"Truly Magical": The 2018 Festival Review

Updated: Nov 18, 2018

The Portugal Spirit Festival, the first European edition of the BaliSpirit Festival, took place in Cascais in mid September 2018 at the beautiful Casa de Santa Maria and the adjacent Parque. For a whole weekend, an international crowd gathered in a beautiful “safe space“ which allowed everybody to be themselves and in which no sharing was too personal. 

The festival venue was the Casa de Santa Maria, a gorgeous 19th century villa located right across the city’s marina. The music stages were set up in the adjacent Parque. A spectacular scenery, which made it all even more special.

The festival schedule offered yoga, dance, music and healing. You could experience different forms of yoga (hatha, vinyasa, kundalini), do breath work or dance, join seminars on topics such as self-care and self-love, radical honesty, yoga philosophy … You also had the chance to arrange private sessions with healers or get a massage. The evenings were mostly dedicated to live open air concerts in the park as well as a beautiful cacao ceremony.

It was a lot about the shared experience and the Balinese Hindu concept of Tri Hita Karana: Living in harmony with our spiritual, social and natural environments. The harmony and good vibes were palpable: I’ve rarely seen so many happy “heartopen“ and inspiring people in one place. Truly magical!

I met people from Portugal, Spain, France, the UK, the US, Canada, Brasil, Norway, Sweden, the Netherlands, Israel, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Australia, Bermudas, Malaysia, Indonesia and of course from Bali.

My personal highlights were a gong bath in which we were bathed in powerful gong sounds for an hour, an open air vinyasa class on the terrace on the first morning, a deeply moving breath work class – my first experience in this domain – a seminar on women’s self-care as well as the last class of the festival: “love explosion”, a hatha yoga class, that really cracked my heart open.

I laughed and cried a lot, had the most inspiring conversations, danced, sang, learned a lot and improved my yoga skills. By the end of the festival, I left with the sweet feeling of saying goodbye to many new friends. New friends I hope to see again for the second edition, which I’m sure, is coming up in 2019!

In two days I managed to attend ten classes of which some really blew my mind, inspired me and left a lasting impression on me. I also cried on both days of the festival, each time completely unexpectedly.

About the author:

Noémie is a Berlin-based enthusiastic yogini, meditation adept and spiritual seeker. When she’s not sweating on the mat or exploring her inner universe in silence, she likes to ride her black bike, meet with friends, cook and eat healthy vegan dishes, dance, sing and travel. She writes about her experiences with yoga and meditation on her blog www.spiritandthecity.online