10 Best Meditation Retreats — Wellness Retreats to Visit
Travelers are making meditation retreats increasingly popular. Wellness tourism is growing at twice the rate as the tourism industry overall, according to the Global Wellness Institute. Some of these trips last for a day, while others can span a week or more — and they’re often held at a meditation center or in nature, where attendees engage in mindfulness activities, sometimes in complete silence.
“This period of extended meditation practice gives you a chance to focus without the usual distractions or responsibilities of daily life,” says Ted Meissner, online program and community development manager for the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society.
That doesn’t mean you spend your hours sitting cross-legged on a cushion. Instead, everything you do during the retreat — walking, eating, yoga, or hiking — is done mindfully. This constant state of mindfulness gives your body and mind the opportunity to experience its effects more deeply than shorter spurts do. “Common outcomes retreatants experience are states of calm, reduction in tension, and a lower heart rate,” Meissner says.
Looking for some zen? Check out these top meditation retreats.