Retreats for mothers that are utterly blissful
Retreats for mothers are tailored, self-care holidays for mums - with baby in tow.
For starters, it's likely to include your baby - the anxiety of leaving them that first, or second, or even 10th time can feel so overwhelming, you won't enjoy being away. And you'd quite like to be somewhere you can do some lovely yoga sessions and have a beauty treatment or two... but also ask all of those questions about pelvic floor trainers you've been curious about, so having some women's health experts on hand would be useful.
Good news: self-care for mums is everywhere, as are urban retreats (with or without baby) and far-flung getaways to sun-soaked destinations like Ibiza and Bali.
Not only are these opportunities to escape the everyday and have some me time (or some me and baby, me and toddler, me and child time), but they're safe spaces to talk, to laugh, to cry, to learn and to talk about this crazy, emotional, life-changing journey known as motherhood. Who knows? You might even meet friends for life. Or feel inspired to make that career change you're suddenly dreaming about...
Best for a mind-body reset: HolyMama
Created by Claudia Spahr to be the kind of retreat she longed for as a mother, HolyMama retreats combine nurturing treatments in a female environment (although some retreats have spaces for partners, too), with stunning surroundings, yoga sessions, nourishing food and childcare.
HolyMama runs retreats for parents and kids of all ages in destinations like Ubud, Bali (31 March - 6 April, 2020), where parents can disconnect and reconnect with daily yoga sessions in the custom-built shala, with onsite spa treatments, gong baths, an infinity pool, a raw, vegan menu, and the amazing experience of living in the jungle, amongst the rice paddies. There's a dedicated children's programme, too.
There are also week-long family retreats in Ibiza (with dates from May - October 2020), with daily yoga (and kids' yoga sessions, too), evening workshops, an organic, vegetarian menu, beauty treatments and a Montessori-based childcare programme.
Binky Felstead's The Mummy Tribe
Best for getting all the answers: The Mummy Tribe
An online publisher and event organiser, The Mummy Tribe is designed for mothers at any stage of the game and hosts useful events for parents in London - their recent talk at the Allbright, Beyond the Fourth Trimester, teamed up with femtech brand Elvie (the makers of the fab pelvic floor trainer and hands-free breast pump) for a no-holds-barred discussion on women's post-natal health, sex after babies, the mental health of new mums and every other question mothers have always had but were afraid to ask.
Mummy Tribe retreats are in an idyllic setting in the East Sussex countryside and include experts from all areas - women's health physios, baby sleep experts, parenting coaches, personal trainers and exercise coaches, fashion stylists, therapists, psychologists and more.
Not only can mums enjoy a range of workouts, get plenty of rest, enjoy some beauty treatments and attend workshops covering everything from post partum mental health to business coaching and pelvic floor restoration, but the online community and articles continue to be a supportive space long after mums and their babes have returned home.
Best for babies: Mamaheaven
Created by Paula Gallardo and Tania Smith, Mamaheaven retreats are a haven for post-natal mothers, designed to assuage new parents' anxieties and create a nurturing, bonding atmosphere for them and their little ones through yoga, massage and baby massage, counselling and workshops.
The retreats take place at Florence House in Seaford, Sussex (the next one is on 17-19 March, 2020), with an emphasis on natural, sustainable parenting. With experts on yoga, nutrition and massage and a creche for babies, there's plenty of opportunity for relaxation and conversation, from birth story exchange to tips on how to boost your confidence now you're a parent. You'll also get to take home a goodie bag packed with organic eco goodies for baby and household.
Best for variety: &Breathe Postnatal
&Breathe has a range of retreats to places both near and far, for mothers at various stages of the parenting game. You'll find postnatal and family retreats in Europe, Africa, the USA and the UK.
Choose from a week-long retreat at Portugal's luxury Martinhal Sagres, winter sun in Essaouira, Morocco, or Manoir La Croix de la Jugie in France, with daily fitness, meditation and mindfulness, personal training and massage during your stay, plus an Ofsted-registered creche and gorgeous, healthy meals. There are also specialist retreats designed with toddlers in mind and ones that cater to parents, grandparents and the kiddos.
We also love that &Breathe hosts 'me-treats', recreating the retreat experience in a home session for your convenience, as well as offering a range of 24-hour, UK-based retreats at top family hotels in Sussex and Hampshire. The next with availability is running March 23-24, and will include a mix of socialising, exercising, pampering and learning how to feel your best post-baby.
Best for Italy: DolceMama
Based in Copenhagen, Denmark, the DolceMama team run yoga retreats for mothers and families in Tuscany, ideally suited to those with children aged three months to five years.
Choose from two different Tuscan locations: Elba Island (for kids one and older, with a beach and more of an emphasis on outdoor activities) and Sansepolcro (for babes three months and up, with a spa).
Not only do you get daily yoga classes, the beauty of the Tuscan countryside and Italian food and hospitality, there's babysitting for the kids during any morning activities and evening yoga sessions or spa treatments, so your child can have a brilliant time painting and singing while you do you.