European yoga retreats

From the Isle of Anglesey to a private island in Greece

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The Independent Travel

Silver Island Yoga, Greece

This retreat offers week-long yoga holidays from April to October on a private island off the coast of Evia in eastern Greece. Run by sisters Lissa and Claire Christie, it's surrounded by 60 acres of hills, coves, pebbled beaches and olive groves, all wrapped up in warm Aegean waters. Guests can practise yoga on the beautiful cliff-top pavilion overlooking the sea, with time in between classes to walk to the island's lighthouse, explore the coast by kayak, snorkel or get crafty in the resort's art cupboard. The small and exclusive retreat accommodates 10 guests in two traditional, whitewashed and blue-shuttered Greek buildings.

Silver Island Yoga, Silver Island, Greece (00 277 26 242 242; Six-night retreats from £1,100pp, all inclusive.

Algarve Surf & Yoga, Portugal

This retreat combines surfing with yoga in the Costa Vicentina Natural Park near Aljezur in the Algarve. Sitting in a peaceful valley, it's within walking distance of four superb beaches, making it an ideal spot for catching some waves. Yoga is practised on a platform overlooking the resort's "Tipi Valley", which fans out across the land. Various tents function as the guest accommodation. And, when you're not surfing or stretching, other activities include canoeing, horse-riding or mountain biking.

Algarve Surf & Yoga, near Aljezur, Portugal ( Four-night retreats from £580pp, all inclusive.

Sardinia Yoga, Italy

Sardinia Yoga offers a "beach holiday with yoga" – making it a good bet for those who don't want classes to consume the whole trip. It has retreats from May to September, based at the four-star Grand Hotel in Porto Cervo. Days start with two hours of practice on the beachfront deck, looking out across the turquoise waters of Sardinia's north coast. If you fancy a break, there are spa treatments and boat tours. The company also operates retreats near Puerto Banus in Spain.

Sardinia Yoga, Grand Hotel, Porto Cervo, Italy (020 7060 6160; Three-night retreats from £330pp, B&B.



KaliYoga, Spain

This resort is in Spain's sweeping Sierra Nevada – a Unesco biosphere reserve that's perfect for hiking, horse-riding and yoga. Founded by yoga teachers Jonji and Rosie Miles, it specialises in week-long retreats, mixed with hill walking, fresh juices and vegetarian cooking. Guests can also take part in a raw-chocolate workshop, soak up mountain views from the freshwater pool or indulge in a range of holistic massages. If Spain doesn't tickle your fancy, the company runs retreats in Italy and France too.

KaliYoga, Las Alpujarras, Andalucia, Spain (01373 812 525; Six-night retreats from £795pp, all inclusive.

Les Passeroses, France

Alex and Adrian have been hosting eclectic yoga weeks, ranging from iyengar to freestyle, at this converted farmhouse near Angoulême in rural France since 2004. Describing themselves as a "dedicated yoga centre", they invite different teachers – many of them English – to lead retreats. All include practice in a converted barn or the outdoor yoga deck with countryside views. In between classes, guests can take a dip in the pool or unwind with a hot-stone massage.

Les Passeroses, Le Bas Metraud, Nonac, France (00 33 5 45 21 51 74; Week-long retreats from £595pp, all inclusive.

The Zest Life, Wales

Set on the Isle of Anglesey, Zest runs weekend yoga breaks at Plas Cadnant – a country house set in 21 acres of parkland with waterfalls, rivers and views over Mt Snowdon. The idea is to put guests back in touch with nature by offering action-packed weekends combining yoga with wild swimming, hiking and other outdoor pursuits. Afterwards, guests can replenish with homemade vegetarian meals and curl up beside the fire in the cosy converted barn accommodation.

The Zest Life, Anglesey, Wales (07989 512 859; Two-night retreats from £285pp, all inclusive.

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