Dear Yogis, Meditators, Animal Lovers & Adventurers,
This retreat means a lot to us and we think it will to you, too. We’re answering the call to volunteer and support one of the world’s most respected and noble elephant sanctuaries – the Elephant Nature Park, a place where these majestic creatures find safe haven.
Most of us live in cities where we’re disconnected from the realities of nature as we admire cute clips of elephants on social media. But the startling truth is there are only 30,000 Asian Elephants left in the world. Endangered, many are held captive and exploited inhumanely. Join us on this crucial call to support keeping these intelligent, loving animals from riding camps and other debilitating work. Create once-in-a-lifetime memories and great karma while doing it!
You’ll get to spend two full days at the sanctuary and stay overnight in the park – a truly remarkable experience. Part of the joy in this trip is interacting and just being with the elephants, and observing the beauty of nature.
Believe us when we say you’re in for an unforgettable Chiang Mai experience. Upon arrival, we’re spending two nights at the luxurious Siripanna Villa Resort & Spa – where you can relax and recharge from the journey. And because we’re pretty much always hungry (and Chiang Mai has some of the most delicious food in the world) we’re taking the group to the famous night market and to experience a top-rated cooking class! Plus- you get to impress friends at home with your new Thai cuisine skills. Win/Win.
Next, we’ll venture to the northern villages for our overnight at the Elephant Nature Park. Here, you’ll learn all about the Asian Elephants, help feed them and watch them in their natural habitat. Elephants love people and are social creatures so the presence of loving humans is very comforting for them. You’ll leave feeling inspired by all the beauty of these animals and the natural landscape of Chiang Mai.
For the second half of our retreat, we’ll stay at one of the top yoga resorts in Chiang Mai – The Pavana Resort. The Pavana Resort has some of the most breathtaking yoga pavilions and views. You’re going to love this unforgettable place! We’ll bask in the peace of yoga and deep meditation practices, and build our connection with others in fun, heart-opening intimacy exercises. We love seeing lasting friendships created. ♥
The excitement will ramp up as we embark on our adventure day! Get ready to get wet – we’ll be enjoying a thrilling white water rafting adventure! If that’s not enough, we’ve organized an (optional) zip-lining experience through the jungle treetops. *FYI- We’ve been told this tour makes zip-lining in Costa Rica look like baby stuff, so it’s got our attention!
This retreat has it all. It is truly a one-of-a-kind adventure and an amazing life experience. We’ve designed this retreat to be small and intimate so are limiting it to 14 people. Above all, we want to create a deep connection to our community, to nature, and to our practice.
We hope you can join us.
With deep appreciation & anticipation,
Paul + Leah
Your Retreat Leaders
Your Retreat Vision Board
Included in Your Retreat
Included in Your Retreat:
Yoga classes & live music with Paul Teodo
Meditation with Leah Santa Cruz
Intimacy Workshop with Leah Santa Cruz
Cooking Class in Chiang Mai – Trip to Market and Full Cooking Class (~4 hours)
2 Day Experience Volunteering at Elephant Nature Park & Overnight Stay
Daily Breakfast & Dinner
Lunch on Excursion Days
White Water Rafting & Optional Zip Lining Tour
Seven days immersed in one of the most magical places on earth!
Not included: Airport Transfers, Lunch on Non-Excursion Days, Taxis/transport outside of group activities, Specialty Beverages
Monday, June 19, 2017
Arrivals at Siripanna Villa
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Explore Chiang Mai
Market Visit & Cooking Class (Includes Dinner)
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Early Morning Pick-up for Elephant Nature Park
Full Day with the Elephants – Includes Lunch
Thursday, June 22, 2017
Full Day with Elephants – Includes Lunch
Arrive at The Pavana Resort
Friday, June 23, 2017
Saturday, June 24, 2017
Optional Ziplining, Lunch, White Water Rafting
Sunday, June 25, 2017
*subject to change
Overnight Experience at the Elephant Nature Park
What you will be doing:
An introductory orientation video and talk where you can learn all about our herd and the park is followed by a healthy lunch of fresh local produce then watch the elephants bathe in the river that borders our park. Discover how to communicate with them and learn with our trained staff. Observe our herd at play and watch them interact in each of their social groups. Full dinner at the park and accommodation at park huts.
After breakfast you can go on an elephant walk to see the elephants roaming in the open pasture.
Upon returning to the Park with the elephants you get to feed and bathe the herd. You will soon begin to identify different elephants by their shape, markings and attitude. Observe and enjoy the communications and interactions between these highly intelligent and loving herd elephants.
Dinner and lunches at the park are casual affairs, the focus being on high quality locally grown produce prepared in Western and Eastern styles. The range on offer will suit all diets from vegetarian to Halal.
