Our Thailand Trainings are held on the beautiful beach of Haad Tien on the island of Ko Phangan in Suratthani Province, in south-east Thailand. Phangan island is in the chain of islands which includes Ko Samui and Ko Tao. We are hosted by The Sanctuary Resort.
The island is stunning in natural beauty, which includes lovely beaches, untouched jungle, and mountains. The entire interior of the island is essentially undeveloped (and protected) forest. All the development is along the coast, mainly on the west side of the island.
The bay where we do the training is a small one, tucked quietly away on the east side of the island. There are only about 5 resorts on the bay, and about the same number of restaurants. There is no town and only 3 shops.There is a road but it is not a good one, and traffic is limited to 4 wheel drive trucks. Car taxis to Haad Tien bay are rare and hard to find. Normal access is by water taxi from Haad Rin town.
There are many charms of this place, including the wonderful people who live or visit here and truly make the place special. The general attitude is a relaxed one and is very much ‘live and let live’. You can really be whoever you want to be, without worry of hassle or judgement. Some may call this a ‘hippy’ beach but it is much more than that. Have a look at The Sanctuary website for information on local events.
Another wonderful things about our beach is that it is an extremely safe place for women. There is no violent crime here and no assaults on women of any sort. It is completely safe for women to walk alone at night. This is a very special thing and makes the atmosphere different than almost anywhere else.
The natural beauty is overwhelming, with 2 other beaches in easy, walking reach of Haad Tien (Haad Why Nam and Haad Yuan). The bay is surrounded by untouched jungle, which give rise to many types of flora and fauna (plants and animals).
One can see the stars and moon on many nights, as there are not too many lights at night. The ocean is usually calm and clear (except November to February) and the swimming is divine! There are no dangers to speak of in the ocean save strong currents in the monsoon (Nov to Feb).
The Sanctuary Resort is an iconic resort on the quiet bay of Haad Tien. Established in the late ’80s it has a reputation for delicious vegetarian food, luxurious spa treatments and vibrant local traveler community.
Nestled on a hillside, the bungalows are beautifully designed, many with ocean views. Many of them are built into the stunning rocks that give the bay such a distinctive feel.
The Sanctuary offers many services such as a fasting and healing centre, spa, steam room and the “Tea Temple”, a centre which offers many unique kinds of healing treatments, readings and therapies.
The location, services, food and atmosphere of The Sanctuary is truly unique and it can play a big part in making your experience on the yoga training memorable and fulfilling.
By Air: To get to Ko Phangan, fly to Ko Samui from Bangkok (it is possible to fly there from a few other locations within Asia). Bangkok Air and Thai Airlines fly to Ko Samui. To fly for cheaper, check on flights to Suratthani, which is a half day’s journey from Haad Tien Beach on Phangan Island.
From Samui: You take a ferry boat to Ko Phangan Island. The boat that gets you closest is the Haad Rin Queen at Big Buddha Pier going to Haad Rin on Ko Phangan. There are other boats to Phangan but they will take you to different parts of the island.
Overland by Bus or Train: Get a ‘joint ticket’ from Bangkok (or wherever you are) to Ko Phangan.The buses are safe and clean and perhaps faster than the train. The train is a lovely, genuine Thai experience which I quite enjoy.
You will probably arrive on the island at Tong Sala town. From there, get a taxi to Haad Rin town. It takes about 20 hours to get down from Bangkok to the island.
From Haad Tin, Ko Phangan: get a taxi boat to Haad Tien or tell the boat men ‘The Sanctuary’; most everyone knows where The Sanctuary is.
We have a special deal with The Sanctuary for housing of our yoga students. Please write to them about our special offers.
There is a variety of comfortable accommodation options for all budgets for those visiting Haad Tien. The average dorm room costs $7 a night and bungalows range from $14-19 per night. For those wanting a bit more luxury, some resorts also have upmarket rooms costing anything from $20-70 a night and everything in-between. The overall standard of accommodation is high and you can enjoy rustic, jungle living, immersed in the beautiful natural surroundings of a tropical jungle.
Recommended resorts in the area: The Sanctuary (which offers students a discount on rooms if you are doing the yoga teacher training) Beam Bungalows (Haad Tien),Why Nam Huts (Haad Why Nam), Family Bungalows (Haad Tien) and Bamboo Hut (Haad Yuan).
Most resorts do not take bookings in advance. Whilst this may appear daunting, there are always rooms available on the 3 bays and it has the advantage that when you arrive, you simply leave your bags and visit a number of resorts before choosing the one that best fits your budget and aesthetic requirements.
A complimentary full breakfast is served for all students on each day of the training. This comprises of fresh tropical fruits such as mangos, papayas and pineapple alongside granola, muesli, home-made natural yoghurt (or coconut substitute), toast, jams, nut butters and eggs.
The food across the 3 bays is of a very high quality. The Sanctuary resort (where the training takes place) has a special focus on healthy vegetarian food. Across the other resorts there is a great variety of both Thai and Western food for omnivores and vegetarians alike, as well as some fantastic fish restaurants.
A typical meal of a Thai green curry and rice costs $3-$5. Portions are large and are often enough for two to share.