Last Updated on June 23, 2024

Wellness travel continues to trend upward as more and more people are looking for natural and elemental experiences to stay healthy and feel good.

The biggest names in the travel space are moving away from the evergreen buzzwords and hooking new customers with exclusivity. Natural spa treatments that are exclusive to the destination represent the new frontier of wellness travel. Why go invasive when you can go natural with grounding, purifying and nourishing?

When I travel, I look for those distinctive experiences in skin and body treatments, whether it’s a massage, a facial, or other therapy regime that pays homage to the local surroundings and natural elements. Somehow, these well-considered treatments make me feel so much better afterward. So much so, that I often book a different experience on my second spa visit.

You may not remember a standard Swedish or deep-tissue massage, but you’ll not soon forget a modality that incorporates the natural elements of the region into the treatment whether it be multi-colored volcanic soaking baths on the Hawaiian island of Kauai or the varied body masks created from the clays of the Dominican Republic.

Here are some awe-inspiring destinations where you’ll find  unique wellness experiences incorporating botanicals and natural elements of the region.

Sandals Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

Sandals St. Vincent & Grenadines.
Sandals St. Vincent & Grenadines. Photo courtesy of Sandals Resorts

Tucked away on its own private cove in the Caribbean, Sandals Saint Vincent and the Grenadines all-inclusive couples-only resort offers guests the opportunity to book volcanic sand skin treatments using the island-sourced sand that fertilizes the surrounding flora and fauna.

Additionally, facial treatments use locally grown hibiscus flowers and massages include local oil-infused scrubs.

Four Seasons Hualalai

This luxury resort on Hawaii’s Big Island is surrounded by white-sand beaches and black lava landscapes.

Hualalai Spa features detox treatments using locally sourced volcanic ash and marine clay. Guests may also receive a traditional Hawaiian “kupuna” massage, a sacred healing modality handed down from generation to generation of Hawaiians. Or consider taking advantage of a coconut or coffee body polish.

Amangiri Resort Utah

Located in Canyon Point, Utah, this stunning resort blends into an untouched red rock country all within a desert landscape of canyons, mesas, ridges and gorges. Amangiri guests can book a traditional Hopi Ear Candling service, dating back to the traditions of the Hopi tribe.

The property also features a selection of Navajo healing rituals incorporating local herbs and clays.

Six Senses Duoro Valley Portugal

At this elegant and luxurious resort that occupies a 19th-century manor perched on a hill overlooking vine-covered terraces and the Duoro River, guests can enjoy Vinotherapy Treatments using grape extracts and wine byproducts from the surrounding Douro Valley vineyards.

Massage services at the property also utilize smooth stones sourced from the local region’s schist rock formations.

Mandarin Oriental Marrakech

With the Atlas Mountains as a backdrop, Mandarin Oriental Marrakech lies nestled in 20 acres of olive groves and beautifully landscaped gardens just 10 minutes from renowned Medina.

Spa guests can delight in the Moroccan Hammam Experience featuring exfoliation rituals using local black soap and rhassoul clay (a natural cosmetic product for the skin and hair). In addition, the spa offers massage and facial treatments using argan oil native to Morrocco and sourced from local cooperatives.

COMO Shambhala Estate, Bali

Bali spa treatments.
Bali spa treatments. Photo by Pixabay

This award-winning wellness resort near Ubud, Bali is located in the heart of a forest and surrounded by two picturesque rushing rivers, sporting wellness paths along with a myriad of spa and holistic body treatments.

Guests who book the traditional Balinese Boreh Wrap will enjoy a treatment using a mix of indigenous herbs, spices and rice powder. The deep-heat experience relieves achiness and tense muscles and massage techniques work to improve circulation.

Imagine staying in a five-star resort in a stunning destination and taking advantage of all the wellness offerings to help keep you healthy and aligned while rejuvenating your mind, body and spirit.

Here’s to wellness travel! I for one am all in.

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