Discovering the True Zen of Travel

~ Travel Yoga Journey ~

Written by Becky Khalil

As I sit in a quaint coffee shop just off the main square in the beautiful town of Antigua, Guatemala, I watch the world outside pass by. The booksellers promoting their stalls, the painters readily available to paint a portrait, the children performing in the street, the cafeterias offering coffee outside in the sunshine, the locals resting in the shade and of course the backpackers who seek with an inquisitive nature how this part of the world works in its everyday living.

It isn’t only Guatemala that connects backpackers to the Zen of travel. It just so happens that at the time of writing, Guatemala is where I find myself. What you are about to read can be used in reference to any part of the world.

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Why do people travel? Why do people put themselves in that awkward situation of not knowing anybody; being alone; having outgoings rocket ten times higher than any incoming, and leaving pretty much all comforts at the door of the plane they board when they leave their home country? Think about it, why on earth would people want to do that?

An uncertain, thrilling and enriching experience.. 

It is madness, right…. or is it? How many people do you know who have travelled, whether for a week or for a year, and have returned home richer in understanding, knowledge, maturity, outlook and personality? Those exact people who now may have a completely different understanding in life are those crazy people who put themselves in that awkward situation and as a result transitioned through some level of the Zen of travel.

It is very hard to explain to somebody who hasn’t backpacked why the lifestyle is so uncertain yet so thrilling, so expensive yet so rich and is a journey on a road as clear as mud which leads only to complete clarity. Forgive me for trying.

Travelling is uncertain because you never know who you are going to meet or where you are going to end up. It’s thrilling because not knowing brings more opportunities.  It’s rich because the contrast of lifestyles, activities and sights (not only physical places) overpower anything you have witnessed before. Because of all of the above, you are led down a road as clear as you make it due to forever changing perspectives, principles, priorities, conflicts, debates and arguments. When you get to the end you have a much deeper understanding of things that happen in the world as a whole. For this reason the Zen of travel is a contrast in itself.

Different types of the Zen of travel

There are different levels of the Zen of travel however, and which level you transition through depends on what style of traveller you are and for how long you travel. It is easy to see a backpacker as a backpacker and that is that but this is certainly not the case. After many years of travelling the world alone I have discovered several styles of travelling, general motivations behind each one and typical characteristics for people in each group.

As a general overview I have discovered five main groups of travellers.

Group 1

Group 1 are people who tend to travel with a companion, will travel for a matter of weeks with an itinerary or in a tour group to tourist hot spots and who will have a return ticket back to their home country.

Group 2

Group 2 are people who travel sometimes alone or sometimes with a companion. They will travel for a matter of months with either no return ticket or a return ticket which is changeable, and will have a rough idea of where they wish to go but will also stick to tourist hotspots.

Group 3

Group 3 are people who tend to travel alone for anytime up to or over a year and who tend to have no plans, just an idea of continents they wish to visit. They will try to venture off the beaten track more than groups 1 and 2.

Group 4

Group 4 are people who will always travel alone and are in search of something completely opposite of their life at home and usually different to most other travellers. People in group 4 tend to travel for a matter of years in search of voluntary placements to gain life experience from places not many travellers tend to venture or paid work to help fund their travels, and usually with the intention of staying in one place for a matter of months.

Group 5

Group 5 are people who extend that of group 4. People in group 5 turn travelling from an activity into a lifestyle, perhaps returning home to visit but always with the intention of returning back to their life out in the world. There is no time limit for a person who is in group 5; it could be for 5 years of 15 years. The longest amount of time I have learned about is a friend who has been travelling for 14 years.

Discovering a totality of understanding

The true Zen of travel can be experienced anywhere in the world; all you need is the desire for adventure. Which level of Zen you are susceptible to depends on how awkward and crazy you want to make your initial situation. The more you travel the more tolerance you will have to awkward and crazy travelling.

How is this connected to a Yoga Training

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There is always that moment that you decide you want to dive in a little deeper into the experience and teachings of Yoga. You know that to have the world at your feet and the desire to experience Yoga as a lifestyle is going to give you a holistic understanding of the teachings, rituals, rights and principles of this ancient tradition. To share the space with like minded people, to grow an international community which spans from strangers to friends, and where you can learn from all those around you will offer you an dimension of life that could be missing at home. Maybe yes, maybe no? But you will never know until you go. This is what is offered to you on a Yoga teacher training. All of this and more…

You get to cross a country, explore another culture, eat from the earth, feel the vibrations of another corner of the world. But most of all you get to do it all alone. The most amazing and magical thing about Yoga teacher training courses are that you go alone. You bask in the silence of travel until you arrive to a welcoming family of international Yoga devotees who are all in the same position.

The excitement, aspiration and inquisitiveness emotions run through you and you know that you are safe. You are held, heard, healed and whole.

 Always remember the reason why you do it; to experience the true Zen of travel.

We have a variety of Yin Yoga training’s that keep topping up your heart, mind and soul:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training Online:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Functional Anatomy and Chinese Medicine
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Pranayama, Meditation and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 80 hour Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Neuroplasticity and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Essential Oils and Emotional Intelligence

Residential Yin Yoga Teacher Training:

Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Functional Anatomy and Chinese Medicine
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 100 hour Pranayama, Meditation and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 80 hour Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Neuroplasticity and Mindfulness
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 50 hour Essential Oils and Emotional Intelligence
Yin Yoga Teacher Training: 200 hour 5 Bodies Approach


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Yin Yoga Teacher Training Guatemala

We also have a variety of Yin Yoga Retreats and Yoga Holidays:

Yin Yang Yoga Retreat Spain: Rest and Revive Retreat
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