Your Guide to Yoga, Meditation & Wellness in Tulum

By David Bolaños on Dec 29, 2020

Once a sleepy seaside town, Tulum has become a top destination for wellness enthusiasts and yoga lovers from all over the world looking to disconnect from the buzz and indulge their mind, body, and soul with some time off. With some of the best yoga studios, retreats, and wellness centers located in Tulum, you’ll be spoiled for choice when it comes to picking the perfect one to suit your needs!

If you’re looking for the perfect place to participate in a local temazcal or cacao ceremony, enjoy a quiet beachside retreat, or simply stretch into a few yoga poses during a couple of group classes, Tulum is the perfect destination for you. Read on to learn everything you need to know about yoga, meditation, and wellness in Tulum.

In this guide, we'll take a look at:

  • 1. Where to do yoga in Tulum
  • 2. Where to meditate in Tulum
  • 3. What is a temazcal ceremony?
  • 4. What are sacred cacao ceremonies?
  • 5. Selina's Top 5 Spiritual Spots in Tulum

Where to do yoga in Tulum

The best thing about choosing a yoga retreat in Tulum is that there are plenty of studios designed to fit every budget. Local spots like Sanará Tulum, Yaan Wellness Energy Healing Spa, and Nomade are just a few of the big-buzz names that continue to bring in visitors for a series of holistic and wellness treatments.

Whether you’re looking for an all-inclusive yoga experience or simply in the mood to take part in a few yoga classes at a Tulum beach, you’ll be sure to find something to fit your every mood. Keep in mind, however, that most studios by the beach tend to charge a premium for their now-considered prime location, so it might be a little more difficult to find a beachside Tulum yoga retreat if you’re traveling on a shoestring budget.

Selina is also well-known among travelers and locals for being the best yoga hostel in Tulum. With group yoga classes available as well as private massage therapies, essential oils workshops, and mindful breathing sessions, all guided by a team of holistic wellness professionals, it’s the ideal place to stay if you’re looking to connect with a like-minded community, enjoy the best of Tulum like a true local, and cleanse the body from all the fast-paced, day-to-day hecticness.

Where to meditate in Tulum

If you’re looking to expand your practice to include meditation as well as yoga in Tulum, there are tons of different options that vary depending on the type of meditation you’re looking for, your experience level, and your budget.

When it comes to choosing the best Tulum meditation retreat, you need to decide whether you’re looking for a private spiritual experience or if you’re thinking of participating in group meditation sessions. Places like Selina Tulum, for example, offer private meditation experiences for guests and visitors that include everything from guided breathwork and invigorating sound therapies to various types of mindfulness workshops and holistic massages. Meanwhile, spots like Maya Tulum Retreat & Spa have a specially designed oceanfront meditation labyrinth that allows for quiet thinking and looking within. Depending on the level of depth you’re hoping to achieve, either option could be exactly what you’re looking for in terms of going deep within to deal with any past trauma or current stress.

What is a temazcal ceremony?

If you’ve been looking into the different wellness options in Tulum, chances are you’ve read a thing or two about temazcal ceremonies. But, what exactly is a temazcal ceremony? And what does it mean to take part in one?

The typical temazcal ceremony takes place inside of a Mexican-style sweat lodge that’s shaped like an igloo. Dating back to almost one thousand years ago, they’re led by a shaman – the name given to a spiritual leader – who guides participants through a special meditation session. During a temazcal ceremony, the shaman will throw water and herbs on hot stones to produce steam. The effect, similar to a sauna, is meant to cleanse participants and help them become more aware of their inner consciousness. Traditional chants and prayers are also involved during the ceremony.

Most people who take part in temazcal ceremonies admit to feeling spiritually and physically cleansed after leaving the dome. And, given the different types of herbs and natural ingredients that are involved in the ceremony, it’s no surprise that this is the case for almost everyone. Studies have also shown that some of the benefits of participating in a temazcal ceremony include detoxifying the body, cleansing the respiratory system, increasing blood flow, improving endurance, lowering the risk of dementia, reducing fatigue, and releasing many of the mental burdens that continue to plague the mind.

If you’re planning to take part in a temazcal ceremony, most people suggest that women wear a light dress and a bathing suit underneath. If you’re a man, your go-to temazcal outfit should be swimming trunks (or shorts) and a light t-shirt. Because you’ll be sweating a lot during the ceremony, it’s best to avoid wearing any synthetic fabrics or anything that will cause added discomfort in combination with the heat and humidity.

