Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Angkor Wat Amazing Yoga Retreat

I have just came back from my Angkor Wat Yoga retreat with Azmi and had such a wonderful time there. 

As there were only Bee Yen and myself, Azmi had specifically planned poses that work on the shoulders and upper back for me and balancing and foundation for Bee Yen.   I learned so much more about opening my shoulders and not to force the resistance in my left shoulder but instead to work with it with awareness.  The yoga sessions were held in the morning before we venture out to explore the temples and on the final day we also did a session of yin yoga in the afternoon before going out for a relaxing and heavenly massage at Bodia Spa to end our trip. 

The Angkor temples were amazing and I love Ta Prohm which was both beautiful and eerie with gigantic roots twisted round the stone pillars of the temples and Bayon temple was majestic with its 54 towers with four large faces on each and the large smiling faces gave a welcoming and serene feeling to the place.  It was worth the effort of getting up early to watch the spectacular sunrise at Angkor Wat as sunlight slowly bathed the five towers.   As we visited the inside of Angkor Wat in the evening, I managed to see the sunset from one of the turret inside the temple.  Before the trip I had posted in FB that I would be doing the tree pose in Angkor Wat and I actually did two yoga poses;  the tree pose as well as utthita hasta padangustasana (extended hand to big toe pose) while I was there.   

One of the special moments of the trip was when we went to a concert by Dr Beat (Beatocello) Richner who plays the cello.  It was so heart-warming to see how Dr Beatcello had started and continues to embark on his life project of providing free health care treatment to the people of Cambodia by building the chain of Kantha Bopha hospitals.   The free concert is held every Saturday evening at 7.15 and donations are welcome with a special appeal to young tourists to do a blood donation.

As we had stayed in the heart of the city, it was a short walk to the cafes and local hawker stalls and we had our dinner three days in a row at our favourite local hawker stall where the food is cheap and delicious.  We also got to learn some simple Cambodia phrases like Aw kohn (thank you), Sohm toh (sorry), Niak sohk sabaay te? (how are you today) from the local friendly people and when buying souvenirs that they are "same same but different". 

It was an enjoyable holiday with beautiful sights (with lots of photos for memories) meeting lots of  friendly people and eating the delicious Khmer food (love the Amok fish!) and being able to practice yoga with Azmi and Bee Yen in this amazing city has been fantastic.   Thanks Azmi for being our tour guide and photography teacher besides the great yoga sessions and insights on incorporating the yoga asanas into our daily life and Bee Yen for the company.  

1 comment:

YogaforCynics said...

Nothin' like a holiday in Cambodia...

Seriously, Angkor Wat has long been near the top of my list of places I'd love to visit, and to do a yoga retreat there...what could be better?