By Heather Larson
© SHU T TERSTOCK/MARIDAV; ILLUS TRATION: © SHU T TERSTOCK/MILOJE
A FEW YEARS ago, Laureen Lund, a Costco
member living in Gig Harbor, Washington,
realized she needed to move her body more
every day to feel better. On a cruise to Greece,
celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary,
Lund and her husband tried a six-mile hike
suggested in their guidebook. ;e trek invigorated her, and she found it so much fun that
she continued hiking when she got home. She
also began to see vacations as ;tness and wellness opportunities. ;is July, she’s embarking
on a Women’s Transformational Kayak Journey
for a weekend of kayaking, hiking, meditation, yoga and healthy meals.
Lund is not alone in wanting to use her
Why take a wellness trip?
time away to embrace a healthy lifestyle.
According to a study done by the Global
Wellness Institute, wellness travel in 2013
accounted for about 14 percent of all tourism
expenditures and is expected to climb to 23
percent by 2017. Wellness travel encompasses
health and well-being through a variety of
activities, such as yoga retreats, boot camps,
fitness adventures, hiking, kayaking and
cycling tours, weight-loss programs that focus
on developing new relationships with food
and retreats that o;er reboots for the body,
mind and soul.
What’s the driving force behind wellness
vacations? Wellness travel expert Anne Dimon,
the editor of traveltowellness.com, says more
people have realized the key to good health and
longevity lies in their hands, and the adoption
of a wellness lifestyle while traveling makes
them feel better. ;ey also come home relaxed,
content and refreshed.
In this fast-paced, high-stress world, it’s
vitally important to take time o; to let your
body and brain rest, says Costco member John
Ayo, author of Travel Balance: A Unique Health
Guide for Your Journey (AyoLifeBalance, 2014;
not available at Costco).
He advises that for a true wellness retreat
“get away physically and mentally, learn about
healthy food, do yoga, meditate and bring all
you’ve learned back with you.”
bring balance to life
for your health
Wellness retreats can
incorporate a variety of
physical activities, such as
yoga, sailing and hiking,
as well as meditation,
massage and a focus on
A genuine wellness vacation planned with
intention and purpose is one of the few types of
travel that can truly keep on giving even a;er
you’ve returned home, says Dimon, a Costco
member. A proactive approach to health is a
good investment of both your time and money,
Finding the right fit
To locate the ideal place for your healthy
vacation, Dimon suggests you ;rst decide on
the kind of lodging that sounds best and the
type of food that appeals to you, and then
focus on what you’d like to do during the day.
Do you want to rest and relax, engage in physical and recreational activities, take part in
educational programs, shop and sightsee or
try di;erent spa treatments?
Options include participating in Wine &
Align yoga classes at the Hyatt Regency
Orlando in Orlando, Florida, which treat you
to a casual wine tasting a;er a gentle ;ow yoga
practice. For one week each month, the Lake
Austin Spa Resort, a Costco member in Austin,
Texas, shares its secrets of preparing healthful
cuisine in fun, interactive classes for guests.
Costco members Jimmy and Kathleen LeSage
offer a wellness-retreat experience at their
New Life Hiking Spa in Killington, Vermont,
including three levels of hikes every day;
Zumba, water aerobics, Pilates, ;t ball classes
and one massage for every three-night stay.
;e schooner Zodiac, a 160-foot sailboat,
departs from Bellingham, Washington. Passengers are asked to help raise and maneuver the
large sails; cruises include hiking, kayaking
and using crab pots to catch Dungeness crabs,
which are then cooked on the deck.
In our digital editions
Click here for a video about
the New Life Hiking spa.
(See page 11 for details.)
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