Join our Pilates, Yoga & Cooking In Positano for a week of Mediterranean cooking and a unique yoga and pilates – rejuvenate you soul and learn healthy new recipes. This Italian fitness and movement program designed by Dr. Fortunata includes a combination of pilates, yoga and deep stretching. Pack your yoga mat, inhale and get ready for a week of fitness and healthy cooking in sunny Positano.
Join Chefs Filomena, Fortunata, Giuseppe and Carmine for hands-on cooking in Positano on the splendid Amalfi Coast. With our chefs you will learn how to make healthy organic cuisine including regional antipasto, fresh pasta, local fish, meat, bread and pizza in the heart of Positano. This program features our Chefs’ seasonal and regional recipes based on the healthy Mediterranean diet, which has been proven to promote health & wellbeing. Not only is the Mediterranean Diet rich in fruits, vegetables, fish (including precious ‘blue’ fish), whole grains and olive oil, it is also a diet that celebrates the joy of life, following the seasons and including treats like red wine and delicious desserts. The Mediterranean diet is a healthy way to a relaxed and long-life. Dr. Fortunata will also share with you her philosophy on the benefits of following the Mediterranean-style and diet – from antioxidants to healthy omega-three oils, and how by eating fresh, seasonal products cooked simply, you can heal the body and soul from within.
As part of your program, you will also enjoy four regenerating yoga sessions with our qualified and licensed instructor Fortunata, who will encourage you to relax, stretch and melt into your beautiful surroundings. Yoga’s therapeutic powers are now widely appreciated and provide a calming way to counteract the stresses that accumulate through everyday life. Learn to detach, concentrate on the moment and cultivate a new appreciation of your combined body and spirit.
Positano Pilates, Yoga & Cooking Classes
Our program includes three hands-on cooking classes (you may always add-on more if you like) with lunch or dinner following. Our chefs learned the secrets of Italian cooking from their grandmothers and in culinary school. In each cooking class we use only fresh organic products that are seasonal. You will experience southern Italy’s cooking styles, foods and wines in this unique food lover’s program.
In each cooking classes you will make regional recipes starting with antipasto: fiori di zucca ripieni – stuffed squash flowers, aranci, patate crochette, involtini di melanzane, polpettini di melanzane, pasta: gnocchi, ravioli Caprese and scialatielli, a main course: spigola limone, pesce all’acqua pazza, vitello Positanese, pollo con erbe, and limone and dessert: torta Caprese, torta Vesuvio, babà soaked in limoncello, gelato and crostate, to name a few.
During the week, you will also learn the technique of making authentic Neapolitan pizza with our award-winning pizzaiolo, pizza-maker, who learned to make la vera pizza Neapolitana, real Neapolitan pizza, in Naples. This authentic pizza making class shares the secret recipe for mixing, kneading and stretching delicate pizza dough and baking it at a high temperature in a wood-burning oven for a perfect crispy crust.
If pasta is your favorite, you can choose to add on our Pasta Making Workshop where you will make additional fresh, hand-made pasta with seasonal sauces. Fresh pasta making is an art in Italy, and in Positano you will learn to make it step-by-step! Believe it or not, Italy boasts over 1,000 different types of pasta, including gnocchi, ravioli, tortellini, cannelloni, orecchiette, casarecci, and garganelli, to name but a few.
If you are an advanced cooker or chef, we can offer the same Yoga and Cooking with advanced cooking classes and make it a tailor made menu for you. Just let us know.
After each class, everyone enjoys eating the food that was prepared in class accompanied with a glass of red or white wine. Cook, dine and get inspired on new healthy cooking methods with recipes that you will be able to recreate in your home kitchen.
The Secret Garden™
The Secret Garden Positano™
Our charming Secret Garden Positano program is hosted at your choice of accommodations: a B&B, villa, 3, 4 or 5 star property located in the center of town and overlooking the sea. Cool ceramic tiles line each bedroom, with a private bathroom and shower in each room. Additional amenities include: hairdryer, safe, refrigerator, and air conditioning. Breakfast is served each morning, and daily maid service is provided for your convenience. Positano is filled with flowered pergolas and greenery, vertical cliffs jut from sea and its one winding road circles the town.
