Yoga Ashram 5 day India Retreat —

5 Days Retreat in India. Move. Restore. Expand. [24–28 Nov 2019]

Enjoy time and space to rest, revitalise and recenter with

Meditation, Yoga Asanas, Pranayama & Healing Breathwork, Yoga Nidra, Therapies, Fire ceremony, and a detoxing diet

…all in the peaceful austerity of a traditional Yoga Ashram and the harmonising natural beauty of rural India.

Why this retreat?

Part of my learning process has always involved going to beautiful and far away places to deepen into my practice — yoga, meditation — , to heal from stress or even recover from burn out.

I would love to share the wonderful ashram experience with others. If you are reading this…that means you! I welcome my friends, my friends of friends, and friends to be.

A friend once said that “A retreat is an accelerator to connect with yourself and others”

I have come to the Yoga Vydia Gurul Ashram since 2011. ATM I am back for 4 months as volunteer teacher, study a new course — and to host this retreat :)

An Ashram is a place to abandon the distractions and luxuries of city life and focus on our growth. To allow time to rest, learn and elevate our spirit.


*Full details below*

Dates: 24–28 Nov 2019

Place: Yoga Vydia Gurukul, Nasik, India. 6 hrs drive from Mumbai.

Diet: Yogic / Ayurvedic, Delicious, Abundant, Natural food. With a different menu everyday. 3 meals a day. The diet is varied and includes breads, dal, fruits, soups, etc. (Lacto-vegetarian & non spicy)

Programme: Approx 5 hrs a day, with plenty of time of personal time to relax. See sample schedule below.

Group size: Intimate : ) up to 10 people. Note that there will be other residents and students in the Ashram during that time.

Experience : All yoga levels and meditation experience welcome.

Accommodation: Shared Rooms Only — Ashram life values community living.

Exchange: 220 GBP / 239 EUR / 265 USD — Includes: ashram meals, practices and accommodation — Excludes: flights, transport and Ayurvedic therapies are separate. Read below for details.

I am able to offer such low price thanks to the Ashram’s generosity, offering the space and meals at cost.

Getting there: A Taxi from Mumbai airport can be arranged at aprox 4,500 INR / 52.5 GBP aprox. each way (fits 3 people)

Asana practice : Yoga postures to relax our body and mind…to connect with our very existence.

Detail of practices offered

  • Yoga Asana (posture practice): Active and calming sequences from traditional Hatha Yoga, to relax and condition the body (release tension, tone mussels, release toxins, massage your endocrine system). We will practice indoor and outdoors.

Asana is a steady and comfortable position in the body and mind. Asana is about being, existing in the body.

  • Pranayama (Yogic breathing): These breathing techniques help with stress reduction, clearing toxins, balancing our energy (Prana means life force) and help increase our focus in meditation.
  • Meditation: We will practice a few styles, including Breath Awareness (aka mindfulness of breath), OM meditation, and other practices to move our energy with intention.

We will also practice the Inner Advisor Technique — a shamanic meditation to develop ability to listen our intuition. Through visualising inner advisors, we tap into our latent wisdom within.

Restoring our bodies in shavasana (corpse pose)
  • Yoga Nidra: This is a deep relaxation practice lying down. They call it the yogic sleep, because we enter the borderline state between wakefulness and sleep (the brain waves go from beta to alpha). This increases cognition, restores the body, and helps with fatigue and stress

Some say that 30 mins of Yoga Nidra feels like sleeping for 3 hours :)

  • Fire Ceremony (Havan): This is run by the Ashram community, daily at 6.45pm and all are welcome to join as an optional activity. In this traditional fire ceremony invoking the “energy of those who have awakened their 3rd eye”.
Fire Ceremony (Havan) — Mantra meditation guided by Guruji

Healing and Therapies

  • Healing Pranayama Breathwork : I will conduct small group Breathwork sessions. Breathwork is a breathing technique to allow our body to release trapped energies and find a sense of emotional release and calmness afterwards. Read more about Breathwork here.
  • Yoga Massage and Ayurvedic Therapies: The Ashram has an Ayurvedic clinic and offers traditional therapies and massages for an incredibly friendly price. **These are Not included in the retreat cost. They can be purchased separately at 200–700 INR— For a full list of prices and therapies please click here.
  • Relaxing by the pool: I think it’s a healing therapy ; ) The ashram has a small swimming pool that is free to use.

You can get so much out of your time while you are away.

I believe that all our answers are within, all we need is the time and space to listen to them. Also, that the universe talks to us through the people we meet. Specially when we travel taking time for ourselves

What a day would look like*

The idea is to have some time to practice and have plenty of time for ourselves to process the experience or simply relax. The atmosphere is relaxing and you can expect to listen to the birds sing during the day, and the crickets chirp at night.

*This is a sample days’ schedule — subject to small tweaks.

