Exploring The Last Not of The So Beaten Path of Adventure

"We are like the quinoa beans: if we are alone, the wind will take us far away, but if we are united in a sack, the wind cannot make any harm. We are like the páramo straw that is pulled up and grows again … and from straw of páramo we will sow the world"

Mama Dolores Cacuango (Ecuadorian Indigenous Lider)


What is Fireside’s Amazonia?

An experience embracing the diversity of the Amazon Rainforest, Indigenous perspectives, Ecuadoran culture, fantastic food and the simplicities of adventure travel.

Fireside Adventures is proud to officially launch “Amazonia” for those wanting to explore the incredible Amazon rainforest while travelling along the majestic countryside of Ecuador’s endless scenic spaces.

Amazonia is not only connecting you directly with Indigenous and Ecuadoran communities, culture, people and their art, we are also enjoying the fine balance of being on and off the well-beaten path of an Ecuadoran adventure.

You are officially invited to join Fireside’s Jeff Willis and Majo Obando who have teamed up with an amazing Ecuadoran Indigenous tour operator to co-lead a 14 day adventure travel experience.

Moneky in the Amazones

Our Partners

 
 

Paul and Linda before ALS

Program Details

Date: November 24 - December 08, 2019.
Ages: 18+ (co-ed)
Early Bird Rate: $3.499.00 CDN plus 5% tax per person (ends June 01, 2019)
Regular Rate: $3899.00 plus 5% tax per person (June 02, 2019)

Deposit: $550.00 (required to secure registration).

Register Now

Includes: Pre-camp trip check-in (skype conference with attendees), tour guides and support, most meals, full accommodation, admission fees shuttle and land transportation in Ecuador. Does not include flight to and from Quito, Ecuador.

Why join us?

We are inquisitive, intuitive, informative, reliable, intentional and a load of fun as we keep things simple, authentic, safe and meaningful. We just don’t like offering one of those “canned” or “carbon copy” touristy type of travel experiences. It’s just not our ‘jam” as we strive to connect with real people eager and ready to capture those generous and teachable life moments with others while embracing the best of adventure travel.

Sounds like something you are interested in? Not convinced yet? Want to know more?

“The key to saving the Amazon and the rest of the world’s great rainforests is actually very simple: just put a fair price on the role they play in providing a quarter of the world’s oxygen, a fifth of fresh water, and 60 percent of its species.”
— Johan Eliasch

It's a Life-Changing Experience


“Seeing The World Through Their Eyes And Indigenous Roots”

- Majo Obando

Amazonia Highlights

Amazonia is about a small group of people having a big experience as we visit and connect with one of best places and people on earth. The people traveling with you are kind hearted, interesting, open minded and community orientated.

The Amazon rainforest is considered the world’s lungs while holding the greatest source of bio-diversity of living life. Time to breath it all in!

Colourful Amazones
Village near a mountain in the Amazones
  • Visit the historical center of Quito - capital of the sun, where we will witness colonial works in the best preserved historical center of Latin America.
  • Basic Spanish lessons including a mini “travelling wisely and lightly in South America” workshop so you got the essentials to have fun, be safe and so you don't stand out like a tourist.
  • Toured by Canadian and Indigenous- Ecuadoran guides who are bilingual and very experienced in leading adventure travel groups.
  • Visit Cayambe and the Cochasquí archaeological ruins while learning the historic and geographical significances of Ecuador.
  • Connecting with Indigenous community leaders sharing their perspectives of the impact of western culture on their traditions, knowledge, language and Indigenous identity. They’ll also share their knowledge about interpretation of dreams and the position of the stars.
  • Living, cooking and learning with Indigenous families and their communities as they share their knowledge, insights and hearts as we believe they are some of the richest of people of humbleness, sincerity and gratitude
  • Visit Cuicocha Lagoon, the main energy point of the Otavalo community as well as taking a bath at the Tamia and Supay waterfalls
  • Participate in the elaboration of handicrafts in straw shawl, mud and seeds.
  • Stay in Amazon huts on the Cuyabeno River National Park Reserve as we are surrounded by different types of monkeys, hoazines, macaws, pink dolphins and many species of animals. Not to worry….. with luck we might see an anaconda far away.
  • It would not be a Fireside trip without a day of paddling through a flooded forest ending with a conversation with Yachak (ancestral doctor) who will talk about their medicine and energy ceremonies.
  • Enjoy the thermal pools of Banos and Pailón De Diablo.
  • Options of to go rafting, hiking, biking, canopying before we head to the world’s biggest volcano “Cotopaxi”.
  • Jungle train through the Andes.
  • Sadly 14 days will only scratch the surface of your Ecuadoran Amazonia experience, so stay longer and see more as you’ll be ready to travel more independently.

It's a Life-Changing Experience

“It's what you do that determines who you are and how you get there which is why we created Amazonia”

– Jeff and Majo


What About Ecuador?

Ecuador is a small country with four worlds  offers travelers a trip full of unique and life shaping adventures. Its visitors can easily visit each of the four worlds of Ecuador: the Galapagos, the Pacific Coast, the Andes Mountains and the Amazon Rain Forest, separated from each other by short travel times.

