all of the jellyfish) and did another small Kundalini Yoga practice.
We enjoyed yet another beautiful dinner outside, spoke about everyones sun, moon and rising signs haha and enjoyed everyone's beautiful company.
The next morning it was sadly our final morning, it was time to pack up, enjoy a final breakfast together and complete our last morning practice.
An experience I will never forget and I am so incredibly grateful for this opportunity to be a part of such a special weekend. I am definitely going to sign up to Amanda's course she offers 'The Muses' which starts at the beginning on November and runs for 6 weeks to continue on this beautiful energy of the retreat and learn more through Kundalini Yoga, after just getting a little taste of it after the weekend.
You can find more information on 'The Muses' here.