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Mindful Yoga Retreat, Sri Lanka

Come and join me for some nourishing yoga and a sun filled adventure in Sri Lanka. Immerse yourself deeply and open up to new possibilities through your breath, body and soul.

The luxurious and spacious Sri Devi Villa's is a 15 minutes walk inland from the turquoise blue sea on the southern coast of Sri Lanka. Situated 15 minutes ride from the city Galle. The retreat is overlooking the paddy fields filled with incredible beauty and wildlife. The villa is hidden away and really is the perfect place for complete relaxation among the sounds of the wildlife, the occasional chanting of monks in the far distance.

The daily programme

There will be two yoga sessions a day, including yoga, pranayama, mindfulness and meditation. The mornings will begin with meditation and pranayama for those early risers, followed by a dynamic yet meditative hatha flow yoga practice.

After the morning session, there is an abundance of fruits, a healthy and filling breakfast. There will be several hours in the day to please yourself, whether it be to walk to the nearby white sandy beaches, have a treatment from our in house ayuvedic masseuse, take a ride into the nearby shops, cafes and restaurants on the beach or simply chill by the pool.

We will meet again in the late afternoon for a more gentler practice dedicated to nourishing yourself, including restorative postures, meditation, visualisations and yoga nidra.

There will be several optional activities to choose from during the week, for those interested in seeing the sights of Sri Lanka. There will be one free day during the week when you can explore further on the island or take one of the excursions offered 

The villa is very luxurious and spacious, tucked away near a village and surrounded by wildlife. There are many different areas to have time to yourself undisturbed to simply relax. It is about a 15 minute walk along the paddy fields or 5 minute tuk-tuk (the local 3 wheeler) to the ocean and sandy beach. There are several beaches to choose from, some lively with music and entertainment, some quieter and expansive. Very varied with many restaurants along the coastline for stunning sunsets and entertainment if you wish to experience Sri Lanka's social life

Activities & Excursions

  • Yala : safari to see the wild elephants in Yala National Park.
  • Kataragama, pilgrimage town in Sri Lanka for Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and Veddas.  
  • Sunrise boat trip to see blue whales
  • Safari to see the wild elephants
  • Touring the most famous 19th Century tea estate
  • Booking a magnificent boat trip to Cinnamon Island to see how cinnamon is produced
  • Visiting and walking around Galle Fort
  • Experiencing the flavours of Sri Lanka with a top chef
  • Ayurvedic massage

About Sri Devi Villas

Situated on the southern coast of Sri Lanka, offering excellent beaches for relaxing and enjoying unforgettable sunsets. There are a few tea plantations and various Buddhist temples along the coast.

This luxury retreat centre has over 2.5 acres of tropical garden. The yoga platform is outdoors with a roof and is situated next to the paddy fields in amongst the wildlife. There is a large pool, a spa and both an indoor and an outdoor covered lounging area. The centre is fully staffed who are extremely friendly and helpful and has all modern facilities.

Rusindu, the chef is very creative with more than 15 years of experience in 5-star hotels in Dubai. In Sri Devi Retreat Rusindu cooks amazing locally inspired dishes using nothing but locally sourced products. Guests, who want to join Rusindu on his daily trips to the local vegetable and fish markets, are more than welcome. He’ll show you fruits and vegetables, which most guests have never seen before, and will show you afterwards how to prepare them. Salads made with snake gourd, gotukola or mukunuwenna. A light curry with jack fruit. General cooking techniques of the Sri Lankan cuisine : curries, fish and poultry in banana leaves, sambals and a few more secrets. 

There are many excursions on offer during the week and trips to explore on your day off. 


Sri Devi Villas has several villa's and offer clean and spacious twin beds in each. Each villa has its own tea/coffee making facility, a fridge and bar/counter with sink and a large private terrace/balcony and a large bathroom. In addition there is a fully equipped and staffed kitchen, and for no additional cost the staff can prepare your own food for you. There is a limited single occupancy available for an additional cost.


In the spa we can offer ayurvedic floral / herbal baths, the shirodhara drip and a wide variety of massages. There is also the use of the stream box. An Ayurvedic diagnosis are available with one of the best practitioners and Umesha, our Ayurvedic therapist, has over 10 years of experience in different kinds of Ayurvedic massages and treatments. She worked for almost 10 years in the Paragon hotel, one of the best Ayurvedic hotel-clinics in Sri Lanka, and worked afterwards for a private Ayurvedic clinic before joining Sri Devi Retreat. Her specialties are chakra massages, shirodhara ( the slow oil stream on your forehead ) and relaxing body massages, reducing tension and stress.In house ayuvedic masseuse in the comfort of your own room.

Cost of the retreat

Price per person for a shared twin villa is £950 for 7 nights
Price per person for a private villa is £1,250 for 7 nights (limited availability)

To reserve your place a non-refundable booking deposit of £400 is required. The full amount is due 6 weeks before the start of the retreat.

What's included

  • Two yoga classes per day with one free day
  • Transfers to and from the airport to the villa (a two and half drive in a comfortable taxi)
  • The choice of private or shared accommodation
  • A hearty breakfast/brunch
  • 5 dinner's at the villa (Including your arrival and last evening)
  • Lunch and dinner are not included in the cost to give you the option to go for dinner as a group or individually and to explore the array of affordable local places to eat along the stretches on beach resorts and taverns

If you haven't seen this part of Sri Lanka before then you may like to extend your stay. There are many nearby affordable places in the area I can advise you with.


"I had a blissfully relaxing time at Sri Devi Villa in February this year on a yoga retreat let by Ali Gilling. The Villa was incredibly comfortable and felt very luxurious. The individual apartments were very spacious - a friend and I shared one together - and had plenty of space to ourselves, a sitting area, kettle and fridge, plus a beautiful bathroom. Each morning we awoke to a lovely view of the garden and pool. The yoga platform is situated in the garden - a wonderful setting. It was so tranquil, yet teaming with wildlife and bird sounds. It proved to be an ideal space for meditation and breathing exercises, where you could tune into the sounds and rhythm of the place. I especially selected this yoga retreat as it was led by Ali Gilling, who has led other retreats I have been on in the past. Ali’s style is very restorative and nurturing. She supports you to explore a very wide range of postures, whilst listening to your body and going at your own pace. Ali adapts to suit the needs of the group - and of individuals - meaning that everyone has the opportunity to learn about and develop their own practice. This, combined with the wonderful staff at the villa, who were so welcoming and attentive, made it the ideal holiday." - George

"I had the pleasure of joining Ali’s yoga retreat in Sri Lanka February 2018. Being a novice, and on my first retreat, I had no idea what to expect. I was pleasantly surprised.On arrival, Ali immediately put our minds at ease. we were a small manageable group of 7, and we all settled in to the routine fairly quickly. Ali has a very calming nature, and took us through all of the practices in a progressive way, so that we could work to the best of our  own abilities.She was vigilant with our positions, and gradually built up our strength and balance throughout the week. The Sri Devi villas was a stunning location, offering comfortable accommodation with a delightful pool, and delicious food, not to mention the abundance of wildlife in the gardens and surrounding area. we were also offered massages at a very reasonable price. I would highly recommend Ali’s yoga retreat to anyone, whatever their level. " - Laura 


Advice and support for travel will be given by booking but flights are usually reasonably priced.

Do you have any more questions?

Please don't hesitate to contact me at 

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