India Himalayas Dharamsala
Thursday 20 April - Thursday 4 May 2017, 15 days/14 nights
12 April - 18 days
20 April - 4 May 2017. Journey to the top of the world to stay in a private retreat centre located right by an extensive lake in a nature reserve in the spectacularly peaceful Kangra Valley. On this retreat we also stay in Delhi, Dharamsala (home to the Dalai Lama and Tibetan Buddhism in India), and Amritsar where we visit the Golden Temple.
If you're ready to travel to India to experience yoga at its source...
This retreat program is designed to let your spirit soar high above the concerns and tribulations of the world as we settle into the most spectacularly located yoga retreat centre on earth! We fly from Delhi to Dharamsala where we spend a few days to visit the Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and sites of significance. We explore the Kangra Valley and there is time to shop and browse the marketplaces of McLeod Ganj. We drive higher into the mountains for an immersive 9 day/8 night Yoga, Meditation and Mindfulness Retreat in the middle of a nature reserve with a vista taking in the white capped Himalayan peaks. Gentle days by the lake with time for swimming, exploring, or just being still to absorb the majesty and tranquility of the landscape. On leaving our retreat we journey to the northern city of Amritsar where we visit the incredible Golden temple. We fly back to Delhi where we rest in our 5 star colonial hotel before journeying onwards or home.
a journey like no other...
We have planned a beautiful journey and program in the north of India. Everything is taken care of, ensuring you get the most from every moment. The program, itinerary and inclusions can all be found on this page...
Delve deep into the majesty and mystery of the Himalaya and your own spiritual essence. Here is the full itinerary...
Thursday 20 April
Friday 21 April
Friday 21 April
Saturday 22 April
Sunday 23 April
Monday 24 April
Monday 24 April
Basunti Daily Schedule
For the early risers - Sunrise Meditation and Gayatri Mantra on the roof terrace
6.30am Chai & Fruit
Enjoy chai and fruit on the terrace. We maintain sacred silence everyday until breakfast.
7.00am Healing Meditation
Deeply healing Mano Yoga Meditation practice in the yoga shala
Hatha Yoga Session in the yoga shala
Fresh, vital, living food breakfast on the verandah
Lessons and discourse in the Yoga Shala
Delicious vegetarian lunch on the verandah
1.00pm Afternoon Free
You are welcome to rest or explore.
4.00pm Afternoon Tea
Afternoon tea with a selection of cakes is served at 4.00pm by the pool
5.00pm Healing Hatha Yoga
Restorative, calming Hatha Yoga on the rooftop terrace
Half an hour of meditation and pranayama
8.00pm Relaxation & Meditation
Guided Healing Relaxation and Silent Meditation
Tuesday 25 April -
Saturday 29 April
Monday 1 May
Tuesday 2 May
Tuesday 2 May
Wednesday 3 May
once in a lifetime...
This retreat is a unique opportunity to discover and explore the magic and spirituality of the Himalayas within the framework of an immersive retreat program. Here is why it's special...
Meditation & mindfulness
We start each day at sunrise with Mano Yoga - a powerful healing meditation practice. In the mornings we have lessons in meditation & mindfulness methods and techniques. At sunset we practice Raja Yoga meditation and pranayama. In the evenings you'll be lulled into a deep, blissful state of relaxation during fully guided healing sessions and silent meditation
The Kangra Valley region in the very north of India is one of the most beautiful landscapes on earth. You will take in the most sublime sunrises imaginable - with the sunlight illuminating the Himalayan peaks one by one, and practice yoga in the calmness of the sun setting over the expansive lake. The beauty and stillness of the landscape settles into your heart and soul - you will never forget it!
Yoga was traditionally practiced in the ashrams of India under the guidance of a Guru - away from distractions and outside influence. On our retreats we leave behind all those concerns and distractions to deeply and profoundly realise the spiritual and material benefits of yoga, returning to our lives with renewed energy and focus.
Inclusions & Cost
India Himalayas Dharamsala Retreat
20 April - 4 May 2017
Facts & Questions
Why choose Kookaburra rETREATS?
- Established, reputable business. Kookaburra Retreats are offered by Kookaburra Creek Yoga - a yoga centre and program directed by Robert Becker and Mandy BeckerKnox in Perth, Australia. Kookaburra Creek Yoga is well established having been operating for twenty years.
