I am so excited and honored to announce Wildly Free to Be Panama Retreat 2017!
MAY 24-28, 2017
Learn more below and make your investment today:
Join Virginia native Becky Eschenroeder of Great Abiding Yoga, LLC for four days in paradise of surrendering to that blissful space of allowing life to wildly and beautifully unfold. Embraced by mother nature, nurtured by the sand, and held by the mighty ocean, we will shed the unnecessary layers that we so insist on carrying with us on a daily basis that prevent us from the act of simply being. Prepare to take a journey to one of the the most beautiful locations this planet has to offer as we explore our own internal landscapes.
We will explore the ineffable beaches of Red Frog Beach in Bocas del Toro Panama, with opportunities to flow freely on our mats while quieting our minds with stillness and meditation. The beach lodge provides endless adventure in the form of flying through the trees on a zip-line to drinking in the peaceful serenity and silence as we snorkel off the coast of Polo Beach. Remembering that we are human beings, not human doings, we will mindfully experience each and every day arriving one step closer to the ability of being....wildly free.
• Transportation between Bocas town and Palmar
• Welcome coconuts
• Bio༶degradable, organic, locally made soap, coconut oil sample
• Three meals with beverage per day (menu is customized to any dietary restrictions)
• Coffee & Tea
• Linens & Towels
• Water refills
• Beach chairs
• Tour to snorkeling beach or chocolate farm
• Management Fee
Becky Eschenroeder—a Richmond Virginia native—is an accomplished Yogi who is recognized as a 500 hour RYT, 200 hour E-RYT, RCYT and was voted as one of the top three yoga instructors by Richmond Magazine in 2015. Becky studied under Arlene Bjork and Grace Yoga Training Systems prior to Arlene’s passing in late 2009. Becky then obtained her 500 hour RYT through Om On Yoga under the guidance and wisdom of Jennifer Elliot. It is through this experience that she made the commitment to be a full-time yoga teacher. Becky made the conscious decision to dedicate her life to bringing her love of yoga, movement, and learning to all walks of life as evidenced by her deep commitment and involvement in such initiatives as Project Yoga Richmond.
With a degree in Psychology from James Madison University combined with her elementary school teaching license from Mary Baldwin College, Becky uses both her knowledge and experience in these disciplines to design yoga workshops, classes and retreats, here and abroad, that expand the senses, broadens the mind, and opens the heart to what is truly possible. Her ability to meaningfully connect with those she serves so selflessly arises out of her personal commitment and disciplined approach to deepening her own learning and practice of yoga, philosophy, and meditation.
Becky has been a proud Ambassador for Lululemon Athletica, Project Yoga Richmond and YoKid Stretch Your Limits. Becky taught as a certified YoKid Facilitator Trainer responsible for training fellow adults in ways to incorporate yoga into children’s lives for four beautiful years. Becky is also trained to teach children’s yoga through the “Yoga with Nitya” format, and yoga to individuals who have undergone trauma.
Becky can be seen riding her bike around town as she commutes to and from teaching yoga classes, private lessons, and meeting with community leaders. You might also see her leading a Yoga Hike along the James River during the warmer Virginia months. These only a couple of many examples of how she lives her life in full beauty and in alignment with the yoga teachings and practice. Becky is a creative and passionate woman who loves art, freelance photography, hiking, kayaking, traveling and running along with most outdoor adventure activities. She adores doing all these things with family and friends—both old and new.
This is the fundamental lesson that keeps Becky grounded in uncertain times and one that she learned many years ago when she first began practicing on the mat. Becky lives her life holding a deep belief that it is her responsibility to guide others down this path and help lift them up through action and word. Namaste.
PALMAR BEACH LODGE
Check out the Basics here: http://www.palmarbocas.com/basics
Palmar is located directly on Red Frog Beach, in the lush tropical rainforest of Bastimentos. Our eco friendly accommodations are one of a kind in Bocas del Toro. Experience raw nature as you spend your days lounging on the beautiful beach and your nights falling asleep to the sounds of the jungle and the rhythm of breaking waves.
