The perfect accompaniment to a weeks worth of cleansing food and detoxifying treatments, a definite highlight of my time spent at Alila were the early morning yoga classes that I experienced at both Alila Villas Soori and Alila Villas Uluwatu. If you’ve never tried a beachfront yoga class, add it to the bucket list. An immersive outdoor experience like no other, practising yoga surrounded by sea, sand and sun is one of the best ways to become more connected to your practise.
Each weekday morning throughout my stay, I was treated to a group yoga class at Alila Villas Soori overlooking the stunning volcanic sand beach below. Led by a local Balinese instructor under the warmth of the morning sun, yoga classes at Alila consider meditation and mindfulness as important as the practise itself, with regular pauses throughout to realign and refocus. Suitable for beginners and advanced yogi’s alike, there’s something truly magical about flowing through a series of yoga postures whilst breathing in the beauty of natural surroundings.
At my second destination, Alila Villas Uluwatu, I was delighted to be offered the chance to experience Aerial Yoga in the resorts iconic Sunset Cabana. Combining traditional yoga poses with pilates, calisthenics and dance, Aerial Yoga has been emerging slowly and steadily over the past year, originating in New York and now practised world over.
Stretching out over limestone cliffs with sweeping views of the Indian Ocean 100 metres below, on the day of my class I awoke early for my 5am session led by Alila Villas Uluwatu’s resident yogi, Nyoman Warta. Nyoman is a Balinese native who has devoted his life to developing clarity through intuitive movement, breathing and sense of touch, areas of holistic practice that the Balinese believe are imperative for achieving true and lasting physical, spiritual and emotional healing.
Beginning our practice with a sequence of sun salutations as we watched the sun rise in the East, the ocean quiet, I was transported to a meditative state of stillness within as we practiced the sequence time and time again. As our sun salutations concluded, we moved into our Aerial Yoga Practise.
Supported by a silk hammock attached to the beams of the Sunset Cabana, we swung our way through a series of postures, flips and in-air sequences. Terrified at first, I soon became acquainted with the upside down-ness of the practice. Thanks to my incredible yoga teacher, I felt supported and safe throughout, even if it did take lots of reassuring that it is almost impossible to fall out of the hammock.
Acting like a swing or small trapeze, as the body hangs freely the spine is decompressed and the muscles and joints strengthened. More internal benefits include the stimulation of the circulatory, respiratory and digestive symptoms that are improved through increased blood circulation throughout the body. During the class, I was way too busy attempting to perfect postures to even notice the intense physical workout that Aerial Yoga truly is, but needless to say I felt it within every muscle in my body for days after.
If you love healthy travel and trying out new experiences that challenge both your body and mind, Aerial Yoga at Alila Villas Uluwatu should be high on your to-do list.
Alila Villas Uluwatu costs from USD 965 (+21% tax and service charge) per villa per night
Aerial yoga at Alila Villas Uluwatu costs from IDR 925,000 (+21% tax and service charge) per person
We flew to Bali on Cathay Pacific.
Cathay Pacific flies daily between London and Bali and four times weekly between Manchester and Bali. To book flights visit cathaypacific.co.uk
Prices start from:
London – Bali economy = from £819
London – Bali Business = from £3,619
Manchester – Bali Economy = from £789
Manchester – Bali Business = from £3,589
*All flights are correct at time of publication
Words by Zsa Zsa Vella