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Goura Vrindavana is an Eco-Village in a 800-hectare farmland in the middle of the Atlantic Rainforest, the largest forest reserve in Brazil. Because it extends all the way to the ocean, it is richer in plant life than the Amazon Rainforest. The nearest town is Paraty, a historical Spanish looking village located between Brazil’s two largest cities, Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo; Paraty is only a three-and-a-half hours’ drive from each.
“We are not one hundred per cent self-sufficient food-wise, because there are some things we cannot plant here, but we’re close,” Achyutananda says. “The devotees, and a few employees, plant sweet potatoes, carrots, zucchini, many herbs, and local roots such as Mandioca—which is also known as Cassava root—and Imhame, a kind of yam. We also grow fruit like papayas, oranges, bananas, and avocados.”
“Our guest house, Dharmashala, also brings us income, as people interested in eco-villages come and rent a room for some time, while they learn about simple-living and explore the beautiful forest and waterfalls. We also have a yoga studio which different yoga instructors from all over the country rent for retreats. Many of the people attending these are very receptive to Krishna consciousness—they go to the temple, listen to the classes and kirtan, and eat sanctified vegetarian food.”
There is a big banana plantation on the land, and for years the devotees grew, collected and dried the bananas themselves, selling them to many stores in Rio de Janeiro and other cities. Today the dried banana factory is on hold due to lack of man power, but the plan is to get back to it and make it an even bigger operation.
Bamboo planted on the land grows fast, so are being used to build further facilities and beautiful surroundings for visitors and aspiring new residents.
The VCC is welcomed in Goura Vrindavana, so we’re developing a project for a great Hospice and Retirement Facility on the land; please contact us for further information on this project.