Hare Krishna villages Are Not Hippie Ashrams

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Day 307: Aucallama, Peru

Eco Truly turned out to be very different than I thought it would be. I had imagined some kind of isolated hippie ashram but as always things are never as I expected and always illuminating.

First off, I know there will be lots of questions on the space domes, they are called trulys and based on indigenous buildings, they actually stay quite cool in the day, warm at night and are just made from the earth and water – pretty incredible.

As for the Eco Truly Village, it’s a bit difficult to sum up so I’ll cover it in a few posts but first I thought I would just share the daily schedule with you.

7am – Yoga with Susu a volunteer from Slovakia. I say 7am but the class never starts at 7am but I can’t blame Susu as she starts her day at 4am at temple.

Instead of getting uptight about this everyone just meanders in after seven and starts stretching.


hare krishna duty assignment

8:30am – The breakfast bell rings and we make our way to get food and sit at a communal table. Someone brings out the whiteboard and duties are assigned ranging from cooking, gardening and general cleaning.


ayngelina with axe

10am-1:30pm – Volunteer duties. I spent most of my time in the kitchen mostly chopping vegetables as I really like the solitude.

I also loved my first day in the garden but after half an hour or so with the pick axe almost as large as me they quickly realized perhaps I should just be weeding.


lunch with the hare krishnas

1:30pm – Lunch with everyone at the communal table. Like breakfast it is peaceful and breezy, no one rushes to finish and many stay to talk.

It’s my favourite time of day as even though many people speak English we try to converse in Spanish so that everyone understands.

Afternoon – It’s free time. Many of the afternoons a quick nap turned into a 3 hour slumber fest.

Most afternoons I caught up on writing, listening to podcasts and reading all the e-book PDFs I downloaded from my favourite sites but never read.

6:30pm – This is optional temple time. It’s not expected that volunteers go but they are welcomed. I tried to show up on time the first few days only to find out that 6:30 temple often starts at 7:15 or later.

8:00pm – Dinner, it’s a bit late so it’s a light dinner finished with local Peru fruit. The first few nights I was famished at 8pm but I adapted quickly and didn’t mind eating so late without snacking.


Lindsea and I in the dorm

9:00pm – Bed. I know I’m a loser but I was constantly seduced by being able to sleep 10 hours AND wake up early. Plus there was no lure of alcohol or parties so sleep was the most attractive option.

Stay tuned for what I learned while staying with the Hare Krishnas.


Join the Conversation

  1. turkey's for life says:

    Love the new look site Ayngelina. Much prefer black writing on a white background as opposed to vice versa. Well, my eyes do anyway! πŸ™‚

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I was really stuck on black but I think I got the best of both worlds with this design.

  2. Siddhartha Joshi says:

    Looks quite interesting…I look forward to more in the series…

  3. Siddhartha Joshi says:

    And I also agree that this is much neater look of the site. So much more soothing to the eye πŸ™‚

  4. Wow…new look for your site! Awesome =)

    Sounds pretty friggin’ awesome…I also find chopping vegetables alone (cooking at all actually, especially slow food) to be very relaxing. Look forward to reading more!

  5. Love the new theme. Heaps easier to read.

    Sounds like quite the experience – looking forward to hearing more about it.

  6. Oh wow what a surprise with the new look. I love it. This is so much easier for the eyes. Looks like with both went through changes recently… YAY for us!!!

    Back to the post for some reason when I read the titile I thought you had left to India. I was about to freak out…lol!!! Sounds like you are having a good time in the village. Even though it may not be CRAZY fun I am glad you are still having fun.

  7. Sounds amazing, Ayngelina. Chop. Eat. Sleep?

  8. I love how even in a place that would be expected to have a somewhat “rigid” schedule, it doesn’t – that’s how you know you’re still in South America!

    Love the new site! Cheers.

  9. I love Dalene’scomment about South America and their very special concept of time.The new look is great, as you can see, everyone thinks so. And it’s fascinating for me to read about your experience, something I know would drive me round the bend. I’ll follow you closely.

  10. Gillian @OneGiantStep says:

    I regret that I never spent time in a commune or retreat while away. I think it’s a rewarding experience. Next time I will for sure.

    Love the look of the site!! Cheers!

