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Our brand partner Vamizi Island launched their first retreat in January 2012

Enjoy reading Wellicious Fan Claire Finlay´s diary in three separate blogs on our website about her experience of teaching on Vamizi.

Claire is packing it all in for a fabulous getaway to teach on an exclusive retreat on a private island called Vamizi…

Part 3

Wednesday

The morning yoga session flows well with everyone easing into the routine effortlessly. Working with such a small group means I can give plenty of individual attention and be very hands-on with adjustments. We focus on standing postures and the warrior series in particular seems like a firm favourite.

The rest of the day is allocated to diving, snorkelling and kayaking. Although Vamizi Island is lauded as one of the top 10 dives sites in the world, I’m struck by the fact that you don’t have to go very deep to see the eye-catching marine life that’s on offer. Snorkelling opens up a beautiful world of colour-rich coral and darting shoals of fish. Kayaking at the lagoon on Muntu Nkulu leads us to a beautiful driftwood inspired lunch on a hidden beach. Wow! It is quite simply stunning.

We finish off with yin and yang yoga. A dynamic sequence to warm up and then more meditative postures using our breath held for 3-5 minutes to help us focus. The silence was eerie but what a session… I read a lovely passage from my favourite Poet Rumi and play some soft Adele songs to keep the awareness HERE AND NOW!

Thursday

It’s our last day today. We all join in to chant ‘bhumi mangalam’ and its magic resonates, leaving everyone beaming from ear to ear. The class flows with ease; we slow it down and finish the class off with headstands. A few float up with ease while others find a wall for support. I offer guidance to one guest who finds her balance and slowly adopts an impressive headstand. I later find out that it’s the first time she’s been in an unsupported inversion and I am thrilled to be able to share her achievement.

I close the class with big thank you and share my feelings on the whole experience. I have to avert my eyes a few times as it all gets a wee bit emotional… for everyone!

There is a hive of activity at breakfast with everyone exchanging addresses and numbers. Favourite juice and smoothie recipes are being discussed. Wellicious clothes are being tried on guests are delighted with the 20% voucher that guests found in their welcome gift pack. Compliments are flying around about the great time that everyone has had and feedback forms are passed around and completed. I make sure that there’s still enough time for an afternoon on the beach and lunch before we depart.

We leave Vamizi Island on a high and board our plane ready for the flight over to Dar Es Salaam. We stay overnight at the staggeringly elegant Oyster Bay, which I hear is a favourite haunt of Cheryl Cole and is the perfect end to a wonderful launch retreat. Reviewing the feedback forms words such as energising, pampered, relaxing, liberating, beautiful, rejuvenating and pure. Someone mentions that the staff were supreme and the teaching great. I sleep with a big smile on my face looking forward to the next retreat on Vamizi in November.

Life after Vamizi

I arrive back home on Friday evening, overjoyed to see my family again but not exactly over the moon to find London grey and drizzly. After reminiscing with my tales of Vamizi, I head to bed as I’m back to work at 7.30 am with my London clients. The next day, even though my Fulham studio doesn’t quite match Kipila Shala the island’s yoga studio, the thoughts and energy of Vamizi are with me. To say it has left a long lasting impression on me is an understatement and I thank my lucky stars that I’ve been given the opportunity to experience it.

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