Outside the crowded beaches and the busy resorts of Parikia and Naoussa, Paros is an island full of energy and relaxing vibes. The surrounding sea, the light breeze, the low mountainsides create the perfect setting for a spiritual journey.
That is probably what Nissim Amon, Ran Dagan and Tsiki Ben-Saadon saw and created Tao's, a Yoga, Meditation and Seminars Center located on a small hill in the northern part of Paros, overlooking a spectacular view of the Aegean Sea and the neighboring islands. Tao's offers activities all focused on awareness and self-development, together with a bar-restaurant of Asian cuisine.
Tsiki and Ran, the co-owners and runners of this centre, talked to Greeka.com about the creation and activities of Tao's. "We found the land on a beautiful hill on the northern part of Paros, between Naoussa and Ambelas", they said. "Having a full clear panoramic view, it was too good to refuse. We moved with our families to Paros in 2001, the building of the centre took 3 years and in April 2005 it got open to the public. The decision to create Tao's in Paros was also a decision to live here. The island felt right from the first time we came. It is beautiful, simple, calm and close to nature, and still has everything you need for living. We are positive that Paros is the right space for the center."
What activities does the centre offer?
First of all, there are daily activities that include meditation, yoga, chi kong and movement/dance sessions. These come together with a long list of treatments and therapies, such as massages, shiatsu, reflexology, reiki or rebirthing. Moreover, there are workshops and retreats, either of guest teachers or of the centre. These workshops are all intensive inner journeys that make use of the peaceful background of the island and the unique atmosphere of the center and its activities halls, for creating a change in the way the participants live their lives, towards more aware, balanced and happier life.
Tao's also offers a Work and Study Program for people who are interested in a long period of stay. The program includes participation in the daily life of the center and enables a substantial period dedicated to ourselves. Furthermore, in collaboration with other green organizations in Paros and Greece, we have developed the Going Green Project. As part of this project, people can come and volunteer. Special educational and environmental non-profit events also take place.
Do you provide accommodation to people who take part in your activities?
We don't provide accommodation in the centre, but we take care of all the staying arrangements of our guests. The accommodation is done in the nearby village of Ambelas. The same holds for car and motorbike rental.
Most visitors are Greek or foreigners?
Visitors come from all over the world. They are mostly Greeks and Europeans, and the rest are north/south Americans. The activities are all held in English, some are with translation to Greek.
Why do you think a meditation holiday is necessary for people today?
The regular holidays of sea, sun, tavern and night club, may give a time off but they do not leave their mark. People rest, have some fun but do not take anything new with them, and soon after being back to their routine, the vacation and the rest are gone. A holiday that combines vacation with Yoga, Zen, Meditation or any other activity offered by Tao's, be it a lesson or a seminar, gives you this extra that stays with you for a while, and sometimes forever. Not only you do something out of the routine vacation going-out, you also get some insight about yourself, about your life, a reminder that you can be much more awake, optimistic and alive.