Whether you’re the spiritual kind or not, you should make the most of the occasion and definitely go to a temazcal ceremony while in Tulum. These events are truly unlike any other, which means having the chance to participate is an adventure all on its own! Plus, it’ll make for an incredible story to tell your friends and family once you’re back home.

What are sacred cacao ceremonies?

Now that we’ve discussed temazcal, we can turn our attention to another staple of any spiritual visit to Tulum: the sacred cacao ceremony in Tulum.

Cacao ceremonies are another style of sacred healing practiced by indigenous cultures from all around the world. Much like a temazcal ceremony, these are led by a practiced shaman in order to help participants re-align their energy, heal from the inside, set intentions, and find spiritual clarity. During a cacao ceremony, guests gather around a ceremonial circle and say their names out loud along with an intention they’d like to set. Once that’s done, the ceremonial cacao is poured into cups and passed around to each person. The cacao is then honored and blessed before participants drink it. Lastly, depending on whoever is in charge, there are different exercises that can take place: from breathwork and meditation to dancing, sound journeys, and beyond. All of these are meant to amplify the intentions set by each of the participants at the beginning of the ceremony.

If you decide to participate in a cacao ceremony while in Tulum, you’ll be glad to know that it has many spiritual and physical benefits. In most cases, it’s been said that taking part in a cacao ceremony helps to open your heart, develop untapped potential and creativity, enhance your energy levels, bring peace from within, clear your mind, and heighten your meditation practice.

Cacao ceremonies have been present in ancient Mayan and Aztec cultures for centuries. Back then, cacao was considered a ritualistic plant that could only be used by the elite and the sacred during special religious ceremonies. For example, it’s been said that the drink was used during sacrificial rituals to help “lift the spirits” of those who were sentenced to die. Additionally, it was also used for medicinal purposes to help heal patients suffering from fatigue and fever. Today, many people still believe in the use of cacao for medicinal and spiritual purposes, hence the ever-growing popularity of cacao ceremonies in Latin America.

Selina’s Top 5 Spiritual Spots in Tulum

From ancient pyramids to dedicated hotels that organize cacao ceremonies, these are our top 5 picks for spiritual spots in Tulum that you can’t skip.

1. Ancient Mayan ruins & pyramids for a sunrise meditation
There are so many ancient Mayan pyramids dotted around the country that it might be hard to only pick a few. However, one thing’s for sure: the best way to see Tulum’s ruins is at sunrise. Once there, take a moment to close your eyes and cleanse your mind of any unnecessary thoughts. Listen to the sounds of the waves as they crash below, and feel the ground at your feet. The experience, combined with the serenity of the location, makes for the perfect quick meditation session you might be craving.

2. Nomade Tulum for a special cacao ceremony
Well-known for being one of the best places for a cacao ceremony in Tulum, Nomade hosts a unique ceremony every Friday at 7 PM. A safe space for guests to open their hearts and look deep within themselves, participants are given the opportunity to sit back, relax, and connect with other like-minded souls on a road to self-love and self-acceptance.

3. Holistika for a Temazcal ceremony
Moving on to one of the best places for temazcal in Tulum, Holistika’s ceremony gathers all the best features of the ceremony in a beautiful location. The boutique hotel refers to its temazcal ceremony as a “rebirth” and an “opportunity to cleanse the body and spirit” from everything that plagues it. Visit their website to book a private experience on-site at their stunning facilities.

4. Ahau Tulum Yoga & Spa for a meditation retreat
Take a moment to breathe in and unwind at Ahau Tulum’s oceanfront yoga and meditation studio! Whether you’d like to participate in a group session or book a private class, the views that overlook the Tulum shore – and include some spectacular sunrises – can’t be beaten. If you’re hoping to combine meditation and yoga with a little something extra, you can look into their relaxing spa treatments or shamanic drum circles for an added treat.

5. Selina Tulum for daily yoga classes
If what you’re craving is a dose of yoga in Tulum, Selina Tulum offers daily wellness classes that are suitable for all levels. From early morning lessons starting at 8:45 AM to sunset classes at 5 PM and special fitness sessions at 10 AM, you can test the waters a few different times before settling for the practice you enjoy most. Plus, if you sign up for the Luna rewards program, you can join in on these classes for free!

Whether you’re hoping to explore Mayan ruins, take part in an ancient ceremony, or simply flow like water during a yoga class, there are plenty of ways to enjoy Tulum’s wellness scene and step away from the beaten path. Follow this guide for a non-touristy Tulum experience that will leave a lasting impression that’ll keep you coming back for more time after time.

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