The Secret Garden is truly a magical setting, terraced with lemon trees, and plush green gardens and set under spectacular bougainvilleas overlooking the sea. Guests can sunbathe on the beach or relax at one of the cozy sidewalk cafés with a freshly squeezed lemonade. Step out your door and stroll past cafés, bookshops, and trattorias that spill onto the sidewalk. A panoramic view spans Li Galli Islands and the Amalfi Coast. The Tyrrhenian Sea is literally at your feet, and the beach is just a short walk away. As the sun sets, sit back on your terrace and watch the world-class yachts and local fishing boats ripple through the cerulean waters. Shuttle boats connect from each of Positano’s beaches and sail along the Amalfi Coast. From Positano’s port you can also take a water taxi or a private boat service to Sorrento, Ischia, Capri, Amalfi and Naples.
Mediterranean gardens and lemon groves dot the Amalfi Coast, and gardens grow almost all year long producing red cherry tomatoes, plump eggplant, zucchini and sweet oranges. Olives also grow in abundance thanks to the warm Mediterranean climate, fertile volcanic soil and salted sea breeze, all of which provide perfect growing conditions. Organic herbs of basil, sage, parsley, oregano, rosemary and mint, line gardens and fill pretty terracotta pots set on terraces. The local organic herbs that we grow in our garden are used in our cooking classes, along with our own first cold-pressed extra virgin olive oil.
John Steinbeck lived in Positano in 1953 and wrote, “Positano bites deep, it’s a dream place, that isn’t quite real when you are there and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone.”
Over time, Positano has attracted artists, writers, and photographers who came to capture its magic. It is a little Moorish-style village that was discovered by American and British troops at the end of World War II. Positano’s small winding streets are filled with tiny cafés, terraces, and artisan shops selling ceramics, limoncello and antiques. Take a walk along the stone pathway, the one little street that leads to the beach. Visit the parish church of Santa Maria Assunta in Piazza Flavio Gioia, a Romanesque structure that was completely rebuilt in 1700. The people of Positano celebrate the town’s feast day every August 15th, when the locals carry the statue along the beach with a parade of musicians. A spectacular firework display follows.
Positano’s famous beachfront is Tre Sorelle Ristorante, and Music On The Rocks. This lively area offers great people-watching opportunities. The footpath, Via Positanesi d’America, follows the sea and connects the Spiaggia Grande with Fornillo Beach. Three Saracen towers watch its shore: the most famous ones are, La Torre Trasita, La Sponda and Torre Di Fornillo, all from the 14th century. Set in the sea just a short distance away, are the mysterious islets of Li Galli. Legend has it that they were once mermaids and now have turned to stone.
Itinerary ~ 8 days, 7 nights
Saturday: Benvenuto & Chef’s Tasting Dinner
- Group pick-up and transfer from Naples airport or train station to the property.
- Arrival & check-in. Refresh and relax with an aperitivo. Read over the contents of your Welcome Bag including helpful information that will acquaint you with the area, and go over your itinerary for your cooking program. Also included is your Chef’s apron and general information and notes on landmarks, and our “Hot Pick list.”
- Later in the evening, you will be served the full course Chef’s Tasting Dinner at our favorite local restaurant. Dine on award-winning southern regional Italian food set in charming surroundings that overlook the panoramic Amalfi Coast. (Wine, drinks, grappa and an assortment of after dinner digestives are not included, and are available at a surcharge).
Sunday: Cooking Class 1
- Breakfast is served.
- Take the morning to discover Positano. Take a stroll to the beach and enjoy a swim or explore the many artisan shops.
- Lunch on your own. Pick out a pretty trattoria and enjoy a peaceful lunch. Or simply sip a Prosecco at a beachside Café, before strolling along the seafront and going for a swim.
