MUMBAI. I didn't see any yoga offers in the centre- Colada or Fort - but I checked 3 places:
- K I Yogic Health Centre, along Marine Dr: they don't offer drop in classes, only a complete health program lasting several weeks, and including Ayurveda. Facilities are not so clean.
- The Yoga Institute, near Santa Cruz, again no drop ins, only long term students/ patients.
- Iyengar Yogasharya: excellent! $3 drop in class, and as expected a great focus on alignment. 20 min cub ride from centre, near Lower Parel Station. Their main ashram, where he lives, is in Pune. I may go there later on my way back.
SOUTH GOA.There's a lot of yoga offer, more pricey, more touristy.
Agonda Beach. I was sick and I didn't practice but
- there's a Christian institute that offers ashtanga n vinyasa drop ins for $8, and a YTT.
- Vinyasa yoga classes on a platform in front of the ocean, $7 drop in.
Palolem Beach. At Bakti Kutir Resort there's a Swami teaching Hatha Yoga 3 times a day for different levels, he's good n funny with his Indian accent. $4 a class.
Patnem Beach. Hatha Yoga with Swami Shivananda: excellent. He was trained by his guru in the forests of the Himalaya. Beautiful mantra chanting, nice easy flow but still challenging, pranayama, meditation, and satsang. He does not adjust, he practices with you. $7 drop in.
Also Ashtanga Shala offers $6 drop in vinyasa classes, week long workshops for $250, and monthly YTT for $1200. The Shala also offers accomodation and it seems nice, clean, and western friendly.
HAMPI. Across the river from the temples is where you want to be. Hatha Yoga classes are offered on a platform among rice fields and in a studio close by, both behind the main road. $3 drop in, look for the signs along the main road. The morning I went the teacher was sick and cancelled the class so I taught instead!
TIRUVANNAMALAI. Here there's everything you can imagine and more: hatha /vinyasa/ashtanga yoga, sufi and spiritual dances, kirtan chanting, satsangs in cafes, pujas, Ayurveda. Some are donation based, some about $3 drop in. Look at the billboards in cafes and restaurants and you'll find all the info. Nice locations on rooftops.
MYSORE. This is the land of Ashtanga, but very few schools accept walk-ins and most renown ones also require reservations in advance and week or month long commitment. Nevertheless I found my school and I loved it: Mandala Mysore Shala. They offer excellent walk-in classes of Ashtanga $10 and Hatha Yoga $8; the teacher has been trained by BNS Iyengar, and in his classes I found myself easily getting into postures that I thought I was 2 years behind... Very good energy there! The other great schools that require more long term commitment are Patanjala Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, and of course the Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute.
ADITYA AYURVEDA HOSPITAL, KERALA. A pretty good teacher is available every day for gentle but very interesting yoga sequences. The treatments make you tired, and vigorous asanas are not recommended. Savasanas were heavenly thanks to his pleasant lead auto-suggestion. $10 total for the group class.
KOCHI. There are Hata yoga and sitar meditation classes at the Kathakali Centre, $7 each, early am.
SIVANANDA ASHRAM, TRIVANDRUM. The ashram, $16 a day all included, has pretty strict rules and regulations, which you may or may not enjoy - see the blog- , but the yoga is pretty good: great focus on breath work and pranayama, both beginners and advanced classes are offered and mandatory twice a day, optional coaching classes with teachers to practice and improve the asanas that are challenging for you. Obviously Sivananda asana sequencing is very different from Ashtanga and regular Vinyasa or Hatha classes, but I still enjoyed a lot.
VARKALA. There are several yoga offers along the main road along the cliff and inside Ayurvedic centers. I took an advance class at Vasudev's Yoga Shala, $6, 1.5hrs. It was a Sivananda inspired class, not too challenging, but it felt good overall. The shala is very nice, open air, with a ceiling covered with colorful saris... and right across the shala there's a all you can eat breakfast buffet for $4! Very Yogic! : )
Note: I found the average quality and cleanliness of the yoga mats available in the schools very poor so I would definitely recommend a thin mat to use as a top layer. I've been using one by Manduka that is so thin you can actually fold it and perfect for traveling. I definitely recommend it!