The Best Wellness Retreats in the UK

Horse riders at Dunkery Beacon in Exmoor National Park
Horse riders at Dunkery Beacon in Exmoor National Park | © Stephen Dorey / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Chloe Byrne
10 August 2020

Everyone dreams of the chance to take a break, to hole up somewhere in the countryside and focus on your health and happiness. A stay in one of the best wellness retreats in the the UK can make that dream a reality, encouraging you to embrace nature and find inner peace through yoga sessions, horseback rides or surf lessons.

14-day, 200-hour yoga teacher training in Framlingham

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Embark on this 15-day training course and emerge a fully qualified yoga teacher, ready to share what you have learnt with other aspiring yogis. Led by experienced holistic practitioners Keeley and Tina, you will be taken on an enlightening journey: starting with the origins and philosophy of yoga, going into detail about skeletal functions and the human anatomy, and finishing with the art of teaching. Your encouraging teachers will look at both the hatha and nidra styles of yoga while providing hands-on tutelage. All of this will take place in their peaceful clinic in the heart of the Suffolk countryside, with 14 nights’ shared accommodation included at a local house.

3-day boutique wellness, spa and yoga retreat with Espa treatment in the Kent countryside

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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Steal away to this tranquil retreat in the Kent countryside, where you’ll wake up to birdsong in one of the farmhouse’s elegant rooms. You can spend your days reclining in the outdoor hot tub, hiking through ancient woodland or getting lost in a book next to the warm glow of a log fire. Find peace in the daily yoga classes, taking place in a studio that looks out onto wind-tousled willow trees, and be sure to book in an indulgent massage at the on-site spa. You are also treated to nutritious homegrown food, consisting of freshly laid eggs, bread that’s baked daily and vegetables from the gardens.

3-day camping yoga and surf adventure in Devon

Sports Center, Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Embrace the coastal winds, crashing waves and emerald hills on this adventurous weekend in North Devon. Sleeping in bunting-draped bell tents, each cosily furnished with airbeds, towels and rugs, you will wake up to an energising morning yoga session and delectable vegan breakfast cooked by a private chef. Then it will be time to venture down to the beach where you can hit the surf, go for a swim or relax on the golden sands. Fill your afternoons with hikes along the rugged cliffs or trying your hand at the ayurvedic cooking lesson, before unwinding with drinks and a dahl curry next to the fire.

3-day Simply Yoga holiday in York

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Take the time to recharge at this secluded yoga retreat. Suitable for all skill levels, there are three daily yoga classes, looking at different styles such as meditative yoga nidra, slow-paced yin yoga and the body-strengthening vinyasa yoga. Between these revitalising sessions you will get the chance to explore the bucolic surroundings on an afternoon walk, meet fellow guests over a game of snooker, or peruse the memorabilia gallery of your accommodation, Deighton Lodge. Plant-based meals such as stuffed butternut squash are served in the communal dining room, but if you’re still feeling peckish you can help yourself to snacks in the kitchen.

3-day Be Radiant hatha and kundalini yoga holiday in Kent

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Retreat to a nature-wrapped estate in east Kent to fill your days with yoga classes, candlelit meditation and soaks in the wood-fired hot tub. When you aren’t learning the art of kundalini, nidra or chakra yoga in the honey-hued studio, you’ll be wandering around the gorgeous gardens, exploring the nearby meadows and lakes on a group walk, or hitting a ball about on the tennis courts. When night falls, rest up in the eight-bed dormitory – with curtain dividers and sheepskin rugs – or find further solitude in a private cottage with its own open plan kitchen-lounge.

4-day hot yoga retreat in the Scottish Highlands

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Surrounded by the Black Wood of Rannoch’s fairytale wilderness, this hot yoga retreat is an idyllic escape from the hectic world. Whether you’re new to yoga or can do the moves in your sleep, certified teacher Tanya will tailor the classes to your ability, guiding you through a sequence of yoga poses in a heated room. The toasty temperature helps to warm up your muscles for prime flexibility so you can stretch out joints and tendons while sweating away the toxins in a rejuvenating process. In your free time, go for a stroll through the ancient woodland and look out for its wealth of wildlife. Private or shared rooms are available.

