POST UPDATED FOR 2018
Welcome to 2018 friends. If, like me, you’re ready to slip into something a little healthier this year, then take a look at these 10 healthy weekend breaks from around the UK. I’ve hand-plucked them from a heap load of detox retreats online because I think they’ve definitely got the muscle to get us (me) back in shape. So pack your wholemeal flip-flops, snap your chat to ‘laters’ and go nurture yourself – I’ll meet you in the steam room.
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1. RURAL YOGA WEEKEND,YORKSHIRE
COST: £295PP | FRIDAY – SUNDAY
Overlooking the North Yorkshire Moors National Park, The Orange Tree Relaxation Centre and B&B has plenty to woo your soul. You stay in farmhouse-style accommodation (with 8 clean, comfortable and quiet rooms) from Fri evening – Sun afternoon, your days are then filled with meditation, yoga, free use of the jacuzzi and sauna, and the chance to unwind further with therapeutic treatments of your choice. Meals come home-cooked and vegetarian, served with the other guests – like-minded spirits – in a beautiful dining room overlooking the moors.
Included: Breakfast, vegetarian lunch and dinner; 2 nights accommodation; yoga and meditation instruction; full use of sauna and jacuzzi
Discover more: The Orange Tree
2. LUXURY SPA WEEKEND, CORNWALL
COST: FROM £550PP | 3 OR 4 NIGHTS
The Scarlet Hotel in Cornwall takes luxury spa to a whole new drool-fest level. Classing itself as an ‘environmentally sensitive’ hotel, it’s won many gongs for its sustainable luxury. Very well-deserved they are, too. Five-stars doesn’t even cut it when you see the curved wooden walls and the floor-to-ceiling windows revealing gobsmacking views of the beach.
Inside, 37 rooms – all with sea-views – Michelin-starred food, and an Ayurvedic-inspired spa awaits. Speaking of which: tented treatment rooms, cliff-top hot tub, retreat terrace, morning and evening yoga classes, indoor and outdoor pool, plus your own mysteriously-titled, totally bespoke ‘Scarlet Journey’ – it’s all yours to enjoy on a 3 or 4 night spa break. Go on, blow the budget – The Scarlet is worth it.
Includes: B&B; Dinner on 2 nights; full use of spa; 4hr tailored Scarlet Journey programme; relaxation tips to take home.
3. WILD SWIMMING WEEKEND, WALES
COST: £425 (TWIN ROOM, SHARED) | FRID – SUN
Get set to make a big splash into healthy living with this yoga and wild swimming weekend with The Zest Life Retreats. Your base? Plas Cadnant, a stylish, secluded country house on the Isle of Anglesey. From here, you’ll head out to some of North Wales’ most beautiful wild swimming locations where you’ll dive into the crisp, clear waters under the expert supervision of experienced wild swimmers. All levels of ability are welcome and all equipment is provided.
Afterwards, warm up with a herbal tea and wholesome cake, whilst listening to waves lapping against the shore before heading back to the 21-acres of private parkland that you can call home for the weekend. Alongside the swimming, there are a variety of yoga sessions, ranging from more challenging sessions in the morning to more relaxing, meditative sessions in the evening. And, of course, every day is filled with healthy, detoxing, delicious meals.
Includes: 2 nights’ luxury accommodation with shared bathroom; twice daily yoga and meditation instruction; 2 guided wild swims; wholesome breakfast, nutritious lunch and vegetarian dinner. Unlimited fruit, tea, coffee, and fruit water.
Discover more: The Zest Life
4. SUGAR DETOX RETREAT, SOMERSET
COST: £1700 (TWIN ROOM PP) | MON – FRID
If you’re ready to say ‘goodbye’ to the white stuff forever, then this 5-day women-only retreat will hit your sweet spot. Your detox is held in Somerset in a beautiful wooden house, surrounded by 3 acres of farmland. Each day comes with a carefully-structured programme of activities, including group behaviour, NLP workshops, hypnotherapy and cookery. There’s also a complimentary body treatment and plenty of time for R&R or swimming in the on-site pool.