Ecuador is also a country with a vast and unique natural and cultural wealth. The diversity of its four regions has given rise to hundreds of thousands of species of flora and fauna. Ecuador is considered one of the 17 countries where the greatest biodiversity of the planet is concentrated, being also the largest country with biodiversity per km² in the world.

We know it is impossible to visit all the wondrous places in Ecuador in just 14 days, so we have carefully designed an activities’ schedule that includes among touristic and cultural important locations. You will not be a tourist but an adventurer!!! You will get immerse in the Ecuadorian’s traditions, daily life activities, political, economic and cultural history, FOOD and the beauty of some forgotten populations that have decided to raise their voices to the world to let us know the extremely importance of preserving our nature, languages and knowledge.  

Where are we going?
Andean Mountains Locations:
- Quito (Light of America)
- Zuleta
- Cochasqui
- Cayambe
- Otavalo
- Salinas de Ibarra
- Chachimbiro
- Cuicocha
- Papallacta
- Cotopaxi

Amazon Rain Forest Locations:
- San Rafael
- Shayari
- Tamia and Supay Waterfalls
- National Park Cuyabeno


Ecuador is among the most diverse nations on the planet in terms of geography, species of flora and fauna and culture, you will have an everyday new adventure to live.

The best way to travel is learning, listening, adventuring and experiencing what it is like to live in the place you are visiting and connecting directly with the people.
— Unknown

“The best way to travel is learning, listening, adventuring and experiencing what it is like to live in the place you are visiting and connecting directly with the people.”

A little more info about Ecuador…..
Considered as one of the most megadiverse and plurinational countries in the world, Ecuador is the home of several indigenous tribes, which have been living in these lands for thousands of years. Ecuador and its inhabitants have been struggling to fit into the worldwide economic model, leaving aside its cultural and natural richness. The current western society and the ongoing colonization practices have had adverse effects on Indigenous peoples in terms of loss of knowledge, culture, language, traditions, and identity. Indigenous communities have been obligated to raise their voices in order to protect and preserve their habitats. To have the opportunity to listen these voices represents a “life changing” experience. Countless stories and wisdom are waiting to be shared with you.

Mountain in the Amazones

It's a Life-Changing Experience

“My people need to be heard. My people need to be respected. My people has the right to live in a clean, safe and healthy environment”

– María José Obando.


on top of the mountains in the Amazons

You will:

  • Learn about Ecuador through the eyes of Indigenous peoples and its bio-diverse ecosystem.
  • Learn about different cultural backgrounds. Although this adventure addresses the culture of Ecuador only, Ecuador is able to offer greater understanding of other Latin American countries.
  • Understand oral and informal learning traditions and understand the role of colonialism, in a country where it is so fresh.
  • Experience and learn from the knowledge, culture, language, traditions, food, and the daily life of the Indigenous communities in Ecuador.
  • Identify the principal environmental issues, their causes, and possible solutions
  • Learn about the Indigenous-eco-tourism models being steered by the communities we visit.
  • Connect with Ecuador’s sustainable and conservation tourism model.
  • Support touristic and cultural preservation projects that Indigenous communities are running.
  • Not to be a tourist but a welcomed visitor

Safety

Regardless of a participant ’s level of comfort and outdoor skills, it is safer to travel in a group and it is much safer to have an experienced instructor supporting them. Our team always prioritizes planning, preparing and, most importantly, teaching participants how to be safe in the wilderness.

Food

A well-nourished body makes a significant impact on a person’s experience in times of physical and/or mental exertion. Participants will learn how to pack and prepare healthy and holistic meals in our camp kitchens, suited for all diets.

Fitness Capacities

If you are concerned about yours or your child’s physical readiness to attend one of our Fireside camps/expeditions, please contact us directly. We modify our experiences based on the participant’s abilities and capacities. Relax and let us work together to make an informed and shared decision.

Climate Change

We do our best to understand the present and future impacts of climate change. We provide thoughtful discussions and rationale of why we all must do our best to minimize our carbon use including ways to reduce food waste, non-recyclable materials and more. We take public transit or walk as much as possible, and respect nature by reducing our ecological footprints.

Indigenous People

We acknowledge that we are visitors of the traditional lands of Indigenous People. We ask permission to visit and explore their lands while also inviting local First Nations to participate in our camps, share their knowledge and provide a space to collaborate. Fireside Adventures recognizes the unceded traditional lands of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations.

Small Group Focused & Mobile

We purposely place restrictions on group size (minimum 8 and maximum 15) of participants as believe less means more in regards to providing an enriched and meaningful experience for each participant. We are not defined by one permanent location as we are rooted in the believe the adventure and learning on the explore the lands and waters around us.

Place and Inquiry Based

All of our selected locations for our camps and expeditions are purposely chosen to provide a platform for inquiry and experiential learning, to learn through the natural world and its significance in relation to culture, geography, history, people and environment.

Social and Emotional Learning

We create a safe place so participants can develop and enhance their resiliency, independence and self-efficacy. We weave learning opportunities throughout our programs for participants to improve the skills necessary to manage and understand their emotions and their relationships.

Inclusivity

We are inclusive of all genders, races, cultures, languages, shapes, sizes, colours, abilities and capacities. Those who arrive on the first day of the camp/expedition are important characters of the shared experienced that is to begin. It is a privilege to be the characters in each other's stories and experiences, not our right.

It's a Life-Changing Experience