Accommodation for overnight visitors are traditional bamboo fan cooled huts, rustic and in keeping with our natural surrounds. Mosquito nets are provided so you may sleep with your windows open; if you listen to the night you may hear the elephants whisper, rumble, snore and even the occasional trumpet. You may watch the elephants from your room or the dedicated observation platform.
Elephant Nature Park´s Mae Taeng Valley location is naturally stunning. Combined with the company of a herd of rescued elephants you will have the chance to take numerous pictures and keep lifelong memories.
Gourmet Thai Cuisine
Amazing Thai Food is part of this retreat. Ban Sabai and The Pavana Resort are known for their healthy spa food. A highlight will be our cooking class in Chiang Mai where we will learn how to make a variety of Thai dishes.
Happiness fulfilled in the Lanna style.
The magic of the Lanna style will always impress, attract and make for an unforgettable memory for you to experience. Siripanna is located in the middle of a natural habitat, and offers a family-like service in the typical Lanna style, which will enchant you through all it has to offer during your stay. Explore and experience the distinguished uniqueness of the Lanna way through its history, art, cultural charm, serenity and beauty at the Siripanna Villa Resort & Spa Chiang Mai.
Siripanna Villa Resort & Spa, Chiang Mai was awarded in ‘TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice 2012 Award” as one of top hotels in 4 categories, including Top Hotels in Asia, Top Hotels in Thailand, Top Hotels for Service in Thailand and Top Bargain Hotels in Thailand. The resort was also selected as one of Top 25 Hotels in Thailand in ‘TripAdvisor’s Travelers’ Choice 2014 Award” and recently awarded the 2015-2016 Certificate of Excellence.
Elephant Nature Park is an elephant rescue and rehabilitation center in Northern Thailand where you can volunteer and visit to help. We have been involved in dozens of rescues which have created our thriving elephant herd. The park provides a natural environment for elephants, dogs, cats, buffaloes and many other animals under our care.
Nestled within the lush nature of Mae Ann Valley, The Pavana Resort boasts spectacular grounds of over 100,000 square meters on the hills of Mae Rim countryside. With the unique blend of Lanna architecture, comfortable accommodations, and a comprehensive wellness programs, The Pavana Resort is truly an oasis for those who seek to rejuvenate their body and mind.
A Thai Massage is an awesome addition to any retreat. Both Siripanna Villa Resort & Spa and The Pavana Resort offer world class spas.
Is This Retreat For You?
- You have volunteering at an Elephant Sanctuary on your bucket list (or now you do!)
- You love animals and giving back
- Mountains, nature, and adventure excites you
- You are attuned to your practice and open to deepening it on the retreat
- Then, YES, this retreat is for you!
Retreat Package Rates
First 10 Sign Ups Receive $100 Off Advertised Rate.
Book Now to Save!
- Double Occupancy: $2,097 pp
- Single Occupancy: $2,369 pp (single room for every night except at The Elephant Nature Park – they require doubles)
Discount taken off of the final balance.
Coming alone? Great! We can work to find you a roommate* if you want a shared room. About half of our travelers come alone – it’s a great way to travel. Check out our blog post on why traveling alone is a great option!
*Please note that we do our best to match you with your desired room type and price point. In the event we can’t find you a roommate for your first pick, we will present you with different rooming options.
Terms + Conditions
By reserving your space with a deposit, you are agreeing to the stated policies in our Agreement.
Strict Cancellation Policy
If you wish to cancel your retreat you must notify BYR in writing by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. Your cancellation fee will be determined according to the terms outlined in the chart in our agreement. Exceptions to our cancellation policy cannot be made for ANY reason, including weather, terrorism, civil unrest, Zika virus, health changes, personal emergencies, or otherwise. There is no refund for arriving late or leaving a trip early.
You may transfer your reservation from one BYR Retreat to another up to two (2) months before the original listed Retreat Start Date without penalty, after which time our cancellation policy applies.
All prices are per person and are set well in advance of the retreat start date. Prices vary depending on a variety of cost factors, with peak travel times being the most expensive. You can always find pricing on the website. Prices include retreat costs only; they do not include airfare to and from the retreat and ground transportation (unless noted on the website). BYR believes in fair pricing for all retreat attendees – all prices are set and non-negotiable.
Deposit & Payment Terms (per person)
Reserve your spot with a non-refundable $500 deposit per person plus an online booking fee. Please note the booking fee does not count toward your final balance. At two (2) months final balances will be charged to the credit card on file. If you book within two (2) months of the Retreat Start Date, you will be billed in full within 24 hours after putting down the initial deposit.
Mandatory Trip Insurance
Each retreat attendee is required to purchase individual trip insurance. Blissed Yoga Retreats is not financially liable for any cancellations or circumstances out of our control (e.g. changes to your schedule, acts of God, pregnancy, etc.). We want to protect you -our guest- and require trip insurance to help protect your investment.