Adventure is all around, from hiking through the Bastimentos National Marine Park and discovering surrounding beaches, snorkeling the reefs, exploring caves and organic cacao farms, practicing some beachfront yoga, flying the sky on a canopy tour, or just relaxing in a hammock with a cocktail.
There is something here for everyone.
Accommodations include private safari style tents, a private island cabin, a cabin style dorm, and a two-story Jungalow with private bath. We offer free WiFi for all hotel guests in the restaurant/bar area. . The lodge is solar powered and rainwater fed so we place a large emphasis on conservation of resources. Overall the vibe is very laid back and the lodge is a great place to relax and unwind
Our private safari tents with one double bed are perfect for couples or solo travelers. Each tent is cheerfully decorated and has a large, lockable trunk for securing personal items. This tent size is available with either Double Bed or Two Twin Beds. All furniture is custom made using local materials. Each tent comes with a fan and lamp connected to our solar power system.
These private safari tents with 2 double beds are the same style as the Double Bed Private tents, but larger (16.5 foot diameter vs 13 foot diameter) and can sleep up to 4 guests in two double beds. All furniture is custom designed and hand made to fit the tent, including a large, lockable truck for valuables. Each tent has a private outdoor seating area and basin for brushing teeth.
The Jungalow provides its guests with an open jungle experience. With two floors, a King Bed, and a private bath with outdoor shower, it is sure to impress. Raised above the rest of the property, the second floor offers a unique open air experience of the rainforest, while allowing the ocean breeze and sounds to soothe you to sleep. Each floor has it's own fan, lights, and mosquito netting.
The dormitory is a cabin is a rustic wooden cabin with tin roof that we use for water catchment and large screened windows. It is spacious and comfortable with semi-orthopedic mattresses, a ceiling fan and light, and large lockers for each guest. The cabin has 4 sets of bunk beds. Everything is custom designed and built, right down to the furniture.
Bathrooms and Showers
There are a total of four common bathrooms and four common showers on the property. The King Jungalow has a private bathroom and shower. All of the water is at Palmar is fresh, filtered rainwater at natural temperature. There are absolutely no chemicals, metals, or other additives. Prepare for your softest hair and skin! As our natural water source is limited, we ask all of our guests to be conservative in their usage.
The main meeting area at Palmar is the beachfront Lodge which features a full bar and reception area, a coffee and tea station, a book exchange and plenty of board games, tables and chairs for dining, comfortable sofa seating, and a large deck looking out to the sea. All the furniture in the lodge is custom made by local artisans using local materials. Adjacent to the lodge is the restaurant kitchen. Just down the front steps you will find a fire pit, hammocks, outdoor tables and seating as well as beach chairs and umbrellas.
Yoga Pavilion ༶ Our Shala
Practice in a serene open༶air studio nestled in the jungle, just steps from the beach with a stunning view of the sea. The 24’x24’ open air Yoga Pavilion can fit up to 20 students.
All of your meals for the retreat will be included with your package. We will offer a range of vegetarian meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. All food is sourced from local villages and farms when possible. Water and fresh juices with meals will be included, but alcoholic beverages and sodas will be kept on a separate tab that you can settle at the end of your stay. There are two restaurants within walking distance of our resort if you would like a change of pace at any point throughout your stay here.
We encourage you to disconnect and immerse yourself in the beautiful location while you are here, but we do offer WiFi for hotel guests in the restaurant/common area.
A NOTE ON COMMUNICATION
Please note that the best form of communication with each other once we are there will be facebook and What’s App. If you do not have one or both of these I highly recommend downloading.
Contact your wireless carrier for details about international roaming countries, SIMs, rates, and policies. If you do not have an international data plan, turn off Data roaming to avoid data roaming charges. Provided you have Wi-Fi internet access and active WhatsApp service, WhatsApp should be free to use over a Wi-Fi connection.
