Welcome to El Convento Yoga Retreats and Holidays in Spain
We offer you
unforgettable yoga retreats & holidays in amazing nature of southern Spain
daily guided ashtanga yoga classes with experienced teachers
family yoga retreats & holidays for you and your children with childcare
holistic massage therapies
excellent organic vegetarian meals
authentic eco accommodation
meeting fantastic people and have fun
rejuvenating and relaxing time
Yoga classes are designed for beginners and also for more advanced students.
For detailed information visit:
Natural Beauty of El Convento Ashtanga Yoga Retreats and Holidays
Situated where the Mountains of Snow (Sierra de las Nieves) come together the monks founded El Convento. Goat herders and bee keepers the Barefoot Carmelites grew wheat and vegetables using extensive water irrigation which also powered a mill.
They purchased the water rights to a nearby natural mountain spring which still supplies all the water to El Convento Retreat today.
The fully forested lush green mountains ensure the air is pure, together with the spring water, one is invigorated and cleansed.
El Convento Retreat is an ideal haven to enjoy the fullness of summer of Southern Spain. The climate is hot and dry in the day and pleasant at night.
The cool nights together with the abundance of oxygen and complete isolation from air and ground traffic give excellent sleep. With zero light pollution the skies are ablaze with stars giving a magical touch to the natural beauty of the mountains.
At the monastery bathing in water straight from the mountains is possible in a large water tank near the church. The constantly fed pool ensures the water is always refreshing. Access is for everyone at El Convento and we are welcome at El Convento Retreat.
Wild boar, ibex dear, owls and birds of prey are all our neighbors as the reserve stretches as far as the eye can see in all directions. Snakes are not poisonous and never seen and mosquitoes rare.
The accommodation of Tipi's, yurts and huts give excellent access to the beauty around us within safe comfortable romantic homes.
The Heart of El Convento Yoga Retreats & Holidays
The heart of El Convento Retreat is the converted 16th century hermitage of San Juan in the walled grounds of the former Convent of the Barefoot Carmelites.
El Convento was the second built by the Barefoot Carmelites whose spiritual leader was Saint Teresa of Avila.St Teresa was allied with the leading Spanish mystic of all time, St John of the Cross. The monastery was running for over 250 years before being sold to the Vera family in the 1850’s.The family still own the monastery complete with church and hermitages apart from selling 1/5 to El Convento Retreat in 2003.
El Convento Retreats & Holidays is part of ’El Convento de Nuestra Senora de Las Nieves y Montanas’. Reached by a stunningly beautiful 9 km drive into the Nature Reserve of the Sierra de Las Nieves. The reserve lies 30 minutes drive southwest of Ronda through magnificent mountains and is 75 minutes to Malaga airport.
El Convento Yoga Retreat is surrounded by virgin forested mountains and has no neighbors outside El Convento for at least 5 km. The other owners of the now converted monastery are all Spanish, who visit at weekends and at olive harvesting. This large extended family are dedicated to their tradition of olive farming and ‘campo’ life. Eating from the land, hard working, relaxing and enjoying life; allegre (happiness) is all around. Friendly and robust the Vera family give an insight into traditional Andalucian country life. Communicate with smiles and Andalucian Spanish only!
Today El Convento Retreats & Holidays is available for authentic retreats accommodating groups up to 16 people. The main workshop space is the purpose built 110m2 covered roof atop of San Juan hermitage which affords panoramic views in all directions.
Individual visits are welcome subject to accommodation availability.
Chosen specifically for spiritual practice now and 400 years ago El Convento Retreat is ideal for yoga and meditation retreats. Available for all retreats which respect humanity and nature i.e. Pilate's, art, creative writing, walking...
Benefits Of Yoga
Yoga makes one feel whole, complete and part of the world. Yoga raises ones awareness and makes one more present in life. By practising asanas (physical postures) for as little as 90 minutes twice a week the effects physically mentality and emotionally are easily noticed.
The physical benefits are numerous and often documented. The Hindus believe the root of all illness is the digestive system. Ashtanga yoga increases dramatically the digestive fire and massages and stimulates all the internal digestive organs aiding function and optimising performance. The nervous system is balanced, the immune system is boosted, strength, stamina and flexibility are increased. As Danny Paradise often states "by practising we can approach old age and death with grace".
Yoga can help us stay well enabling us to live life to the full maintaining all our faculties.
When practising Ashtanga Yoga the ability to focus and concentrate the mind is developed by constantly bringing the awareness to the breath. The whole practice can be viewed as an opportunity to follow the breath and hence stay present in the moment. The more present we become the more joy we feel. The more lost in thought we are the more unsatisfied and ill at ease we become.
As we practice we try and become more aware of our bodies, breathing and feelings.
Our monkey mind jumps from thought to thought, we let thoughts go focusing on our breath again and again. We learn to be aware of our feelings and how they change throughout the practice.
In Ashtanga yoga we practice a familiar sequence of postures. This helps our thinking to disengage as the mind no longer needs to decide what to "do". Our free minds are trained instead to focus on the breathing and our practice becomes meditative. Random thoughts and repetitive scenarios lessen as the mind calms. When there is more space between thoughts we go from "doing" to "being", thinking to feeling.
"Meditation in movement" -this becomes a reality.
The asana practice helps the individual have access into meditation and can be an excellent gateway to spiritual practice. For those that find sitting meditation at present too challenging or boring, ashtanga yoga can satisfy the mind and at the same time teach one to be more present giving one happiness.
By focusing the mind, following the breath, and coming into the body and away from thinking, yoga creates a feeling of unity. The loneliness of separation dissolves and joy returns as we feel one with those around us.
Family Yoga Retreats & Holidays
Every season we run Family Yoga Retreats which are designed especially for children and their parents. Children have their own special activity sessions as well as being cared for, while parents are on their daily course.
Recommended age for children is 3 years upwards.
The Program for Children:
The activities (depending on their age), would include arts/crafts, adventure walks, singing and dance sessions, circus skills, organised games, swimming(in the water tank), as well as some fun yoga.
Read more about our Family Yoga Retreats & Holidays .