Centre Ananta of Ao-Nang Krabi. Retreats and guesthouse.
OPEN FROM THE 1rst OF JANUARY 2012
ANANTA comes from Sanskrit and means: limitless, eternal or infinite. Ananta is also the symbol of fertility, eternity and universal knowledge. ANANTA is a place for retreats, for recharging your batteries and for personal evolution. It is neither a monastery nor a temple devoted to any religion or religious practice nor is it a tourist centre, spa or a place for physical or psychological convalescence. Our centre is simply a friendly place aiming at a holistic approach to health that is to say to the health of both the mind and the body.
ANANTA House :The house is modest, like our budget! But we have tried to make it friendly and comfortable without exaggerating the standards wewesterners tend to expect and which are too often too costly for the environment and for our purse. There are five rooms. Each has 2 twin beds (120 cm wide) which can be joined for the use of couples. At the moment, elephants go through our garden as they leave for jungle treks. We hope this will continue but our immediate neighbors may wish to prevent them using this track. There are 2 virtually deserted beaches nearby, one less than 3 kilometers from the centre, the other about 6 km away. Paradise! They are easily accessible by bike or motorcycle. The nearest beach is adjacent to the mangrove; you may be lucky enough to meet a few friendly monkeys on the way!
Arrivals and departures: arrivals depend on plane times. Our centre is about 1 hour's drive from Krabi airport. So as to minimize taxi fares, please let us know as soon as possible the date and time of your arrival so as to arrange a group transfer from the airport whenever possible
Activities on the spot : click here
Air Travel : The plane ticket costs between 550 and 990 Euros (£500-£900) from Europe, depending on whether or not it is a direct flight. The sooner you book your ticket the cheaper it is. Above 850€, there's no rush to buy your ticket. Below 600€ it's worth buying quickly. However beware of long waits in transit. The flight from Europe to Thailand usually takes 10 or 11 hours (cut in two if you stop off) Time goes quicker if you take a night flight. Most air companies offer individual TV screens with a large choice of DVDs. Planes are very comfortable and it's easy to find your way around airports even if you are not used to travelling. From France only Air France and Thai airways have direct flights (British Airways, Lufthansa, Quantas, Eva Air, KLM and others fly direct from other European capitals). Some companies are better than others: for example Ethiad, Royal Jordanian, Quatar airlines. Oman airways, Emirates offer cheap flights but not direct (from 500 to 700 Euros ). Avoid Chinese, Egyptian and Russian companies. Compare flights and prices on your favorite website. Ask for a flight Paris ( or other European Airport) to Bangkok, (not Paris – Krabi as the price will always be high !) However if you are booking through a travel agent a ticket European Airport – Krabi will be cheaper ! There are at least 3 Thai companies and numerous flights between Bangkok and Krabi.
Cost / price : http://www.dojo-zen.com/stage-formation-meditation-zen.htm
This price includes :
but does not include the plane ticket, personal expenses, and the cost of possible excursions or trips. (For any particular request contact us). There will be no reduction on the price if you decide not to eat or sleep on place or take massage.
Everyday practicalities: You'll find everything you need on the spot or in the town of Ao Nang, 6 km from Ananta. The Thais have the same standards of comfort as us and all you need can be found in Ao Nang : shops, pharmacists, banks and foreign exchange, ATMs, hospitals, dental clinics, hairdressers' and beauty parlors, travel agencies etc.
Excursions : We can help organize excursions for you or for the people accompanying you. We remind you that the aim of this stay is not a tourist trip but combining tourism and meditation is still possible. The region is magnificent and very interesting. It would be a shame to come so far and not visit it. A day's excursion costs about 1000 bath (20€ to 25 €) all inclusive.. Transport, lunch, water and fruit, guide, possible entrance fees etc. Fabulous excursions are possible every day from 8h30 am. Numerous islands of paradise are within easy reach of Ao-Nang. You can visit the rain forest; hot water springs (Cristal pool), go canoeing in the mangroves or kayaking under lofty sea cliffs. Elephant trekking and horse-riding are possible, and so are courses in rock-climbing on the world-famous limestone cliffs of Railay. The less adventurous may prefer course in Thai cookery, or an evening boat-trip to admire the sunset from a near-by island. There are lots of opportunities for diving and snorkeling and underwater photography. In other words the person accompanying you will have plenty to do without necessarily taking part in the activities offered at Ananta, which of course is also possible. We remind you that our centre is not a travel agency nor are we tourist guides whose job it is to organize your stay, we will however do our best to guide and help you as far as possible.
Health and Vaccinations: No vaccination is compulsory when arriving from Europe or North America. If you are travelling to Thailand from Africa or South America you should check to see if you require proof of yellow fever vaccination. Thailand is a very clean country. The water is of good quality and the risks of illness are similar to those in Europe. It is not necessary to take any particular precautions in this part of Thailand and at this time of the year. There are few mosquitoes. It is advisable to drink bottled water and be sensible about the hygiene of where you eat, but there is very little risk.
House guests : It is possible to stay at the centre without taking part in the activities which are offered. You may wish to bring someone who does not want to take part, in which case we request that he or she remains very discrete and does nothing to disturb the other residents in particular during their meditations and meals, be it in his or her attitude, behavior or motivation. Failure to comply with this request will entail immediate exclusion from the centre.
