8 Days Beginners Tai Chi and Qigong Holidays in Zante, Greece

  • Natural Zest Retreat Center, Zakynthos, Ionian Islands, Greece

8 Days Beginners Tai Chi and Qigong Holidays in Zante, Greece

  • Natural Zest Retreat Center, Zakynthos, Ionian Islands, Greece

Tai Chi and Qigong Holidays Greece

This holiday combines the best of Greece. Join your host at a beautiful island and find your inner peace and strength. During this holiday, you will be surrounded by breath-taking sceneries and crystal clear swimming beaches that will nourish your mind, body, and soul. Enjoy sunrise hikes, Tai Chi classes, meditation and Qigong sessions, and Chi Kung lessons, take a trip to beautiful healing natural spa waters, and a boat excursion through landscapes that will surprise you!

Highlights

  • Enjoy sunrise hikes and Qigong practices
  • Up to six hours of daily Tai Chi and Qigong sessions
  • Sunset Qigong practice above the famous Ship Wreck
  • Experience a boat excursion to the famous shipwreck and the Blue Caves
  • Take a trip to the beautiful Xigia healing natural spa waters
  • Tai Chi booklet of what you learn and contacts information
  • 7 nights shared accommodation
  • 3 daily healthy meals plus water
  • Airport transfers
  • 7 days with instruction
  • Greek, English
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During this training, you will stay either in a shared or a private room at the Natural Zest Retreat Center. The rustic apartments and studios are peacefully located 50 meters away from a crystal clear swimming beach.

There are five rooms offering en-suite accommodation that are suitable as either twin, double, or single accommodation. These rooms are all traditionally Greek and are furnished with simple white comfortable bedding, bedside tables, lamps, fridge freezer, and air-conditioning.

All the en-suite bathrooms are comprised of a sink, a toilet, and a shower. The room amenities are rustic and you will not find the latest plasma television or mini bar, however you will find a comfortable bed, a breathtaking sea view, with the sounds of the waves to nurture your soul, and a space in which to relax, rest, and rejuvenate.

Away from the main crowds, the location is ideal to support you on your Tai Chi and Qigong journey. Surrounded by olive groves, it really is a hidden treasure and haven for relaxation.

The retreat is genuine, simple, and at one with nature and this is reflected in the accommodation. You won’t find any shiny cutting edge technology or luxuries in materials on the retreat but you will experience a warm simplistic accommodation in traditional Greek family hospitality style.

This training is designed for those who wish to discover their inner strength with the practice of Tai Chi and Qigong. During this training designed for beginners, you will practice up to six hours of Tai Chi and Qigong sessions daily.

You will enjoy sunrise hikes and Qigong practices above a shipwreck, experience a boat excursion to the famous shipwreck and the Blue Caves, and take a trip to the beautiful Xigia healing natural spa waters. You wil also receive a Tai Chi booklet so you can register what you learn and keep the contacts for future information and to keep you motivated.

About Tai Chi

Tai Chi is a Chinese exercise designed to relax the body and mind, and to increase physical and mental energy (chi). The result is better health and a feeling of well-being. It provides gentle physical movement of joints and muscles, relaxes the body and the mind, and develops concentration.

Tai Chi is designed to help the body maintain balance and flow. Tai Chi advocates say that this soft martial art helps to release the energy flows from the body. When these energies are trapped, the body can become ill and unwell.

About Qigong

Qigong creates an awareness of and influences dimensions of your being that are not part of traditional exercise programs. Most other forms of exercise do not involve the meridian system, nor do they emphasize the importance of including mindful intent, breathing techniques with physical movements. When these dimensions are added, the benefits of exercise increase exponentially.

The gentle, rhythmic movements of Qigong reduce stress, build stamina, increase vitality, and enhance the immune system. It has also been found to improve cardiovascular, respiratory, circulatory, lymphatic, and digestive functions.

