The Yoga Cucina retreat in the Southern Highlands is all about enjoyment, beyond silent meditation and super food. Stay in a historic sandstone house and follow up your two-hour yoga sessions with brunch, national park hikes, Italian cooking classes and board games by the open fire.

It all started over a late-night bowl of truffle-and-porcini risotto. Yoga instructors and wine lovers Rebecca Lockyer, Claire Blackwood and Aly Clarke arrived home, starving, after a sweaty yoga session. So Blackwood’s husband Marco Gobbo and his best friend Lucas Faccin, both Michelin-star-trained chefs, cooked up a storm.

“The five of us posted up at the kitchen table … we had one of those moments, mouths full and everyone beaming because the food is so delicious,” says Clarke. “We wondered how we could take it out into the world on a larger scale.”

And so Yoga Cucina was born.

“You don’t have to be a really incredible ‘yogi’ to come along”, says Clarke. “If you’re hungry and you like to move, we want you there. Extra points for dart throwing, barbeque-cooking, fire-pit loitering and wine appreciation.”

And all just two hours away, complete with 19th century open fires, an old-style farmhouse kitchen and eight-course degustations in the grand dining hall.

“Getting people elbow to elbow on their yoga mats and at the table is what we are most excited about,” says Clarke. “Getting the music blaring and then sitting down together to make gnocchi. The moment when Marco and Luca yell, ‘Pagliacci, la cena è pronta! Clowns, dinner is ready!’”

The long weekend getaway begins at $880 per person for three nights in a shared room (in a single bed). Private accommodation options are also available for $935 for a room with double bed.

yogacucina.com