- In the afternoon, head into the kitchen for Cooking Class 1: your first hands-on cooking class. Tie on your apron, get your recipe notebook ready and get cooking with our expert team of Chefs. During the class, you will learn to prepare regional seasonal foods made with farm fresh local produce in the healthiest way possible. Lunch or dinner follows and everyone enjoys the foods that were prepared in class. Toast with a glass of red or white local wine, included. (Additional wines, beverages, after dinner drinks and more are available at a surcharge).
- Watch the sun set over the twinkling lights of Praiano & Li Galli Islands.
Monday: Yoga Class ~ Discover Sorrento
- Breakfast is served.
- Greet the new morning with your first yoga session. Meet your professional instructor, Fortunata, reach, stretch and uncoil again and follow her gentle instructions. Slowly warm up and hold each pose before bending and stretching into a series of Sun Salutations. Enjoy testing your limits then relax as you cool down after your class.
- 1 Total Body Therapeutic Relaxing Massage.
- Lunch and afternoon on your own.
- Suggestion on your own– Explore Sorrento the city of song, dance and the Tarantella on your own. Visit Piazza Tasso and the famous Fauno Café, walk through the cobblestone streets and see artisans make shoes, leather bags, ceramics, confetti and wedding candies. Visit the artisan soap maker who produces lemon soap from the essence of the Sorrento lemons. Visit the famous limoncello maker and see how this delicious local drink is made, complimentary tastings included. Stop at the artisan “Confetti & Agrumeti,” and watch Antonio toast the almonds and then coat them in chocolate, orange zest or lemon. Complimentary tastings of the sugarcoated almonds are available. Walk to Marina Grande in old Sorrento and visit the Church of Saint Ann – the patron saint of the marina – sip a Prosecco at the Fauno Café, or stroll along the famous Corso Italia. This is not included in the tour, and is a suggestion.
Tuesday: Cooking Class 2 & Mediterranean Food Talk
- Breakfast is served.
- Morning is free. Suggestions: Limoncello Making Add-On Class or relax at Fornillo Beach.
- You may want to add on the Limoncello Making Class on the villa terrace overlooking the sea. The Positano lemons used in making authentic DOP Limoncello, blossom and bloom four times per year. We start off the class with an informal discussion on the history behind the lemons and how they made their way on the Amalfi Coast. Learn our secrets on cooking with the Amalfi Coast lemons. Get peeling and watch the famous lemon liqueur come alive before your eyes. As the lemons bathe in the magic mixture, we fill your glass with an ice cold Limoncello. Tasting of limoncello included.
- Or, take a walk through the winding streets of Positano on your own, and venture off to Fornillo at Ferdinando’s Beach. Ferdinando’s, lined with colorful beach chairs and umbrellas, is where the locals go. Guido will guide you to your beach chair, while Mamma Celeste is in the kitchen preparing the specials of the day. Stay for a bite, take a swim or sip a limoncello. Walk the sands where Diane Lane’s love story took her in the film “Under The Tuscan Sun.”
- Afternoon Cooking Class 2: Tie on your apron and get ready for your second hands-on cooking class. Start with our antipasto, then get busy creating pasta, a main course and dessert. Lunch or dinner follows on the foods prepared in class after the cooking class. Toast with a glass of red or white local wine, and end with a sweet dessert, both included. (Additional wines, beverages, after dinner drinks and more are available at a surcharge).
- Mediterranean Diet Talk. After class, enjoy a talk given by a local health professional on the enormous benefits of following a Mediterranean-style diet – from antioxidants to healthy omega-three oils, and how by eating fresh, seasonal products cooked simply, you can heal the body from within.
- Enjoy the evening, walk the sands, catch the sites and listen to live Neapolitan music in Zagara as you look out over a dreamy Tyrrhenian Sea.
Wednesday: The Amalfi Coast & Ravello Excursion
- Breakfast is served.
- Drive along the famed Amalfi Coast headed to Amalfi and the hilltop village of Ravello. Along the way, stop to visit our artisan ceramic maker. You will see old-world ceramics like table tops made of volcanic rock and hand painted in soft colors with seascapes, grapes and lemons, romantic angels and Mediterranean scenes. This family-owned producer of ceramics also ships worldwide.
