Disclosure: Complimentary ticket received for review purposes.
This past weekend, Wanderlust, producer of the largest yoga lifestyle events in the world, returned to Turtle Bay Resort to celebrate the fifth anniversary of Wanderlust O'ahu. The 4 day event was headlined by yoga superstars and allowed attendees to choose their own adventure from a variety of activities including live music, meditation, surfing, paddle boarding, eco-kayaking, explorative hikes, running treks and fine dining.
I was only able to attend one day at the Festival, but I had such an amazing time that next year I plan to return with friends for the entire weekend! We arrived Saturday morning about an hour before our first class and breezed through check-in. The event is very well organized and the staff and volunteers were always helpful.
After we got our bands, we headed to the Great Lawn where a few vendors were open for breakfast. The mood was fresh and relaxing. After some yummy crepes, we headed to the Indigo workshop, a bonus activity, led by Island Bungalow Hawaii. This class was super fun as we learned different techniques to create our own beautiful all natural indigo-dyed scarf.
|The instructor shows us different techniques to use.|
|Dipping a scarf in the natural indigo dye.|
|They were right! You can't go wrong with indigo.|
We left our scarves to dry and headed over to the Beauty Bar by Aveda, a Wanderlust partner. Braids were everything at Wanderlust and since our next event promised a physical exertion level of 3 - intense and sweaty, my Aveda expert quickly braided by bangs back into a pretty albeit secured crown. I loved it!
Now that we were ready, we took our yoga mats and headed away from the resort towards the harbor to an open space overlooking the beach named the Haven. Here, with a gorgeous view of the ocean, we took an intermediate FitFlow class led by Briohny Smyth and MacKenzie Miller. FitFlow is a total-body experience combining yoga with high intensity interval training aka HIIT. This class was a definite challenge for me as it began with four rounds of heart pumping HIIT exercises like burpees and v-ups followed by a vigorous yoga flow that wasn't any easier. But taking the class in a group setting at Wanderlust gave me the motivation I needed to keep going and get through to the end. The feeling of accomplishment was pretty amazing.
|Our view on the way to FitFlow.|
|Instructors Briohny Smyth and MacKenzie Miller.|
|Trying to keep up with the pace of the yoga flow.|
We returned to the Great Lawn to find it alive with yogis buzzing about, relaxing, and connecting with one another. We quickly got in line for some henna art and then enjoyed some acai bowls while taking in the sights and sounds of the festival.
|Beautiful flower crown making.|
|Yogis relaxing and of course, practicing yoga poses.|
|Beautiful henna art for a fee.|
|Refueling with an acai bowl.|
After our break we were ready for our last event of the day, a 90 minute coastal journey guided by Kahokule'a Haiku, an award winning Native Hawaiian Cultural Educator and licensed Hawaiian Kahu. The relaxing hike was the perfect way to end my Wanderlust experience. I enjoyed the walk along the coast and enjoyed even more listening to Hoku share with us the culture and history of Hawaii.
|Our guide, Kahokule'a Haiku starting the hike with a chant.|
|Attendees enjoyed learning about Hawaiian culture and history as well as plants along our path.|
|A view of the beautiful Turtle Bay Resort on our hike.|
|Watching SUP Yoga from a distance.|
|My favorite story was the legend of the Naupaka flower.|
The mission of Wanderlust is to help you find your true north - to cultivate your best self. My experience taught me the importance of being aware. I noticed that throughout my day at Wanderlust, I really enjoyed being present in every moment. I realized that once I turned off the distractions, my experience became a hundred times better and more enjoyable. I am now motivated to strive to live a mindful life and to inspire my children to do the same. In doing so, I hope to put them on the path of finding their true north as well.
Thank you to Wanderlust for sponsoring my ticket and for the amazing experience and journey!