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Look up anything about Nosara, Costa Rica, and you are going to find mention of yoga and surfing. First surfing, and then yoga, has been a magnet for four decades to the quiet stretch of sand, ocean and tropical dry forest on the Pacific’s Nicoya Peninsula.
Starting in the 1970s,pioneering expats from the U.S. began trickling into the beaches of Nosara, most settling in the beautiful, broad horseshoe-shaped bay of Playa Guiones. They came to “get away from it all”, to surf and seek a healthier and more peaceful lifestyle. Yoga was a natural addition, brought in by Don and Amba Stapleton, who founded the internationally-renowned Nosara Yoga Institute (NYI) in 1994 at Playa Guiones.
Playa Guiones has definitely become a yoga-focused community. Shops sell yoga wear and yoga accessories alongside beachwear, surfing gear, and health products. Most people you see around town are fit and athletic-looking from the area’s two top pastimes – yoga and surfing.
“There is energy here for yoga,” said Hilary Schweitzer at the Nosara Yoga Institute. “Nosara is a magical spot. You have the ocean, the jungle … and it’s in the Blue Zone (for long life).”
NYI is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. People come from all over the world for the yoga teacher training and yoga classes at this most well-known landmark in Nosara.
NYI recently expanded its hilltop facilities to open their new Yoga Village earlier this year. Trainees in the Institute’s educator classes now have a place to stay onsite, and visitors are able to come to NYI for all-inclusive yoga retreats on self-guided programs. New facilities include housing for 56 persons in single, double, triple and dorm-style units, a 25-meter pool, mini-waterfalls and man-made streams, and a huge two-story open-air pavilion containing a vegetarian restaurant, juice bar, lounge, gift shop and coin laundry. The Yoga Village is environmentally designed using gray water recycling, solar panel heating, and capturing rain water for the creeks and waterfalls.
The Nosara Yoga Institute is located just before the town center of Playa Guiones. Public yoga classes are given several times daily, and educator trainings are held most of the year.
Renowned for some of the best surfing in Costa Rica and uncrowded beautiful beaches, the Nosara region was named by CNN one of the 11 Places to Go Worldwide in 2014, and National Geographic noted it as a Best Winter Trip of 2014.
L'acqua Viva Resort & Spa is a 4-star luxury hotel in Costa Rica tucked between the coastal foothills and the beach at Playa Guiones. The Bali-style garden resort is located on the main road just off the beach – all hotels and businesses in the area are set back from the beach to preserve the coastline. Accommodationsrange from Deluxe Rooms to Suites to Villas. L'acqua Viva Resort & Spa is an Enchanting Costa Rica Hotel.
Article by Shannon Farley