Learning Journeys’ Eat, Pray, Love series is designed to nurture your mind and body while simultaneously allowing you to explore novel places and cultures.
It’s a story many women are familiar with: a woman’s journey of self-discovery and self-love after a difficult divorce and unhealthy relationships. Eat, Pray, Love is the best-selling memoir from Elizabeth Gilbert that became a motion picture starring Julia Roberts. The story follows Elizabeth on her travels as she indulges in the cuisine of Italy, learns the power of prayer in India and finds true love in Bali. It has inspired people around the world to take similar journeys to escape their everyday lives and find themselves. One of those people is Carol Dimopoulos.
After a much-needed break from responsibility to focus on herself, Dimopoulos developed the Eat, Pray, Love travel series for Perillo’s Learning Journeys.
“It is necessary to take care of self first as women, so we can be strong, healthy and support our lives and those we love,” Dimopoulos says.
What is the Eat, Pray, Love Travel Series?
Travelers are introduced to wonderful destinations all over the world, such as Italy, India, Bali, Malta, Costa Rica, Peru, Greece and Japan.
“This is your time to explore and transform,” says Dimopoulos. “Our women-focused series features yoga, wellness, spirituality, culinary and art travel.”
Capitalizing on the popularity of health/wellness travel and female travel excursions, Dimopoulos has designed a program that appeals to travelers of all kinds. These adventures are perfect for mother-daughter trips, girlfriend getaways or solo travel expeditions, says Dimopoulos. Not only will women get a chance to experience everything these destinations and cultures have to offer, they will also enjoy opportunities for daily yoga, meditation, journaling, photography, cultural immersion, classes and “giving back” to the local communities.
Samples of the Eat, Pray, Love Series
India is a sanctuary for many seeking to find serenity and spiritual renewal. Travelers venture there to learn the wisdom of ancient practices, including yoga, meditation and healing. Guests taking the “Spiritual Northern India” sojourn, a trip designed for personal reflection and growth, will interact with yoga and meditation experts, and experience cultural immersions. Enjoy yoga and wellness classes, relax during spa treatments, and visit the Taj Mahal in Agra and Red Fort in Delhi. Go saree shopping with Nettu Singh, a local woman revered for her style, community service and voluntourism projects; enjoy cooking and astrology lessons; take part in a Ayurveda lecture; and explore the Beatles’ ashram. (Tour is 12 days/11 nights starting at $2,450 per person.)
Another popular itinerary is “Spiritual Southern India.” The culture of India comes to life as guests partake in Ammas Ashram journeys, become immersed in Goddess Temples and visit community service projects that focus on education and female empowerment. Guests will learn how to prepare Indian dishes, visit a wildlife sanctuary, sample spices and teas and enjoy daily yoga. (Tour is 10 days/8nights starting at $2,495 per person.)
Another journey visits a land of delicious cuisine and wine. The “Tuscany – Mind, Body and Soul” itinerary brings you to one of Italy’s most beloved regions. Visit the delightful villages, medieval castles, and vast stretches of vineyards and olive groves in the Tuscan countryside. On this journey, you’ll feed your body, mind and soul with daily meditations and yoga, spa treatments and delectable local dishes. You’ll stay at the elegant Tuscan Villa, built back in the 14th century and located in the heart of Figline Valdarno, a small province just a few miles away from Florence. This is the perfect trip to enjoy with friends as you soak in the Italian culture and reconnect with your body and soul. (Tour is 8 days/6 nights starting at $1,950 per person.)
In the Mediterranean country of Malta, travelers will discover how to enjoy life to the fullest. The “Mystical Malta – Wellness, Gastronomy and Culture” itinerary exposes guests to the vibrant Maltese people, the beautiful countryside and beaches, and bustling historic cities. There’s a sense of well-being throughout the Maltese islands, and a holistic lifestyle is made possible with fresh, healthy food; local art; festivals; temple visits; and spas and meditation. Travelers will get the chance to meet local artist Hermine Sammut at her studio and school Connect 2 Gozo. She uses flowers from her fields to create paintings, and offers jewelry making and ceramics classes where students can create pieces of original art to take home. This is just one of the experiences guests will have on this itinerary, along with many yoga sessions and time for self-reflection. (Tour is 8 days/7 nights starting at $1,999 per person.)
The Meaning Behind it All
What’s the purpose of these learning journeys?
“The opportunity to get back to self,” says Dimopoulos. “[Women] enjoy what makes them happy, expand on interests, and learn new things and ways of living while still seeing all of the major highlights of a destination and giving back to the communities.”
So far, the series is receiving an excellent response, with most departures booking out and many group leaders planning different destinations each year for their following, Dimopoulos says.
The health and wellness travel trend continues to grow. More women are seeking out experiences where they can genuinely connect with a local culture, meet fellow travelers and have time to work on themselves. Perillo’s Learning Journeys’ Eat, Pray, Love series has tapped into this desire and will continue to expand to meet demand for new and exciting destinations as well as opportunities for self-reflection and self-discovery.