Wander Women Cabarete:
An Adventure + Aerial Arts Retreat
January 10-15, 2020
Kick off your year right by joining Alexandra Baackes of Alex in Wanderland and Jess Lubin of Good Karma Studio for a five night yoga + aerial arts retreat in Cabarete, Dominican Republic. This retreat is set on the North Coast’s most bohemian beach — brace yourself for six days of aerial and adventures set to a backdrop of white sand beaches, organic healthy eateries, and a charming surf town.
We’ll dive into workshops in aerial hammocks, lyra, and silks, plus swing through the palm trees on an aerial trapeze rig, practice yoga in a treehouse, and enjoy all that cute little Cabarete has to offer. Cabarete is far removed from the all-inclusive hustle and bustle of the east coast, a peaceful and friendly hidden gem whispered about around the world by kite surfers and other adventure seekers.
When we aren’t on the mat or in the air, we’ll be surfing, hiking, watching the sunset from the beach, eating delicious meals, and doing cartwheels on the beach. I’ll be behind the lens every step of the way, ensuring everyone leaves with profile-picture worthy shots of themselves in the air, in their favorite asanas, and smiling in the sun.
Cabarete stole my heart from my very first visit, and I’m just thrilled to show you what makes this one of the Caribbean’s most precious hidden gems. Jess and I can’t wait to share this experience with all of you. After running our first retreat together in St. Pete, Florida in the summer of 2018, we are thrilled to rejoin forces again!
Please note that this retreat is open to all level of yogis and aerialists, from fresh beginner to long-time enthusiast. We’ll split into aerial groups as needed and make sure every skill level is addressed. If you’re a beginner, consider this a taster menu of our favorite aerial apparatuses — Jess will help you find success right away! If you’re a seasoned practitioner, take advantage of this time to hone your craft with a true aerial artist, and enjoy unlimited open gym time in the retreat center’s aerial arts ramp.
The dates of this retreat are January 10-15th. Pricing starts at $1,725 and includes just about everything.
• Five nights accommodation
• Five dinners, five brunches, and five morning smoothies (and one bonus lunch!)
• Four aerial arts workshops, two aerial yoga classes, two mat yoga classes and two trapeze lessons
• A tubing tour to Taino Organic Farm
• A local surf beach excursion
• A tropical aerial photoshoot and drive of professional photos
• A lush welcome bag
• Airport transfers from Puerto Plata + all local transportation
• 5% profit donation to local charities
What’s Not Included
• Meals not included in the itinerary (see more in the FAQ)
• Optional surf lesson ($40) or optional cave tour ($20)
• Airport transfer surcharge for other airports
• Optional activities
• Mandatory travel insurance
Oh, The Places We’ll Go
Subject to change, and expect surprises, but here’s the general idea.
Day 1: Arrivals and a post-travel yin massage yoga class (yes! a massage! during yoga!) followed by sunset welcome drinks and a beachfront getting-to-know-you dinner.
Day 2: Rock a morning aerial hammock workshop before heading into town for lunch at a cute local cafe. After, enjoy time to shop local boutiques, enjoy our pool or beach, and join an optional group excursion to the town’s local caves and swimming hole. Enjoy a later afternoon trapeze class before another beachfront organic dinner at our hotel.
Day 3: Kick off the day with a morning aerial lyra workshop before heading out on a tour of the organic farm that supplies our hotel’s produce, followed by a farm lunch and river tubing tour! Back at the hotel, we’ll chill out to an evening aerial yoga class before dinner under the stars.
Day 4: Start the day with a morning silks workshop before heading off to a hidden local surf beach. Take an optional surf lesson, or beach bum under the palm trees and soak up the bohemian vibes. Back at our hotel, swing between those palm trees at another trapeze class before we sit down to dinner together to gush over our day.
Day 5: Begin the day with a mixed apparatus workshop and tropical aerial photoshoot before heading for lunch at a sustainable local cafe. Enjoy some free time at the beach, pool, or in town before a laid-back aerial yoga class and a goodbye dinner up in the hills above Cabarete, with stunning views over the Dominican Republic’s North Coast.
Day 6: Say farewell to Cabarete with a closing mat class in the treehouse, followed by a beachfront brunch at a colorful, organic cafe.
Come Fly With Us
Hi! My name is Alexandra Baackes, and I’m an aerial arts and travel addict. I’ve been exploring the Caribbean for years as an independent traveler, and so I knew I had found something special when I first fell in love with Cabarete. I had no idea this kind of destination — independent, laid-back, bohemian — existed in the Dominican Republic. Right away, I knew I had to share it with all of you!
I’m absolutely thrilled to be sharing this dream trip with what is sure to be a kick-ass group of women. I’m an RYT 200 Registered Yoga Teacher, a Buti Bands and Sculpt instructor, an aerial arts enthusiast, and a regular yoga practitioner for over a decade.
Jess Lubin returned to her hometown of Albany after her life path took her around the globe, living and studying yoga in Guatemala and India. She opened Good Karma Studio, the first and only aerial yoga studio in Albany, New York in 2011. Jessica has since studied & trained under Tribe Yoga, Gravotonics, Rolf Gates, Janet Stone, Shiva Rea, Yoga Works NYC, Kula Yoga’s Schuyler Grant, and Sadie Nardini. She’s developed a cult following in Upstate New York and loves to teach, to learn, to be inspired and to inspire!
Where We’ll Stay
We’ll be staying at a beachfront aerial yoga retreat center on Kite Beach in Cabarete. There’s an onsite pool, restaurant, bar, extensive gym, and kitesurfing school — and you’re just steps away from the ocean. All that is in addition to the treehouse yoga shala, the aerial facilities, and the trapeze rig that we’ll be playing on daily!
