What to Pack for a Wellness Retreat

Last updated November 15, 2022

So. You’ve just booked a wellness retreat and are probably feeling very excited! With so much to gain in personal growth, physical and mental restoration and unlimited discovery, a wellness retreat truly has the capacity to transform one’s life.

I’ve personally seen that transformation, leading various international retreats myself in the past. Anything is possible with an open, prepared mind.

But I’ve also seen retreaters come physically unprepared, bringing either too much or inappropriate gear that actually hinders their journey. Hence, the questions begin: How do you pack for a wellness retreat? What gear do you need to bring? Anything not to bring? What do you even wear?

5 Packing Lists for Your Specific Type of Wellness Retreat

Whether you’re taking a general wellness-focused getaway, a yoga retreat, fitness retreat, nature or meditation-based retreat, the following packing lists will help you best prepare for your wellness retreat ahead mentally and physically.

1. Any Wellness Retreat

Here’s a basic list of essentials to bring along with you: 

  • Reusable water bottle
  • Medications or supplies
  • Toiletries
  • Pen, or pencil, and journal
  • Passport (if needed) or ID
  • Comfortable fitness gear
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Headphones
  • Travel blanket
  • Credit card, and cash
  • Sleep aids (earplugs, eye mask, etc.)
  • Healthy, non-perishable snacks

2. Fitness Retreat

A fitness retreat may include everything from bootcamp classes, fitness courses and/or yoga. You can learn some fresh routines and exercises to return back home with, or undergo a complete wellness revolution.

Here’s what to pack for a fitness retreat:

  • 2-4 legging options
  • 1-2 pairs of all-purpose shorts
  • Various sports bras
  • Yoga mat (if not provided by property)
  • Personal props
  • Athletic sneakers (fitness)
  • Lacrosse or tennis ball (for rubbing out the knots)

3. Meditation Wellness Retreat

You just sit there all day. Sounds easy. You don’t need anything but the floor, right? Not exactly. To best prepare yourself for a meditation retreat, be sure you’re packing:

  • Crystals or other relics
  • Cushion for sitting, or back support (if not provided)
  • Comfortable, loose clothing
  • CBD balm, or muscle relaxant
  • Photos of loved ones (especially on silent retreats, the visual connection can motivate you)

4. Wellness Retreat at the Beach

Sun, sand and lots of time at la playa! If there’s some beach time planned in your agenda, bring along: 

  • Sunscreen
  • Extra swim attire
  • Extra towel
  • Sun hat
  • A good book
  • Hydrating powder to mix with water
  • Aloe or other sunburn relief gel
  • Extra set of sandals

5. Wellness Retreat in Nature

On a nature retreat, there’s going to be plenty of outdoor time. Nature is an incredibly healing atmosphere for any travel experience. This is especially true when you are prepared. Nothing ruins an enjoyable moment like too many bug bites or a sunburn. Pack the following for your nature adventure:

  • Hiking books
  • Bug spray
  • An extra hat
  • Long sleeve and full-length breathable pants
  • Backpack or light-weight tote that slings over your back

What NOT to Bring

Over-packing can actually be worse than under-packing. To make the most of this trip, leave behind the following to clear your mind and suitcase:

  • Too many clothes
  • All of your electronics
  • Wifi adapter (disconnecting is a part of the experience, right?)
  • Your work email
  • Your best jewelry and fanciest clothes
  • High heels
  • Hair dryer/hair spray
  • Perfume
  • Expectations
  • Negativity or judgement

Mental Prep

Once you’ve got the physical elements ready to go, there’s one more very important component prior to take-off — your mind. Here’s a few tips to ensure you’ll be mentally prepared for all the wisdom that is to come: 

  • Positive energy and friendly demeanor
  • Open mind for whatever new experiences may come in the upcoming days
  • Clear out and handle all work obligations prior 
  • Remind family and friends you’ll be on this retreat and disconnected

Before any trip, I always recommend that one checks the temperatures and upcoming weather of their destination.

In addition, ensure your passport is up to date, and any tests or entry regulations are complete in advance. You can also download the wellness packing checklist I use to send out to all my retreaters once they book with me.

Now, it’s time to get packing for your upcoming wellness retreat! We hope these lists were helpful to get you prepared for your adventure ahead.

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