6am — 8:30 : Meditation & Yoga Asana

9am — 10am : Breakfast

10:30–11:00 : Yoga Nidra

11:00–12:00 Workshop: Pranayama / The Inner Advisor /Lecture

12:30 —1:30pm Lunch

1:30–6:30: Free time (Swimming pool, therapies, Reading)

6:30–7:30: Havan / Sunset Yoga / Meditation

7:30–8:30 Dinner

8:30 End of the day Gathering & sharing.

10pm is Bedtime at the Ashram

Sunrise Yoga on November / December weather.

Ashram Accommodation

Shared accommodation available only, and rooms for men and women are separate as per the Ashram values. There are showers with hot water and western toilets

The concept is austerity, community and simplicity. So everyone makes their own bed, cleans their own room. There is free wifi in the Ashram’s office but not in the rooms or main grounds.

The Ashram has a shop where you can but a yoga mat, toiletries, organic soap, yoga books, to-die-for delicious healthy snacks, some clothing and yoga objects like praying beads and singing bowls.

Ashram shared rooms
Ashram shop: books, toiletries, yoga mats, incense, oils, organic soaps, healthy snacks & clothing are available.

Yoga Halls


November is after the monsoon season so it will be green! It will be sunny. mostly, however a random rainy day might come. Expect slightly cool mornings and evenings (light jacket).

Rio Otoya is a Yoga teacher, mindfulness coach and a Breathwork facilitator. He certified as a yoga teacher in India in 2011 and did and advanced certification in early 2018.

He worked 4 years at Google, where he led startup and leadership programs. Also was part of gPause, Google’s mindfulness initiative, where he trained in their science based approach and led meditation classes and workshops for Googlers and entrepreneurs internationally. He is passionate about the power of the breath as a way to connecting with both the mind and body.

[More about me] [LinkedIn] [Instagram]

Ashram Life: Food & Etiquette

  • Meals: Vegetarian meals are served daily. They are prepared with love and care according to Yogic dietary principles. Healthy snacks are available to purchase in the evenings at the Ashram’s shop.

The Ashram observes silence during meals. The idea is to focus on tasting our food and in the beautiful Prana (life force) coming into our bodies :) There is no meat or stimulants like caffeine.

  • Modest dress: Ashram guests are invited to dress in casual, comfortable clothing suitable for warm days and cool evenings. Clothing should be modest (if possible covering shoulders & knees), though bathing suits, shorts and tank tops are acceptable at the pool ; )
  • Dont’s: No consumption of meat, alcohol, caffeine or recreational drugs are allowed.
  • Do’s: Co-exists alongside the ashram teachers, volunteers, yoga students, and ashram residents.
I took this photo during our free time while on a course at the ashram, in 2018.

Book here

Please Register here, You can book with 50% of the amount and the rest upon arrival in Cash or Paypal in USD / Euros.

Message me on Whatsapp +447825729088 — Rio. I check messages on the evenings around 8pm India Time.

Thank you for reading, please come if you feel the calling. Please pass it on if you think someone could benefit from the experience. I hope you can join!

This is me with Guruji (Vishuas Malik) in March 2018. When I asked him about the Yogic view on retreats, and that I was going to organise one in the future, he said, “Of course! Bring them to the Ashram!” : )

Booking Further Info & Terms

Please arrange your Insurance responsibly. The organiser shall not be held liable for any damage to, or loss of, property or injury to persons. By joining, the participant waives any claim against the organiser for any loss, damage, injury, or death.

Note: This retreat can only host 10 participants. If you are interested in joining, please register as soon as possible to guarantee a space.


• Food and accommodation while at the ashram (from arrival 23rd Nov and departure 28th Nov)

⁃ 3 meals a day (vegetarian)

⁃ During the day we provide purified water and herbal teas

• All classes and lectures.


• Flights to India

• Ayurvedic Massages & 1:1 therapies (available at a small fee and bookable on a first come first served basis).

• Transport from the airport (We can Help organising taxis to the Ashram can be provided at a small fee).

Arrivals / Departures

Please arrive to the Ashram by the late afternoon that day (leave from Mumbai on the 23rd by noon). We’ll have an evening welcome / meet and greet that evening. Your first class will be the following morning.

The retreat activities start 24th Nov. We’ll start with a sunrise gathering with yoga and mediation.

The last day of the retreat is on the 28th Nov at noon. We’ll have a closing yoga ceremony at sunrise and wrap up activities until lunch time. Departures to Mumbai / onward travel may take place that afternoon.

A Taxi to Mumbai / airport can be arranged at approximately 4,500 INR / 52.5 GBP per car (fits 3 people with luggage)


Rio Otoya [Maya Dhamma]

Written by

Speaker, Meditation & Yoga Teacher. Guide of The Inner Advisor technique. Works at Google Launchpad. LkIn: https://bit.ly/2ng6f4P | Instagram: @rio.dhamma

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