4-day horse-riding holiday in Exmoor National Park

Sports Center
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Courtesy of BookHorseRidingHolidays
Explore rolling moors and misty woodland on horseback during this four-day retreat. Based in a 15th-century farmhouse in Exmoor National Park, you will be taken on a series of half-day rides and taught skills such as free schooling in the rider workshops. Each day you will ride on different terrain: trotting through rocky streams, climbing steep bridleways and cantering across the hilltops. Along the way you will stop for ice cream breaks and hopefully spot some shaggy Exmoor ponies. Afternoons at the house are a chilled affair – you can walk to the nearby village for pub grub or catch a bird flying display during summer months, then crash in one of the charming private rooms.

4-day surf holiday and sunset barbecue in Newquay, Cornwall

Sports Center
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Courtesy of BookSurfCamps
Catch some Cornish waves, devour a hearty barbecue and soak up the sun at this oceanfront lodge just steps from Fistral Beach. Wake to the sound of lapping waves and tuck into a leisurely breakfast of pastries, fresh fruit or cereal before heading down to dig your feet in the sand. Three of the four days feature a 2-hour surf lesson – tailored to the tide to ensure the best conditions to learn in. There is also plenty of free time to catch live music or grab a drink in Newquay. Shared dorms and private rooms are available.

5-day inner child healing, juice detox and yoga retreat in Sussex

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Hide away in nature and detox your mind, body and soul at this picturesque retreat. There are five daily classes to choose from, ranging from yoga and fitness to one-to-one hypnotherapy sessions and educational talks. Over the course of the experience you will be encouraged to confront past conflicts, disappointments and traumas and work towards healing your emotional wounds. You will also detoxify the physical body with electrolyte broths, fruit and vegetable juices and supplements. Take the time to stroll through the nearby bluebell woods before resting up in one of the eco-lodge treehouses, private shepherd huts or cosy budget-friendly rooms in the Grade II-listed farmhouse.

5-day yoga nidra meditation retreat for wilderness and wildlife lovers on the Isle of Mull

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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
This restful meditation retreat offers a chance to breathe in the fresh air and disconnect from the buzz of life. Sequestered away on a quiet hillside on the Isle of Mull, you can easily slip on hiking boots, grab some binoculars and head out to explore the wilderness on your doorstep – looking out for the otters, deer and birds that call the area home. Your experienced instructor will also teach you a series of yoga nidra meditation practices throughout the week, focusing on breathing techniques and body movements. Each day concludes with a mid-evening session, so you can fall asleep loose-limbed and relaxed in your private ensuite room.

5-day private yoga and meditation midweek retreat in the Lake District

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
Sitting in acres of woodland and green-streaked pastures, this retreat is a haven for spiritual experiences. Accommodation is offered in the form of four renovated 17th-century cottages – each decked out with natural materials such as traditional oak beams and stone bathrooms. Mornings are a mix of restorative yoga and meditation, taught in a yurt where you can hear the soothing sounds of a nearby babbling brook, while the rest of the day is filled with stomach-rumbling brunches, holistic massages and walks through the countryside.

Private Sacred Heart couples weekend retreat in the Lake District

Yoga Studio
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Courtesy of BookYogaRetreats
A fusion of romance and relaxation, this weekend retreat encourages deep connection in a private setting. Restorative morning yoga and guided meditation take place every day, giving you an opportunity to get in touch with your body and mind, while on Sunday a holistic healing massage session for couples will knead away any lingering tension. In your spare time, you can stroll over to Ambleside’s popular Drunken Duck Inn to sip on local brews, go mountain biking in Grizedale forest, or stretch your legs collecting wood for an evening campfire. Nights are also a pleasure in the private bubble of your own barn cottage.
These recommendations were updated on August 10, 2020 to keep your travel plans fresh.

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