  11. Loving this new theme by the way. Great layout! Well it sounds like that you had an interesting time. I am looking forward to reading the follow up posts on Eco Truly Village. It is funny sometimes what you picture about a place and then when you arrive it is something totally different.

  12. South America ME says:

    The first photo of the buildings is cool. So…. different and interesting!

    Nice new design by the way, very clean and uncluttered.

  13. OMG, I almost didn’t recognize the site I was at, love it! What a cool experience.

  14. So awesome dude! Sounds like a really cool experience! I would love to do something like this one day. And the new design of the site looks AMAZING! Love it love it love it!

  15. Nothing is better for reflection than the absence of distraction. Can’t wait to read the rest of your series!

  16. Camels & Chocolate says:

    Are trulys the new yurts? How cool–I want to stay there!

  17. Love the new layout Ayngelina! Looks great! I’m eager to read more about your experience. Sounds great. I have never gotten into yoga, but my wife absolutely loves it. She stayed at an ashram in Rishikesh, India while I went on a trek, and she absolutely loved it.

  18. Cathy Sweeney says:

    You look like you’re handling that pick axe quite well. Interesting to read about your Eco Truly Village experience.

    The new site looks great, too. It’s inspiring me to get busy making some changes on mine.

  19. Trullies are beautiful. I stayed in one in southern Italy and ever since I want to have one for myself. Those trullies above are much more colourful…I will make sure to stop by when I go south πŸ˜‰

    And congrats to the new look! Is that the result of early nights at the ashram?


  20. That sounds like a great experience to have. I’d love to do something like that. I can’t wait to read your next post. πŸ˜€

  21. The NVR Guys says:

    Sounds like a great experience. We will look forward to hearing more!

  22. Sounds like a great experience and boy, I wish I could go to bed at 9 pm and get me a nice 10 hour sleep!
    Congratulations for the new, awesome look of your site, by the way!
    Ejoy your Eco Truly Village experience.
    Stay safe!

  23. Jozef Maxted says:

    This looks great, we’re finally in South America now and will be heading up to Peru eventually so this is definitely being added to the “Things To Do In Peru” list. Thats if we survive this Brazilian heat long enough to get there!

  24. Justin Hamlin says:

    Amazing how time away from backpacking around the world is such a welcome thing πŸ™‚

    Glad to see you got to disconnect and enjoy yourself πŸ™‚

  25. really enjoy the colors and painting on these earth domes,,looking forward to more pics of EcoTruly. (and you are not a loser for cultivating a clear mind and body>> i love sleep & find no need to drink alcohol.)
    kind wishes*

  26. Looking forward to reading what you’ve learnt! Great design!

  27. John in France says:

    The pace of their life there is something we should all learn from – just rushing out for another meeting!!

  28. DTravelsRound says:

    Yay for the new look! Love it! Can’t wait to hear about your experience here …

  29. I like the new site as well! Good luck on the big changes you are making with the blog and hope I can join you on that soon! Love the volunteer aspect of this post!

  30. Nice new design, Ayngelina. Very easy to read and navigate.

  31. I love your new site design! So fresh!

    Your experience sounds great, can’t wait to read more!

  32. Looks like the TeleTubbies could live there…very colourful. The new site is looks good..

  33. Love the new site. I can navigate it more easily…go figure?? This place looks like the Dharma Inititive…are you sure you aren’t in a time warp zone there? Love the pic of you and the ax….holy heavy! I can just tell it was!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Rachelle – I love LOST, I would totally hang out with the Dharma Initiative

  34. Wow! Came across your site via StumbleUpon and love the day in a life style post I just read. No glitz, no glam -humble and real.

  35. Ayngelina,
    Thumbs up on the new site design. I love how you’re always able to find interesting and different things to do on your travels.

  36. Cornelius Aesop says:

    I’ll have to check this place out next time I go to Peru…I’m sad I just bought two tickets to Lima but they weren’t for me…yet I did take the airline miles for them…maybe I will take a trip down there.

  37. Fantastic new theme Ayngelina. I also agree it is more pleasant on the eyes.

    It’s interesting to learn about your experience- I didn’t even know these places existed!

  38. Wow, this sounds amazing Ayngelina! How’s Peru? I’m getting heavily into travel hacking these days and South America is definitely on my list…

  39. Looks fascinating. Keen to hear more about your retreat. And good that there’s physical labour involved as well as the spiritual side. I think you need both.