Individual Massage Classes: are organized on the spot at the Ananta centre as requested for a between 2 (minimum) and 4 (maximum) participants. Thai massage, Californian massage and Siam herbal massage, Korean relaxation, water massage etc. are all possible as you request and on appointment (to be made as early as possible).
Insurance: You would be well-advised to subscribe to the insurance policies regarding cancellation and repatriation (offered with your bank card or plane ticket). Look into the conditions before subscribing, as some insurance policies are much more advantageous than others. Approximately 50€. Don't hesitate!
Internet: Access to the Internet will be possible by wifi.
Language: All the Thais who have regular contact with foreigners (farangs) speak some English and you'll manage to communicate. Hardly anyone speaks French or another European language. The Thai alphabet is completely different from ours, so is their pronunciation system. Our advice, if necessary, is to revise a little basic English which may be useful for your trip.
Massages: We can organize with you a program of massages during your stay. In addition to Thai massages and Oil massages, you will be offered other massages: for example water-massages, singing bowl massages, essene energy massages, shiatsu etc.
Meals are taken together at Ananta. The food is local Thai, mainly vegetarian with plenty of fruit and vegetables, rice, of course, and also fish, sea-food and chicken from time to time. Most dishes will be prepared non-spicy intentionally, but for those who love 100% Thai cuisine plenty of spices are available! The meals are well- balanced and contribute to the physical and spiritual equilibrium of each individual. Phot, your Thai host is a professional chef. No reduction will be made if or when you decide not to eat at the centre. N.B. Please note that wine and alcohol will not be served. All drugs are forbidden and use of drugs will entail immediate exclusion from the centre. Smoking is forbidden in the buildings and immediate surroundings.
Money : The currency used is the Bath. 1€ = from 40B to 43B depending on the exchange rate. The Euro fluctuates quite considerably and so does the exchange rate. Avoid changing money in Europe as bank commissions are high. The same remark goes for money transfers. The cheapest solution is to bring Euros or US dollars and change them in Thailand (preferably new bank notes).
Number of places available: Maximum 10 people
Practicalities: What to bring? Comfortable clothing, sunglasses, a sunhat or cap, a small first-aid kit, anti-mosquito lotion (all these can be found in Ao Nang), personal medications, possibly an English dictionary. Maximum baggage 20 kg per person.
Safety: We are on the edge of the National Park in Krabi province. It is a protected area where wild life of all kinds is abundant. The surroundings are magnificent for walks; encounters with monkeys for example are always source of joy and fascination. However it is necessary to respect a few basic safety rules to make the most of your stay.
Telephone: If by any chance you cannot find the answer to you queries on this page you can call Mehdy 00.33.5769 1515, / 00.33.6.81.23.16.90 .or preferably send us an e-mail. firstname.lastname@example.org
Transport on the spot: We have chosen to create the centre a certain distance from the sea resort of Ao-Nang, itself 40 km from the largest nearby town. This distance is intentional. If necessary, we will organize daily transport into Ao-Nang. You would be well-advised to hire a bike or small motorcycle to get around on the spot. Motorcycle helmets are (supposed to be!) compulsory. You can also call for a taxi or tuk-tuk to take you into town. As for car hires, be warned that Thailand has no reliable insurance system and you drive on the left ! For those who are hooked on the bussel and frenzy of shopping and town life, ..... Ananta may not be the ideal place for you! Ananta is in a quiet spot inductive to meditation and introspection but we insist that you should be free do as you wish and go where you want too. So contrary to other places for retreats …. Monasteries, temples etc. we wouldn't dream of stopping you getting about. However we draw your attention to the fact that if your desire is to hitch onto the world you've just left (noise and agitation, internet and information and world news), it may be that you are hooked on it, without realizing it, and you can't let go of it. …...It has become a form of drug that you can't do without. The aim of these retreats is just that …. ….getting rid of those habits you have become dependent on. So to our mind, too many trips to the busy town will not be beneficial to you. Of course you are free to choose. We are there to help you to find the middle way, between the firmness of discipline necessary for developing your awareness and the freedom to do what you want. It is a fine line between discipline and freedom! But the awakening and growth of awareness are only possible if both are respected.
Unforeseeable circumstances : In case of general cancellation for unforeseeable circumstances (political, climate etc.) 80 % of your down-payment will be returned. We remind you that you are strongly advised to subscribe to a good cancellation / repatriation policy.
Visa : You will not need a visa for Thailand if you stay less than 30 days. (15 days if you arrive by land). Beware a month is not always the same as 30 days! If you plan to stay longer you should apply for the 60-day tourist visa from a Thai consulate or embassy before your trip. Longer than that you will have to leave the country and re-enter.
lama & Phot
Your host: You will be able to discover Thailand, the Thai people, their habits and customs through your Thai host, Phot ( pronounced « pot »). Phot , the co-founder of Ananta, Buddhist and a master chef, comes from a very poor family of the region of Chiang Raï in the north of Thailand. Since his birth his life has been a struggle to survive and to help his family to survive. As westerners, we don’t always realize that behind the smiling friendly calm attitude of the very discrete and modest Thai people lie important difficulties in everyday life. We mustn't forget that this is an emerging country, with all the problems that this entails. If you open your heart to Phot, as he will to you, you'll discover his kindness, his devotion and his great welcoming qualities and those of his family.
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