2019 Dates:    19-23 September  /  17-21 October

SPECIAL RETREAT:  Ulpotha, Sri Lanka, 1-15 March – see separate page

2020 Dates:   May / June / September / October

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Visit the spectacular Sintra region, near Lisbon, Portugal

Spend 5 days doing yoga on an beautiful eco-farm from only 390€

(Or organise your own accommodation; attend classes and meals for 270€)

Do you need a retreat, a holiday, an exploration into yoga or a deepening of your practice? This extended weekend can be some, or all, of the above. Quinta Ecosophia is a beautiful eco-farm located within a UNESCO world heritage natural park, 45 minutes from Lisbon between the foothills of the Sintra Mountains and the nearby Atlantic coastline with beautiful beaches and rugged cliffs.

Before and after summer are favourite seasons in this region of Portugal – warm but not too hot, and outside of the busy tourist months so the tranquil day-to-day village life continues. Experiencing Quinta Ecosophia will give you a taste of living in harmony with nature and  ecological principles, while restoring your energy with twice daily yoga classes and delicious vegetarian meals. The natural swimming pool has brought an incredible amount of wildlife to the area and has a “plant zone” of water lilies.

The Retreat

Designed to give you a nourishing, energising, and peaceful break from your busy life, your days can be filled with a combination of yoga, rest, delicious vegetarian meals, dips in the natural pool and, if you like, some time to explore the local region, visit tourist attractions or trips to the beach, depending if you’re looking for a retreat or a holiday.

For regular Iyengar yoga students the retreat will give you a concentrated dose of all the benefits you already know Iyengar yoga brings, while also helping with your personal practice and understanding. People new to yoga are welcome if you’re prepared to enjoy learning among already converted yoga practitioners!

The Location

Sintra was once a sanctuary for the Portuguese royalty and aristocracy. The mountain stands out prominently between Lisbon and the Atlantic ocean and is sprinkled with historical villas and palaces. Visable from the capital city, the mountain is crowned with Pena National Palace, well know for its sweeping views and 19th century Romanticism style of architecture.

Cabo do Roca (Europe’s most westerly point) with stunning coastal and pine forest mountain views, is also located nearby.

Quinta Ecosophia

The quinta exhibits how to live both comfortably and minimally with as little impact as possible on the natural environment. The owner, Denise Luxton, has transformed an abandoned farm into an attractive homestead that focuses on sustainability and nature. The well-planned gardens, eco-buildings and natural pool are built with as little impact as possible on the environment and the result is an oasis for all who step foot on the property.

The vegetarian meals are full of local flavour and fresh ingredients. Fresh eggs will be provided by the hens and many vegetables and herbs are grown on the farm. Quinta Ecosophia is home to horses, chickens, dogs, a cat and a wide variety of wild birds.

Accommodation options

Quinta Ecosophia works in partnership with two other nearby quintas – one by the sea and the other on the nearby hillside with beautiful landscaped gardens. All classes and meals are held at Quinta Ecosophia and whether you stay on the rustic eco-style Quinta Ecosophia or with more luxury and comforts at Quinta Beira Mar or Quinta das Glicinias depends on your accommodation choice. Those staying at one of the nearby Quintas will be picked up before classes and driven back after meals which are enjoyed after the daily yoga classes. They are both a 5-minute drive away or walking distance for active people!

Mongolian Yurt – shared The original Mongolian Yurt offers a cosy, picturesque glamping experience situated next to the natural pool and sandy area. The beautifully painted Yurt has electrical lighting and sockets, and use of a shared outdoor solar shower and compost toilet.

Quinta Beira Mar  This Quinta is situated next to three stunning beaches and has views of the sea and the Sintra mountains. Praia Pequena beach is 2 minutes walk from the Quinta and Praia Grande, a world renowned surfing beach is 12 minutes walk. The beach and village of Praia das Maças is a 5-10 minute walk from the quinta, which also has a pool and lovely garden.

Quinta das Glicinias Rebuilt in a very traditional and authentic architectural style, this elegant Portuguese country house is surrounded by beautiful gardens with a swimming pool. The spectacular setting offers views towards the ocean and over the Sintra mountain range.

Yoga Sessions with Georgia

Until I tried Iyengar yoga specifically, I had not been very impressed with yoga. I had a damaged lower back, tight hamstrings and a stiff body. I had decided that yoga wasn’t for me!  But after my first Iyengar yoga class, in 1992, left me with a very different opinion, I haven’t looked back and I can honestly say it has transformed my life!

I’ve now been teaching for nearly 20 years and I feel fulfilled and grateful to have learnt a yoga system that is so thorough and effective. I gain great pleasure from passing on the benefits of yoga to people and watching the change it brings to their body and state of mind.

I provide all the equipment used in Iyengar yoga, so you don’t need to bring anything to class, unless you prefer to use your own mat. This retreat is limited to 12 people so that during the 15 hours of yoga classes offered, you will receive lots of individual attention and tuition.

Daily Programme  

7.30 – 8.15    Pranayama

8.30 – 10.30 Asana class

10.45 – 12.00 Brunch

12.00 – 17.00 Free time

17.00 – 19.00 Restorative class

19.00 – 20.30 Dinner

Optional Extras

  • Massage
  • Cranio-sacral therapy
  • Guided coastal walks
  • History Tours
  • Visits to local tourist sites
  • Surfing / Body boarding lessons
  • Rock Climbing
  • Mountain hikes
  • Bike riding
  • Horse riding

Retreat price options

Yurt Glamping (shared): 390€

Shared room (up to 3 people): 410€

Twin or couple: 450€

Twin or couple with en-suite: 470€

Single: 530€

Single with en-suite: 570€

Non-residential: 250€

*Above prices are per person in Euros and include accommodation (4 nights), meals (brunch, dinner, snacks, tea and coffee), and yoga classes  (up to 15 hours of tuition in a group no bigger than 12 people).

What is not included:

Airfares need to be arranged independently. Airport transfers and optional extras can be booked through Yoga Bahia at an additional cost to the basic retreat cost.

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