Yoga retreat in Australia with Esther Ekhart and Tracey Cook

Set in the tropical forest of Mission Beach, Australia, and walking distance to the beach, you will be immersed in nature and all of its healing and revitalising elements.



16 Jun 2018


22 Jun 2018


Mission Beach yoga-retreat-in-australia-with-esther-ekhart-and-tracey-cook

What to expect:

The combination of asana, pranayama, meditation, philosophy, introspection, silence, and nature, provide the perfect opportunity to retreat deeply into the delights of the forest and restore and revitalize yourself on all levels.

Each morning we wake and observe mouna (silence) until lunchtime. We will practice pranayama and meditation with the rising sun, and then have a light breakfast and some free time to enjoy the morning quietly. After breakfast, we will continue with a strong (ish) fluid yoga practice that focuses on loosening the body as well as strengthening and stabilizing the body and easing the mind. Everybody can work at their own level.

The silence breaks after this session and we will enjoy a nutritious and delicious lunch. After lunch we'll have a break where you can relax around the pool or go for walks to the beach and through the forest, or have a massage.

In the late afternoon we come together for some more yoga and awareness practices, and we finish the day with a delicious dinner together.

A day of silence

On this retreat we will observe at least one full day of complete silence, outside of class times. As you begin to relax into stillness, you cultivate presence, awareness, and an authentic relationship with yourself. You will get in touch with a felt sense of "Being". It is a universal felt-sense that we all have within us. From birth and throughout every moment of your life, being is a constant, quiet, background presence that's always with you. But until it is pointed out it can go unnoticed. The beauty of the nature around us also helps this realisation to unfold.

You may also discover that being together with others in silence allows for a different sense of connection that can be more satisfying than spending the same time engaged in conversation. You will access that same state of "being" shared. Rather than knowing others through their stories of who they are and what they do, the silence highlights our sense of connectedness. We basically begin to understand the concept of oneness through our shared beingness.

Who is it for?:

This retreat is open to all levels, but not for complete beginners. As a guideline, you should be able to follow the level 1 and level 1-2 classes on with relative ease, and that you know your boundaries and are aware when to back off to keep yourself safe.

If you are new to yoga and really want to join, follow Esther's Beginners Vinyasa Yoga program and practise some of the level 1 and level 1-2 classes to prepare.

Since the retreat is located quite deep within the forest, a moderate degree of physical fitness is required for exploring the breathtaking surroundings and sometimes walking on uneven jungle terrain. 

Daily Programme:

Please be aware that times and activities may change slightly.

Arrival is on Saturday, June 16th. We have an introduction in the evening.
Departure is on Friday, June 22nd after breakfast. 

  • 08:00 - 09:00 Meditation/Pranayama*
  • 09:00 - 11:00 Breakfast + break in silence
  • 11:00 - 12:30 Hatha/Vinyasa flow
  • 13:00 - 16:30 Lunch/Free time
  • 16:30 - 18:30 Talk, Inquiry, gentle yoga practice
  • 19:00 - 20:00 Dinner and free time
  • 20:00 - optional nighttime activity offered on some nights: bonfire/kirtan, Yoga Nidra, meditation, guided nighttime forest walk, etc

Cost per person and booking:


  • 6 nights' accommodation
  • 3 nourishing and delicious meals a day
  • tea, coffee, and fruit available daily
  • our complete yoga, meditation, and awareness programme

Twin Share (prices are per person in Australian Dollars)

  • $1595 AUD Rainforest Hut, shared bathroom
  • $1695 AUD Rainforest Hut, alfresco (open air) ensuite
  • $1880 AUD Deluxe Canopy Cabin (also one cabin available with 3 single beds)

Single occupancy

  • $1775 AUD Rainforest Hut, shared bathroom
  • $1895 AUD Rainforest Hut, alfresco (open air) ensuite
  • $2255 AUD Deluxe Canopy Cabin 

Please note that spaces are limited so early booking is recommended. Your space is secured with a non-refundable deposit. Please the contact box below to register your interest and we will send you full payment and joining details.

Accommodation options: 

Rainforest Hut shared bathroom - For those who wish to experience the forest in its full capacity, we recommend Rainforest Huts. Accessed by a boardwalk to protect the forest floor, the rainforest huts have a timber structure which is screened on all four sides with weather-proof curtains able to be drawn for privacy and protection from adverse weather. Each hut has a small verandah, simple furnishings and sleeps two in either double or twin occupancy. A shared bathroom with cold water shower is 10 – 70 metres away.

Rainforest Hut Alfresco Ensuite - An option of a Rainforest Hut with an attached alfresco open-air bathroom is also available. This option offers a cold-water shower, great for invigorating the body and mind!

Deluxe Canopy Cabin - Solid wooden construction, with ample, screened glass windows, the canopy cabins offer maximum protection from the elements, while still offering a close connection to the sights and sounds of the forest. Larger than the rainforest huts, these cabins are stylishly appointed with polished wooden floors, handmade natural timber furniture and spectacular glass-walled bathrooms (with hot water) looking out high in the trees.

Please visit the Sanctuary's website for photos

How to get there:

Arrival is on Saturday, June 16th. We have an introduction in the evening.
Departure is on Friday, June 22nd after breakfast. 

A charter bus pick up from Cairns airport leaves at around 1-1.30pm Saturday, June 16. On check-out day (Friday, June 22) the bus will leave around 9am after breakfast to get to the airport for 11ish. Please book your flights accordingly. It is about 1.5 hours to Mission Beach from Cairns.

Cost for this charter is $45-60 AUD each way. If other arrangements need to be made, please let us know.

There is a lot to see and do around Mission Beach. If you wish to extend your stay at the Sanctuary before or after the retreat, please contact The Sanctuary directly to book.

About the retreat centre and surroundings:

The Sanctuary at Mission beach is located deep within the rainforest in Northern Queensland, where the rainforest meets the sea. The forest provides a magical place to retreat and to look deeply into the nature around us, as well as our own inner nature. Brooks Beach is a secluded beach, only a few minutes’ walk away, and an amazing place to bask in the beauty of where the forest and the sea come together. The Sanctuary is one of the best places in Australia to see a cassowary in the wild!  With this in mind, be aware that by living within nature we are also sharing the forest with its original inhabitants. Insects, birds, and lizards may visit the vicinity of the living quarters. These ‘visitors’ are not dangerous, and the forest is their home too. We encourage you to view ALL experiences as part of the retreat, to appreciate the lessons they provide, and to share the space with our forest friends, even the spider that may be living on your front porch!

About Esther & Tracey:

Esther Ekhart has been teaching Hatha, Vinyasa and Yin yoga for over 20 years. Her knowledge and practical down to earth teaching has inspired thousands of yogis all over the world. She is an internationally experienced yoga teacher, Clarity teacher and therapist. Yoga and Clarity work showed Esther that there is nothing to find and that everything she was looking for is 'right here, right now'.

Tracey Uber Cook’s sharing of the ancient practice of yoga encourages students to lovingly dissolve physical, emotional, and energetic barriers to reveal the clarity, peace, and the sweet magnificence of life that is always within us. Her strong yet playful teaching style is anchored in the ancient traditions of hatha yoga, yoga nidra, tantric and vedantic philosophies, drawing from the rich and subtle healing qualities of the natural elements around us. Tracey has been teaching internationally for 15 years and regularly joins Esther as a pranayama, meditation, and philosophy teacher in her annual 200hr Yoga Teacher Training in Spain.

Register your interest