PUGLIA, ITALY | JULY 14 -20, 2019



Photo:  Monique Pantel

Photo: Monique Pantel


Travel to the stunning Mediterranean coastline of Puglia, Italy for a yoga retreat and creative photography workshop with professional photographer Monique Pantel and Daniela Manzur. 



  • Daily yoga class amongst the olive trees with Daniela Manzur

  • Storytelling + Travel Photography workshop with Monique Pantel

  • 6 nights

  • 5 dinners

  • 5 lunches

  • 7 breakfasts

  • Hands-on Italian Cooking Class at a farm in Ostuni, tasting Apulian products, oil, orecchiette, mozzarella and oil soaps

  • Beach yoga practice at Monopoli Beach

  • Visit old town Locorotondo and Cisternine

  • Photography workshops with Monique Pantel

This Copal Retreat is limited to 12 people. 

*Rooms are typically shared with one other guest. Please note beds in Italy may be located close to one another. 

Airfare to Italy is not included.


Triple occupancy $2800 USD (2 rooms available)

Double occupancy $3000 USD (2 rooms available)

Single occupancy $3200 any room can be offered as single.

Workshop Equipment Requirements - to get the most of of this workshop we recommend you bring the following photography equipment with you:

- DSLR Camera 

- Memory cards

- Battery charger and a couple spare batteries 

- Lenses

- Camera manual

Optional items:

- Laptop and camera connection cable 

*It is essential that you have some way to show your images after they are captured, for review and feedback by Monique and the group, either by way of a laptop/ipad (if your camera is compatible), or the screen on the back of your camera. 

*If you are interested in joining us on this adventure but do not have a proper camera - don't fret! Newer model iphone cameras (8+) can capture some impressive images and are a welcome alternative. 

*An important note about mobility

We will be walking quite a bit, often on uneven surfaces, small hikes, on and off boats, and stairs, lots of stairs. We ask you are comfortable with these conditions.



Photographer, content creator and educator Monique Pantel has made a career out of her lifelong love affair with human connection and curiosity to discover inspiring places. In addition to documenting heart felt weddings and teaching photography workshops, she dedicates much of her time to her Heart Projects, involving visual storytelling for charities and NGOs worldwide.

Monique’s commercial photography work spans the travel and wellness sectors and clients include lululemon, Mantra Magazine, Ariztia, Kit & Ace, Wanderlust Festival, Coqui Coqui Residences, Prairie Love Festival and more.

Follow along with Monique's travels on instagram.



Dani Manzur discovered yoga in 2002 and was instantly delighted to be able to combine concentration, physical effort and inner peace. From that moment Dani hasn’t stopped practicing and studying yoga and other techniques.

During her first trip to India in 2005 she met one of her first teachers, Sunil Kumar. Her desire to share her experience led her to obtain her Teacher’s Certificate. Since then, she has explored and studied different types of yoga such as Ashtanga, Vinyasa flow, Anusara, Sivananda, Power Vinyasa. She has found and connected with the uniqueness of each of them. This has enabled her to transmit and guide people through different paths.

Along the process Dani started to combine yoga with other energetic tools as healing practices. She uses pranic healing, crystals and other shamanic techniques. The purpose is to find what best suits each person towards his or her wellbeing. For Dani yoga and the holistic path are methods to awaken and find a deeper meaning of life. Through inhalation and exhalation we begin to awaken our conscience. We build a state of absolute acceptance, observance to understanding everything as part of a process. Knowledge and practice lead students to focus on enjoying and making the most out of every moment.



Photos: Monique Pantel, Italy



A few details about what will be covered during the trip. The area provides an amazing photogenic backdrop so this is a 'learning on the go’ experience, designed to maximize our time photographing the sights. Here’s what you can expect:

- The Basics: Camera operation, shutter speed, aperture, ISO, focal length, white balance

- Discovering the Light: How to photograph light

- Finding Perspective: Composition, depth of field, and strategies for capturing those in-between moments

- Your eye + your style: We will cover the main genres of photography: Making portraits and strategies for photographing people within a cultural context, landscape, still life, reportage & documentary 

- Telling the Story: Storytelling through image, editing for online and social media

- Editing 101: Editing using Adobe Lightroom, image enhancement and how to edit photos on the fly using iPhone apps



Copal Retreat will email you when it is time to make your travel arrangements.

There will be no refunds for this Copal Retreat due to the planning and logistics involved. 



July is a wonderful time of year to visit Italy. Puglia enjoys a typical Mediterranean climate of long, hot summers with minimal rain. The weather is generally very warm with consistent sunshine throughout the month.

