Yoga and holistic treatments are at the heart of what we do, but if you're into yoga, the chances are that you like the active life too. We offer a range of activities on our holidays to suit all budgets from free cycling and trekking to low-cost visits to hot springs and a wide range of other sport and learning opportunities. In this way, you can add to your experience or stick to your budget and still have a fantastic holiday.
Activities and trips can be booked at breakfast time each day, when our staff are present to help plan your holiday and day.
Most of what guests pay goes direct to the local providers, with Sunflower Retreats taking a percentage for booking, advertising and promoting the service or activity for them.
Thermal baths and wild hot springs
Each week we organise a visit to the open-air pool at Viterbo and the nearby wild springs, where you can bathe in sulphur-rich mud. Combining sulphur-water bathing with yoga practice is extremely healing to the whole body and mind.
The Terme Dei Papi Centre
Viterbo's hot sulphurous spring water has been used since Roman times to draw impurities out of the skin, to stimulate skin cells to secrete natural oils and to reduce blood pressure and rheumatism. The huge pool has sun-loungers, palm trees and a bar and the water has different depths and temperature zones.
The wild springs
We also visit the local wild hot springs, situated in open fields. Here you can bathe in the sulphur-rich organic mud used in rehabilitative treatments, beauty masks and wraps.
Both the thermal baths and the hot springs are quiet, perfect places to relax, unwind and feel the tension, toxins, aches and pains being released from your body.
The all-day excursion to the thermal baths and wild hot sulphur springs costs €45 per-person (minimum 3 people) including the entrance fee to spa, visit to the springs, and transport.
Please remember to pack flip-flops and a towel, or towelling dressing gown, for this excursion.
Swim in our countryside pool and in wild streams
Our holidays include free use of a countryside swimming pool surrounded by olive groves and rolling hills. It is exclusive to our guests and is open from late May to the end of our season, subject to the weather.
Guests can walk to the pool, cycle or use our free shuttle service.
You may also use the swimming pool at the tennis club, for which a charge is made.
It is also possible to visit wild streams which run through mountains and valleys, where you can immerse yourself in the nature of the Sabina area.
We highly recommend doing some cycling during your holiday in Sabina. We offer free use of bikes, modern and classic, including racers, explorers, mountain bikes and even a tandem! - It's a great way to see the location; it gives you time to take in the views and discover the countryside, breathe in the fresh air and taste the scents.
There is no hurry on a bicycle; you can just go at your own pace enjoying the views and feeling free to stop, say, at a beautiful field full of poppies, wild flowers and ancient olive trees in the springtime. Take a picnic, or maybe cycle your way to a hilltop village and have a wonderful traditional Italian lunch, eating delicious local organic ingredients such as fresh hand-picked tomatoes, freshly-picked basil, mozzarella and more.
It's a great way of meeting the local people too. Even in high summer when it tends to get hotter, you can cycle to wild streams and waterfalls and reward your effort by diving into in the fresh, cool, clean water of these beautiful natural sites.
We provide detailed maps of the area, as well as advice on interesting natural and historic sites to visit. There is a choice of routes, across quiet and low-traffic, hilly or mountain roads with spectacular scenery.
Every Sunday we have free guided walk. The Sabina mountains (1200 meters) surrounding Casperia, rich in flora and fauna, are rarely visited by walkers and offer astonishing trekking and scenery.
If you'd like to organise trips of your own, we can give you recommended walking routes and maps.
Climbing is very popular in the Sabina mountains too, but you'll need to bring your own equipment.
Lessons take place at the Gusto Borgo cooking school located inside the hilltop village of Casperia - a professional cooking school with its own home-grown organic produce.
You'll experience cooking with the finest ingredients; freshly picked organic vegetables, herbs and fruits straight form the farm. The menu of mouthwatering Italian vegetarian or non vegetarian cooking blends perfectly with the yoga and holistic treatments we offer at Sunflower Retreats. You'll come away feeling energised and with knowledge of delicious Italian organic cuisine as well as enjoying a delicious dinner with wine and water and dessert after the lesson.
The cost for Cooking classes range from €90 per person and includes a 2 to 3 hour cooking class and dinner with wine and dessert. Courses tend to be for a minimum of 3 people.
Enjoy an art class with us and tap into your creative self in Italy.
Watercolour painting lessons are with Giovanna Somai - a professional local artist and interior decorator who speaks English. Casperia is rich in history and the beauty of nature, the Sabina area being an ideal setting to learn about water colour painting.
The classes are held outdoors, in Casperia's streets or the beautiful countryside surrounding the village. Private Water colour painting classes cost €75 for a 2 hour session.
Join in with olive-picking in late October and November when you can pick olives with small organic producers and watch the milling process right through to getting your very own fresh extra virgin oil. No fancy labels; just the real, genuine product.
On request we can arrange evening apperitivi and olive oil tasting experiences with local producers in the Sabina countryside. Local organic extra virgin olive oil can be also bought all-year-round for about €8 - €10 per litre.
We offer grammar and conversational Italian classes with a fully bilingual mother-tongue Italian teacher.
Prices are from €15-per-student for 1-hour group lessons for two or more people, or €35/hour for private lessons.
Horse riding is available at several stables near Casperia with a selection of horses, rides and treks in the surrounding Sabina hills and countryside.
The riding is suitable for beginners and advanced riders and costs from €40.
Trips with a private driver to historic sites such as Saint Francis' hermitage, Orvieto, Assisi and to thermal baths and other nature sites can be organised. Prices range from €6 to €100 per person, depending on the destination and the number of people travelling. Guests can also reach these towns by public transport: Bus and train times will given when you arrive.
Independent day trips to Rome
Our location makes it easy to travel to Rome and back by public transport for an exciting day at the shops and monuments... amonst them, the Colosseum, Trevi Fountain, Pantheon, St Peter's - the spiritual heart of Rome - and the Vatican Museums.
If you'd like to sample local wine, we can arrange tastings , run by local winery Tenuta Santa Lucia, with appertivi from €25 per person for 3 or more people. We drink in moderation at these events, as you would expect.
You can also experience olive oil and wine tasting at the enoteca Osteria La Vigna in the village and olive oil tours are run by Johnny Madge. For more details, see www.johnnymadge.com.