Journey into the Sacred Heartland of Yoga Hareesh and Hannah

Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

12 reviews
Dec 27, 2018 - Jan 7, 2019
Group size: 15 - 35
Journey into the Sacred Heartland of Yoga Hareesh and Hannah
Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

12 reviews

Dec 27, 2018 - Jan 7, 2019
Group size: 15 - 35

About this trip

THIS TRIP IS SOLD OUT, Please consider joining Hareesh in Karnataka Dec 11-22:

Join us for a 10-day pilgrimage of the inner and outer landscapes of India!

with Hareesh Wallis and Hannah Muse

Back by popular demand, the Sacred India Tour is a journey unlike any you've experienced. We will visit incredible temples and sacred sites of Yoga and of Shaivism while engaging in deep practice and contemplation of spiritual teachings.

This time we travel to Tamil Nādu, the spiritual heartland of yoga. Sanskrit scholar Hareesh (Christopher Wallis), who first visited India more than 20 years ago, will be your guide to these sacred sites and their teachings, while yogini master teacher Hannah Muse will enliven your body and senses with a daily yoga and meditation practice.

You can relax into your experience knowing everything is all taken care of. The price is all-inclusive (except flight and tips), and every detail is attended to with loving care. We stay in luxurious hotels with a traditional flair, because why skimp on what might be the greatest pilgrimage of your life?!

Join us as we visit some of the most powerful sacred sites of South India and explore Tantrik philosophy right where it flourished over a thousand years ago.

Woven together with daily āsana practice and guided meditation, this journey will nourish your body, mind, and senses.

Who are our guides?

Hannah will be offering daily  āsana practice and guided meditation. She is known for her profound devotion to waking up to the sacred that permeates everything and her nurturing way of weaving ancient wisdom + transformational ritual into everyday living.

Her classes skillfully weave mantra, pranayama, meditation, mudra, and philosophy throughout intelligently-sequenced, alignment-based flows  – and her studies span traditions of raja, tantra, hatha yoga, as well as anatomy, ayurveda, the neuroscience of mindfulness, and much more, including various mystical traditions.

Hareesh (Christopher Wallis) will offer yoga philosophy discourse and accompany you on the entire pilgrimage. In addition to the experienced guidance of Hareesh we also have a local tour guide we’ve worked with for all our retreats who speaks fluent English and will be devoted to us for the entire trip.

Brief Itinerary: 


Dec 27: Arrive in Chennai

Dec 28-29: Mamallapuram/Mahabalipuram

Dec 31-29: Tiruvannamalai

Jan 1-2: Chidambaram

Jan 3-4: Thanjavur

Jan 5-6: Madurai

Jan 7-9: Rameshwaram Extension 

And there is an optional Rameshwaram Extension Jan 7-9th, where we will participate in am powerful water purification ceremony. 

What’s included

All historical and spiritual talks and guided meditations with Hareesh

All yoga and meditation with Hannah

All hotel rooms stays at heritage hotels and eco-resorts

All meals at the hotels and en route

Admissions to the monuments

Transportation in a comfortable air-conditioned tour bus

Local tour guide

Tips for hotel staff and waiters

Bottled water

All taxes

Not included


Still camera/video camera use fees in the temples (a few dollars at most)

Tips outside of our hotel- it is traditional to tip guides and drivers

Transport to and from the airport

Before You Go

You are held

India can be a wild ride. This retreat offers an opportunity to be held and guided in a way that allows you to put all of your energy into opening your heart to the teachings, sacred sites, and practices.

You will be in the best of hands: Hareesh, Hannah, trip coordinator Melissa Pontius, and local experts Southern Trails Ltd. have all worked together before on prior India trips with great success. 

Melissa, our tour manager, will be sending emails with all of the important information, including flight and visa information, to ensure you are completely taken care of and prepared

When traveling to India do I need a visa?

You do need a visa; The process is becoming easier every year. There are two options- a regular multiple entry Visa, suggested for people who plan to be in India for over three months, or an E-Visa upon arrival, suggested for everyone else. If you choose the E-Visa option, we will receive an email with more information and specific info about when to submit your application. 

