Yoga, Hiking and Blues
Retreat in Santa Maria, Azores, Portugal
9-16 July 2023

Your unique hiking and music adventure combined with daily yoga and meditation.

The hidden gem of the Atlantic, Santa Maria island, is one of those last remaining places on earth where pure nature dominates the landscape and where time seems to stand still.

The first part of the retreat is a 5-day hike around the island in the breath-taking Azorean nature combined with daily yoga and meditation to make sure you feel fit and energised for your hikes.

The second part of the retreat is a combination of the 3-day Blues Festival and a series of yoga workshops customised for your unique body

Enjoy and deepen your yoga and meditation practice
Explore the island in the middle of the Atlantic unknown to the tourists
Experience Santa Maria Blues Festival with like-minded people

Daily schedule

During the first part of the retreat, Yoga & Hiking, every day starts with setting an intention followed by a Vinyasa-style yoga class.  Then we will have breakfast to nourish the body before embarking on a hiking adventure for the day.  After the hiking of the day is finished and we arrive at a new accommodation, you will have time for some relaxation and we will finish the day with restorative yoga practice before dinner.

During the second part of the retreat, Yoga & Blues, every day we will explore the foundational yoga postures in detail and discover how to customise them for your unique body needs.  In the evening, we will head over to the Blues Festival.


Jaw-dropping hikes in the unique nature

The Portuguese Azores are unknown to the regular tourists.  Your 5-day hike around Santa Maria island is the best way to explore the island whilst keeping fit.  On average, we will be hiking about 15 km a day.  You will enjoy the beautiful flora and fauna, the quaint traditional architecture, the unique geology and fossils, the fascinating history, and the delicious gastronomy.

Dramatic volcanic landscape, lush forests, greenest fields, spectacular waterfalls, stunning rainbows, and even a desert – this is what you experience when hiking in Santa Maria island.

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Santa Maria Blues Festival

As part of this retreat, you are invited to attend the yearly Santa Maria Blues Festival which lasts 3 days. The festival originates back to 2014 and throughout the years that followed, it grew in a sustainable way and always with a great focus on the quality of the venue, music and the surrounding environment.

Great international names of blues music have played at the Festival. Have a listen to the previous edition here.


During the first part of the retreat, Yoga & Hiking, we will practise yoga and meditation twice a day: before and after hiking.  Classes are adjusted right on the spot to your body needs and movement experience.  We will meditate and practise mindfulness after our yoga practice or in nature.  

During the second part of the retreat, Yoga & Blues, we will dedicate our afternoon sessions to the details of certain yoga postures and how they need to be adapted to suit your specific body needs.  These sessions are workshop-style and focused on each participant individually.

Unique accommodation

During the first part of the retreat, Yoga & Hiking, our home for 5 days/4 nights are the 5 different chalets along the hiking trail.  These charming houses have been built using traditional methods and ecological materials.  The solar energy or wood water heater is used for the hot showers.  Your luggage (up to 15 kg per person) will be transported to every new accommodation so you do not need to carry it with you.

During the second part of the retreat, Yoga & Blues, we will stay in Vila do Porto town, in Azores Youth Hostel Santa Maria with a stunning outdoor swimming pool, in a twin room setting.

Local cuisine and celebration dinner

You will be served with 2 daily delicious and nutritious meals: breakfast and dinner.  The dinners offered during the first part of the retreat, Yoga & Hiking, are made of traditional Portuguese and Azorean meals, vegetarian options available.  Your dietary requirements will be thoughtfully taken care of throughout the retreat.  Along the trail, you can stop at restaurants for lunch or buy food in the grocery shops.  During the second part of the retreat, breakfast is included.

I have organised a very special dinner on the last day of the completed hiking trail, combined with local craft beer tasting.  Time to celebrate your hiking achievement and have fun! 

