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01 Nov 2020

by Lexi Burgess

Over the last year I have researched the digital nomad lifestyle in earnest. Amongst my more embarrassing searches, like what is a digital nomad, I came across flOasis. The founders of flOasis have created a network of information about all the digital nomad Europe destinations available to people who are searching for reliable, friendly, and community-driven retreats for remote workers.

Their newest drive to bring together co-living retreats has taken the form of their pioneer programme. It was this project that first caught the attention of Rowena Auld, a qualified yoga teacher and aryyedic masseuse. Rowena is no stranger to community-driven initiatives. She founded Rising Soul Retreat in Bulgaria with the dream of creating a bespoke, inclusive, and companionable community for digital nomads around the world.

Rising Soul Retreat stands out from the crowd because it ticks off a number of must-haves on my list. As I read on, I realised that what makes this retreat so attractive is that fact that it is run by someone who has experienced the digital nomad lifestyle themselves. Because of this, Rowena understands what facilities nomads need to complete their work, and acknowledges the need for spiritual and fitness-oriented activities.

Why Bulgaria?

Having not known much about Bulgaria, I was shocked to discover how low the cost of living is compared to my hometown of Manchester. I compared Manchester with Veliko Tarnovo, one of the oldest settlements in Bulgaria that is located a twenty-minute drive away from Rising Soul Retreat. I found that restaurant prices are 201.71% higher in Manchester than in Veliko, and groceries are 71.10% higher.

Where is the Rising Soul Retreat?

Set against the Balkan Mountains, this retreat is surrounded by life. The location sets the scene for a relaxation retreat that could destress even the most flustered remote worker. This rural spot is the perfect place to complete digital nomad work whilst still being connected to all of the amenities of modern-day life. Having experienced the issues that arise with working on-the-go herself, Rowena has created facilities that allow her guests to make private calls and conduct client meetings.

What is on offer at Rising Soul Retreat? 

Rising Soul Retreat is a bespoke co-living community and retreat space that caters for up to eight guests. Digital nomads can choose between a four-person dorm room, a double room with an en suite, and a twin room. 

Guests can expect to find breakfast included in the price of their stay. Rowena makes sure to cater to all her guests with a selection of plant-based staples with a variety of additional protein side dishes for non-vegan guests. From then on, lunch and dinner are a communal affair. Guests will pair up and take it in turns to cook for their fellow digital nomad workers. Rowena provides all of the food at a cost of 5 euros per day per person, and she ensures that all of it is locally sourced, ethical, and sustainable. 


Rising Soul Retreat has three main services. The co-living aspect of the retreat caters to digital nomads whose focus is working and socialising. Next, the relaxation retreat part of Rowena’s vision allows her guests to hire yoga mats and mountain bikes for the duration of their stay. Lodgers are free to self-practice or join Rowena’s in-house yoga classes for a discounted rate.

Lastly, Rowena allows Guest Coaches to hire the yoga hall to host fitness and Yoga based spiritual and relaxing events that co-livers can participate in for a fee.

Is there a community at Rising Soul Retreat?

The sense of community at Rising Soul Retreat has encouraged me more than ever to begin my digital nomad lifestyle. Whilst staying with Rowena, guests can expect to participate in communal meals, game nights, and group outings to local towns to see traditional architecture and monasteries.

Digital nomad work can be lonely. The prospect of being able to live with likeminded people against the beautiful backdrop of the Balkan Mountains is too good to pass up, especially considering the low cost of living in Bulgaria.   

Learn More

Digital nomads around the world searching for a sense of community can find it at Rising Soul Retreat. It does not just offer a host of useful amenities, but also a communal living space that is headed by someone who has experienced the nomad lifestyle herself. Explore Rising Soul Retreat’s blog page to read more about this hidden gem.  

To read more from Lexi, head over to her blog at https://makingalongstoryshort.com/

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