7 of the best bootcamps around the world

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If you don’t feel like joining the hordes of people at the local gym this January or if you’re completely new to exercise and have no idea where to start, one way to avoid the crowds and not feel out of place is to book a healthy fitness bootcamp break. More and more people are booking these type of trips to get beach ready as soon as possible — plus it’s a perfect holiday for both singles and couples who want to kickstart a health plan.

Searching on Google for bootcamps yields more than four million results, so it’s hard to know what the best bootcamp to choose is. You may want a high intensity with no alcohol affair, or something more suited to the mind as well as body. We have a selection of the best places around the world for active holidays from high-intensity interval training to yoga retreats to surfing breaks and more.

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1. Klafenfurt, Austria

(Photo courtesy of VIVAMAYR Austria)

VIVAMAYR Maria Wörth is not just a fitness destination but also a medical spa, so you can get fit and get well at the same time. You can opt for immune-boosting therapies, detox while doing a spot of golf, waterskiing, cycling or rowing. Make sure you take a dip in the crystal clear lake as cold water is proven to help your fitness recovery and weight loss goals.

Pricing: Pricing found on Healing Holidays starts at £1,899 per person based on two people sharing or £2,175 for single use. Prices include transfers, full board, daily activities, accommodation, basic medical programme and personalised diet.

How to get there: EasyJet has nonstop flights from London Stansted (STN) or London Gatwick (LGW) to Ljubljana (LJU) in Slovenia. As of September, British Airways will also fly to LJU from London Heathrow (LHR). Flight time is two hours and the VIVAMAYR is a 50-minute transfer. Prices average around £47 return.

Read More: 7 best sunny winter escapes

2. Malaga, Spain

Fitness and weight management retreats are a specialism of Shanti-Som. Included in the programme are pilates and yoga classes, personal training and group training, group hikes, meditation and access to the spa and massage menu. At the end of the retreat, you also receive nutrition advice to make sure you keep up the good work you did during the week.

Pricing: Prices on Healing Holidays start at £1,999 each per person based on two people sharing for seven nights, or £2,369 for singles. Prices include transfers, full board, accommodation and a seven-night programme.

How to get there: Norwegian Air, Ryanair, EasyJet and British Airways all fly direct to Malaga (AGP) from London airports. Additionally, several carriers also fly nonstop from AGP to Bristol (BRS), Birmingham (BHX), Manchester (MAN), Liverpool (LPL), Newcastle (NCL), Edinburgh (EDI) and Glasgow (GLA). Prices average around £53 round-trip or for from as low as £0.50 and 10,000 Avios one-way off-peak with BA from London.

3. Lisbon, Portugal

(Photo courtesy of Palacio Estoril Hotel)

If you aren’t sold on a full body bootcamp and hate the gym, then perhaps head out of your comfort zone and try the experience of surf and spa at the award-winning Palacio Banyan Tree Spa. Included in the programme are private surf lessons, surf equipment and also access to the spa and gym as well as two massages.

Pricing: Low season includes three nights from £738 per person sharing or £989 for an individual. Prices include accommodation, breakfast, transfers and a three-night spa and surf programme.

How to get there: Ryanair, EasyJet, Wizz Air, TAP Air Portugal and British Airways all fly direct to Lisbon from various U.K. airports — Manchester (MAN), London, Bristol (BRS) and Edinburgh (EDI) — from £38 return or for as low as £0.50 and 10,000 Avios one-way off-peak with BA.

4. Hua Hin, Thailand

Chiva-Som, Hua Hin
(Photo courtesy of Chiva-Som)

The objective at Chiva Som Fitness is to create sustainable fitness suitable for both absolute beginners and the more-experienced bootcamper. A personalised programme is designed by professional trainers based on your goals and lifestyle. Fitness programmes include core work, muscle toning, endurance, joint mobilisation and stretching. You end a hard day of working out with a recovery massage and ultra-healthy but delicious nutritional cuisine.

Price: From £3,599 per person for double occupancy or £4,975 for single occupancy for five nights. Transfers, accommodation and full board are included as well as consultations, activities, daily massage, personal training and oxygen power fitness/metabolic breathing exercise.

How to get there: Three hours by car or 25 minutes by private plane from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi (BKK). Thai Airways, British Airways and EVA Air fly to Bangkok from London Heathrow. Prices average around £700 return or 19,500 Avios plus £234 in economy off-peak one-way with BA.

Read more: Sky Family: Thai Airways’ A350 in Business Class From Bangkok to Frankfurt

5. Ubud, Bali

(Photo courtesy of COMO Shambhala)

The perfect balance of holistic living at COMO Shambhala involves both the body and mind. You receive daily personal training, massages, wellness consultations, fitness assessments and access to the best yoga instructors, Oriental medicine practitioners and advice from dieticians. The aim is to leave with a toned body and mind and a personalised programme is given to you to maintain your goals when you are at home.

Price: Sharing from £1,595 per person or singles from £2,299 for three nights. The three-night programme includes transfers, accommodation, full board, daily activities, use of wet facilities, a personal assistant, two wellness consultations and personal training.

How to get there: COMO Shambhala is 90 minutes from Bali Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS). Indirect flights travelling through Dubai (DBX) with Emirates, Doha (DOH) with Qatar or Singapore Changi (SIN) with Singapore Airlines are available from £670 return from the U.K. Alternatively, use 38,000 KrisFlyer miles and pay £119 off-peak one-way.

Read more: My best points and miles redemption of 2019

6. Kaplankaya, Turkey

(Photo courtesy of Six Senses Kaplankaya)

The Six Senses Trim & Fit programme is for those for have a specific goal or want to improve their stamina, tone the body or address specific movement concerns. It’s a mix of high- and low-intensity training with muscle imbalance corrections and soothing aftercare treatments.

Price: £2,619 per person based on two people sharing or £3,385 for single use. Prices are for five nights and include transfers, full board, accommodation, hydrothermal facilities, fitness classes, health screens, massage and private training.

How to get there: Flights to Bodrum (BJV) are available travelling with Pegasus or Turkish Airlines with one stop for approximately £127 return from London. EasyJet operates summer seasonal nonstop service from London Gatwick to Bodrum beginning in late March.

7. The Himalayas, India

(Photo courtesy of Ananda Spa)

In partnership with Sumaya, India’s leading personal training company, the approach at Ananda Active Fitness is on functional training, customised fitness regimes and a complete focus on lifestyle management. Included is fitness consultation and assessment, body composition analysis, personal training as well as being able to dip into Ayurvedic medicine, yoga and meditation.

Price: £1,199 per person based on two people sharing or £1,499 for single use. Prices are for three nights and include regional flights, transfers, accommodation and full board. The three-night programme includes signature tea, fresh fruit, wellness consultations, ongoing checks, hydrotherapy facilities, personal training, outdoor fitness and an international therapy session.

How to get there: Fly domestically within India to Jolly Grant Airport Dehradun (DED) from Delhi International Airport (DEL) and then take a 45-minute drive.

Bottom line

Various fitness bootcamp experiences vary both in price and what is on offer. The key thing is to consider what your goals are, but also if you will fully participate in the programme offering. If you are someone wanting a lie-in rather than 7 a.m. yoga class, then book a retreat that will allow this. When inquiring about your fitness escape, make sure you price up the extras that aren’t included in your stay. As a general rule, all group classes should be included in your package as well as access to wet facilities such as swimming pool and jacuzzi.

Featured image by Getty/Mike Powell

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