Sample daily schedule

  • 08:00 Wake up tea
  • 08:30 Qigong
  • 09:00 Breakfast
  • 09:30 Tai Chi walk
  • 10:00 Tai Chi lesson
  • 11:00 Tea break
  • 11:30 Tai Chi lesson
  • 12:30 Meditation
  • 13:00 Lunch followed by free time
  • 17:00 Tai Chi lesson
  • 19:00 Meditation or Qigong
  • 19:30 Dinner
  • 20:30 Chill time

This training includes a boat excursion to the famous shipwreck and the Blue Caves, and a trip to the beautiful Xigia healing natural spa waters. The shipwreck is the most famous of the beaches of Zakynthos Greece. It is situated on the eastern part of the island, near the village of Anafotiria.

The official name of the beach is Agios Georgios. The beach took it name from the ship that transported illegally cigarettes in 1983, and washed up on the beach which, with the years passing, grew up around it.

The ruins of the ship are in the middle of a beautiful white sandy beach with crystalline waters. The beach is surrounded by vertical rocky cliffs, creating a very impressive picture. You will go by a local boat to visit the crystal clear waters ad enchanting caves.

The Xigia Beach is in the north of Zante and offers a unique chance to go to a health spa for free! The water here has high sulphur content, reputed to be good for skin, removing cellulite, relieving arthritis, and for other minor ailments.

You will treat yourself with a pampering swim, so you can return home healthier and revitalized! The beach is small and uncrowded, perfect for a tranquil time to bathe in the healing waters.

If you are keen to see some of the more historical sites on the island of Zante, then a trip up Mount Skopos to see the stunning monastery at the top should be on your list of things to do. Recently renovated, the Skopiotissa Monastery is really stunning – perched on top of the mountain with sweeping island views all around. Natural Zest offer an sunrise guided walk never to be forgotten.

This training will take place at the Natural Zest Retreat Center in Zante, Greece. The island of Zakynthos or Zante is a very popular destination, called by the Venetian "the flower of the orient," for being one of the most beautiful islands of the Ionians.

The island has impressive landscapes, long golden sandy beaches diving into crystalline waters, a marine park for the protection of the sea-turtle, beautiful pine-covered mountains, traditional villages with stone houses, and a charming capital to offer. There are also many beautiful orthodox churches, archaeological sites, and Venetian castles.

Nearby places

  • Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH) - 35 minutes

Three daily healthy meals plus water and tea will be served during this training. You will also enjoy a meal in a traditional Greek restaurant. Special dietary requirements will be catered with raw, cooked, and vegetarian options.

During your free time, you will have lots of options to see and do such as sunbathing, swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, paddle boarding, hiking, cycling, sight seeing, horse riding, and many more. If you are keen to see some of the more historical sites on the island of Zante, then a trip up Mount Skopos to see the stunning monastery at the top should be on your list of things to do.

Recently renovated, the Skopiotissa Monastery is really stunning, perched on top of the mountain with sweeping island views all around. Natural Zest offers an sunrise guided walk never to be forgotten.

You can also enjoy a massage or body treatment for an additional cost. There is a near by spa that offers a range of treatments in your own environment.

There is a near by spa that offers a range of treatments also massage in your own environment can be arranged on request at an extra fee.

  • 1 meal in a traditional Greek restaurant
  • 3 daily healthy meals plus tea and water
  • 7 nights shared accommodation
  • A boat excursion to the famous shipwreck and the Blue Caves
  • A Tai Chi booklet to register what you learn
  • A trip to the beautiful Xigia healing natural spa waters
  • Transfer from and to Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH)
  • Up to six hours of Tai Chi and Qigong sessions daily
  • Additional activities
  • Additional meals
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Airfare
  • Spa treatments
  • Travel insurance

Arrival by airplane

Please book your flight to arrive at Zakynthos International Airport (ZTH). Transfer from and to this airport is included in the price. Natural Zest will pick you up from the airport. Alternatively, you can arrive to Araxos Airport (GPA). Transfer from and to is airport is available upon request.

