INDONESIA IS AUSTRALIA’S favourite holiday destination for a good reason. Home to expansive natural reserves, ancient temples, delicious food and a culture of welcoming local hospitality, it’s an otherworldly getaway less than a seven hours flight from Sydney. For wellness lovers, meanwhile, Indonesia is home to some of the best retreats in the world. Drawing from thousands of years of mindful, spiritual practice and Eastern medicine, it’s the perfect place to strengthen your mind, body and soul.
A connection to nature, access to traditional healing techniques and architecturally-designed accommodation options are just some of the reasons to book yourself a stay. Feeling ready for a New Year’s reset? From Bali to Sumba, we’ve selected a list of some of the best places to book into, and drop out at.
The Best Retreats In Indonesia
Fancy staying in a luxury tree house and being immersed in the lush embrace of an Indonesian canopy? Nirjhara makes that dream a reality. Located in the revered Tanah Lot district of Bali, you can choose from residing amongst the trees, or a range of one to two-bedroom villas with a glorious combination of river, pool and jungle experiences.
After settling in, cap off a day at the Yoga Shala or a holistic spa treatment at the retreat, with dinner at Ambu, Nirjhara’s world-class restaurant (open for breakfast, lunch and dinner) that features a delicious menu of French, Greek and Indonesian cuisine, along with sublime vistas of rice fields, a cascading waterfall and a lush, tropical forest. How could you feel anything but relaxed?
In the Sanskrit epic The Mahabharata, Adiwana Svarga Loka is described as a heavenly paradise for the Gods, making its namesake Indonesian resort fittingly titled.
Located in Ubud, Bali, the resort’s rejuvenating retreats offer activities like melukat (traditional cleansing) sessions, yoga and meditation classes and customised aura readings with a Balinese healer. We recommend an inclusive package like the Svarga Balinese Healing Experience, which includes the above and is perfect for anyone looking to ground their wellness journey in spiritual practice.
If you’re keen on exploring the area, local destination experiences also include Ubud art markets, the Monkey Forest, and Gunung Kawi, which is known as Bali’s very own ‘Valley of the Kings’.
Located in the Balinese resort town of Canggu, Desa Seni is an eco-resort and yoga school that offers wellness programs that blend Western and Eastern therapies. It’s a great retreat option for those wanting to accelerate their Yogic practice with both restorative yoga and mindfulness retreats available for every level of experience.
In terms of accommodation, you’re given choices between shared, deluxe or suite houses, as well as village cabins, houses and homes. And when dining, you can trust that the ingredients on the balanced, Asian-fusion menu are fresh, considering that 80 percent of Desa Seni’s produce is grown on-site.
At NIHI Sumba, guests are invited to choose from 27 uniquely designed villas that offer magnificent views of the Indian Ocean and Nihiwatu Beach. While it comes with an appropriately luxury price tag, and an additional flight out of Bali to Sumba Island, the getaway is particularly enjoyed by couples looking for a more secluded escape.
After splashing around with horses on the beach–which we couldn’t recommend more highly–enjoy the hotel’s open-air, feet-in-the-sand restaurant, Ombak, which uses fresh ingredients from their on-site organic garden to evoke local flavours, or venture into a unique omakase experience with a seven-course meal at Japanese-style restaurant Kaboku. It’s the epitome of “wild wellness”.
Tucked away in Bali’s Nusa Dua hills, Revivo is easily one of Indonesia’s most impressive yoga and wellness retreats. Sitting on three hectares of teak tree forest, the resort has 22 Balinese-style suites and villas to choose from, all of which feature a gorgeous open-plan bedroom with either a private garden, courtyard or pool.
Revivo’s signature retreats on offer are categorised into detox (centred around the release of self-limiting habits), mind training (mindful practices), and longevity (a focus on rejuvenation), and tailor-made pre-arrival to suit your individual wellness needs. Ideal for the person looking to unwind and reset.
Driven by the 6000-year-old principles of Ayurveda, Sukhavati is a luxury Indonesian retreat that brings a restorative dimension to the practice of wellness. Based in Bali, it offers a range of specialised programs that address particular health concerns (insomnia, weight loss, arthritis, cardiovascular disease) alongside meditation and yoga.
In terms of accommodation, the choice is vast with eight villa options to choose from, each furnished with a king-size bed and a private breakfast balcony, as well as gorgeous marble floors, thatched roofs and stellar views of the lush green estate.