The path to nirvana
Retreats from coast to coast show the way to bliss — or at least a smaller waistline
Location: 19 acres on the lake in Austin, Texas.
Location: A castle 90 miles north of New York City, overlooking Lake Mohonk
Best for: Anyone who loves the outdoors
Details: Mohonk's health amenities all revolve around the picturesque outdoors in Hudson Valley. Choose to explore the 85 miles of hiking trails, to swim the lake in warm weather or to skate in the 10,000-square-foot outdoor ice rink during cooler months, said Fiske, who also represents Mohonk. When the sun sets, remain under the stars for a cozy nostalgic campfire, complete with s'mores.
Cool perk: It's one of the rare health retreats that invites you to bring the kids. They can take part in nature walks and canoe tours led by a staff naturalist.
Dates offered: Ongoing
Price: Rooms start at $270 per person per night and include all meals and most activities.
Information: 845-255-1000, mohonk.com
Hilton Head Health
Location: Coast of South Carolina
Best for: Serious weight loss
Details: Most people tend to stay at this retreat for two to four weeks and on average lose seven to 14 pounds, said Michelle Musulin, Hilton Head Health program consultant. They achieve this through a combination of fitness classes, behavioral-modification seminars and a customized diet. Cooking demonstrations and nutrition classes also are offered, so you can continue your progress long after you leave the retreat.
Cool perk: As soon as you arrive, you are assigned a private coach, who designs a schedule for you for your entire time.
Dates offered: Ongoing
Price: A week starts at $3,300 and includes all meals and classes.
Information: 800-292-2440, hhhealth.com
Big Sky Yoga Retreats
Location: Near Yellowstone Park in Montana
Best for: Yogis
Details: The goal here is to use yoga's techniques and philosophies and apply them to everything else in your life, said Margaret Burns Vap, founder of Big Sky Yoga. Big Sky has a variety of retreats; all are women-only, but the most popular is Cowgirl Yoga, in which you spend half the day doing yoga and the other half connecting with horses and going horseback riding. "There's a fear of falling off, since horses can be unpredictable," Vap said. "We're trying to smooth that over and show what's possible when you link breathing and yoga and horses."