  40. Hi Ayngelina, I’m a fellow Canadian and I enjoy your travel site. I’m a little curious is all : are you going to Chile, and if so, will you be visiting Pablo Neruda’s 3 residences there? I can tell by how you write that you most probably read not a little – and not just blogs – I hope; wanted to ask you why you don’t write about any Latin American writer’s and the huge influence they’ve had on the very fabric of culture; and their recent history as well; Che wouldn’t have done or become what he was if it weren’t for the books he read. I know from being there that they love their authors – almost holding them up in awe : Neruda and Matilda couldn’t walk through streets in Santiago without being accosted by admirers; and Argentina before the advent of Maradona loved their Borges to veneration – I remember in Buenos Aires every street corner sold books; Anyway, keep the flame burning as long as you can – I like your attitude towards travel and I-know-that-you-know there’s nothing here (Toronto, Canada) to look forward to in terms of ‘personal growth’ so I really do hope you manage to become location independent. Keep representing Canadians well on the travel circuit even if most here would rather strap on house/car payments than a rucksack!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Wow, what a thought provoking question!

      I would definitely say I’m a big reader, in fact in the middle of Modern Library’s Top 100 books of the last century. Although that has been on hold for a while as it’s hard to get English books here but I’m hoping to get a Kindle in the next few months.

      I don’t write about how authors affect the culture mostly because I’m still learning the culture.

      Although I do find Che fascinating, in Western countries he’s idealized by people who have no idea of his story and here he represents possibility for change and inspiration for the lower classes – and the class system does still exist here. I may write about it someday but I don’t feel ready yet – not to provide an opinion that is just as uneducated as the privileged frat guys who ironically wear Che shirts that should really say “I have no idea who this is.”

  41. Patricia GW says:

    Totally understand going to be at 9:00pm, it looks like you had chores at the village that were really involved. I felt this pull in my heart as I was reading, of how much I want to do that myself. How did you come to be in Eco Truly Village?

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Eco Truly is pretty well known in Lima and a lot of people go there. I found it through a quick search of yoga in Lima but they also have another location in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile and Colombia.

  42. Wow. These pictures are fantastic and so evocative! Do you take shots of anything that grabs you and then sort it out later? Or do you have a method on what you take beforehand?

    Love it!

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      I took a lot of photos of the trulys as they were so photogenic, some with my DSLR others with my Cybershot. During quiet times I try to go through and delete the ones that aren’t as interesting as others. It’s easy to take good photos when the subject is so interesting.

  43. Leslie (Downtown Traveler) says:

    Looks like an intense experience! Wow.

  44. The new site design is really good Ayngelina.
    I’m really intruiged by the Eco Truly Village. What are the cocepts and aims for the project? But I guess that’s the subject of future blogs.

    1. Ayngelina Author says:

      Hey Jim

      The eco village is just an alternative community that the Hare Krishna have developed to create the type of life they want and the voluntreer program helps them fund their efforts.

      But basically they wanted to create a more harmonious life between God and nature.

  45. Your new site looks AMAZING!!! πŸ™‚ Love what you’ve done. πŸ™‚ I’m so enjoying your pictures from the village. I’m glad you had such a peaceful, restful time. Chopping veggies in the kitchen sounds very therapeutic. πŸ™‚

  46. monette | fliptravels says:

    what an amazing experience! having breakfast there would also make me want to linger! πŸ˜€

  47. I didn’t know there was a place like this in Peru. Good to know.

  48. Wow – Big changes on your blog. Well done. looks very good. Loved the post as well. Looking forward to the next part.

  49. Wow, Eco Truly Village looks very interesting. Love the trulys shot you took. It’s such an interesting shape too.

  50. WoW! Nice houses πŸ˜€

  51. crazy sexy fun traveler says:

    Very nice photo of the trulys! There is a town close to where I’m now with trulys as well, called Alberobello, Italy. But they look totally different, just grey and white, not more colorful.

  52. Great new look to your site. I like the clean design. Congrats. Enjoyed reading about your experience with Eco Truly also.

  53. Roiunlimited says:

    Hare krishna village is really beautiful. The most famous of these activities are the patron festivals that are celebrated yearly. Peru’s constitution gives its citizen the right to practice any religion.

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