If data roaming is enabled on your device, we suggest that you disable all media in When roaming under Media auto-download in your WhatsApp settings to avoid extra data charges. To learn how to configure Media auto-download please read here.
While traveling, we recommend that you set your WhatsApp status to "I am currently roaming abroad, will reply when I am on Wi-Fi". This way your friends will know why you are not answering right away
This is the same deal with Facebook - if you are on wifi, it is free!
In addition to all of the yoga you will be doing, Palmar Beach Lodge is a great home base to explore the beautiful nature found in the Bocas del Toro archipelago. It is common to see a variety of wildlife on the premises and nearby including sloths, capuchin monkeys, the famous red frogs and dolphins. If you are lucky you may even get to see some of the critters that are rare to spot including sea turtles, anteaters or armadillos. There are hiking trails that lead to pristine nearby beaches where you can snorkel and explore. Other popular activities include the Bastimentos Sky zip line canopy tour, trips to the Bastimentos Bat Caves, snorkel tours to the Zapatilla Islands, surfing and surf lessons, SCUBA dive trips, slack lines, kayaking and paddle boarding. As part of your retreat we will be leading you on a Castaway day that includes a beach hike, snorkeling, and a walk back through the jungle. The kayaks, paddle board, surfboards, and slack lines will be available for your use during your stay. There will be plenty of ways to customize your trip to what you or your friends might want to do. There may even be some surprises along the way!
In more detail…
Our staff will be happy to set up personalized tours of the area with the best guides in Bocas. Here is a list of some of the adventures we can arrange:
Hiking ༶ We will be happy to recommend trails for all skill levels. Popular trips include hiking to Polo Beach, hiking to Wizard Beach, hiking to Bastimentos Town and some delicious stops along the way. Complimentary guided tour!
Zip Line Canopy Tour ༶ Just minutes from Palmar, the Bastimentos Sky Canopy Tour is a must༶do for all adventure seekers! This amazing tour features 7 zip lines and a tree top ropes challenge course. $55 (still waiting to hear back from Red Frog Villas about discount)
Chocolate Farm Tour and Nature Hike ༶ Hike through a local permaculture farm, learn about the chocolate making process, and sample the delicious products while enjoying beautiful views of the rainforest.
Up in the Hill ༶$20 ༶ 10 minute boat ride ($5) or hour and half hike
Zapatilla Island and Snorkeling Tour ༶ $35 ༶ Visit Dolphin Bay,
Coral Key, and the unspoiled Zapatilla Islands which are part of
the Bastimentos National Marine Park. Snorkeling, beach combing and jungle walks are all available.
Fishing Tour ༶ Enjoy a half or full day fishing trip to some of the
best spots in Bocas del Toro with a local guide. Deep sea private
charters also available.
Local ༶ $40/45 half day
Deep Sea ༶ $500 half day
Dive Trips or Certification ༶ If diving is your passion let us make arrangements to take you on a reef dive to remember. All gear is included. Trips leave from Bocas Town or Bastimentos.
$80 for two tanks
$300 certification over 3 days
Cave Tour ༶ Take a boat through the mangroves to arrive at a hidden natural opening. Walk and swim your way through a pristine cave, with an option to jump from a waterfall into a pool at the end. $35 for 5 hours
Flying Pirates ATV Tour ༶ See Isla Colon on your own 4 wheels. Explore a vast area of beaches, monkey trails, caves, lagoons, streams, and even beach bars. Half and full day rentals available.
You can bring your yoga mats and do yoga at Bluff Beach before lunch! $100 for half day (two people suggested to ride one bike so $50 per person)
Surfing ༶ Red Frog Beach can be an ideal beach for beginning surfers for much of the year. More experienced surfers can hike to Wizard Beach or Long Beach if you want to trek by foot or we can call you a water taxi to shuttle you to any of the amazing surf breaks that Bocas has to offer! Make sure to rent a board in Bocas or Bastimentos town. Limited quantities are available at the restaurant nearby. Phil is a wonderful instructor $35 for an hour session!
