Forest bathing is a popular Japanese practice of finding tranquility among trees and nature. Now, a new wellness trend, ‘starbathing’ or hoshi yoku, is gaining popularity.
Unlike forest bathing, this trend revolves around spending time under the night sky for improved mental clarity. If you’re looking to indulge in this experience, Tasmania emerges as the ideal destination.
Tasmania’s Cosmic Canvas: A Starbathing Paradise
Tasmania, located in the South Pacific Ocean just south of mainland Australia, not only offers clear dark skies but also stands as one of the world’s prime locations to witness the southern lights, Aurora Australis, particularly during the winter months (May to August).
Let’s delve into the allure of Tasmania’s celestial canvas, and what makes it an unparalleled destination for starbathing enthusiasts.
Dark Sky Retreats
A weekend-long dark sky retreat called Nocturna is held on Tasmania’s east coast, one of the darkest inhabited regions on earth, as part of Tasmania’s Beaker Street festival. Attendees are encouraged to disconnect from all screens and be immersed in nature while experiencing Tasmania’s pristine dark skies.
Starbathing encompasses several aspects, including Indigenous astronomy, storytelling, and a range of activities, which occur during this retreat. Talk about holistic!
Guided Astronomy Evenings: Exploring the Cosmos
Tasmania also has guided astronomy evenings for anyone who wants to have an intimate experience with the universe. The Astronomy Society of Tasmania holds public night sky viewing events at their Mount Pleasant observation center, where patrons can view the beautiful night skies through telescopes and gain a better understanding of the universe.
Walk on Kunanyi organizes group astronomy tours in Mount Wellington (kunanyi), and participants can join the tour. Such a tour will involve astronomy sightings as well as tales about the sky from Palawa. Well worth a visit if you’re in the area!
Starbathing Stays: Accommodation
To experience starbathing in privacy, Tasmania offers accommodation options that allow guests to marvel at the dark skies from the comfort of their rooms. Pumphouse Point on Lake St Clair provides a luxurious stay with heritage buildings and Retreat Suites featuring floor-to-ceiling windows for panoramic night-sky views. Freycinet Lodge’s Coastal Pavilions, nestled in the forest near Great Oyster Bay, offer eco-friendly stays with glass-paneled walls to immerse guests in nature.
Eagles Nest Retreat, surrounded by bucolic farmland, provides secluded bliss with outdoor baths in each of the three ‘nests,offering the perfect setting to soak up the stars. Tasmania’s celestial offerings make it an unparalleled destination for starbathing, combining natural beauty, cultural experiences, and luxurious stays. We’ve also heard it’s quite starry.
Wymara Villas on Providenciales in Turks and Caicos offers a serene and secluded experience for travelers seeking a different luxury experience. Beyond the island’s popular resorts and beaches, Wymara Villas sits on top of the Turtle Tail peninsula and boasts unparalleled views of the iconic turquoise waters of the island.
The Wymara Villas provides ultra-private accommodations with oceanfront infinity pools and overwater swim decks, perfect for a relaxing stay. The main Wymara Resort is only 15 minutes from the world’s best Grace Bay Beach, making it an ideal location for those wanting the best of both worlds. Wymara is expanding its private villa estate concept by adding a 130-foot-long ocean pool to its Sunset Cove Beach in March 2023, which has never been seen before in the Caribbean. The beach, with its freshly planted palm trees and shallow waters, is perfect for families, while the ocean pool provides a unique place for guests to swim and watch the sunset.
Wymara offers a state-of-the-art sports club with basketball, pickleball, and tennis courts christened by NBA players. Couples seeking a private and romantic experience can opt for the one-bedroom pool villas with oversized outdoor terraces. Wymara plans to add five more multi-bedroom villas, bringing the total to 12 by mid-2024, along with a new restaurant and bar beside the villa beach. In the meantime, guests can enjoy gourmet food prepared by chefs in their villas or indulge in its highly-rated restaurant, Indigo.
A Good Night Out
On Saturday nights, Wymara’s beach barbecue features live music, bonfires, and tables set up under string lights and a starry sky. It may be challenging to give up the serenity of the villas and the luxurious private pool, but joining the festivities is worth it. Guests can spend the night swaying to the music with their toes buried in the famous powdery white sand, enjoying the perfect blend of luxury, tranquility, and fun.