Magic, Yoga, and Positive Energy Await You in Southern Spain

By Abbey Algiers

You know that feeling when you have an amazing vacation, and you want to tell absolutely EVERYONE you know about it… and then you do, and you see that they “get” you had a good time but don’t quite “get” HOW AMAZING the experience was? And no amount of Instagramming can truly relay what you experienced because not even you understand exactly what happened.

My experience at the Suryalila Retreat Centre in southern Spain felt like that. 

As I approached the road to Suryalila, I sensed I was in for something special.

The short story—I led a Wellness Retreat & English Immersion at Suryalila Retreat Centre in southern Spain. We could end this here, and no doubt you’d get the feeling it was amazing, even if you weren’t in need of English immersion. The mention of southern Spain probably puts visions of rolling hills, white-washed villages, sunflower fields, olive oil, wine… beauty. Right? And then add that we’re at a yoga retreat and discussing wellness topics—I’d bet you’re on board with the possibilities for Zen and relaxation.

Suryalila Retreat Centre… it’s Different. And Special. 

If you visit this centre, be prepared to be inspired and changed. Located on a renovated olive farm, the setting of the Suryalila Retreat Centre makes you feel like you’ve been transported to the beginning scenes of The Alchemist, set in the rolling hills of Andalucia. If you’re unfamiliar with this story, it’s the mystical tale of Santiago, an Andalusian shepherd boy who sets out to travel the world in search of treasure. While searching, he learns to listen to his heart’s calling and the guidance he receives from the “language of the world.” The “alchemy” of the story is Santiago’s evolution,  or “discovering his Personal Legend.”  Here’s the tie-in—the longer you stay at Suryalila, the more you feel the same sense of alchemy.

This alchemy is just one of the reasons Suryalila is so magical. Something about its very energy begs you to connect with yourself on a level that perhaps you hadn’t reached before.

The rolling hills of Suryalila will both “wow” you and make you feel incredibly at peace.

The Energy of Suryalila Retreat Centre

One can sense an unmistakable positive and mystical energy at Suryalila, which I believe stems from its location. Set in a large open valley in the foothills of the Sierra de Grazelema, the retreat offers views of a majestic mountain range peeking out on the horizon, and every direction holds awe-inspiring surprises—rolling hills, fields of sunflowers as you’ve never seen, farmhouses, and even an abandoned monastery. Moreover, its 45 acres of land hold a working olive farm with 350 olive trees and organic vegetables, fruits, chickens, horses, goats, sheep, dogs, and cats.

Not sure how to take in all of the views? Start with the property’s yoga halls. There are three, and each provides a unique place to enhance your practice and achieve inner peace. The biggest is the majestic Om Dome, which was the realization of a dream years in the making and is what Yoga Journal called  “the most magnificent yoga hall in Europe.” The dome’s massive bay window offers views of beautiful rolling hills and an abandoned convent while you take in the special energy of the dome. Two other spaces allow for even more options for awe-inspiring yoga. The Moon Shala is a sustainable cobb (straw bale and mud building) organic structure located in the olive grove, offering its own stunning vistas. The Ganesha Yoga Shala is part of the retreat’s main house, with windows on both sides allowing plenty of light and fresh air.

Not achieving a zen state is not a problem, even when you’re not practicing yoga. The property offers a multitude of places to relax and reflect. Whether you cool off in the saltwater eco pool, nap in the Moroccan Pavilion, or sip tea on one of the benches, chairs, or pagodas aesthetically and strategically placed throughout the property, you’re promised unparalleled views and serenity.

Every meal was as gorgeous and delicious as this.

While nourishing your spirit and soul, your body will also be cared for. The menu consists of perhaps the most nourishing and lovingly prepared vegan/vegetarian organic food I’ve ever had. To say it is beautifully presented could be the understatement of the century.  With ingredients sourced from the property, each meal is planned by a (very happy and friendly) group of chefs. There’s even a view of the site’s organic vegetable garden from the kitchen window.  

As you can see, the setting of Suryalila is quite simply perfect. But the story can’t end here because the setting can’t get all the credit for the magic of Suryalila.

The magic can be found and felt in every one of the people behind it. Bringing it back to The Alchemist, it’s clear that Vidya, the woman behind Suryalila, followed her personal legend to bring this beautiful place to life in 2011. (Her story is found here.) Her positive energy and unrelenting spirit created this magical escape that attracts like-minded yoga instructors, chefs, property managers, massage therapists, and support staff.  

Each of them is on course to discover their personal legends as well. They come from all over the world, each searching for something different but with the common spirit of making Suryalila (and the world) a better, brighter place. In doing so, they’ve created a vibe that shines as bright as the sunrises and sunsets gracing Suryalila daily. If you want to know (and feel) what I’m talking about, arrange a trip to Suryalila. You can participate in one of the many yoga retreats offered throughout the year, or simply stay in the centre’s yoga hotel, with accommodations to fit every budget. 

Whatever way you choose to experience Suryalila Retreat Centre, I promise you, it will be magical.

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