When I first arrived in Guatemala the last thing I expected to find was a thriving yoga community. I know when people think of yoga they think India, Bali and maybe Costa Rica. But if you love yoga and are thinking of doing a yoga retreat or teacher training then I urge you to consider Guatemala. So here is why you should do Yoga in Guatemala.
When I arrived in Guatemala I had no idea that yoga was such a big thing! In fact, during my 9 months there yoga was on my itinerary (almost) every day. As well as having a whole host of retreats around Lake Atitlan catering for all budgets there is an abundance of incredible teachers in Antigua and Guatemala City offering daily classes as well as special workshops with international teachers.
Why not! It’s a beautiful country, the cost of living is low and the cost of travel is really cheap. It;s also a very spiritually connected country. Lake Atitlan especially is often described as a vortex and it has the most incredible energy I have ever experienced. People never go to Guatemala just once, they either end up staying for longer than expected (like me) and/ or they always go back.
There is just something about Guatemala that draws you in and makes you want to return time and time again.
There is a very solid community of yoga teachers and lightworkers in Guatemala. What I was most impressed with was how they are all connected and in communication! There are several facebook groups dedicated to open communication and everyone posts and shares events. I’ve never been anywhere else where it has been so easy to connect in and get information about what’s happening.
So here is the lowdown of yoga in Guatemala
If you are looking for a Yoga Retreat or Teacher Training then Lake Atitlan, and most likely San Marcos is where you will be heading. Although there are also a few retreats in San Pedro, Tzunan, and Santa Cruz. most are in San Marcos.
One of two of the Ashrams only host their own retreats and Teacher Training but some welcome international teachers who host their training at the Ashrams.
Here are the main Ashrams:
This is a relatively new Ashram in Tzunan
This place is the most well known in Lake Atitlan. Cost is around $50 per person per day for accommodation and 3 meals and yoga classes if you just want to check in for a few days. They also host more formal retreats and Yoga Teacher Training throughout the year.
OK, so this one is a bit more fancy and pricy. They have various international retreat leaders hosting retreats at their center throughout the year. If you are looking for luxury then this is the venue for you.
I LOVE this place it’s a lower cost less fancy version of Villa Sumaya. It’s where all the Guatemalan Yogis go to chill for a few days as they let you use the studio there and it has a great spot for taking pictures with the lake and volcanoes in the background. So even if they have no retreats you can always check in for a few days and do self-practice in one of their Ashrams or on the platform.
This place is in San Pedro and a little bit out of town. They offer retreats and teacher training and they also own the place at the beach (see below!)
Antigua is full of excellent yoga teachers and boasts several yoga studios most of which are on 4th Calle (handy!).
If you want to tap into the yoga community in Antigua then the first place you should visit is Shakti Shala. I know I’m totally biased because I worked there. But it really is a home from home and trust me when you walk in there and are greeted by Lauren and Irene you will know what I’m talking about! Don’t forget to try a delicious smoothie and some Avo Toast and a Matcha Late while you’re there!
A small space at the end of 4th Calle you can find their timetable here
Based inside Samsara Garden this is a small studio and you can find their classes here.
They have classes every weekend as well as some classes during the week. The timetable changes weekly so keep an eye on their facebook page. Oh and don’t forget to try the pizza while you are there!
They have regular classes on a Saturday and during the week sometimes. If you make the journey up there stay for a night or two if you can. It’s a great place to stay for a few nights and the prices are very reasonable!
If you need accommodation I highly recommend Wicho and Charlies or Lemon Tree if you are looking for a hostel. Alternatively, if you want a B&B I can’t recommend Donde Rita enough. She is a good friend and has opened up the most stunning Moroccan style B&B.
You have two options for yoga in El Paradon. If you are just looking for classes then Driftwood Surfer (the party hostel) offer daily classes from their resident Yoga Teacher.
Of if you are looking for a retreat Mystical Yoga Farm will be hosting retreats from their beach property.
This studio is the most established in the country. It offers a string Mysore program and regularly brings down international teachers to lead week-long workshops. Make sure you like their page on facebook and if you see something you want to attend and aren’t sure how to get there post in one of the facebook groups and ask if anyone can give you a lift.
Any questions? Feel free to send me an email or comment below! And if you are heading to Guatemala make sure you take a read of some of my other posts:
Or if you are a yoga nut like me and are thinking of doing your teacher training I’ve written several posts on finding the right training here:
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