As most do in January, I spent a large proportion of time in front of the fire, a good stone heavier, planning my trips and adventures for the year. I get a tad obsessed with having things planned to look forward to. I may have a bit of a history of getting over excited with booking.com. That isn’t a plug btw, pretty sure they hate me with the amount I book and cancel. I blame them for free cancellation being so easy (just remember to cancel if plans change-trust me, it’s really annoying paying for a hotel room you aren’t staying in). I’m basically addicted to booking hotel rooms. God I’m cool.
I had a week pencilled in for March to nip away. Trouble is I had no-one to go away with. I hadn’t done it for some time, but I decided this would be a good opportunity to go somewhere on my own. The last time I did this was five years ago when I took a month off work to travel round South America (to find myself, obviously). But I wasn’t looking to find anything now, other than where I could get free wifi and a white Magnum. To be honest, I was feeling a bit weird about going away on my own. I hadn’t done it for so long and even though I loved it when I went travelling before, that was a different scenario. I wanted to test myself and feel uncomfortable then. Now, I just wanted to switch off, lie to myself that I’d have a digital detox and read an actual book. I was concerned I might feel bored this time around.
But my crippling addiction took hold, I caved into the adrenaline rush of booking my flights and accommodation, sold my soul to cheap Ryanair flights for the 1678th time after saying I’d never book with them again, sat back and felt pretty smug.
So I was looking for somewhere that I could have a healthy few days of sun. Yoga retreat was the goal. I know it’s a cliche, but thing is, I am. And when you’re in your thirties, the thought of a weeks binge drinking makes me just feel tired. Only problem I found with a lot of yoga retreats was that they were often organised on specific weeks and you had to commit to the whole week, fixed price (which is often pretty punchy) and the schedule always felt a bit rigid. Then I came across Paradis Plage which hit the nail on the head.
In Taghazout, Morocco, so only a 3-4 hour flight, it not only looked stunning, but was a surf/yoga hotel resort. Yoga was offered three times a day, so you could pick (on the day) when you wanted to go. You could do as much or as little as the mood took you. Surf lessons were also available daily (I wasn’t feeling quite gnarly enough this time), a full outdoor and indoor gym, spa, excursions and more. This was perfect! I didn’t want a schedule, just the option to do activities as and when I felt/could be bothered.
I couldn’t have felt more relaxed from the moment I arrived and was handed a welcome drink and shown to my enormous room overlooking the beach. The resort is incredible. On the first day, I woke early and headed straight to the yoga studio. Did I mention it’s located on the beachfront looking out to sea?
The rest of the day turned out to be perfect sunshine, which as an obsessive weather app checker was remarkable, as three days of rain had been promised. I’d love to say I embarked on many fulfilling activities, which in a sense I did, as I ordered a G & T round the pool. I needed the vitamin D, I’d forgotten what heat felt like, (if you also have-it’s really great btw).
I LOVE Morocco. This was my fourth visit. I’ve previously stayed in Marrakech a couple of times and Essaouira. Both of which are such an exciting explosion of culture, camels and colour. They should use that in their next campaign. They have perfectly adopted my penchant for painting things lovely bright colours. You will see a lot of blue and smell a lot of jasmine. Bloody delicious.
I finished the day with my fave Moroccan mint tea and a sunset stroll.
I then decided I should take advantage of an outdoor workout while the sun set. There were no excuses as they had exactly the same equipment that I use at my Strongman training in London. Tyres, ropes, weights. Damn it.
Day two and the heavens opened, which was ideal, because as a Brit abroad, one day of sunshine is, quite frankly, more than enough. FFS. Luckily I had a spa day planned. A two hour traditional Moroccan Hammam and orange blossom massage.
For those who haven’t had the pleasure of a Hammam yet, it basically involves stripping down to a pair of paper pants, sitting alone in a stone steam room and then having a really good scrub down, mud treatment and wash. It may sound terrifying but it feels amazing. There is no possible way you could feel cleaner. Sadly I don’t have photos of this.
The rest of the day was spent in a relaxed daze, so much so I didn’t notice that it continued to hammer down with rain most the afternoon. I mean, obviously I did notice, I’m British, it was all I talked about, but I was so zen and two glasses of red wine down, I simply didn’t care. I trotted off to another incredible yoga class, ate my body weight in pastries and slept for 12 hours. I was becoming so relaxed I was on the verge of being stressed out by it.
I’ve had a few people get in touch since I posted about this trip saying they’ve been considering a solo break but were hesitant. DO IT. I wrote that in capitals so I really meant it. I had a few moments of thinking I should make an effort and befriend people, then realised I really didn’t want or need to and was so happy to just do my yoga, relax by the pool and switch off. It’s great being the only one making decisions. Also, there were lots of solo travellers whilst there so if you were interested in befriending, there’s so many activities and excursions going on you’ll never feel alone.
If you want to book a stay with Paradis Plage, use the promo code AmyVoce2018 and you’ll receive a 10% discount if booked before 30/04/18. So there you go, no excuses, get your adventure booked and get excited!!