Health Retreats: 5 Ways to Shape Up

Yoga at the New Age Health Spa in the Catskills, NY. Courtesy New Age Health Spa New Age Health Spa
By Charis Atlas Heelan

Whether you want to relieve some stress or need to shed a few pounds before summer, a getaway to a spa, a health retreat, or a boot camp could be your next perfect vacation.

Unwind on a tropical beach, hike in the mountains, and enjoy the massages or other spa treatments that are included in each of these five vacation packages.

Photo Caption: Yoga at the New Age Health Spa in the Catskills, NY. Courtesy New Age Health Spa
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An oceanside drive through Puna. The Big Island Visitors Bureau
What: Kalani Oceanside Retreat, on the southeast coast of the Big Island, escaped any tsunami-related damage. If you can survive a week without television, cell phones, and your computer, this is the tropical retreat for you. Phone service is available (just not in your room), plus there is limited Internet access.
Where: Kalani is near Pahoa, bordered by a tropical jungle and the Pacific Ocean. It is a 45-minute drive from the Hilo Airport.
When: Throughout the year
Price: The Kalani Experience package includes six nights in a lodge room with a private bath; three healthy meals per day; two one-hour bodywork massage sessions; one half-day adventure; use of the pool, hot tub, and sauna; and daily yoga classes and activities like hula and meditation. For airport transfers, add $65 per person or $45 per person for two of more guests.
More Info: tel. 800/800-6886; www.kalani.com

Photo Caption: An oceanside drive through Puna, on the southeastern coast of the Big Island.
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Present Moment Retreat in Troncones, Mexico. Courtesy Present Moment Retreat Present Moment Retreat
What: Present Moment Conscious Living Retreat offers physical, spiritual, and mental rejuvenation through yoga, meditation, and the healing arts -- all in a private beach setting. The seven-night Restore and Refresh package includes accommodation in an ocean-view bungalow; breakfast and lunch daily; two massage and bodywork sessions; one guided activity such as kayaking, surfing or horseback riding on the beach; unlimited yoga, Qigong and dance classes; silent meditation practice and guided Vipassana meditation classes daily; and evening dance celebrations or drumming circles.
Where: Troncones Beach is on the Pacific coast of Mexico, less than 20 miles north of Ixtapa and a 45-minute drive from the airport.
When: April through October
Price: $1,295 per person based on double occupancy, or $1,750 for a solo traveler, plus tax
More Info: tel. 916/580-3418; www.presentmomentretreat.com

Photo Caption: Present Moment Retreat in Troncones, Mexico. Courtesy Present Moment Retreat
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Kayaking with Appalachian Trail Adventures. Courtesy John Keough John Keough
What: Predominantly a hiking-based spa company, Appalachian Trail Adventures offers a variety of packages that include hiking, accommodations, and meals with add-on activities and services. The Hiking and Spa Vacation consists of accommodations in Killington with three daily spa meals; snacks; guided hikes; afternoons of kayaking, caving, or another excursion; plus a daily one-hour massage. Yoga, boot camp, and water aerobics classes ($18.80 each), tennis lessons ($70), cooking demonstrations ($22.50) and nutrition consultations ($90) are available à la carte.
Where: The vacation is based at the Summit Lodge, 200 Summit Path, in Killington.
When: May 27-Oct. 11, 2011
Price: Seven or more nights from $278 per day based on double occupancy
More Info: tel. 888/855-8655; www.appalachiantrailadventures.com

Photo Caption: Kayaking with Appalachian Trail Adventures. Courtesy John Keough
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The New Age Health Spa, an all-inclusive resort in New York's Catskills. New Age Health Spa
What: If city life is taking its toll on your body and mind, escape to New Age Health Spa in the Catskills. Located on 280 pristine acres in Sullivan County Catskills, this all-inclusive resort offers health-enhancing programs like tai chi, yoga, meditation, and aerobics classes, plus spa treatments in a casual environment.
Where: 7491 Route 55, Neversink, NY -- a two-hour drive from New York City
When: Throughout the year
Price: From $1,371 per person for four nights, plus a free spa treatment (worth up to $100) with the purchase of at least two treatments.
More Info: tel. 800/682-4348; www.newagehealthspa.com

Photo Caption: The New Age Health Spa, an all-inclusive resort in New York's Catskills
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Scenic vistas and healthy food, thanks to Mountain Trek. Courtesy Mountain Trek Mountain Trek
What: A seven-day hiking and fitness getaway in the mountains of British Columbia. Enjoy daily guided hikes; yoga and fitness classes; health and lifestyle lectures; a sauna, a steam room and outdoor Jacuzzis; organic calorie-controlled spa cuisine; airport transfers; and private room accommodations. You also receive three 50-minute therapeutic massages and a healthy cooking class.
Where: Plan to fly into Spokane, WA; you'll then be transferred to the fitness boot camp lodge in the Kootenays Mountain Range, near Nelson, B.C.
When: April 30-Oct. 29, 2011
Price: A seven-night all-inclusive Kick Start package is C$3,900 per person
More Info: tel. 800/661-5161; www.mountaintrek.com

Photo Caption: Scenic vistas and healthy food, thanks to Mountain Trek. Courtesy Mountain Trek
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