There is so much beauty on earth. So many inspiring locations. We discussed a lot when we started talking about offering yoga teacher trainings a few years ago. We love the yoga scene in Bali. We love the culture in Mexico, the vibe in Sri Lanka and the beauty of Costa Rica. But ultimately, we felt a draw to Europe. Partly because we are European, probably. But also because there weren't so many intensive vinyasa teacher trainings in Europe. We explored the idea of southern Spain, with its amazing food and numerous well established retreat centers. We explored France, which has a timeless appeal. We discussed wonderful Italy. Then we settled on Portugal. These are a few reasons why central Portugal was our pick for our yoga teacher training in Europe:
1. The climate. There is a fresh lushness about central Portugal that we love. We are four season creatures but are more than happy to accept three instead. Spring-summer-fall, yes please.
2. The coastline. It reminds us of California – but without the Californian population size. It's rugged, pure and breathtaking.
3. The people. The Portuguese are generally (we haven't met exactly all of them) such good and friendly people. They are patient with our slaughter of their beautiful language, helpful and generous at heart. We even find that the (mainly European) expats who chose Portugal are an exceptionally nice breed of humans!
4. The fresh produce. This comes with the lush and temperate climate. Roadside markets, village markets, veggie stands and friends' gardens – so much good veg and fruit is available all year.
5. The arts, crafts and architecture. This is a very Instagram friendly country, offering up fantastic backgrounds for any posing yogi. From tiled facades to royal palace beauty. From hand woven rugs to faded sculptures and run-down houses. Beauty is all around.
6. The access. The venue we picked for our up-coming yoga teacher trainings is located within an hour from Lisbon international airport.
7. The ritual around coffee and pastries. We may be yogis, but we don't generally say no to a moment with a pingado and Pastel de Nata, if you know what we mean. If you don't there's another reason to join us in Portugal.
Articles about the world of teaching and living Vinyasa Flow Yoga by Elin Jensen and Lisa Andersson Rhodiner