A Guide to Yoga in Guatemala

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When I first arrived in Guatemala the last thing I expected to find was a thriving yoga community in Guatemala. 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 yoga teacher training then I urge you to consider doing Yoga in Guatemala. So here is my guide to 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 yoga retreats around Lake Atitlan catering for all budgets there is an abundance of incredible yoga teachers in Antigua and Guatemala City offering daily classes as well as special workshops with international teachers.

Did You Get Travel Insurance Yet?

If you are planning a trip right now then you NEED to thing seriously about insurance. If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that you need to be prepared for anything!

Travel insurance has always been high on the list of things to get before you travel but now more than ever it should be at the top of your list! I’m pretty sure we have all had travel plans messed up because of COVID and not all insurers covered this. So you need to find an insurer that covers travel disruption due to COVID-19, World Nomads and Safety Wing are the ones to go for. World Nomads is great for incidents that happen prior to your trip, so if you get sick or are unable to travel due to travel restrictions some of their policies will cover that as cancellation cover. Safety Wing goes the extra mile and covers quarantine outside your home for up to 10 days, they also have a really handy map on their website showing requirements and restrictions for each country.

If you are doing shorter trips or a onger backpacking trip then WorldNomads is the best option. If you are a digital nomad or planning travel of at least 6 months then go for SafetyWing. Alternativly Travel Insurance Master is a great site to do a more general serch for vacation insurance. Just make sure whichever insurance plan you go with will cover you for COVID.

Why not! It’s a Guatemala beautiful country in Central America, 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. 

P.S. Check out my review of The Best Travel Yoga Mats.

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala
Irene and Lauren the co-owners of Shakti Shala in Antigua

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 with other yoga teachers and get information about what’s happening.

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala
Yoga in the Park with Irene and Lauren | Shakti Shala Antigua

Yoga in Lake Atitlan 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 yoga places in Lake Atitlan:

Eagles Nest Retreat

A Guide to Yoga in Guatemala

I stayed here on my recent trip to Guatemala and all I can say is WOW! The views are out of this world and Greg the owner is amazing. They don’t have regular yoga classes, but they do have Ecstatic dance every Sunday and an exciting schedule of workshops, retreats, and festivals. You can check out their schedule on Facebook

What I love about Eagles nest is that when there isn’t a retreat booked in you can go and stay there and you will likely have time each day to practice on your own on their incredible yoga platform. It was the perfect place for me to stay for a few days at the lake. I just practiced yoga, meditated, cooked in the open air kitchen and enjoyed the incredible views over the lake while showering in the morning.

A stay here won’t break the bank either, check out their prices here.

yoga Guatemala

Yoga Forest 

This place is the most well known for yoga in Lake Atitlan. Cost is around $50 per person per day for accommodation and 3 meals and yoga classes in San Marcos if you just want to check in for a few days. They also host more formal retreats and Yoga Teacher Training in San Marcos throughout the year.

Villa Sumaya Retreat Center & Guest House

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.


Hotel Isla Verde

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala
Irene practicing at Isla Verde | @yogaconirene

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 yoga retreats by Lake Atitlan you can always check in for a few days and do self-practice in one of their Ashrams overlooking Lake Atitlan or on the platform (see below).

Mystical Yoga Farm

This Yoga Retreat is in San Pedro Lake Atitlan and a little bit out of town. They offer Yoga retreats and Yoga Teacher Training in Guatemala. 

Yoga in Antigua Guatemala

Antigua in Guatemala is full of excellent yoga teachers and boasts several yoga studios most of which are on 4th Calle (handy!). Yoga in Guatemala is huge and nowhere more than in Antigua.

Shakti Shala> yoga studio in Antigua Guatemala

If you want to tap into the yoga community in Antigua then the first place you should visit is Shakti Shala in Antigua. I know I’m totally biased because I worked there but Shakti Shala is the heart of Yoga in Guatemala as far as I’m concerned. 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, oh and try the Matcha Late while you’re there! Tell them I sent you ;-).

Studio Y Yoga Studio in Antigua Guatemala

A small space at the end of 4th Calle you can find their yoga timetable here

Yoga at Caobo Farm in Antigua Guatemala

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala

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!

Yoga at Earth Lodge in Antigua

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala

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. 

Yoga in El Paradon Guatemala

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala

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.

Yoga in Guatemala City

Yoga at OM Yoga in Guatemala City

Learning Abroad | Why you should do Yoga in Guatemala
Workshop with @day1yoga at OM Yoga in Guatemala City

OM yoga studio in Guatemala City is the most established studio in the country. It offers a strong 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. 

 

A Guide to Yoga in Guatemala

 

Final Thoughts

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:

How to see Guatemala in 4 weeks

How to Spend 2 days in Antigua, Guatemala

Things to know before visiting Antigua, Guatemala

Guatemala Guides | How to get from Guatemala City to Antigua

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:

Finding Yoga Again, and again and yoga teacher training

How to choose a yoga teacher training abroad

How to prepare for Yoga Teacher Training Abroad

 5 reasons to do Yoga in Thailand

This post was proofread by Grammarly

James trowell

Saturday 25th of January 2020

Claire. I concur with all your yoga spots and reviews. I just spent a month traveling the country and actually stayed at the majority of your Atitlán spots Isla Verde was so lovely. And Sumaya was great for the luxury.

I’m gonna visit Om in Guatemala City tomorrow! Cheers and namaste.

Jim

Peter C. Meyer

Thursday 14th of February 2019

Hello Claire: I enjoyed your pages but am scared of all the bone breaking pictures. I want to attain higher consciousness and separate myself from the influences of the material world. Can I get there by meditating and by listening to lectures? And where can I do that with some guidance? I am 90 years old. Peter

Guatemalan Textiles at Lake Atitlan

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