Are there required or recommended vaccines?

Vaccines are not required but if you want to find out about recommendations then you're welcome to visit your Doctor or a travel clinic. We won't be in a malaria affected area on this tour but you may want to bring malaria pills with you just in case.

How much money should I bring with me?

Since your basic costs are already covered consider what you want to bring for tipping, any extra excursions you plan to go on, airport transfers, and shopping. 

Available Packages

Early Bird Double Room
Available until Oct 11, 2018only 2 left

This option is for people who would like to share a room. You do not need to be traveling with someone to choose this option. If you are traveling with someone and you would like to share a room with them, you can specify that on the Registration Form at checkout. 

Early Bird Single Room
Available until Sep 05, 2018only 2 left

This option is for people who would like a private room.

Double Room
only 2 left

This option is for people who would like to share a room. You do not need to be traveling with someone to choose this option. If you are traveling with someone and you would like to share a room with them, you can specify that on the Registration Form at checkout. 

Single Room
only 2 left

Full Payment is due September 15


Available options

Rameshwaram Extension Double Room
Rameshwaram Extension Single Room

Double Room
Past Trip


27 December 2018

Upon arrival in India, you will be met by a friendly driver and taken to the beautiful hotel in the city of Chennai where the group will meet and prepare for our adventure together!

Your Organizer

Hareesh Wallis
12 reviews
Christopher Wallis, also known as Hareesh, was introduced to Indian spirituality at the age of seven and initiated into the practice of yogic meditation at sixteen. His degrees include a B.A. in Religion and Classics from the University of Rochester, an M.A. in Sanskrit from U.C. Berkeley, an M.Phil. in Classical Indian Religions from Oxford, and a Ph.D. on the traditions of Śaiva Tantra from Berkeley. He received traditional education at yoga āshrams in upstate New York and India in meditation, kīrtan, mantra-science, āsana, karma-yoga, and more. He currently teaches meditation, yoga darśana (philosophy), Tantrik philosophy, Sanskrit, mantra-science, and offers spiritual counseling. Hareesh is the Founder and Head Faculty of the Mattamayura Institute.


This trip was absolutely wonderful! I learned so much about the culture: history, religion, society, yoga, music. The food was fabulous, and the accommodations were excellent. Our group was well cared for the entire time. It was a once in a lifetime experience that I am so grateful for. Thank you Hareesh, Hannah and Yusif for taking us on a magical journey in Mother India.
What an unforgettable experience! I am a yoga therapist and brought my husband along with me, who did not have any interest in going to India at all! Hareesh, Hannah, Yusuf, and Susan took such great care of all of us, and my husband had a wonderful time, of course! The accommodations were fantastic, food was delicious, traveling was comfortable, and the rest of the attendees were positive, accepting, friendly, and fun! The tour was very organized, and consisted of daily yoga with Hannah, and visiting various temples, caves, spiritual sites, and more, and ended with kirtan or satsang with Hareesh nightly. I not only took part in activities that I would never be able to do on my own, I learned so much about life through the beautiful lectures led by Hareesh. My husband and I will definitely be going on retreat again with Hareesh and Hannah. Props to Yusuf, our Indian guide, whose dedication and commitment made this a trip of a lifetime. I cried at the end out of pure gratitude to the trip leaders, So many fabulous memories that make me super excited to go back soon!
This trip was fun and profound--Hareesh and his staff led an awesome journey on all levels--traveling through the real India and making contact with the deep spirit of India, her people and ourselves. The food and accomodations were great and the yoga and tantrik teachings were excellent.
I was a little concerned because of the number of people going. How ever this was never an issue at all. We were all very well looked after from before the trip started to the end. Hareesh, Hannah, Melissa and Yusuf were the perfect guides, teachers, and friends. Lots of powerful learning experiences all the way, combined with laughs, insites, new friends and a lot of love made this trip worth every cent. The best accommodation and delicious food to boot. Can’t recommend travelling with this mob more highly enough. Would love to do it all again.
It was an incredible journey with deep experiences.
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