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“Great way to unwind and remove yourself from a modern world” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat

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Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat
Ranked #1 of 1 Diwan B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Melbourne, Australia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Great way to unwind and remove yourself from a modern world”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 April 2014

I came up here with a girlfriend in the hope of finding some solace from a very hectic year. (August 2013) Prema Shanti Yoga Retreat offered us a beautiful place to recharge ourselves, my mind some peace and quiet, absolutely beautiful surrounds and a great base to explore what the Daintree has to offer. Upon arrival we were greeted by Janardhan who offered a tour of the retreat and our room, then gave us some time to settle in. Whilst the rooms and bathroom are simple the retreat is designed to get back to nature. The retreat is surrounded by lush rainforest and the sounds of wildlife. Thats the beauty of it.

Meals were vegetarian, relaxing and an opportunity to mix with other guests. I often sat and took in my environment and managed a lot of time for reflection. We appreciated the time in the afternoons to walk through the rainforest, walk on the beach, swim in the swimming holes and eat at some of the beachside restaurants. Any activities at the Daintree Mara and Janardham are only too happy to help you organise. We found them delightful hosts so much so when we went to Port Douglas we went to their yoga they run on the beach to say hello.

I had been looking to find somewhere that offered Yoga and Meditation and the morning Meditation and evening Yoga really suited me. With only 4 weeks annual leave a year I wanted to incorporate this into a holiday and this was perfect for that. Its not too intense so beginners would get a lot out of this or people who are looking to do some meditation and yoga but who also want to have some time to themselves. I learnt a few new techniques in the Meditation which was great to learn and now do at home.

Overall a lovely part of our holiday which I will always remember and be grateful for

Thank you Mara and Janardhan

Toni :-)

Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank Tonster71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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115 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (12)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Darwin, Australia
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 December 2013

I had a fantastic stay at Prema Shanti in October 2013.

I've been quite ill, and got a lot out of the daily meditation and yoga regime, healthy vegetarian dinners and tropical breakfast. The food is simple but delicious and plentiful. Fruit and muesli for breakfast, curries and soups in the evening.

The meditation and yoga are both accessible for beginners- meditation starts at 7am, yoga before dinner in the evening. Both Mara and Jenarden teach, and they push you but according to your limits. There is noble silence and lights out from 9.30pm, although you can read in your room.

The property and house are gorgeous - big verandahs, couches, hammocks, lovely wooden floors and plenty of cosy places to curl up with a book. The rooms are simple but clean and comfortable.

You do need a car to get around the area, and they ask that you go out for lunch.

As a retreat, I thought it was great value and a fantastic experience. I loved my fellow guests and got a lot out of the yoga and meditation. It's a very easy place to be a solo traveller, and I loved going snorkelling on the reef and heading out for walks in the rainforest between the yoga and meditation.

I was also lucky enough to see a cassowary at the beautiful swimming hole across the road!

Would love to come back, still have Cape Tribulation dreaming.

Stayed October 2013, travelled solo
Helpful?
1 Thank mirandatea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
17 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 November 2013

We loved our 5 day stay here. Beautiful quiet bush retreat. Wonderful inside knowledge provided by the owners on hidden waterholes and local activities. Yoga and meditation provided was perfect but balanced by the push to get out and see the area. No late nights here, but that's not what we were after. Staying in the rainforest is a plus, given the walkable water holes. You do need a car to get o the beach, but we would recommend a car in this area for sure.

  • Stayed December 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank julie m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 September 2013

Varied and very enjoyable yoga classes for all levels, particularly those frequently practicing yoga who are ready to learn something new and push themselves a little further.
Morning and evening meditation is also wonderful in the rainforest setting. Probably ideal for a first time retreat since the afternoon is free for exploring the Daintree region. Perfect for those who want to get in touch with nature, solitude and simplicity. I really enjoyed my stay at Prema Shanti (and was even luck enough to spot three Cassowaries!).

