by Tiffany Lazarek, Inner Fire Luminary
This summer, I was invited to spend the long weekend in Whistler by Leah Emmott, the owner and creator of Inner Fire Apparel. I never even hesitated for a second about making the trip. It would have been my first time out west and my first Wanderlust festival; I was stoked. For those who do not know, the Wanderlust Festivals happen across North America and internationally every year. Essentially, if you love the outdoors, practicing yoga and being in tune with your body and soul, this is the festival for you!
As I had registered for most of my classes ahead of time, it was easy to have an idea of what the weekend would consist of. Here are some tips for a hassle free weekend:
- Book Early! Many of the more popular classes get filled up right away, especially if they involve props such as the SUPyoga and aerial yoga classes.
- Put yourself on the waitlist: Many of the full classes will give you the option to be waitlisted and because people change their minds at the last minute, you will more than likely get a spot in that class.
- Do not over book yourself- stay away from back-to-back vinyasa flow classes or a hike followed by a run. Give yourself some downtime. Trust me, your legs will need it.
- Explore the grounds! Get to know the area, map out where your classes are being held. Giving yourself extra time to show up to class a couple minutes early.
- Download the Wanderlust App for your phone. It makes tracking and switching your schedule that much easier!
Once you get out to the Vancouver/Whistler area, or if you’re even planning on making it to another Wanderlust festival here are my top “must-do’s” for the weekend:
- GO TO THE TOP! Take a hike, gondola, chair lift, whatever you can to get to the summit of the mountain. The views are absolutely breathtaking. The air is clean and crisp, and you really get to test your breathing skills. The class I took was called the “Whistler Summit Trail Hike” marked Intermediate/Advanced I later learned, because of the 9.4km-4 hour long “High Note Trail” we took all around the peak of the mountain. It was beautifully exhausting!
- EAT CLEAN. One of the best places I popped by for lunch was a little juice bar café called “Naked Sprout” (www.nakedsprout.ca) Serving up freshly squeezed juices, organic salads and wraps, all made with natural seasonal produce. With little chairs and tables outside, you can people-watch and rest assured your body is appreciating the goodness you’re providing it!
- DO YOGA. Obviously. I had the opportunity to take a wide variety of classes during my Wanderlust experience, and not one was like the other. All I can say is go in with an open mind, an open heart and you will not be disappointed. I can also say that I left every class more grounded than before yet lighter than air. I left more spiritually inclined yet more open minded. I left feeling whole and aware. The diversity of the teachers, their thoughts and practices will enlighten and inspire you endlessly.
- CHILL OUT. If you have some downtime during the day, Lululemon hosts a “chilling zone” for Wanderlusters to sit back and take it all in, or my favourite, craft time!! They do everything from flash tattoos, crafting your own dream-catchers, to Vedic Astrological readings and making friendship bracelets. I even made my very own wooden coasters to take back home. I like to call it, letting your inner child out with art therapy! On top of that, Wanderlust hosts great musical talents such as MC Yogi, DJ Drez and Michael Franti who performed parkside in the evenings. Grab your Acro Yoga partner and practice to some awesome beats! Finally, don’t miss the “must-see” Wanderlust Spectacular Show-a jaw dropping performance of Wanderlust’s mission-how to find one’s own true north.
- If time permits, GO EXPERIENCE VANCOUVER! Having 1 extra day to do some sightseeing around Whistler and Vancouver was well worth it. The drive alone along the coast from Whistler to Vancouver was spectacular. Winding roads through the mountains, pit-stops of breathtaking views and small coastal towns waiting to be discovered all within 2 hours of the city. I had the opportunity to visit Bowen Island, accessible only by ferry, which was picturesque in every sense of the word. Small family-run restos and artisan shops, a beautiful marina and incredible views if you decide to go for a hike. In the city, I had a chance to grab dinner in Gastown, at a resto /bar named “The Flying Pig”; best salmon I’ve ever tasted! Check ‘em out http://theflyingpigvan.com/
That sums up my best experiences of the weekend and it couldn’t have been in better company or spirits!
So, if you’re in need of a reboot, refresher on life, do the Wanderlust experience. Not only will it leave you wanting more, but by definition, it’ll ignite your desire to wander, travel and explore the world in all its beauty. Also, don’t forget your camera! :)
“To move, to breathe, to fly, to float; to gain all while you give; to roam the roads of lands remote; to travel is to live.” -Hans Christian Andersen