September is National Yoga Month, and whether you’re a seasoned yogi or a total newbie, we’ve found stunning spots in New England — from yoga retreats to seaside resorts that offer yoga classes — where folks of all levels can get their downward dog on.
BEAT THE RETREAT
Spread over a stunning 150-acre swath in the Berkshires, Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health is a hub of holistic health and a go-to resort for all yogis. If you’re looking for guidance, specific education and a structured schedule, sign up for one of their themed programs — there are hundreds throughout the year. For example, you might enroll in “Quiet Your Inner Critic and Calm Your Anxious Mind” Sept. 21-23, “Five Days to Get Om Schooled: A Fall Yoga Immersion,” Sept. 17-21, or “Painting and Yoga in the Berkshires” Sept. 30-Oct. 5.
Or, if you’re just looking to unwind and do your own thing, there’s the make-it-want-you-want “Kripalu R&R” option. Here you might take a gentle yoga class — or not. Just sit back and enjoy the view. Or practice solo by the lakefront beach, curl up with a book, sketch, take a guided group hike, or walk alone. Stay as long as you want.
With either option, an array of whole food meals are included, as is access to the fitness center, hiking trails, and sauna. Rates vary. 57 Interlaken Road, Stockbridge. 800-741-7353. kripalu.org
Treat yourself to a stay at Canyon Ranch Wellness Resort. A restored 1897 mansion on manicured grounds with a stunner of a spa and indoor and outdoor pools, the Berkshires resort offers a myriad of activities aside from yoga — Pilates, qi gong, stand-up paddleboarding, kayak, hiking, biking, rock climbing, meditation, tennis, skulling, archery and cooking classes among them. Check online for weekly classes. Meals — largely locally sourced, and organic — are included. The spa menu includes shiatsu massage, lemon verbena pedicure, and detoxifying seaweed mud wrap. Rates vary. 165 Kemble St., Lenox. 413-637-4400. www.canyonranch.com/lenox
Escape to the Canadian border at Sewall House Yoga Retreat, a quaint historic house/B&B in Island Falls, Maine. No prior experience necessary; classes are small. Screen-addicts, break free and unplug: phones aren’t allowed in the common areas, although you can use them in your room. Vegetarian meals are included. Wake for pre-breakfast meditation or yoga before tucking into vegetarian pancakes or handmade granola and breads, nut butters, jams and cheese. Aside from yoga, activities include hiking, biking, horseback riding, kayaking, canoeing, stand-up paddleboarding, plus free time for a massage, or reading. You might dine on sweet potato lasagna, homemade bread, farm fresh salad, and avocado ice cream before an evening Jacuzzi soak. Open through Columbus Day. Rates vary. 1027 Crystal Road, Island Falls, Maine, 888-235-2395, sewallhouse.com
RETREATING FROM THE RETREAT
If you’re really just looking to get your child’s pose on before relaxing with wine on vacay, we’ve got you.
Topnotch Resort in Stowe, Vt., isn’t just for skiers. Take a private or group class at the on-site yoga studio, or try aqua yoga, meditation, Pilates or tai chi, guided walks, among other offerings. Hike or bike nearby woodland trails. Take a post-yoga trip to the dreamy spa complete with solarium, indoor hot tub with cascading waterfall, couple’s massage suite with fireplace, and more. Grab a craft beer and dine on-site at The Roost, offering meat-lovers and vegetarian options. Eat breakfast at Flannel for a mountain view with your veggie omelet. Rates vary. 4000 Mountain Road, Stowe, Vt. 800-451-8686. www.top
Greet the morning on the yoga deck at Twin Farms, an all-inclusive luxury inn in Barnard, Vt. Surrounded by Vermont-in-a-postcard woods, trails, and pond. Take a meditation class, practice yoga in the fitness center, soak in a traditional Japanese furo tub — a hot soaking pool with woodland view, or head to the spa for a heated blue stone massage. Hike or bike on-site trails, or just curl up by the fireplace with a book and glass of wine. Farm-to-table meals are included in the room rate, as is wine, beer, and spirits. Rates vary. 452 Royalton Turnpike, Barnard, Vt. 802-234-9999. www.twinfarms.com/spa.
You’ve heard of goat yoga? Try Goat Island Yoga. At Gurney’s Newport Resort & Marina on Goat Island in Newport, R.I., guests of the luxury resort enjoy complimentary weekend yoga overlooking Newport harbor. Swim in the indoor pool or practice poses in the fitness center before relaxing in the dry eucalyptus sauna, then zen out with a massage at the Seawater Spa with waterfront view. 1 Goat Island, Newport. 401-849-2600. www.gurneysresorts.comLauren Daley can be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @laurendaley1.