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A freediver ferried us on a speedboat around the bay, stopping to show us secluded caves where we could swim, eventually pulling up to a restaurant on the shore of the tiny car-free island of Ilovik. On the way back, our daughter slept by the engine of the boat in a nest of towels. And we did lie motionless on sunloungers with local aloe vera pulp smeared across our sunburned shoulders in the bloated afternoon sun.

We braced once more on the tiny plane, our teeth rattling as we insisted, dry-mouthed, that the wings were meant to wobble like that. At home it took some time to rejoin our old commuting routines, our school runs, our doom.


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Some time to recover from the undiluted joy of a holiday like this, one that left us feeling… better. British Airways and Croatian Airlines fly to Zagreb.

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Communal bathhouses were a common feature of Andalusian towns under Moorish rule. The Califa Hamam will combine a Roman-inspired caldarium, tepidarium and a frigidarium hot, warm and cold baths with a Moroccan steam room, massage room and a domed atrium where mint tea will be served.


  • Christmas Yoga Retreat in Fuerteventura, Canary Islands 21st – 28th December.
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  • Hotel and hamam packages will be available for a cosseting break. Prices for the hamam have yet to be released, califavejer. People have been coming to take the waters at Bad Ragaz for almost years, ever since Benedictine monks first discovered the healing properties of the warm spring water. The Tamina Therme is a contemporary public bathhouse which opened in the town nine years ago.

    Forget any negative notions of municipal baths: this place is stunning, with soaring ceilings, marble floors and mountain views. The entry price gives you access to various indoor and outdoor pools, whirlpools, steam baths and saunas and, for an additional fee, you can book treatments such as Haki — a relaxing cross between massage and yoga. Following a series of successful pop-up retreats in the Algarve, the British founders Ed and Sofie Templeton will set up shop in a rustic Iberian farmhouse on the outskirts of Lagos, a minute drive from Faro.

    This stretch of coastline is known for its great surf conditions for all abilities. Families are welcome and the company will launch some kid-friendly breaks later this year. It would be hard to conjure up a more enchanting setting for a retreat than the village of Ulpotha, surrounded by jungle in central Sri Lanka, with a lotus-strewn freshwater lake for swimming.

    Despite its location and rustic accommodation — off-grid wattle-and-daub huts — its reputation attracts burned-out travellers from all over the world. Retreats run for a fortnight at a time for six months of the year from November to March and June to August with each one being led by a different yoga teacher.

    The group tours depart in March and will give participants the chance to summit the peaks of Nevis, Antigua and St Kitts. It finishes with a breakfast party on the beach. Includes accommodation, based on two sharing, transfers and inter-island flights hikecaribbean. The White Isle has reinvented itself in recent years as a wellness destination, a canny move given that its original clubbing clientele have mostly grown up and are more interested in soaking in a hot tub than dancing on a podium.

    Packages include guided hikes or bike rides with a nature guide, foraging for medicinal wild herbs and access to spa, yoga and wellness classes. Mindfulness and environmental sustainability are the cornerstones of the Sharpham Trust, an educational charity based just outside Totnes in Devon. The days include guided meditations, sensory exercises and periods of silence, with evenings around the campfire. An estate in Tuscany, surrounded by lavender fields, vineyards and orchards is the new location for luxury retreat company in:spa.

    The family-run Locanda Cugnanello, which is 20 miles from Siena, features a luxurious villa alongside an year-old farmhouse that blends rustic style with modern comforts. There are 12 comfortable guestrooms, a saltwater pool, outdoor sofas and a large hammock. Its rural location offers guests a peaceful retreat in which to detox and de-stress, with a combination of yoga and fitness classes, hikes, spa treatments and nutritional consultations.

    Also, new for this year, in:spa is offering guests the chance to sign up for a pre-retreat consultation with a health screening company who will check blood sugar, cardiovascular function and cholesterol levels and give recommendations on ways to improve health during the retreat.

    Retreat dates are May and September. Ten days before my fitness bootcamp in Marbella, a friend came over and glanced at my fitness schedule, pinned to the fridge. Seven days before I was due to meet my fitness fate, my year-old son also looked at the schedule. He promptly telephoned his older brother, who then rang me. Are you sure about all this? My sons expressing concern for their unfit mother. I was touched. And secretly alarmed.

    2. Califa Hamam, Vejer de la Frontera, Spain

    From Thursday afternoon until Sunday lunchtime, a new world awaited: of beach runs and burpees, fasted HIIT and tabatas, circuits and squat jumps. From there, we adapt the training to the individual. In case he was lying, and because I dreaded the public humiliation more than the heart attack, I did some emergency pre-training: two jogs with the dog, one on my own, and two cycling and running sessions in a gym.

    And I did. And let me tell you, it was wonderful.

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    It really was. I did one form of high-intensity exercise after another, on the beach, on tarmac, in the gym. Just as Sisyphus pushed the rock up the mountain, so James and Claire pushed me on, and on. This translates as, skip breakfast, then do high intensity interval training and metabolic conditioning. I jumped through the rungs of a ladder on the sand, like footballers do; did star jumps and wished I had a pelvic floor; I saw, and swung, my first ever kettle bell, thrusting my hips outwards in what looked like a misguided mating call. I picked up two ropes thick enough to moor a tanker and tried, and failed, to wiggle them up and down.

    By Sunday morning, they were, if not ribbons in my hands, at least airborne. Two boxing sessions with James and I was hooked.

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    During the spin sessions, I slid off the saddle, swore volubly, sweated more, and felt like my legs were being ripped apart. Visit hotel website. We compared the lowest prices from 13 websites. We compared the lowest prices from 10 websites. Grand Hyatt Bali.

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    We compared the lowest prices from 9 websites. Grand Inna Kuta. Special Offer Family Package. This hotel won't win any What a fantastic service, full use of the hotel service, room was very clean and comfotable, pool was lovely, staff very We compared the lowest prices from 8 websites. The Mansion Bali. We compared the lowest prices from 7 websites. The Anvaya Beach Resort Bali. We compared the lowest prices from 11 websites. Novotel Bali Ngurah Rai Airport. I was very happy with the accommodations.

    The executive room was as big as it needed to be. The sheets were heaven to sleep on. The entire experience was much nicer than I I continue the rebook this hotel as a bookend to my trips to Bali. Often arriving late Kuta Seaview Boutique Resort. Clean rooms, smiling and helpful staff.

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    We will come back again with our family especially for the food. You can hire a scooter just outside the hotel entrance and can visit all the The Kayon Resort by Pramana. Komaneka at Rasa Sayang. Mercure Bali Legian. Our selection last minute spa hotels is second to none. Going, going, gone! For the ultimate last minute spa experiences, explore our range of last minute spa day and break package deals ending soon.

    These offers won't hang around so hurry! Book your last minute spa day or spa break now or miss out! Read our updated privacy policy for more about what we do with your data, as well as your rights and choices. Reject personalised marketing. Looking for a last minute spa escape? This Friday.