DIY Yoga Retreat on a Budget - Bali Edition
Yoga retreats can cost upwards of $2,000 for only a week or two which is a lot especially if you’re backpacking on a budget. In reality, you don’t need to spend that much. Here is how you can create your own yoga retreat in Bali including a cost breakdown.
Flights vary of course depending on your starting point. I flew from Stockholm to Hong Kong to Denpasar. Flights to Bali are not cheap, but once you arrive, the cost of staying there isn't pretty cheap, as far as the US and European standards go. Book as far in advance as you can.
Flight Cost: Stockholm --> Bali = USD $540
Locations in Bali
There is no shortage of beautiful places in Bali. When choosing a location to do your DIY retreat, it all depends on the type of environment you'd like to be in. I ended up in Canggu thinking I'd only stay for a week, but I ended up staying for one month. I loved the laid-back environment and its proximity to the beach.
To be honest, I had no idea where to go for yoga, but I had met a friend a few months before who told me his friend went to Serenity Eco Guesthouse & Yoga and loved it. This place ticked all the boxes for me: cheap accomodation, daily classes, free breakfast, pool. I stayed here for one month.
There are so many yoga studios in Bali, and it can be a little bit overwhelming. For the sake of straightforwardness, I'm just going to suggest places in Canggu and Ubud. Canggu in on the coast, Ubud is more inland. They are about an hour apart by taxi.
If you want places that offer accommodation and yoga, Serenity Eco (where I stayed) and Yoga Barn in Ubud (slightly more expensive than Serenity) are good options. Alternatively, you could choose to stay at a cheap hostel or homestay and buy a weekly or monthly pass to a yoga studio of your choice.
I stayed at the cheapest dorm at Serenity. Four people per room, no A/C. Shared bathroom.
30 days accommodation: IDR 140,000/ night (~USD $10).
30-day yoga pass: IDR 2,100,000 (~USD $154).
30 days accommodation + 30-day yoga pass: IDR 6,300,000 (USD $463)*
*If you look at Serenity's yoga and accommodation packages, it's a lot more to book online. If you do it when you arrive, it's one million IDR cheaper.
My review: Serenity Eco Guesthouse vs. Yoga Barn
Ubud is also well known for its yoga studios, especially Yoga Barn. Their set up is similar to that of Serenity Eco Hostel, but their facilities are much bigger. Everyone raved about Yoga Barn’s yoga classes, so I tried a few myself when I traveled to Ubud. The style of yoga there is more creative, less traditional than the classes at Serenity, and the teachers are highly experienced. Maybe it’s because I stayed in Canggu for much longer, but I preferred Serenity’s teachers and smaller class sizes. I felt like the teachers got to know my skillset better, allowing them to push me further in my practice.
6 tips for customizing your own yoga retreat
Find a place where you’d be happy to stay for a week or more. (You don't have to go to Bali! There's tons of other cheap locations where you can do yoga, like Costa Rica or Thailand.)
Do your research and figure out pricing of accommodation and yoga packages.
Factor in the cost of other activities you’d like to do in the area (i.e. biking, day tours, surfing lessons, massages, etc.)
Personalize your package and retreat length (one week, two weeks, one month, etc.)
Find a style of yoga you prefer most and stick to that (Hatha = realxed, slower-paced; Vinyasa = more movement; Ashtanga = more difficult postures, etc.)
Do as much or as little yoga as you want—you don’t need to do it every day!
If you do decide to book a yoga retreat, I would recommend checking out BookYogaRetreats, but make sure to read the reviews and don’t fall for places that only post positive reviews. You can read more about my experience with using BookYogaRetreats in this post about my yoga teacher training in India.
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions about yoga, Bali, or whatever, hit me up :)