When you leave the Sugar Detox Retreat you go home armed with a 4 Week At Home Programme, this supports you so you can carefully re-introduce natural sugars back into your diet in a controlled and planned way. You even get a a one hour follow up call to help you manage your re-introduction in the real world.
Includes: pre- and post-detox support; between 4- 6 hours activities per day, group behaviour, hypnotherapy and cookery workshop, 1 complimentary body treatment; ensuite accommodation with power shower or bath, luxury bedding, bath robes and towels, all meals and snacks and drinks prepared to your dietary requirements.
Discover more: The Body Retreat
5. ECO-TREEHOUSE WEEKEND, WALES
COST: £379 (FOR TWO PEOPLE) | 2 NIGHTS.
EXTRA NIGHT FREE IF YOU ARRIVE ON SUNDAY.
This slice of high-living heaven comes to you from Living-Room – a remote self-catering forested retreat where you take up a weekend’s residence in one of six state-of-the-art eco-pod style treehouses, 30 feet up in the tree canopy. Each treehouse blends beautifully into the thick branches of the trees; as charming and quaint as a Hobbit’s home with a rope bridge, spiral wooden staircase and striped-branches balustrade to complete the picture.
Come here and forget the world you know: there’s no electricity so light is au natural – lanterns, tea lights, and lamps. As for comfort, be in no doubt, you won’t find finer: luxurious double beds, wood burners, and thick insulation mean escaping to Living-Room all year round is possible. Who needs yoga classes when there are babbling streams nearby and whirling red kites overhead? Let nature be your teacher.
Includes: treehouse accommodation; fully-equipped kitchen; logs for wood burner; eco hair and body wash; all linen.
Discover more: Living Room
6. SOCIAL MEDIA DETOX WEEKEND, SUSSEX
COST: £299 (FOR 1 PERSON) | FRI – SUN
Man, I love social media. But it is draining staying up-to-date with all of my accounts. Feel the same? Then say ‘howdy’ to Gayles, a small retreat centre on the South Downs, fifteen miles from Brighton. Set in ten acres of tranquil countryside, this weekend escape is about re-discovering clarity and focus in your thoughts, getting a personal perspective on your digital life, reconnecting with real human beings (not virtual ones), and embracing the power of single-tasking once more.
You stay in a comfortable dormitory, eat healthy, vegetarian food, and enjoy a suite of guided relaxation classes to restore your inner harmony, including 2 daily yoga sessions and daily meditation sessions. Your morning yoga practice and meditation is dedicated to boosting your metabolism and immune system. In the afternoon, your practice is about restoring the bliss of your body and mind. You’ll also join mindful walks, where the only twitter will be that of the birds.
Includes: 2 daily yoga classes, daily meditation sessions, mindful walks, 3 vegetarian meals daily, accommodation in a shared dormitory.
Discover more: Social Media Detox
7. GYPSY CARAVAN WEEKEND, SCOTTISH BORDERS
COST: FROM £270 (2 PEOPLE) | FRI – SUN
Recharge, rejuvenate, restore – for that, there’s this: Roulotte Retreat. It’s an über-romantic Scottish escape where home is a exquisite Romany caravan (known as a roulotte in France) and your neighbours are the sounds, smells and earthly pleasures of a 3-acre wild meadow near the Eildon Hills. Choose from six French roulottes and one Dutch roulotte, individually named with their own quirks and character and unique interiors.
In Rosa Bella you’re bedazzled by deep jewel colours reminiscent of the Orient Express. Step inside Karlotta and seduction comes with exotic Moroccan vibes. Whilst Gitana enchants her guests with hidden fairies, butterflies and leaping hares – and if that’s not temptation enough, this saucy mistress also boasts a Japanese-style eco hot tub if you’d like to bubble cares away under the stars. There’s even the choice of adding yoga classes, massage and beauty treatments to your weekend break.
Includes: All roulottes come with kitchen with Baby Belling cooker, fridge, kettle, toaster and kitchen utensils; showers, toilets and washroom facilities; all bed linen and towels provided; wood burning stoves; electric sockets; outside garden furniture.