Temperatures range from 18°C to 27°C, which means you should pack light clothes for your stay and a light jacket to prepare for the odd shower. 



The Copal tour leaders: Janet, Monique & Daniela Manzur, are a part of your group and are there to look out for your safety, to help resolve issues, and to make sure you get what you want from your vacation. The Tour Leaders will make sure that everyone who wants company has it, including dinners when no group meal is scheduled.

They also work with the local guides to insure the right combination of pace, information, and duration - and, well...keep the ball rolling.



Welcome Drink and Aperitivo 

Transfer from the Airport (if they arrive early or leave late $70-80 Euros on request) otherwise we have a schduled shuttle the day the retreat starts after 2:00 PM but no later than 6:00 PM

19h-20h First dinner at the house in Castellana Grotte

20h-21h Welcome celebration enjoy the night among olive trees, under the stars while local singer will sweeten the evening with his guitar followed by celebratory limoncello and fresh fruit collected from the area.


Morning yoga amongst the olive trees.

Breakfast by the one and only Ernestina, who she makes from scratch the decadent croissants, by hand.

After breakfast, we will travel by van to a farm in Ostuni, where we will cook and taste typical Apulian products, oil, orecchiette, mozzarella and oil soaps.

Lunch at the farm.


 Photo workshop with Monique Pantel


Nearby to the farm, we will explore the photogenic city of Ostuni and look for photo opportunities in this beautifully whitewashed, ancient Italian city.


We will return by van to the Villa in Castellana Grotte.



Evening Yoga amongst the olive trees



Ernestina will prepare Panzerotti, a dish that is traditional to the area and it is out of this world.


We have an early start this morning in order to experience a beach yoga practice at Monopoli Beach.

After, we will enjoy a delicious packed breakfast, carefully prepared by Ernestina

Suggested mid-morning activity:

Boat tour in the Adriatic ocean with Aperitivo $50Euros.


Lunch at the Beach Club (not included). Except to spend estimated $30 Euros.

At 13:30 Photo workshop  #2 with Monique. We will explore a particularly photogenic beach. We will explore neighbourhoods and other little shops along the way.

We will be returning to Monopoli at night  to walk through the narrow streets ancient buildings and rock churches.

14:30h Van arrives to take us back to the Villa in Castellana Grotte

17h-18h Aperitivo

18h-17h Evening practice among the olive trees

16h-20h Van will pick us up to take us back to Monopoli to see the city at night and put your photo skills to practice. We will re-convene in the evening in Monopoli for an informal review session with Monique over wine.


7h-8h Morning practice among the olive trees

8h15-9h15 Breakfast prepared by Ernestina

10h-11h Photo workshop #3

Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure

Activity Options:

Visit Nadir Fitness center Yoga Sauna Pilates and relax by the pool

Book your massage (4-5 slots available for the day)

Visit Bari’s to go shopping walk through their historic buildings and monuments. $60 Euros

12h-12h30 Lunch prepared by Ernestina

15h30- 20h Van arrives and takes guest first to Poligiamo a Mare and then to Alberobello to see the famous Trulli, a Unesco Heritage Site

20h-21h Dinner in a traditional Apullian trullo enjoy the rest of the night at leisure. People are out on the streets up until 2:00 am grandmas children dogs cats.


7h-8h Morning yoga practice among the olive trees

8h15-9h15 Breakfast prepared by Ernestina 

9h15-12h30 Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure


Visit Nadir Fitness Centre Yoga sauna Pilates and relax by the pool

Book your massage (4-5 slots available for the day)

12h30-13:30 Lunch prepared by Ernestina for those who decide to stay  (packed lunch for those that go to Nadir)

Enjoy the afternoon at leisure

16h-17h Van will arrive to take us to Matera European Capital of Culture 2019

17h Gelato time enjoy the city at leisure

18h Dinner

19h-20h Return to Castellana Grote

20h-22h Karaoke


7:00-8:00am Morning practice among the olive trees

8:15-9:15 Breakfast prepared by Ernestina 

9:30-12:30pm Van will arrive to take everyone to Nadir sports and wellness centre to relaxed pilates fitness activities swim in the pool massage an sauna.

12:30-1:30pm Lunch at swimming pool  (not included)

4:00-7:00 pm Van arrives to take guest visit old town Locorotondo and Cisternino

7:30-8:30pm Dinner at a traditional trattoria

8:30 Return to Castellana Grotte


7:00-8:00am Morning Practice among the olive trees

8h15-9h15 Breakfast prepared by Ernestina

10h-13h Ciao Amici! Transportation to the airport.


Please note that this is a prospective itinerary. It is subject to modifications, dependent on local weather, new opportunities and desires of the group.