Talalla – Reunions, relaxation & rediscovery of self

Reuniting with my best friend, after 2.5 years of long distance love, on a tropic island, at a wellness retreat…I mean, I couldn’t have planned it better myself. Except, I mean, I did.

Poor Margaret had no more time than to have a shower and lie down briefly before I whisked her off to the southern coastal town of Talalla, about 3 hours from Colombo.

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We had booked a 5 night, 6 day wellness retreat with Talalla Resort, located about 30 minutes east from the popular beach town of Marissa. We’d both had pretty crazy years, so this would not only be an ideal way to re-centre, but also the perfect setting in which to reconnect.

Margaret and I met in Central America, both on our own solo journeys, and connected immediately. We’ve been super lucky that we’ve been able to maintain such a strong friendship after limited days together and thousands of miles (and time) between us. But nothing was ever going to come close to sharing our experiences together again, so after a year or so of back and forth, we got it together!

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At Talalla you choose to do retreats solely based around yoga or even surfing, but it was the wellness package, featuring a mix of yoga, Pilates, boxing, surfing, and a bunch of other activities, that really spoke to the goldfish in me.

If you’ve followed my posts at all in the past, you’ll know that I’m terrible at switching off and winding down, especially in a new country. My fear of missing out on a potentially awesome experience makes me anxious af.

So starting my holiday somewhere that I was being encouraged to stop, think, and relax was exactly what my tired little brain needed.

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Many coconuts were harmed in the enjoyment of this retreat

Our mornings at Talalla were welcomed with sunrise meditation, followed by Pilates or Boxilates (an ingenious combo of Pilates and boxing) and then breakfast.

I must mention that the food here is phenomenal, a seminal smorgasbord of local delights, as well as a couple of international flavours thrown in for good measure. Any hopes I had to also slim down at this retreat were quickly dashed as I continually went back for a third serving.

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Fro-town, population me

Afternoons contained writing exercises, surfing lessons, cooking classes, free time, or trips to local towns if you so desired. See, here was the best thing about Talalla – you didn’t have to do anything you didn’t want to do. This was your time to relax and recharge the way that suited you best.

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On day three we went on a morning safari, but I need to dedicate a whole post to that. You’ll see why!

Our guides for the week, Jenna and Lauren, also took the time to conduct one-on-ones with each of us to discuss our intentions for the retreat and really delve into any physical or emotion barriers that had been holding us back, which was unexpectedly emotional for me (but in a good way!). Personal recognition and growth has been a massive thing for me and this was the perfect avenue to release the insecurities and trauma i’d been holding on to.

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Outdoor shower and swimsuit appreciation

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On the second day of the retreat, we had an afternoon surfing lesson planned. I have always been ashamed that I am an Aussie who can’t, and never has, leaned to surf. I’ve always loved and grown up by the water, but as a nervy kid, who got embarrassed easily, it was all a bit too hard basket.

But this was my time to shine! I was going to try to surf, I was going to stand up and I was going to make my island nation proud!

It also probably helped that my retreat group was made up of the best bunch of supportive babes, helping with any performance anxiety I may have been feeling about not making a fool of myself.

Please follow my surfing journey below…

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The babe van

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Heart palpitations at the killer waves
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Waiting for the perfect set to roll through
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And she’s up!
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Did it, done it, ticked it off the list!

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Super chuffed

We were also fortunate to participate in a cooking class with a Talalla local (who had the CUTEST kid ever), who showed us how to perfect a range of traditional dishes such as pumpkin curry, dahl, bean curry and even a mango curry – sounds weird but it is amazing!

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Our last couple of days at Talalla were filled with lots of free time, which Marge and I used to explore the coast a little, as well as the chance to reflect on some intentions we set in writing tasks at the start of the week.

Soul fulfilling, emotional, joyous and stuffed with love, a week at Talalla was my own little piece of healing heaven. A couple of snaps of the final days of beached bliss below 🙂

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