Breaking Information: Our Purple Sea, Egypt, and Lebanon Retreats for 2020 have formally been rescheduled for 2021, and there are a number of spots left in every. Extra particulars at the top of this put up!
Right here, I’m recapping my travels in 2019, together with my Wander Ladies Purple Sea journeys in September.
Very long time followers of the Wander Ladies model know that sustainability is on the coronary heart of what we do.
After together with an choice for a Challenge Conscious Dive Towards Particles on my first ever dive and yoga retreat, Wander Ladies Koh Tao, I used to be impressed to make clear up dives a bigger side of every dive retreat we maintain from now ahead. My pleasure for the concept grew, slowly morphing right into a full day celebrating conservation in Dahab for Wander Ladies Purple Sea.
However earlier than you serve others, you need to fill your personal cup.
On considered one of our retreats, we have been fortunate sufficient to have a fellow yoga teacher as considered one of our friends. As quickly as I noticed her current certification on her consumption kind, I reached out and requested if she’d like to show a category on the retreat — no strain, after all! As a reasonably new teacher myself, I do know what a thrill it may be to show in a brand new area, to a brand new group.
She enthusiastically accepted, and I liked beginning the day as a scholar.
After class, we had a uncommon little bit of free time to chill out by our personal pool, compensate for journaling, or go for a wander. One week, a number of of the women and I made a decision to take a stroll on a brand new route alongside the waterfront, a brief journey with a giant reward.
Again on the villa, it was time to set off for our clean-up stroll via city. Dahab, sadly, has a significant trash downside (as, from my expertise, does Egypt at massive.) Whereas a few of this is because of poor infrastructure and training, a few of additionally it is as a result of complicated components that conversations with locals opened my eyes to — the fixed wind whips plastic straight out of dumpsters and into the roads, and hungry goats journey round in packs, tearing into no matter they’ll discover.
So, this little stroll is one tiny manner we give again to the city that so usually hosts our retreat.
Usually we shuttled from our villa to and from the center of Dahab through pickup truck taxi, so this clean-up doubles as a possibility to see town up shut and each recognize its tough edges and admire its magnificence.
One in every of my favourite murals, on the facet of the native faculty, requested us in Arabic and in English, to “image the sea without plastic,” whereas a fish morphed right into a single-use water bottle.
This can be a sizzling, sweaty, dusty stroll into city nevertheless it’s considered one of my favourite moments of the retreat as a result of really feel good vibes we get from the group! Locals roll down their home windows to provide us massive smiles and thumbs up when driving by, and little youngsters typically run out to hitch us alongside the way in which (although we do sometimes have to softly clarify that we’re primarily specializing in plastic objects, and useless animals might be left to decompose naturally, ha.)
One pleasant store proprietor even tried to supply us free chilly water as an indication of gratitude — whereas we flashed our reusable bottles and profusely thanked him whereas politely refusing, the gesture actually warmed our hearts.
Subsequent, it was time for a yummy plant-based lunch at Vegan Lab! Whereas we proudly cater to all dietary restrictions at Wander Ladies Retreats, we like to include one full plant-powered day into our journeys the place we are able to. Why? To showcase that it’s not all or nothing, one plant-powered day every week might be straightforward and enjoyable, a small swap with a huge impact on the planet.
Plus, I imply, how cute is that this place?!
We love incorporating a mixture of native hole-in-the-walls, cute wholesome cafes, and well-deserved indulgences on our retreats. Deciding on the place and what we’ll eat is certainly considered one of my favourite analysis factors when planning a visit!
I’m undecided if it was the joy or the natural agave buzz, however again at H2O, I used to be buzzing about our afternoon journey.
From the second I met the women of Challenge Azraq, I knew that we have been going to search out some option to help them with Wander Ladies Retreats. Founders Nour El Sawy and Amy Johnson work in the direction of their ocean conservation objectives within the Purple Sea via reef monitoring, marine training and clear up dives — the latter two of which we have been fortunate sufficient to hitch them for, for the day.
After a briefing on the significance of and procedures for a Dive Towards Particles cleanup dive, we set off for Masbat Bay, Dahab’s trashiest dive website.
Since Dahab is primarily a shore diving location, once we wish to enter someplace a bit previous the dive store, we get away the trolleys and easily wheel our manner down the corniche, wetsuits and all. I discover it endlessly charming.
After which we have been off!
One of many causes I’m so keen about together with a cleanup dive on all our retreats is that this identical theme of planting a seed of how easy it may be to include a few of these actions into your routine. Whereas most of the tips are frequent sense, it’s good to go over the fundamentals of how one can maintain your self and the marine atmosphere protected throughout a clean-up dive — when you’ve been briefed, you may take that information into any dive you see particles on sooner or later.
And who is aware of — sometime maybe a visitor of ours will probably be impressed to prepare a clean-up dive at their native dive websites too, in the event that they’re fortunate sufficient to have them!
It’s not all cigarette butts and beer bottles — we additionally are inclined to run into some fairly cool fish down there, too!
Upon returning to the floor, Nour and Amy helped us type, report, and report every little thing we’d discovered — this information is useful for guiding native marine rules, for monitoring native ocean well being, for marine training and to lift consciousness of an issue we are able to encourage others to really feel invested in via our actions.
That night, we gathered at Marine Backyard Camp, the zero-waste restaurant that caters our breakfast via the retreat, for a particular dinner and a presentation from the Challenge Azraq women on coral threats within the Purple Sea.
At Wander Ladies Retreats we’re proud to make a donation to a neighborhood non-profit in every of our locations as a option to give again to the locations that make our retreats magic! In Dahab, I can’t consider a extra worthy trigger than Challenge Azraq.
Thanks a lot, Nour and Amy, for all of the work that you just do. And thanks to my women for being so beneficiant, so open-minded, and so supportive of our efforts to make our journeys as sustainable as potential. It’s a journey, little question — however we’re transferring in the suitable route.
What do you suppose? Is an organization’s dedication to conservation vital to you when reserving a visit?
Intrigued by Egypt? Our 2020 retreats have been rescheduled to 2021, and there’s a number of spots left in every. We’ll be holding Wander Ladies Lebanon: An Journey + Yoga Retreat from August 21-28th (waitlist solely!), Wander Ladies Egypt: An Historical Journey and Yoga Retreat from August 28th-September 4th (three spots left!), and Wander Ladies Purple Sea: A Dive + Yoga Retreatfrom September 4-11th (six spots left!)