Life-changing experiences to start your new year

Nov 16, 2017

Plan your vacations in 2018 around experiences that aim to enliven the mind, body and soul.

Bliss out at a holistic retreat in Indonesia

como shambhala estate yoga class bali

The best-selling book Eat, Pray, Love riffs off Bali’s reputation as a place for soul searching and spiritual awakening. Enter Como Shambhala Estate (above), a haven of wellness focused on relaxing and de-stressing. To set guests up for a more peaceful and productive 2018, Shambala has organised yoga and pilates classes inspired by the New Year, with themes including gratitude, joy, peace, celebration, family and friends. Special consultations with resident experts will help guests create realistic and meaningful goals for 2018.

SEE ALSO: What it’s like to find zen at a meditation class in a Kyoto temple 

Learn about indigenous culture in Australia

yolngu women weaving in arnhem land

Australian indigenous tourism operator Lirrwi Tourism’s new tour takes females through Arnhem Land in the Northern Territory to see how women of the Yolngu (indigenous people of North-east Arnhem Land) live. The tour is named Gay’Wu, meaning dilly bag – an important cultural symbol both for its practicality in carrying bush foods and medicines, and for its spiritual significance as a carrier of knowledge. On this five-day tour, participants will be immersed in indigenous culture, connecting with Yolngu women and learning about traditions and their links to the earth. There are five departures in 2018.

Find happiness in Bhutan

tiger's nest monastery bhutan

A quest for happiness should start with a visit to Bhutan, a country with an official Gross National Happiness index. Jacada Travel’s nine-day Cultural Bhutan tour explores the cultures and traditions of the only surviving Himalayan Buddhist nation. Visit ancient dzong (Bhutanese forts), temples and museums in the capital Thimphu, take part in a village festival and hike up to the spectacular Tiger’s Nest Monastery (above), all the while imbibing one of the world’s most serene destinations.