Northern Nicaragua provides an environment for health seekers, explorers, surfers, and entrepreneurs to find their own ‘oasis’.
Grace Van Berkum, from Toronto, Canada, has spent the past year doing just this by creating Gracious Living Oasis. Where she hosts and facilitates healthy vacations and nutrition focused retreats since February when she officially launched.
Her property in the Azul complex of Manzanillo, Nicaragua, is nestled at the top of a tropical incline over looking the near by ocean. In her own words her mission is to “teach people that being healthy is cool and possible and life becomes so much better when you can move your body with ease and abundant energy.” Grace “provides education classes and a lifestyle tool-kit to clients so they can bring what they learn back home.” Her focus at Gracious Living Oasis, is to offer different outdoor adventures, such as stand up paddle board yoga, beach fitness, volcano hiking, and, of course, tropical yoga are offered to help people strengthen their connection to nature, as this is sadly becoming an over looked topic in our modern society.
At the Gracious Living Oasis, there are five different ‘levels’ of retreats you can participate in. For example, level one is an introduction to plant-based eating and level five is an intensive detox for clients who are trying to heal from diseases like IBS, Chron’s, Diabetes, MS, and even Cancer. So no matter what your background is there can be a place for you at the ‘oasis.’
Several years ago, Grace’s father, Chris Van Berkum was diagnosed with cancer and told he was going to die in less than a year. He choose not to accept that information and drastically changed his life by beginning to study alternative medicine, quantum physics, yoga, meditation, and having a plant based diet. Grace, originally fearing for her father’s life urged him to try chemotherapy but he insisted that he was going to become cancer-free doing it his way. Eventually Grace grew to accept this as well and began embracing the alternative medicine that was so helpful to her father. Chris, alive and well today (and remarkably cancer-free for over 10 years!), happily lives with his daughter and flirts with her clients. Chris’s success story, is the primary source of Grace’s inspiration and a great example of how simple lifestyle changes can save your life.
Grace has plans to provide free monthly meals and yoga classes for locals in the area to share her passion for healthy living with her ‘neighbors’ and a country that also can greatly benefit from learning how to use food as medicine.
Learn more at http://www.gracevanberkum.com
View on Instagram as well: @boomsurfreport
Words and Photos by: Tucker Cocchiarella @travelswithtucker