There are direct flights offered to Zakynthos from April to the end of October. You can also take a 45-minute connecting flight via Athens International Airport "Eleftherios Venizelos" (ATH) to Zakynthos.

Arrival by bus

There is a daily bus service including the ferry available to arrive at Zakynthos. The journey is approximately seven hours.

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 30% of the total price.
  • The deposit is fully refundable if the booking is cancelled up to 60 days before the arrival date.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid on arrival.

Testimonials

  • Review by Adele

    "We spend a week in NaturalZest and we were lucky enough to experience Tai Chi for the first time. Nasos found the perfect spot to introduce us to it. The beach at sunset was peaceful and relaxing and we were really surprised at how much we enjoyed Tai Chi itself. We learnt how to become aware of incorrect body posture and how to breathe deeply for relaxation. We have done Tai Chi a few more times with Nas who really is a wonderful teacher, and the peace that it brings to the mind and body is really amazing!!!"

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Nick from United Kingdom

    "I spent a week with Nasos learning Tai Chi from scratch, 2 sessions a day and it's difficult to know where to start but I will say Nasos is the most patient and subtle teacher I have had for anything and the calm, energy and general well being (a relaxed, confident and greater awareness way) that tai chi can give you just has to be experienced to understand. I had a week and would like 6 months of it, I was looked after brilliantly! Nasos is surely a great teacher of Tai Chi and I absolutely loved it. Great location, great relaxed teaching from a great teacher who I now feel fortunate enough to call a friend, 11/10 for the whole experience, and something that can stay with you forever, my advice, just do it, you won't regret it, tai chi can only ever have positive impact I believe and I for one can't wait to go again and learn more!!!"

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Deborah

    " wanted to begin a practice in Tai Chi, but as I have a very intensive work life where I am posted in remote locations, I have no access to learn. I was looking for a teacher to show me the very basics in an intensive one-week course, so I can take something back with me to add to my daily life. Finding Nas was an amazing blessing! Nas is a great teacher – he is patient, never gets frustrated and has the most serene ability to review things over and over again to help one understand the subtle and specific points of the form. More than anything, Nas is a kind and generous person, whose energy I deeply appreciated bringing into my life. He and his wife Julie took great care of me, cooking delicious Greek meals, blending up fantastic juices and showing me stunning beaches. If you are looking for lots of stimulation, parties or running around, look elsewhere – but if you want to spend a few weeks with beautiful people, in a beautiful location, learning a beautiful art form – than please visit Nas and Julie!"

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Carol Richardson

    "Nas is a Tai Chi expert and has trained in China with well know professors in the Yang tradition. He is very knowledgeable and able to transmit the finer points of The Form. He really cares that his students get what they want from their retreat and is an enthusiastic and patient teacher. Continuous repetition can be tedious but Nas’s gentle humour transforms it into an enjoyable experience. By the end of one week I was able to complete the first part of The Form well enough for me to practice on my own at home without having to stop and think about which movement comes next. Filming Nas doing the first part of the Form was a useful aide memoir when I got home and I forgot some of the details.Nas’s dream is to run his own Tai Chi and Qigong school and I wish him every success with this endeavour. He truly deserves it!!! "

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Lottie from United Kingdom

    "The two weeks that I spent at NaturalZest with Nas and Julie were beyond peaceful and transformational. Nas is an incredibly gifted teacher, who took all the time and effort in the world to make sure that my first experience of Tai Chi and Chi Gong were the best I could have. I arrived very exhausted with little sleep and a very poor diet, and over the 2 weeks Nas and Julie helped transform my view on food and diet alongside physical and spiritual movements. Every tiny detail was taken care of, and the entire time was tailored to suit my exact needs. I was new to Tai Chi and Chi Gong and through the amazing teaching of Nas, I now couldn’t imagine it not being a part of my every day - the effects on my daily life are beyond words!! The entire experience was one of a kind and one that I sincerely hope to repeat. Nas and Julie are at the centre of this amazing programme, and it’s due to their dedication and experience that the teaching comes through so well, I absolutely cannot recommend enough!!"