Room Tip: Room with the hammock seems the best one!
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Cc_Ireland2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 September 2013

Nestled in the forest this peaceful retreat was just what I needed. The morning meditation surrounded by the sounds of the forest was a wonderful way to start the day. Taking part in Mara's evening yoga class its clear she knows what she's doing. A bike ride to the beach, a short walk to the gorgeous blue hole or just swinging in a hammock with a good book, I never felt like there was anywhere else I'd rather be.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Helena K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brisbane, California
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 September 2013

For five I was lucky to have the hosts of Prema Shanti to myself . This special intimate time blended with a magical, spiritual retreat, good food and rainforest that embraces you, with its healing earth energy, was everything my soul needed. I cannot recommend this place more highly. Along the great hospitality and guidance blended with the morning meditations and nightly yoga classes. I left feeling more centred and at peace within myself, than I have felt in years

Room Tip: be aware that the three minute ferry ride cost $23 return
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Roz32112
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 August 2013

Me: a forty-something, professional ‘desk jockey’ from cold Melbourne, still getting over a nasty winter bug.

Prema Shanti: a beautiful, tranquil yoga and meditation retreat set in the ancient Daintree rainforest, only five minutes' drive from a stunning tropical beach and a ten minute walk from a magical blue waterhole.

A match made in heaven? You betcha! I definitely found Prema Shanti a special experience but rather than echo the sorts of comments previous reviewers have made, I’ll focus on practical stuff in this review.

It should be clear from the website and the other reviews that Prema Shanti is not a luxury resort. Having said that, my room was very comfortable (particularly the mattress and pillows which is never a given in budget accommodation), the water in the communal shower was hot and everything is kept clean and tidy. The communal areas on the wide verandah surrounding the yoga and meditation temple are great: there are hammocks, couches, bean bags etc to lounge in and soak up the views of the garden and surrounding rainforest. All in all, the accommodation and facilities surpassed my expectations. The breakfast and dinner is simple but yummy vegetarian fare and there is plenty of it: you won't go hungry at Prema Shanti.

Highlights included:

• visiting the magical 'blue hole,' a sacred aboriginal site, just a short walk from Prema Shanti;

• swimming, walking along and lounging on the spectacular Thornton beach (a five minute drive away and the pick of the beaches in my humble opinion);

• walking along the several informative and picturesque rainforest board walks in the area;

• a visit to the excellent Daintree Discovery Centre;

• chatting with other guests at Prema Shanti;

• a croc tour - even if you don't see any crocs (and we certainly did), the boat ride along Cooper Creek is pleasant;

• seeing a Cassowary – twice! – once on Turpentine Road (where Prema Shanti is located) and once on the road to the Blue Hole.

• hanging in a hammock and sitting in the swinging chair at Prema Shanti.


Below are some tips and comments about staying at Prema Shanti and in the Daintree more generally. (I’ve broken the comments up into topics so that you can just read what you’re interested in).

Yoga and meditation

Prema Shanti caters for everyone from beginners to advanced students. It is fine to use a normal chair for meditation (I did due to dodgy knees). I was there for eight nights and was worried about doing yoga for that many nights in a row. However, for a couple of nights I was there by myself and decided not to do yoga for those two nights which really helped my body recover. In my personal opinion it would be helpful if you had at least a little previous exposure to yoga and / or meditation but it is not necessary. While I was there, most guests had done some yoga before but we were pretty beginnerish! On the other hand, on the last night a girl who had completed her yoga training was there and she told me that she really enjoyed the class; experienced yogis shouldn't feel that they won't get anything out of it.

The hosts and the other guests

Mara and Janardhan are genial, helpful hosts and have a good sense of humour. They eat dinner with guests and are happy to chat and offer advice on the area, tours, yoga, meditation, spiritual matters etc. However, they are not 'in your face'- you pretty much do your own thing during the day. While I was there the other guests ranged in age from early twenties to late fifties and came from a few different countries so it's definitely a mixed and very interesting bunch. Most of them came on their own (as I did) so it is an ideal place to go for solo travellers (although groups, couples etc enjoy it too of course). I enjoyed meeting and spending time with the other guests but also the fact that you could be by yourself during the day: Prema Shanti not an intense retreat atmosphere where you spend every waking moment in the company of others.

Sleep

The beds are comfortable and the fact that there is noble silence from 9.30pm (coupled with the no alcohol rule!) means that your sleep won’t be disturbed by talkative guests. However, the rainforest can get quite loud at night. If you’re a sensitive sleeper you might want to throw in some earplugs! In addition, make sure you have your torch handy by your bed for late night bathroom trips etc. It gets very dark at night and the light in your bedroom will probably be by the door rather than by the bed. Solar(?) torches are provided but I tended to use one I had brought with me.