Snorkeling ༶ Our staff knows a number of secret snorkeling spots within walking distance of Palmar. Masks and snorkels are available complimentary.
Not included in price:
- Airport transfer in Panama City
- Transportation to Bocas
- Meals outside of Palmar
- Soda or Alcohol
- Other Tours like zip lining and fishing tours or activities like massage.
- Yoga mats ༶ we do have mats that can be used for free, but we suggest you bring your own!
The retreat center is located 15 minutes (by boat) outside of Bocas del Toro. Our website provides great details on how to travel to Bocas and the port: http://www.palmarbocas.com/gettinghere Another option is to look at Nature Air which flies in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama. This way you can take a direct flight from the US to central america and navigate from there. If you fly into Panama City you either must take a bus or a flight. If you take the panama air domestic flight, you must leave the airport you entered and get to the domestic airport. This is really common in panama and there are taxis and shuttles you can find on arrival. If you're more a planner, airlines can sometimes help you book these in advance. Also, if we get folks coming into panama at the same time that need to make the airport transfer, I encourage you to arrange group transportation! When you book your tickets, send us your itinerary and arrival time so we can be sure to get you to the lodge!
You should aim to arrive in Panama City (PTY) to make the May 24 Air Panama 4:00 PM flight that leaves from the Panama-Albrook airport (PAC) to Bocas del Toro (BOC). You may certainly arrive earlier in the day if you wish. The International and Domestic airports are in different locations! Please make sure to leave enough time to get to the Domestic Airport. Travel time takes about 30 minutes but during high traffic times can take longer, so I recommend having 2 or more hours between flights. The customs process has been relatively quick to date. Air Panama only allows booking 3 months in advance, so I recommend waiting until you can book your Air Panama airfare before booking your International flight. The Air Panama website is airpanama.com. I recommend you book that flight directly online or with a travel agent as you cannot search for flights that go from the US directly to Bocas.
For those that travel as a group of 4 or more they can arrange for a group airport transfer between the International and Domestic airports.
PLEASE NOTE THERE IS A $350 NON-REFUNDABLE DEPOSIT
(SOLD OUT!) Jungalow (One King Bed, One Bunk Bed)
o $1,525 paying per person (if 1 person)
o $1,275 paying per person (if 2 to 4 people)
· Banana Private Safari Tent (Two Double Beds)
o $1,300 single or $1,050 double (per person)
· Limon Private Safari Tent (Two Double Beds)
o $1,300 single or $1,050 double (per person)
· (SOLD OUT!) Papaya Private Safari Tent (One Double Bed)
o $1,200 single or $1,000 double (per person)
· Dorm Bunk Beds (Two Bunk Beds)
o $900 Paying per person
Special for Locals!
1 Double Bed for $115 Per Night
Dorm Bed for $90 Per Night
IF GOING WITH THIS OPTION, SIMPLY SELECT AND PURCHASE YOUR ACCOMMODATION THE AMOUNT OF TIMES EQUAL TO THE NUMBER OF NIGHTS YOU PLAN ON JOINING FOR THE RETREAT
Make your investment today:
***PLEASE NOTE: In order to officially secure your spot the $350 deposit must be added to your cart in addition to you accommodation of choice.***
I invite you to take a look at some words from past retreaters here:
PLEASE NOTE THAT ONCE YOU HAVE SIGNED UP, WE NEED THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION FROM YOU:
1. Domestic and International Flight Confirmations
2. Picture of Passport, Full Name, and Emergency Contact Information
3. Dietary restrictions
4. Any medical conditions we should be aware of
5. Filled out waiver (I will send upon confirmation)
Please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with and questions and with the info above!