Discover more: Roulotte Retreat
8. SURF & YOGA RETREAT WEEKEND, CORNWALL
COST: £390 (SHARED TWIN/DOUBLE ROOM) | 2 NIGHTS
Founded by Surf Sistas, which runs women-only surf holidays in the UK and abroad, this ingenious weekend escape – called All The Good Things – mixes yoga and surf with wild swimming, foraging, Polaroid photography, hiking and wine tasting. On arrival you’re loaned a Polaroid camera for the weekend and have to pick a word from a hat. Under the expert guidance of professional photographer, Kate Czuczman, you’re encouraged to capture each word you picked in a relevant shot. The hilarious, brilliant and inspired results are displayed in your base for the weekend: a beautiful contemporary two-storey eco-lodge at The Park in Mawgan Porth.
It’s here you bond with the rest of your soul-seeking companions and enjoy blissfully good food. On the Saturday night your dinner is made and delivered by local food and wine expert Debbie Warner, formerly a sommelier at Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall. Yoga comes in the mornings and early evenings, taught by the retreat’s co-host, Hayley Johns, and surf’s up on Saturday morning, followed by beach foraging in the afternoon. Sunday it’s back to the beach for swimming or more surfing before you head home laden with good things: new friends, inner calm, and a salt-kissed soul.
Includes: healthy wholesome breakfasts and evening meals; wine-tasting evening with a sommelier from Jamie Oliver’s local Fifteen restaurant; 4 or 5 yoga classes; surf lesson; foraging afternoon; Beach & Wild polaroid photography project; beach hikes and wild swims (wetsuits provided).
Discover more: Surf Sistas
9. LET GO OF LOSS (LONG) WEEKEND, SOMERSET AND SCOTLAND
COST: £2650 PP WITH A COMPANION | 5 NIGHTS/6 DAYS
For those who’ve experienced loss, The Bridge is a 5-night healing retreat that aims to heal your hurts, help you let go of traumas, and give you a fresh new perspective on life. Indeed, the idea behind the weekend is to help you cross a metaphorical ‘bridge’, so you’ll leave the past behind you and step into a positive future. Held a few times a year in Somerset (amongst 42 acres of ancient woodland) and in Scotland (on the breath-taking shores of Loch Lomond), the Bridge is run by co-founders and exceptionally-qualified life coaches and healing experts, Donna Lancaster and Gabi Krueger.
They use therapeutic techniques, including movement and music, alongside group work and personal reflection and enquiry to help you heal and transform. For both locations, you stay in beautiful farmhouse accommodation with all the trappings of a boutique hotel. As you’d expect, first-class recovery comes with a first-class price tag – but this is 5 days of high-intensity healing and saves you splashing out on years of therapy.
Includes: Food; accommodation; refreshments; course materials; all individual and group sessions.
Discover more: The Bridge
10. EXERCISE WEEKEND, KENT
COST: £595PP (SINGLE OCCUPANCY) | FRI – SUN
Get set to smash your exercise goals with Green Farm Fitness’s high-energy exercise weekend. Your personal trainer for this 2-day sweat-fest is one of London’s top fitness gurus, Kathryn Freeland. She’s sculpted the bods of celebrities and royalty and now she’s all yours for a packed weekend programme of workouts and nutrition – tailored to your goals and fitness level.
On arrival, you get a personal consultation with Kathryn, covering your diet and exercise regime. The rest of the weekend is spent mostly outdoors training in specially-created woodland clearings and exercise stations. You can do as much or as little as you like – with the options of walks, cycles, and additional runs on top of the yoga, Pilates, and relaxation – and you stay in a handsome 15th century farmhouse.
Includes: private consultation with Kathryn; daily circuit training, yoga, Pilates style and relaxation group sessions; bikes, runs and walks; use of the eco hot tub, sauna and plunge pool; home-cooked meals; 2 week follow-up phone consultation.
Discover more: Green Farm Fitness