The town of Amalfi is rich in culture and history. The small town, perched on the coastline, is dominated by Amalfi’s Cathedral and its main streets are lined with small shops and elegant bars. Merchants display their wares outside and nothing could be more pleasant than browsing through stalls of herbs and spices, jewelry, shoes, the beautiful handmade Amalfi paper, and local lemon specialties such lemon soap and lemon liqueurs. Suggested is a stop in at one of the oldest and most famous pastry makers in southern Italy- dating back to the 1800’s. A look inside reveals a sweet showcase of chocolate drenched eggplant flavored with pine nuts, liqueur and orange; fragrant ricotta pear tarts; candied lemon and orange dragged in dark chocolate; or festive pastries of the day! Whatever you decide to order, take a seat outside in the piazza at one of the small café tables that overlook the greatest people-watching site on the Coast.
Ravello follows. This quaint town, often called the city between ‘Sea & Sky’, is suspended high above the coast, with sweeping views that span everything from the Tyrrhenian Sea to the mountains inland.
Ravello is hailed the ‘International City of Music’ and is known for its precious panoramic view from the gardens of Villa Cimbrone. The town is perched 350 meters over the rocky spur of the Amalfi Coast separating the Valle del Dragone from the Valle del Regina. Today, Ravello is world-famous for its outdoor music concerts. Visit Villa Cimbrone, once the residence of Greta Garbo, wander through the lush gardens and the Terrazza Della Rosa, or stroll down the path that leads to the Terrazzo dell’Infinito (Terrace of Infinity). This natural balcony is adorned with imposing marble busts. From this unique vantage point you can see the distant Cilento Mountains and the Licosa beyond the sparkling sea, the lush Amalfi Coast, its distinctive terraces of colorful lemon trees, and the typical whitewashed houses that cling to the rugged coastline. Stroll along the streets and alleyways and discover little gems of churches, chapels, and noblemen’s residences. Also see the Cathedral, Villa Rufolo, San Giovanni del Tauro, and Santa Maria.
Add-On Angela, Our Guide:
You may also reserve a private guided tour with Angela, native Ravello resident and eloquent art history expert who will take you on a Market Visit & Food Lover’s Tour Amalfi and Ravello Landmark Tour to the two towns, Amafli & Ravella, gardens, pathways, villas, shops, artisans and churches of the town. If you love food and wine, Angela offers insight and history. The walking tour starts out with introduction to the historical city of Amalfi, and then moves on to all the best stops for food, produce, wine, pastry and cheese. As we make our way through the beautiful seaside towns, we make a couple of tasty stops along the way, meet local producers of wine, cheese, bread and more, and learn about the seasonal fruits, vegetables, fish & cheese of the Amalfi Coast. Tastings included. (Guide’s fee is extra, please reserve in advance.)
- Evening free & dinner on your own.
Thursday: Cooking Class 3 ~ Afternoon Yoga Class 2
- Breakfast is served.
- Cooking Class 3: Tie on your apron and get ready for your third hands-on cooking class. Alongside the chefs, create a traditional antipasto, first course, second course and dessert. Lunch or dinner follows on the foods prepared in class after the cooking class. Toast with a glass of red or white local wine, and end with a sweet dessert, both included. (Additional wines, beverages, after dinner drinks and more are available at a surcharge).
- Olive Oil Tasting. Join us for a tasting of our locally produced Extra Virgin Olive Oil. At Cooking Vacations we make our own first-cold pressed extra virgin olive oil from healthy olives that have been tended and cared for all summer long. We use only the first cold press Virgin olive oil. It means that the oil we bottle is pressed only one time giving it a clean fresh taste. Virgin means it is pure and not mixed with anything else. It is DOP-Denominazione di Origine Protetta, ‘origin protected’ domain of production-and “made on site in Italy.” Grown under the warm Mediterranean sun, in rich volcanic soil, and with salt sea winds, our olives make perfect olive oil. We respect the old world process of picking just at the right time, just in October and not too late in the season. Always organic. Our olive oil it is made without chemicals or preservatives, we promise. The informal tasting provides a bit of insight into tasting, buying and using olive oil.