- Retreat management experience. Kookaburra Yoga have offered professionally organised and facilitated international retreats for over ten years. Each retreat is carefully planned to ensure the safety and comfort of participants.
- Local expertise. Kookaburra Yoga's international retreat program is coordinated by local, licensed travel agents who manage the logistics, transportation, bookings and take care of the practical needs of participants. The organisation and management of retreats is mainly invisible to participants enabling them to focus on their own inner and outer journey.
- Health & Safety. Our venues are carefully selected to ensure they are of a high standard to support the health and wellbeing of participants. When travelling we take every precaution to ensure the hygiene and health of participants. We carry a first aid kit and keep our first aid knowledge up to date.
- Quality food. Food is an integral part of our retreats and menus and ingredients are planned and considered to ensure they are nourishing, health-promoting and conducive to yoga and meditation.
- High quality program. Directors Mandy and Robert facilitate all Kookaburra Yoga Retreats. They are both exceptional yoga and meditation instructors with decades of continuing education, self-enquiry and practical teaching experience. They have literally taught thousands of people yoga and to meditate and how to effectively apply the knowledge gained to enhance and transform lives.
- Professional leadership. Both Robert and Mandy have worked professionally in high-level leadership positions in government and the not-for-profit sector and are leaders and skilful group facilitators able to guide individuals and groups safely through peak experiences and the transformational change which often occurs on retreat.
- Value for money. Retreats are fully inclusive with meals, transport, accommodation sightseeing taken care of and included in the cost. We are upfront about any potential additional costs allowing participants to budget and plan.
- Culturally sensitive. We do our best to adapt to our environment and educate our guests to be attuned and respectful of customs and cultural sensitivities.
- Socially responsible. We care for people and the planet. All our retreats cause as little harm as possible. We choose vegetarian venues (vegan where possible). We contribute generously to local organisations and charities and encourage the same of our participants.
- Personal development. Kookaburra Retreats are a wonderful opportunity for personal and professional development. You'll be gently guided to explore limitations and obstacles to achieving your potential and become equipped with the tools, techniques and practical wisdom to evolve and grow. Kookaburra Retreats are transformational and potentially life-changing!
Do I need experience in Yoga to attend a retreat?
No, we welcome anyone who is interested in embarking upon a journey of self enquiry and discovery. The yoga and meditation practices on each retreat are carefully explained and taught in a caring and respectful manner. All of the practices taught can be adapted to suit the needs of each participant and you always have the option not to participate in all the programmed sessions and activities.
DO I NEED to organise passport, Visa, INSURANCE and International flights?
- To enter India it is a requirement that you have a passport valid for at least 6 months from date of travel.
- You must book your own international flight to Delhi Airport or ask your own travel agent to do this for you.
- You must have a travel insurance policy with relevant inclusions and provide us with your Certificate of Currency prior to departure. This is a condition of attending all Kookaburra Yoga Retreats.
- To enter India you need to obtain an entry visa. Visas must be organised in advance in your own country. For anyone travelling from Australia this can be done online in advance of the retreat. Visit http://www.vfsglobal.com/india/australia/ for more information and to apply.
- This retreat includes 2 domestic flights within India which are included in the tour price.
- You should organise your travel insurance at the time of booking your international flights to ensure you are covered in the event you need to cancel.
What if I Need to cancel?
- We ask for a deposit of $700 upon booking a place on each of these Retreats.
- Your deposit is your commitment to attend and is generally nonrefundable unless we can offer your place to a waitlisted person or you find someone to take your place.
- In exceptional circumstances we may refund the deposit to you. Even then only the unused portion of the deposit is refundable (we book domestic flights as soon as you register to secure seats)
- If you cancel 0-4 weeks before the retreat the full amount is payable.
- If you cancel 4-6 weeks before the retreat 75% of your what you've paid (not including deposit) will be refunded to you.
- If you cancel more than 6 weeks prior to the retreat your full payment (except for the deposit) will be refunded to you.
- If you need to cancel due to ill health or the death of someone close to you, your travel insurance policy may refund your deposit and all other money paid back to you. Please check with your insurer.
