WHERE THE JUNGLE MEETS THE SEA | Samantha Wills

I am lucky enough to travel a lot for my job, sometimes so much it feels like my life is spent on a plane. And probably for that reason, I wanted to check out for a bit – and that in my opinion require going somewhere far away…Not always in distance, by far away from your normal existence. My Soul Cycle Instructor and friend, Mantas Zvinas told me about a company he was apart of starting; SurfYogaBeer – Fitness Retreats Worldwide was doing a group trip to where the jungle meets the sea… Nosara Beach, Costa Rica. I booked my plane ticket that day. 

SurfYogaBeer is my ideal mix of ocean time (learning to surf was on my bucket list going into this trip), adventure, fitness & self reflection & sociability of cocktails & local dining with other people in the group. 

I wanted to travel somewhere where my mind was inspired creatively, but more so was able to check out of work mode & forward planning, and into ’now mode’ and doing things both outside my comfort zone & that I had never done before.  As I type this from my apartment in NYC having returned from paradise last night, I can feel my tan fading already, but feeling refreshed & clear of mind in a way I have not felt before. 

The retreat was five days, in bohemian style accommodation that required no more than a backpack, a bikini, sunscreen & mosquito spray! I caught more waves then I wiped out on, I hiked in the jungle & I climbed a waterfall. I kayaked down a jungle river that had alligators in it! I practiced yoga, I saw the sun set through beautiful storm clouds from the middle of the ocean. I ate local cuisine & drank too many delicious cocktails (Malibu Rum is alive & well in Costa Rica! My dream!) I had the best massage of my life (At Bohdi Tree if you are ever in Nosara!), I drank $1 coconuts, I made many new friends, I heard a lot of their stories, and I saw that everyone is dealing with their own sh*t. Whether their reasoning for being at this retreat was the same as mine or not, what I know it allowed everyone to do, was step outside their day to day life & get perspective. And I think that is one of the most powerful things you can do for yourself. 

Biggest thank you to the incredible people I met on this adventure, and special thanks to Mantas & the SYB crew for everything you guys do. 

Sometimes to see things clearer, you have to go off the trail a little. - SWx

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