My Time with Hare Krishna

The Trulys at the Eco Truly Park Hare Krishna Community outside Lima, Peru

The incredible truly buildings at the Eco Truly Park, Hare Krishna Community outside Lima, Peru

This experience would have never happened if it wasn’t for friend and fellow traveler Ayngelina from Bacon is Magic. We were having a chat one day while I was in Lima and she told me I had to visit Eco Truly Park, a Hare Krishna community outside Lima.

As I began to explain that it wasn’t really my thing, she uttered the few words I can never pass up. She said, “C’mon you should do something different, it will be a very unique type of adventure.”

She knew just what to say. I was sold.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay, Lima, Peru

I was immediately captivated by the beauty of the Eco Truly Park.

I left Lima 2 days later and ended up spending almost a week at the Eco Truly Park, volunteering for room and board as I learned about the Hare Krishna religion, ate like a vegetarian and entertained everyone with my terrible yoga ability.

I expected to feel completely out of place when I arrived. I expected monks and hippies to coach me on how to become a believer in Hare Krishna. I expected weird food, long days and awkward conversations.

It was nothing like I expected.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

The volunteer crew eating lunch at Eco Truly Park

As soon as I arrived at the park workers and volunteers alike welcomed me with open arms and made me feel surprisingly comfortable in a very out-of-box situation. People explained to me what Hare Krishna was all about and I asked a ton of questions, but they never tried to convince me of anything.

I never felt pressured into believing anything they taught.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

An amazing place to relax and reflect without obligation or judgement.

Also, the food was delicious! This was the longest I’ve ever gone without eating meat and it wasn’t as painful as I imagined. We had big bowls of fruit, yogurt and oats for breakfast, fresh salads, rice and beans for lunch, and really good pizza, pasta or veggie creation for dinner. Most of the ingredients came from within the park’s garden so everything was incredibly fresh.

The strawberries were also in season, so I think I ate my weight in those.

Our days were structured without feeling stressed.  While many of the other volunteers joined the monks before sunrise each day to pray, sing and chant, I slept through that and joined them after for yoga class before breakfast.

Yoga - Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

Early morning yoga session

Yoga is one of those things that I would love to make a habit of. It was a great start to the day, although I definitely scared some people with all my sweating and moaning as I tried to touch my toes.

After breakfast we divided up the daily chores and worked until lunch. Tasks included painting, gardening, kitchen maintenance and food prep. I stuck with the outdoor jobs and enjoyed myself with some much-needed manual labor.

Volunteering - Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

Tending to the garden (while devouring strawberries)

My afternoons were free to wander along the adjoining beach, read, nap and just enjoy the peace and serenity of the place. One afternoon a volunteer from California taught a couples yoga class, which was fun, although some of the moves felt a little inappropriate for a place that believes in abstinence.

Volunteering - Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

Enjoying the afternoon with a hike up the sand dunes above Eco Truly Park.

In the evenings, before dinner, I would join community members and volunteers in the temple for nightly prayer. It was really interesting to witness all their traditions and the songs were super chill and relaxing. It provided a great opportunity to think about and reflect on all things in my life.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

Inside the temple where traditional ceremonies were held.

One of the things I was most captivated by during my stay at the Eco Truly Park was the Trulys themselves. The cone like buildings that cover the property are architectural genius. Not only are they earthquake proof and heat regulating, but they also provide great acoustics and have incredible spiritual significance (no corners for energy to get stuck in). They were fascinating.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

The Volunteer's Trulys

The few days I spent at the Hare Krishna community were some of the most relaxing and refreshing I’ve had in a long time. I recharged the travel battery while disconnecting from everything.

I don’t know if I’ll become a full-fledged Hare Krishna follower anytime soon but as a result of this experience I’ve added a few of their guiding principles into my everyday life.

Eco Truly Park - Hare Krishna Community - Chancay Lima Peru

So peaceful.

More Info: Volunteer at the Eco Truly Park

Read Ayngelina’s Take: What You Can Learn from the Hare Krishnas

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15 Responses to My Time with Hare Krishna

  1. I have been waiting for this post!

    I am so happy you had such a good time and that it was so similar to mine. You definitely need to be open minded to go to these but I think they are so accustomed to people being wary at first that they allow people to discover on their own time.

    I just saw they opened a village in the jungle in Ecuador, there are also a couple in Argentina and I think Bolivia and Chile.
    Ayngelina recently posted..Maui on my mindMy Profile

    • Gareth

      I’m glad I did it Ayngelina, thanks so much for convincing me. Being open-minded coming into this definitely help me experience the best aspects of the community.

  2. What an amazing experience. I’ve always wanted to try an eco resort/yoga retreat, but can’t get over feeling like I’d be the odd-one out (I’m sooo not flexible). But its nice to hear that everyone was accepting!
    flipflopcaravan recently posted..Photo Friday: Shanghai Street ScenesMy Profile

    • Gareth

      Welcome to the club FFC, that’s what I was worried about too. What helped me is I went in there telling them I suck at yoga so they were expecting the screams and frequent falls. If you have the chance, do it! And laugh at yourself all the way through.

  3. When I was a kid I was always singing a song Hare Krishna Krishna Hari but I just can’t remember where I took the lyrics :-)
    Zinedine recently posted..Can Bad Diet Cause Dandruff ?My Profile

    • Gareth

      Haha, it’s a very simple and addicting song, but they sing it over and over. “Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
      Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
      Hare Rama Hare Rama
      Rama Rama Hare Hare”

  4. truly those buildings are really cute and cool.. i love the view from the sand dunes above the park, maybe im gonna stay there for awhile..
    rdsean recently posted..Travel from Singapore to Penang by BusMy Profile

    • Gareth

      They were really fascinating Sean, I definitely recommend staying for awhile if you pass through… one of the best places ever to relax.

  5. Such a great place to be..I wish to have vacation in this kind of place so relaxing, perfect place to relieve stress and problems.
    Jennifer Hammond recently posted..Sales Summer InternMy Profile

  6. I read about this place already before (what Ayngelina said) and there are similar houses in Southern Italy where I used to live, but they are just white and grey. Really looking forward to visit this place soon!
    crazy sexy fun traveler recently posted..WHERE TO STAY IN VILLA TRAFUL – CABAÑAS RUCA LICOMy Profile

  7. I’ve stumbled upon this nice village for some times in a row now, fate?. I’ll give it a try sometime in the near future, now that I have a review.

  8. Glad you have a great time and activity in this place…I wish I can be here…the establishment looks like a strawberry candy with lots of flavors inside.

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  10. Those mud-colored buildings are extraordinary! Seems like a great spiritual retreat, love the atmosphere that the pictures emanate. Temporary escape from square thinking, right? Is this place self-sustained or does it just look like it? You altered my view of Hare Krishna a bit with this post, I have to say.

  11. Only saw this post now, but I find it fascinating. I think it’s really nice that you got to learn about their ways without being pushed into something. And I’m curious about what you’ve implemented into your own life?
    Sofie recently posted..The Stoneham Mountain Resort in Quebec, Canada – #gotoQuebecMy Profile

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