- Travel insurance on this retreat is compulsory.
- If we have a waitlist and can fill your place from this, all money paid (except for deposit) will be refunded to you regardless of when you cancel.
What if I am not in perfect condition or if I get sick?
- You should be fine to attend this retreat if you are in a reasonable state of health. If you have any specific conditions or concerns please check with your own health care provider.
- If you get sick while travelling, our local organiser will assist you to receive the most appropriate and best medical attention and care as soon as possible.
what isn't included in the cost?
- international airfare
- travel insurance (compulsory)
- entry visa (approx AUD$100)
- extra night's accommodation before and after tour ($150 per night in twin share room. $280 per night in single room). This will be added to your final invoice if you select this option when booking.
- lunch 2 days in Dharamsala, 1 day in Amritsar ($5-$10)
- additional meals/snacks ($5-$10)
- any additional outings and transport not mentioned in itinerary
- any items ordered through room service including food or laundry service
- canoe/boat hire at Basunti
- tips for service staff (estimate approx $50-$100 in total)
- discretionary donations to ashrams, monasteries and charities (estimate approx $50-$100 in total)
- transfer to airport on final day (approx $35 - less if sharing a car)
what are the payment options?
- $700 deposit on booking confirms your place This is used to secure accommodation and domestic flights and is non-refundable
- online payments only: credit card, paypal or direct deposit
- balance of payment can be paid in instalments (be in touch to arrange)
- full payment must be made by 1st December 2017 to receive an early-bird discount $200
- full payment must be received by 20th January 2017 (3 months prior to travel)
- deposit is non-refundable if you cancel
- if you cancel before 1st December balance of payment is refundable (everything other than deposit)
- ensure you organise insurance as soon as you book. Your insurance policy should cover you in the event you are unable to travel or cancel due to unforeseen circumstances. Please check with your insurer.
What is the Retreat Size?
Our venues in Dharamsala and at Basunti retreat centre in the Himalayas are quite small. Basunti is comprised of two separate lodges and a main house. Each lodge has four twin-bedded terraced chalets. Each chalet is self-contained with its own bathroom (with shower and toilet) and private verandah. The main house provides accommodation for up to 4 people in two separate apartments.
- There is a maximum of 16 places for participants in shared rooms.
- This retreat is subject to a minimum of 10 participants.
What health considerations are there?
- We advise participants to seek medical advice regarding any pre-existing medical conditions before signing up for this retreat.
- Vaccinations are not mandatory. Advice changes depending on risks at any given time. We encourage participants to seek the advice of a travel health specialist. In Perth we recommend Travel Health Fremantle who have our travel itinerararies on file so they can provide you with specific advice.
- We suggest you travel with a small medical/first aid kit which may include natural or allopathic medicines to prevent or treat gastro conditions, respiratory infections and mosquito-borne viruses.
- Travel insurance is mandatory. In the event that you be come ill, we will assist you to receive the best medical attention possible. This will be at your own expense and should be claimable through your insurance policy.
Is travelling in India safe?
- We have travelled to India many times and provide participants with advice and assistance to stay safe in the country.
- There are inherent risks in any form of travelling. These are largely mitigated through careful planning, engaging the services of reputable local travel agencies, and encouraging scrupulous hygiene and food awareness.
- We take our own children to India and they sometimes accompany us on retreats. We wouldn't consider risking their wellbeing and equally we wouldn't consider risking the wellbeing of participants.
What should i wear?
The Kangra Valley is warm during the days reaching temperatures of up to 28 degrees and cool in the evenings with lows of about 11 degrees (celsius). This is the driest time of year with the monsoon season starting later in May or June. Clothes should be suited to this type of weather. You can purchase light cotton clothing in McLeod Ganj markets.
- When visiting monasteries, and in fact any public places, dress should be very conservative with legs and shoulders covered.
- Bring bathers for swimming. While there are no issues in hotel pools and our retreat centre, when swimming in public places such as the lake, modesty is essential and a sarong or tshirt over your bathers is recommended for women.
- For yoga, wear whatever clothes you are comfortable to move and stretch and sit in. We recommend bringing or buying a shawl for meditation, and you will need mala beads for meditation which can be purchased at McLeod Ganj.