Transformative travel is the travel trend of 2018, with holiday-makers wanting to come back from trips informed, enlightened and changed. Here are a few of the world’s hotspots for a wellness getaway…
The buzzword for 2018 is transformative travel – experiences motivated and defined by a shift in perspective, self-reflection and development. Travellers are looking at ways in which they can assimilate the shift they have experienced on their travels into their everyday lives. We’ve handpicked some of the best ways to experience transformative travel through mindfulness, wellness, sustainability and wildlife conservation offerings. Enjoy!
Go on a tailor-made fitness journey at Trisara, Phuket
Set in a secluded cove in the hills of Northwest Phuket, Trisara’s white sandy beaches and 40 acres of manicured jungle serve as the perfect playground for the new 100k Step Extreme Wellness Experience. Designed to completely reset wellness goals, guests will be put through their paces as they embark on a tailor-made fitness journey over the course of eight days. Each guest will be equipped with a brand new Fitbit Ionic to track their fitness progress, allowing instant connection to Trisara’s senior resort hosts via Facebook for any questions or motivational texts. The programme is made up of a range of activities such as kayaking, paddle boarding, Thai kickboxing, ocean swimming and hiking. To reset weary limbs, Trisara’s Jara spa is a game changer. Signature treatments include a Samunpai scrub and wrap with local Thai herbs, a thermal massage, stretching and walking meditation historically practised by Buddhist monks.
Get active at Deplar Farm, Iceland
Chōsen and Eleven Experience are hosting a series of seven-day active Iceland experiences at Eleven’s Deplar Farm on the remote Troll Peninsula. The exclusive programmes will be designed to promote experiential learning through a balance of adrenaline-fuelled adventures, diverse fitness modalities, goal-setting and mindfulness, hosted by an expert Chōsen team. They will include nutritional and wellness elements with gourmet menus inspired by locally grown produce and daily relaxation sessions.
This transformative travel itinerary will include a range of activities including a sea-kayaking adventure featuring water navigation and rescue skill training, a wildlife exploration and dry suit snorkelling with whales and puffins, as well as summit hikes and orienteering. There is also a wellness element with daily restorative yoga, spa sessions, breath work and meditation, professional bodywork and guided goal setting form part of the mindfulness component of the lifestyle itinerary in Deplar’s in-house spa.
Try the Six Senses sleep programme
Six Senses has made it its mission to tackle the three distinct phases of memory and their link to sleep with the group’s ‘Sleep with Six Senses’ programme. Addressing the mind’s abilities of acquisition, consolidation, and recall, Six Senses has concluded that sleeping well, and sleeping right, will aid each of these aspects of memory health and can make a real difference in our ability to take in new information. Six Senses has put together a simple, practical three-step guide to help its guests to sleep more, sleep better, and sleep longer, by providing the tools for long-lasting results at home beyond a stay at a Six Senses hotel or resort. This transformative travel experience will truly change your day to day happiness back in the big smoke.
The programme covers establishing a sleep routine, being mindful about consumption and easing your stress. Renowned clinical psychologist Dr. Michael J. Breus is a member of the Six Senses Integrated Wellness Board, which created the pioneering Sleep With Six Senses programme that adds a new dimension to a stay at a Six Senses hotel or resort.
Reforestation Project in Guatemala
This experience from Scott Dunn teaches guests the importance of reforestation from local Guatemalan charity, Global Visionaries. Planting season runs until 15 October which goes hand in hand with Guatemala’s green season (rainy season). The rest of the year is dedicated to the maintenance of the project when visitors will have the chance to work on the already reforested land. The hands-on experience is a fun way to learn about the nature of Guatemala and to interact with the local community of helpers which includes students from the local schools.
Find sanctuary at Taj Madikeri, Coorg
For travellers looking to reset, look to India to learn from the most distinguished spiritual gurus, yoga gurus and ashrams around the world. Guests can detox from city life and enjoy the most serene resort in Coorg, Taj Madikeri, located in the heart of a 180-acre rainforest. They will find sanctuary in the hotel, which is located within one of India’s seven biodiverse habitats, and experience 270 degree views of the surrounding rainforest from their secluded villa.
The 30,000 square-ft Jiva Grande Spa is a key highlight, hidden under a rainforest canopy where guests can unwind listening to the sounds of the jungle. Pair this restorative break with the benefits of the sea at Taj Bekal, an exceptional beach resort tucked away in Northern Kerala and one of India’s best kept secrets. The Jiva Spa menu at Taj Bekal features signature experiences, Ayurveda programmes, Indian therapies, Indian aromatherapy, scrubs and wraps, and beauty rituals rooted in the rich and ancient wellness traditions of India.
Escape to the remote Himalayan society of Ladakh
The Shakti Walking Experience by Ampersand Travel is ideal for travellers seeking seclusion and a remedy to city minds frazzled by concrete and adrenaline. With no motorised transport, no rush, no phone signal and travelling at the speed of your own two feet, this walk is a journey of the most personal kind. Situated in India’s far north and perched at over 3,500m, Ladakh is often referred to as ‘little Tibet’ and is home to one of the best preserved Tantric Buddhist societies in existence.
Staying at Shakti, Ladakh, travellers can experience the ‘Head in the Clouds’ journey as the perfect antidote to the frenetic world, with highlights including silent walks led by mindfulness gurus and a 3km hike to mountain caves chaperoned by a monk, imparting a unique insight into the region’s spiritual life. Accompanied by local porters and guides, guests stay in traditional homestays – complete with private chef – that Shakti has spruced up to provide serious comfort without compromising on authenticity. There is no standard itinerary as every trip is tailored to the individual travellers ensuring the best possible experience to suit their tastes.
Connect with Khmer’s community at Knai Bang Chatt
Knai Bang Chatt is a chic, modernist boutique hotel revealing Kep Sur Mer – a relatively undiscovered coastal destination on Cambodia’s South Coast, once the 1960’s escape for the elite. The hotel is the first in Cambodia to be recognised as internationally sustainable and has been certified Gold to the ‘Green Growth 2050 Global Standard’. The hotel employs 92 members of staff, who are locally based and well-provided for in terms of accommodation and welfare. The owners realised during their first visit to Cambodia that many neighbouring and impoverished communities were in need of improved health, clean water, more livelihoods opportunities, and better education for their children. Owner, Jeff Moon continues committed to empowering the local community.
Visit the Sumba Foundation in Indonesia
Nihi Sumba Island is a remote hideaway on Sumba, one of the 17,000 islands in the Indonesia Archipelago. Beyond adventure and indulgence, guests of Nihi Sumba Island are invited to volunteer and become involved in the hotel’s philanthropic arm. Philanthropy is at the core of the resort’s business model, with a portion of profits channelled into The Sumba Foundation. Established by Nihi Sumba Island, The Sumba Foundation is committed to lessening the consequences of poverty across the island. Visiting the foundation is a complimentary experience offered to all guests of Nihi Sumba Island. Guests can choose to visit a local water project, a health clinic that helps combat malaria or offer to volunteer for a morning at a local school.
WILDLIFE AND CONSERVATION
A nature lover’s dream in the Seychelles
Fregate Island Private is the perfect place to receive an introduction to conservation and offers a once-in-a-lifetime chance to get up close to rare wildlife. Guests can discover the island with resident conservationist Tanya Leibrick, before visiting the nursery for the young tortoises, which are protected and monitored to ensure safe development and growth. The resort also allows guests to witness first-hand one of nature’s true miracles – the sight of a mother turtle laying her eggs on the shore. Guests can also join the islands ecology team for sea turtle patrol, searching the beach for baby turtles.