“She’s immersed herself in the world of fitness and wellness, not only with nutrition and meditation certifications under her belt but also as a yin and restorative yoga teacher. To boot, she’s found an alternate career as a professional corporate emcee. So when Blue Sky Escapes was curating our second holistic retreat to Kathmandu, Nepal this November — the first was in Bhutan — we set our hearts on finding a journey leader who embodied the right mix of personality, leadership and passion. That person was Stephanie Bovis.”
– By Chuin Ying
Led entirely by Stephanie, the 8D7N journey will start and end in Kathmandu (there’s also a 2D1N extension option to Pokhara). From medieval cities where you can witness daily Nepali life through to exhilarating overnight treks and a two night stay at the legendary Dwarika’s Resort where your restorative and resetting intentions will be made complete, this journey is befitting of fitness and wellness enthusiasts who desire a bespoke adventure of a lifetime.
Our upcoming Nepal journey is designed as a holistic retreat. How do you think our travellers can achieve their fitness and wellness goals en route?
Our journey to Nepal will be one where our travellers can tap into many aspects of what wellness means to them. For some, our 3D2N hike will be strenuous and will be the most rewarding aspect of the experience. For others, it may be our yoga and meditation retreat at the Dwarika Resort at the very end. You do not have to be an avid climber or a hardcore yogi to embark on this journey. We will all set a personal intention before we embark on the escape, and hopefully by the end there will be a sense of fulfilment of that dedicated intention. We have structured the itinerary so that the flow of the trip progresses from difficulty in fitness levels, to a more relaxing finish.
What are you most excited for the experience?
The fact that the trip is truly holistic. I believe that the inclusion of culture, adventure, endurance, and restoration will make this experience wholesome.
Tell us why you decided to partner with us.
The moment I perused itineraries from previous journeys, and better understood the ethos of Blue Sky Escapes, I knew I couldn’t turn this opportunity down. Ten years ago, I’d spent two months in Nepal volunteering in Pokhara, where the experience carved a place in my heart for this country. Blue Sky Escapes had presented to me a working itinerary for the journey to Nepal, and it literally spoke to my soul! As a mountain girl at heart who has summited over six peaks around Asia, and is passionate about leading wellness sessions with groups, I knew that this was a match made in heaven.
What would you like people — and more specifically, our travellers — to know about you and your fitness and wellness background?
I have heard the terms “specialists” and “multipotentialites”. Specialists dedicate their whole lives to concentrate on one subject or activity, whereas multipotentialites have more than one creative interest. I would say that when it comes to wellness, I am a multipotentialite. This means that I have pursued certifications in many aspects of wellness, from nutrition through to yoga and meditation. I used to work for Ritual Gym, where my mentors and my good friends (still) influence me in my scientific knowledge of fitness and nutrition.
In moments where you’ve been pushed to the limits, both physically and mentally, how have you overcome them?
Quietness and solo time is a remedy for me, whether it be through physical or mental adversity. I have truly valued the concept of rest when my body tells me that I need to slow down.
What would you tell our travellers about following your guidance and direction on the journey, given that you are leading the entire experience?
As a yoga instructor and emcee, I am accustomed to guiding the flow of a class or event. But I do believe it’s important to give you free reign to guide yourselves. At the end of the day, I want this to be your journey. Not mine. The more you make this your own, the more you can contribute to the energy of the whole group.
Tell us about the most memorable travel experience you’ve had.
The first one that comes to mind takes me back to Morocco. It was the summer of 2010 when I took a trip to the Sahara Desert with some friends. We had to ride camel-back to get to the heart of the desert, but once we were underway, we faced a crazy sandstorm that whipped us relentlessly! Sitting on and sprinting down sand dunes, and singing songs while eating tagine under a clear milky way are my Moroccan memories that I will cherish forever.
What about your next big adventure?
My next big adventure would be to Nepal in November!
You’re a self-proclaimed “student of life”. How do you think exploring the world fits into your belief?
The moment you stop learning, it’s all over. If you look closely enough, everything and everyone has a lesson to share. It’s up to you to be open enough to sense it.
Complete this sentence: Immersive travel is…
Stepping out of your comfort zone and going off the beaten path. I don’t mean this just physically through destinations, but also engaging in conversations with the locals and understanding what their life and culture is truly all about.