Healthy, Happy And Hedonistic On An Island Off Of Africa
I don’t often admit to being a healthy hedonist, but this week, I have to put my hand up. My break away to the Anantara Bazaruto Island Resort and Spa in Bazaruto, Mozambique is arguably one of the more pleasurable ways to guarantee I’ll live a better, longer and certainly happier life.
After a short flight from OR Tambo in Johannesburg on Airlink and a boat ride from Vilanculos to the island of Bazaruto, I arrived at the Anantara Bazaruto Island Resort and Spa. Not even an experienced health hedonist like myself is exempt from the trials and tribulations of an over-stressed urban lifestyle. I knew as soon as my bare feet touched the sandy shore, my decision to take a mid-winter break was one of the better decisions I had taken all year.
Where To Begin?
Apart from the spa, the island resort offers many healthy activities to experience. If anything I would have to manage my overactive health personality and not let it get the better of me.
I love horses and the resort has a really nice riding facility with eight friendly-looking horses. Yes, I would have to ride along the beach and explore the island on horseback. And, of course, being on an island in the warm Indian Ocean lends itself naturally to many water sports and toys to play with. I watched another guest paddle out on a stand up paddle (SUP) and was tempted to drop all my immediate spa plans and just head out there.
I had to get a grip. There are so many healthy choices and just a few days. I could take a daily run on the beach. Dive, snorkel, sail, kayak, fish, play golf, walk, play tennis, swim, go to gym, learn to cook better, go for a dune board ride and, and, and. Or I could just start by going to the spa.
I Made My First Decision – I Headed For The Spa.
One can never underestimate the health benefits of spa treatments. For many centuries as far back to Roman times, spa facilities have provided patrons with therapies to support positive health outcomes. Anantara has built their beautiful spa on the highest point of the property overlooking the ocean.
So the view as you enter the spa is stupendous.
I met Natasha, the spa manager. She has a lovely calm energy and her eyes light up when she speaks about for her work. I asked her how she landed up on this island in Africa and she told me it was where her life journey had taken her. After years of studies, then working all over the world, on cruise liners and other leading spa facilities, she didn’t hesitate when the opportunity availed itself to her.
I began my own island spa experience with a treatment called the Rasul, also known as a Turkish Haman.
And I was not alone. Which is exactly how it should be. The Rasul is a traditional Arabian cleansing ritual, more often than not enjoyed communally. A time to share news and chatter. This time it was just three of us together and we were provided each a set of three bowls. One bowl contained salt crystals to exfoliate our skin. This had to be followed by massaging the smooth clay. Clay is great at drawing out toxins from you skin. I was also given a beautifully scented jasmine infused hair treatment. All these bespoke products have been created for Anantara.
The Joy Of Being A Healthy Hedonist
The darkened Rasul soon filled up with wafts of steam. The mosaic-clad room has a high ceiling peppered with these little small lights that changed color throughout the session. It’s like staring up a darkened starry sky emulating the traditional Rasul temple experience. Forty minutes later, after a gentle steaming, the twinkling heavens literally opened and a temperate stream of water rained down gently and washed my body clean of any remnants of city energy.
Feeling very relaxed, I retired to the patio and a cup of lemongrass tea. In that moment, looking out into the dark, tranquil expanse of the Indian Ocean, I was reminded just how fortunate being a healthy hedonist can be.
Tomorrow, I may ride one of those horses or head out on the SUP or, actually now that I think about it, you will probably find me right back at the spa again.