The focus of the resort is to be as eco-friendly, sustainable and self-sufficient as possible. As such, facilities are basic — the hotel is solar powered, and the ventilation system uses the wind as a natural cooling element instead of high energy consuming air conditioning, tiled floors keep the heat down and low energy fans keep the air from getting stale. The hotel uses multiple rainwater collection systems for gardens and hotel maintenance, uses low wattage light bulbs, low energy consumption fans in all our rooms and low flow water taps in the bathrooms. They hang dry the laundry, use environmentally conscious cleaning products, and have embraced every-other-day room cleaning, as daily cleaning is one of the biggest wastes of natural resources in the hotel industry — all this to say, they walk the walk when it comes to being an eco-hotel! Lots of green vegetation also helps to reduce the heat during the hottest months. As an eco-friendly hotel, they don’t offer a lot of extras, instead they offer environmentally conscious, comfortable rooms you can feel restful and relaxed in, knowing you’re leaving a minimal carbon footprint!
Shared rooms come with two queen sized beds or one queen and one single. Of course you can room with a friend but if you’re traveling solo, fear not, so are most of our Wander Women guests! We’ll do our best to pair you with someone we think you’ll click with based on your intake forms — and we’ll all be besties by the end anyway. Private rooms are available.
What We’ll Eat
The resort’s onsite restaurant will host our daily breakfasts and most of our dinners. Our meals will be healthy, organic, and locally grown. Onsite permaculture gardens and an off-site organic aquaponics farm, Taino Farm, produce much of the organic food served there. The Taino Organic Farm is cutting edge for the region, with modern aquaponics and water management systems, vermiculture, animal husbandry practices, as well as apiculture and aquaculture. The systems are so advanced for the Dominican Republic that some of the country’s best Universities take field trips out to visit the farm to learn more about its systems. We’ll visit Taino Farm for a farm tour, tubing trip, and fresh farm lunch! Working together with their organic farm, our host hotel has planted over 2,000 trees, further offsetting their carbon emissions. That’s more than any other hotel in the region!
For lunch, we’ll visit the best of Cabarete’s cutes and delicious healthy café scene — from one that supports a nonprofit organization that works to house street children in the Dominican Republic to another that is an industry leader in recovering respectful beekeeping practices, producing quality goods from their own hives.
For our final night, we’ll have a special farewell dinner at a beautiful restaurant in the Cabarete Mountains, with stunning views of the island.
How to Get to Cabarete
The retreat center a twenty minute cab ride from Puerto Plata Airport (POP), to which transfers are included. There are direct flights from several North American cities.
We strongly recommend flying in and out of Puerto Plata! However, you can also fly in and out of Santiago Airport (STI), an hour and forty five minute cab ride away, for a $65 surcharge each way, or Santo Domingo (SDQ), a three and a half hour cab ride away, for a $165 surcharge.
Is It Safe to Go to the Dominican Republic Right Now?
Needless to say, we would never hold a retreat in a destination where we didn’t feel fully confident of your safety, and our own. We will take the same safety precautions we would take anywhere in the world. During my own research trip to the Dominican Republic in February of 2019, I rode in local transportation, stayed in local guesthouses, and felt comfortable and at ease my entire trip.
The incidents that have occurred, launching a media frenzy around the Dominican Republic, have been confined to a handful of all-inclusive resorts along the south coast. The distance between where these isolated events took place and Cabarete, a laid-back beach town with nary an all-inclusive in sight, is over six hours. There are currently no travel alerts from the US Department of State in place for the Dominican Republic, where the travel advisory status remains at “Level Two: Exercise Increased Caution” — the same ranking currently assigned to Germany, Belgium, and Italy.
Of the ten million residents of the Dominican Republic, a vast number rely on tourism to feed their families — we look forward to supporting the local economy with our trip. Read more from our host resort’s onsite yoga teacher on this very topic.
A $500 non-refundable deposit is required to reserve your spot. Payment plans are available. Sign up for my newsletter to be the first to know when enrollment opens on future retreats!
Remember, don’t hesitate to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any and all questions or concerns over if this is the right retreat for you. I’d love to chat!
Why women only?
Girls just wanna have fun!
Will I have time to do my own thing?
This is your retreat and I want you to make it exactly what you want! Any time you want to bow out to have some “me-time” or do your own thing, that’s totally cool.
What’s the deal with meals?
We know everyone has different preferences when it comes to aerial classes on a full or empty stomach! Depending on your preferences, you can opt to have the included smoothie of the day before the morning class and enjoy the brunch of the day post-class, or you can have both in the morning and join us at our favorite local cafes for lunch — expect to spend $5-10 per day on outside meals, if you choose.
Can I do a payment plan and pay in installments?
Absolutely. We want to make this happen for you. Email me at email@example.com.
Will I need travel insurance?
Yes, everyone will be required to have travel insurance for the duration of the trip. Our affiliate, World Nomads offers coverage at affordable rates.
Is there an age requirement?
We require guests to be 18 or older.
What is the refund policy?
The $500 deposit to secure your space is non-refundable. Beyond that, if you cancel at least 60 days before departure, you’ll receive 100% of your remaining retreat fee back. If you cancel between 30-60 days before departure, you’ll receive a 50% refund. Cancellation less than 30 days before departure will result in a 0% refund.
Is there a waiting list?
I will have a waiting list on a first-come, first-served basis in case spaces open up. If the retreat is full and you’re still interested, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will add you to the waiting list.
I still have questions, or cute photos of my dog. Can I contact you?
Um, yes please! My email is email@example.com.