Pure Salty bliss at our Bali Spa and Surf Retreat

Posted on Apr 4, 2016

Have you ever taken the time to ponder what your own personal “bliss” may look like? I mean have you ever really sat down and thought about what brings you personal or deep satisfaction in life? What brings you joy or better yet, euphoria? What would encourage feelings of well being and balance? What fears would you like to overcome to experience a sense of achievement? Have you ever taken the time to write it down on paper then execute those plans? Bringing pure thought or intentions into physical manifestation? I recently asked myself these questions while taking some time out at The Bliss Sanctuary for women in Canggu Bali. As someone who previously lived a cosmopolitan lifestyle in Melbourne with a busy social life and career in event management, I was tired of the same old routine. My leisure time would usually revolve around getting dressed up to the nines with a full face of make up and heels then heading out to the latest bar or nightspot to sip Chandon or cocktails all night. Only to wake the next day with a hang over, feeling unbalanced, unhealthy and vibrating at a low frequency. I just wasn’t getting the same buzz from those nights out that I used to in my 20’s. I felt like I needed to explore new  ways to get “high” which eventually led me to beautiful Bali retreat bliss! surf retreat, surfing, surfing bali, bali, On arrival to the sanctuary, I was welcomed by the beautiful hostesses and immediately felt a little “blissful” and at ease. As part of my “Bliss retreat experience” I wanted to try an activity that was foreign to me, something new. I wanted to be completely spontaneous and go out on a limb to experience new sensations of euphoria. I wanted to Surf! I had dated surfers in the past but I was always the girlfriend who hung out at the beach in her bikini tanning and reading a book rather than the girl that put on a wetsuit and hit the surf with fearless abandon. I have always loved the ocean and felt a special connection with it. I’ve enjoyed scuba diving, jet-skiing, paddle boarding, sailing and wake boarding  on vacations throughout various tropical destinations but I had never been on a surf retreat style holiday. I’ve always felt “alive” during those moments in the water which is what drew me back in and prompted the desire for surf lessons. My driver picked me up at 8:30 am and we drove into Seminyak. My instructor asked me what level I was at and I told him I had rented long boards in Hawaii and Bali previously. The extent of my experience was standing up and riding the white wash in. I had never had an actual guided surf lesson before. My instructor looked surprised when I told him that which suggested he must teach a lot of beginners who have never attempted surfing before. We selected a (smaller size) long board made of foam with plastic fins (so completely accident proof) to prevent injuries to the head or slices to the leg (a group of students from another surfing school were wearing helmets in the water). We paddled out to the surf break and I stood up and caught the white wash in a few times but it really wasn’t hitting the mark for me. My instructor looked at me and said, “I think you want more of a challenge”. I said, “Yes!” surfing, bali, surf retreat, retreat for women We waited for the next sets to roll in and then paddled out to the far surf break. I sat up on my surfboard and felt a tingling sensation being  “out the back” with the more advanced and experienced surfers.  My instructor taught me to barrel roll under a large wave and expressed how important it was to intuitively feel the wave and move with it, stand up at the right time, shift the weight to the back foot and bend the knees. I now understand the term “hang ten” as my instructor kept reminding me to curl my toes around the end of the board. I felt that my yoga practice put me in good stead for surfing, transitioning from stomach to standing with ease and maintaining good balance. Look Im not going to lie, there were a few wipeouts but they didn’t deter me from getting back on the board and trying again. Every time I caught a wave the intensity of the “high” outweighed any fear of another spin cycle in the salty washing machine. It’s like yoga. You try. You fall. You try again. I can see why surfers get hooked on catching a wave because it is a thrill. The bigger the wave, the bigger the thrill. My surf lesson went for two hours and we took a break to reapply sunscreen and rehydrate with a bottle of water. Once the instructor assesses your abilities in the water, they work with you to improve your skill level and make sure you are having fun too. Whether you are looking for adventure, a new experience or complete relaxation, The Bliss Sanctuary for women has a diverse range of activities and tours available making the experience so appealing and unique. I enjoyed how encouraging the hostesses were with “choosing your own adventure”. There were no rigid schedules so I had the opportunity to go at my own pace without being “locked” into anything.  The founder of Bliss Sanctuary Zoe Watson understands that each individual has their own perception of what “bliss” means to them. I appreciated the freedom I was given to explore my own personal desires and move to the beat of my own drum to find my “pure salty bliss”. Written by Alanta Daley