What you will receive


  • 2 daily yoga sessions customised for your unique body needs – during the first part of the retreat
  • 3 daily yoga workshops to deepen your yoga practice – during the second part of the retreat
  • progressively developed yoga sequence that you can follow after the retreat


  • detailed explanation of how best to position your body during your meditation practice
  • daily guided meditations at the yoga sessions or in the unique nature spots


  • guided 5-day hike around the island with diverse landscapes
  • ticket to the 3-day Santa Maria Blues festival


  • video recording of a 30-minute yoga session based on techniques and practices we will learn at the retreat
  • and a surprise gift  upon your arrival!

Your host

My name is Irina Oshchepkova, I am a certified yoga teacher with 1000+ hours of teaching experience.  I offer the most in-depth and nurturing luxury retreats in unique locations around the world.    

I love the Azores.  I came here for 2 weeks and ended up staying for 6 months.  I cannot wait to show you the most gorgeous places and experiences of these magic islands!

It is a highlight of my career to take a group of like-minded people to breath-taking destinations to go deeper into their practice, really nourish themselves and reconnect to nature.

What is included


  • 4 nights, 5 days in charming houses along the hiking trail
  • 3 nights, 4 days in a hostel with a swimming pool with an ocean view
  • in houses: bed sheet, sleeping bag, towel
  • in hostel: bed linen, hygiene products
  • luggage transfer, up to 15 kg per person


  • 2 daily meals, vegetarian options available – during the first part of the retreat
  • 1 celebration dinner with local craft beer tasting
  • 1 daily meal, vegetarian options available – during the second part of the retreat


  • 2 daily yoga and meditation sessions tailored for the landscape of the day
  • 5-day organised hike around the island, on average 15 km per day
  • tickets to the 3-day Blues Festival


  • group transportation from and to the airport
  • group transportation to the hostel on the last day of the hike
  • group transportation to and from the Blues Festival

What is not included

  • your flights

Your Investment

The payment is non-refundable but can be fully transferred to another person.  Should travel be blocked due to COVID restrictions or other force majeure events, your payment will be credited to a postponed retreat.  The necessary and appropriate travel insurance is needed.

All the payments are made by credit card or by direct bank transfer.  Please contact me for details on bank transfer and invoicing.

Please check my advice on the best flight option here.

Early bird price – book by 4 May 2023

Subscribe to my newsletter here to receive an additional discount of 50 euro!

A unique opportunity to reconnect to nature, yourself and like-minded people

This is your unique chance to enjoy a beautiful 5-day hike in an exotic setting followed by a 3-day Blues Festival. The Azores destination is like nothing you have ever experienced, it will take your breath away!

Time for nourishment and healing, time to be nurtured by nature, time to explore and revitalise your energy.

Give yourself a gift of valuable time for your body, mind and soul.


The weather in the Azores is spring-like most of the time: with days of sun interlaced with low clouds, a shower, a rainbow – and then sun again. They say the Azores can have the four seasons in just one day!  It is a cool to warm subtropical climate, heavily influenced by the ocean and perfect for the outdoors.

Book a flight to Santa Maria, the Azores (SMA).  

Option 1

There are direct flights from Lisbon.  If you fly from Brussels, book with TAP Air Portugal or Ryanair, both are with a stop in Lisbon. 

Option 2

However, a better option price-wise could be to book 2 separate trips: 

  • Return flight 1: your ‘home’ – Ponta Delgada (the ‘capital’ of Azores in Sao Miguel island).  If you fly from Brussels, book with TAP Air Portugal or Ryanair.
  • Return flight 2: Ponta Delgada – Santa Maria.  These are with the local airline Sata Azores.


Send me your flight details and I will arrange group transportation at the most common time for all.  If the common time does not suit you, take a taxi to Vila do Porto.  It will take about 10 minutes.

We will then start the hike after the briefing session which is at 10:00 am on 9 July 2023.

All levels are welcome, from zero to advanced!  Each class is adapted to the needs of participants.

Make sure to bring comfortable clothes for yoga, hiking and swimming.  Hiking shoes are highly recommended.  I will send you a detailed list when you book your experience.

It is highly recommended to stay over the weekend on the island as there are plenty of places to see and things to do.  Contact me for details.

Check the latest updates here.