- In the afternoon, enjoy your second yoga and stretching session. Along with Fortunata, reach, stretch and uncoil again and follow her gentle instructions through this early evening class.
- Evening is free and dinner is on your own.
Friday: Yoga 3 ~ Afternoon in Positano
- Breakfast is served.
- Greet the new morning with your third yoga session. Join Fortunata, reach, stretch and uncoil again and follow her gentle instructions. Slowly warm up and hold each pose before bending and stretching into a series of Sun Salutations. Enjoy testing your limits then relax as you cool down after your class.
- Afternoon free to relax on the beach or pick up last minute gifts from your favorite Positano boutiques.
- Evening is free and dinner is on your own.
Saturday: Check Out & Departure
- Breakfast is served.
- Departure transfer to airport or train station. Ciao e a presto!
*Note: This sample itinerary schedule may vary due to inclement weather, saints days; festivals. All activities, in the event of rescheduling, are always included during the week. Please note that museum tickets are not included in program price.
- Seven nights and eight days based on 2 guests.
- Daily breakfast and maid service.
- Three hands-on cooking classes, with lunch or dinner following. Learn more about how to create healthy breakfasts, lunches and dinners following the principles of the Mediterranean Diet. A toast of local wine included, with additional wines, beverages, after-dinner liqueur and caffè available at a surcharge.
- Full course Chef’s Tasting Menu on your first night arrival featuring a full course Chef’s Tasting menu with local fare. (Wine, beverages, after-dinner liqueurs and caffè available at a surcharge).
- Excursion to Amalfi and Ravello with private driver. (Private tour guide available on request).
- Three yoga pilates sessions with certified Italian instructor.
- 1 Total Body Therapeutic Relaxing Massage.
- Mediterranean Diet Talk with food tastings included.
- Olive Oil Tasting.
- Round trip group transfers from Naples Airport or Naples Train station to Positano.
- Cooking Vacations welcome bag with chef’s apron, Prosecco and recipe booklet.
$3,395 per person, based 2 guests in the B&B with garden, terrace and mountain view.
For Single Guests: If you are traveling on your own, please call us for the best group price. We are happy to welcome you into an already scheduled group.
2022 Dates: This program is available throughout the year. You can check in and start your cooking program any day of the week, as this program is offered 12 months per year. Rates are subject to change based on currency exchange. Call for updated rates. Airfare not included. Group transfers for any cooking tour or tours that include transfers, are for the group and are not private. Transfers before, after or to another destination outside of your cooking tour are not included in the program price. If you would like to add on a private transfer or transfers, let us know and we will send you pricing.
ROUND TRIP TRANSFERS
*Round trip group transfers from Naples Airport/Train to Positano and from Positano to Naples Airport or Train Station are included in your program. 1 transfer per group each way.
ARRIVAL-Arrival transfers from Naples Airport going to Positano are at scheduled 1:00pm and 4:00pm; and from Naples train station to Positano at 3:00pm, in consideration of international arrivals. Departures leave promptly at the scheduled time. If you cannot make the scheduled group transfer time, a special transfer can be reserved for you, please call for pricing.
DEPARTURE-Departure from the property in Positano to Naples Airport or Train Station are at 4am and 10am (in heavy traffic conditions, departures may start 30 minutes prior). 10am is the official property check out time on the morning of your departure. If you would like a private transfer, please call for pricing.
City taxes, which vary, are not included and must be paid by each guest on site at the time of check out. Please call us if you have any questions.
*Even though Positano has many stairs throughout, our properties are located with minimum stairs. Going to the beach offers handicap access. People who do not like to walk or have health problems are advised to read up on the landscape of Positano. We suggest walking shoes, sun block, and a hat for Capri and Pompeii.