Sorry for the misleading title – there currently is no yoga centre in Bottle Beach. Rather this post explores the possibilities for someone who wants to enjoy the beauty and seclusion of Bottle Beach as well as practice yoga.
There is a growing number of visitors to Koh Phangan who want to improve themselves; they want to transform, detox and uncloud their understanding as well as unblock their energy ways. Yoga is in many ways a coverall term for the effort at spiritual improvement.
Currently most of these spiritual aspirants head out for the west coast of Koh Phangan. The area around Srithanu has a number of yoga centres and practitioners in reiki, Thai medicinal massage and life audits. There are the lost and hoped-to-be-found, and there are those who see themselves in a teaching role. And there are those who want more than golden sands, Thai food and relaxation from their time in Koh Phangan.
It is just a shame that those looking to practice yoga can’t also benefit from staying on one of Koh Phangan’s best beaches. The beaches on the west coast of Koh Phangan nearly all have large tidal differences. At low tide it is hard to swim off these beaches. Moreover, the coral reefs all along the west coast make it unpleasant underfoot and necessary to cross the reef for deeper depths swimming. The answer for west coast resorts has been to build a swimming pool. While pools look good in promotional literature and websites they are a drain on water resources and detract from the natural beauty of the soft sand and warm, clear sea.
The Yoga Studio
Presently the best option for those wanting to stay on Bottle Beach and do yoga is to rent a bike and commute to the neighbouring beach of Thong Nai Pan Noi. It is still a rough road (see more here) but it is doable, especially when it is dry. There are no immediate plans to upgrade the road from Bottle Beach to Thong Nai Pan Noi but it is maintained because it is the only land artery to Bottle Beach, and the sea route is dependent on weather conditions.
At Thong Nai Pan Yai is The Yoga Studio. It is a small, purpose-built school in the woods at the main road junction between Thong Nai Pan Noi and Thong Nai Pan Yai. The yoga instructor is Mel. She has studied in India and has been leading yoga sessions in the area for several years now. The Yoga Studio is followed by Trip Advisor and is rated middle-ish in the ‘spas and wellness’ section.
Mel at Yoga Studio maintains a website and social media presence and replies promptly to emails.
Another yoga option is to use the taxi boat between Bottle Beach and Chaloklum. In Chaloklum there is Veranda. It is a wellness and yoga centre on the beach. They have affiliation with The International Association of Yoga Therapists. They combine yoga asanas with Pilates. There is also the option to do Asthanga Vinyassa Flow. This is a new yoga and detox centre and as such has too few Tripadvisor reviews to ascertain quality.
Of course the real solution is for someone to set up a yoga centre in Bottle Beach. It can start, small and make-shift but if the quality of the yoga is good, they will come.