Mobile reception, wifi etc

Don’t expect mobile reception anywhere in the Daintree! Some people got it in certain spots (e.g. Thornton beach) but it’s really hit and miss even with Telstra. I even climbed (twice) to the top of the observation tower in the Daintree Discovery Centre in a failed bid to get reception. Do yourself a favour and tell people that you probably won’t be sending or responding to texts. There is wifi in a few spots – I logged on at PKs but Mara and Janardhan can advise you of other spots. Note that there is no television at Prema Shanti which I found very refreshing.

Hiring a car

Do it! Hiring a car really opens up the Daintree area to you and without one your options are quite limited. Even getting to the nearest beach would be a bit of a drag (although do-able by bike). I was nervous about hiring a car by myself but the trip from Cairns was fine. Once you're in the Daintree, there's not much traffic and the distances between sights and activities are not great (if you’re driving). There are a couple of bikes for hire but, honestly, there is only so much you can do by bike. I didn't notice any cyclists on the road and it's quite hilly so not exactly bike-friendly (disclaimer: I am a nervous rider so competent riders would probably say the road is fine). Bear in mind that if you want to do any tours, you'll have to get to where the tour starts under your own steam: you won't get picked up from Prema Shanti.

Self-catering

Don't come expecting to self-cater. Self-catering is pretty unnecessary as you get two yummy meals (breakfast and dinner) with the accommodation. As for lunch, Mara and Janardhan ask that you go out (this is another argument for hiring a car). There is no fridge, crockery or cutlery available for private guest use and you're asked not to store food in your room as this attracts rainforest critters! (You can, however, put a couple of things in a shared esky - I stored an open packet of chocolate there.) The other factor is that there is not much by way of supplies in the Daintree - I saw a couple of poorly stocked, expensive and small general stores and that was about it.

Lunch spots

Don’t expect fine dining in the Daintree but you can still eat well. Here are my comments on the places I ate lunch:

Whet: good quality food and service around the $20 mark. Good if you’re in the Cape Tribulation area (a good 25 minute drive from Prema Shanti).

On the Turps: odd sounding name but delicious food in a tranquil, beautiful garden setting. Although a little pricey (around $25), On the Turps has the benefit of being the only lunch spot within a short walk of Prema Shanti.

Thornton beach kiosk: very convenient kiosk with adequate food – perfect if you’re on the beach. Beware the grumpy owner, however!

Discovery Centre cafe: I had a surprisingly fresh sandwich here but not much else is on offer. Not a bad place to lunch if you’re down the Southern end.


Books at Prema Shanti

There is a small collection of books at Prema Shanti that guests can read during their stay. These are nearly all spiritual books, books about meditation, etc. Many of them would be a bit inaccessible for beginners in these areas. Janardhan recommended a couple of more accessible books for me which I really enjoyed. However, bring your own reading materials if you don't think this type of book would interest you!

Room Tip: Some rooms are somewhat better located than others - the one next to the communal bathroom is less p...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2013, travelled solo
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Kristin G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat

Property: Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat
Address: 183 Turpentine Road, Diwan, Cape Tribulation, Queensland 4870, Australia
Region: Australia > Queensland > Daintree Region > Cape Tribulation > Diwan
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Diwan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Prema Shanti Yoga and Meditation Retreat, is situated in the heart of the worlds oldest rainforest, the magnificent World heritage Daintree rainforest in far North Queensland, Australia, where our program of yoga and meditation runs everyday.At our yoga retreat centre you never miss out on your yoga and meditation practice, our yoga and meditation program runs 7 days a week, all year round.With our stunning secluded beaches, only 2hrs drive north of Cairns, our crystal clear fresh water swimming lagoons, native wildlife, surrounded by lush tropical rainforest, you awaken to the sounds of the rainforest birds calling you to meditation, you practice yoga on our polished timber floor in our purpose built yoga retreat temple.The Prema Shanti Yoga and Meditation Retreat provides you with the perfect ambience, for a unique rainforest yoga holiday. We offer you the complete holiday experience with a full range of spa treatments and massage available for you to enjoy and indulge.The Prema Shanti Yoga and Meditation Retreats purpose built facilities, boutique rooms & unique location provides the perfect venue for an unforgettable yoga holiday adventure.The Prema Shanti Yoga and Meditation Retreat facilities are ideal for yoga & meditation teachers looking for that special place to hold their next workshop or retreat.The program runs 7 days a week , all year round. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Prema Shanti Yoga & Meditation Retreat Daintree Region/Cape Tribulation

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