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Sara from United Kingdom

    "We spent a fortnight with Nas and Julie last April. We stayed in a beautiful villa right by the sea surrounded by wild spring flowers, by the scent of jasmine and by birdsong with the Mountains of kefalonia on the horizon: an idyllic setting. We learned a routine of Qi Gong moves that we practiced each morning, discovering how breath and movement bring forth calmness and vitality. We learned Tai Chi walking, a slow and sustained physical mediation that grounds and connects body and mind. We learned the first 14 postures of the long Tai Chi form, a sequence of flowing movement practice that offers ongoing inspiration and physical discipline. Amidst this wealth of nourishment, both physical and spiritual, it was Nas and Julie’s attentiveness and humanity that transformed this holiday from a pleasure into a revelation. We learned a way of living that has proved a turning point for me and my partner. Five weeks after leaving we continue to practice Qi Gong and Tai Chi in our local park each morning. Our two weeks with NaturalZest has been an inspiring and enduring experience. If you are seeking health, happiness and well being, Nas and Julie will lead you well on your way."

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Lawrecen

    "My partner and I recently visited NaturalZest for two weeks and the experience has genuinely improved our lives. Nas is friendly,open and With great patience, skill and clarity introduced us to Tai Chi and Qi Gong, something neither of us had experienced before. This physical work has given us an exercise program which is natural, safe, healthy and life enhancing. Now, every morning we get up, go to the park and begin the day by doing our Qi Gong warm up and our Tai Chi routine to the sun, enjoying the bird song and the beautiful trees in the park!! If you despair of going to the gym and suffering injuries then the NaturalZest experience is for you. We cannot recommend them too highly."

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Vibeke from Norway

    "Dear NaturalZest"

    "I want to thank you for a Wonderful Week. Nas, I really going to miss our Tai Chi / Qigong sessions. I immediately felt something 'clicking' in me when going through the exercises. You are a great teacher and your Energy is amazing and yet so calm! Wonderful!!!This was exactly what i had hoped for,so thanks again for making everything possible. I am going to miss you all - I feel like I may have friends for life, and I would love to stay in touch. If any of you should ever come to Denmark do let me know! I hope to see you again. Xx Kathrina Martinsen Denmark"

    "Doing Tai Chi with Nasos was a fantastic experience. Natural Zest has a lovely atmosphere and Nasos is a very professional and calm teacher. His caring way of passing on his knowledge makes you feel wonderful. I left each lesson with a clear mind feeling totally destressed. Grateful greetings."

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Helen from United Kingdom

    "It's the best health and relaxation holiday that I have been on!! The Tai Chi linked with meditation was inspirational!! Being on your balcony, feeling the warmth of the sun and having my own very patient 1:1 teacher encouraging me and telling me 'very nice' when I nearly get something right, was fantastic!! Nas is a great teacher xx"

    Natural Zest website, edited

  • Review by Katri Kaasik from Esthonia

    "Couple of month ago I experienced a little bit (just one week) of Tai Chi with Nasos. And today I´m feeling sensations I had, when we practiced!!! How light and happy I felt, how relaxed and at ease, how simple and natural, I really can hear the sounds around me, the air aorund and I can see that peaceful smile on my teacher! Yes I´m feeling it all today, when lots of days have passed... Thank You Nasos for guiding me there! !! When I think of Tai Chi, then I don´t think of exercises, what first comes into my mind is Nature, in all means: majestic mountains, the sound of birds (and frogs , the beautiful sunset, the smell of a fresh moist of the evening, and a peaceful loving being in all that when moving softly through the air. This is Tai Chi for me!!! I thought I would write something short, but hey, I could go on and on. I guess I miss it..."

    Natural Zest website, edited

Ionian Islands, Greece

Natural Zest offers Tai Chi Yang holidays for beginners in Messinia and Zante, Greece. The retreat center is in 5000 square meters of nature.

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8 days / 7 nights

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