Barefoot Expeditions: Galapagos Islands, Ecuador and Peru Travel Adventures

The Best of Ecuador Adventures 2008. New Trips, New partnerships, Bigger Location and more!

Barefoot Expeditions has helped us connect to our guests and the adventure travel community at large. It has helped us work through the challenges (and retributions) of running a adventure travel family business based in the US and Ecuador.  The team is thrilled to have served useful and unbiased information about Ecuador Adventure Travel and we are looking forward to proving you even better and more exciting articles in the upcoming years.

We’ve accomplished many great things of which we wanted to share with you the outstanding ones:

  1. Barefoot launched a new website and blog that you are reading.
  2. Barefoot Expeditions is helping with the operation of G.A.P (Great Adventure People) trips in Ecuador. We are thrilled that G.A.P has decided to start working with Barefoot.
  3. We’ve expanded our operations to cover Galapagos tours and to offer full fledged multi-day expeditions into the Amazon Jungle.
  4. Our whitewater rafting operations cover more than any other company in Ecuador. We run world-class rivers with top notch guides and the highest level of security. For instance, Barefoot Expeditions has been constantly chosen by tour operators in the area of Tena to run their whitewater rafting tours. Even though there are many rafting operators in that area.
  5. We moved to a bigger location in Quito and we are currently renovating it and decorating it. The new location is big and it will have a few rooms that would be made available in special occasions to our guests.

2008 was the year when the Ecuador Adventures Blog really took off. We’ve seen traffic grow quite a bit from last year and we’ve seen our readers being more active and present with comments in our articles. We love the feedback you’ve given us and your interest in the topic. For that we want to give a big thank you to our readers.

We want to celebrate the new year by sharing an Ecuadorian tradition with you. The Año Viejo.  In Ecuador, we celebrate the end of the year by writing up a testament that commemorates and celebrates the “good” that happened during the year and throws away the “bad” that the old year brought to us. StudySpanish.com summarizes it well:

In Ecuador, Año Viejo is a fiery tradition that symbolically burns up the failures, regrets and anger of the old year in order to usher in the hopes and resolutions of the new one.

To be honest, there is a lot that I would leave behind if I really could. Things like the economic meltdown and the the housing market crash. Both episodes have affected the travel market and us in a direct way. To this end, the proverbial Año Viejo testament provides a mechanism to burn (literally) all the bad if only in words.

We’ve liked the posts that we have written with a sense of urgency. The articles that remind us  what adventure travel is all about. That highlight traveling not as a bragging right but as a sharing, learning activity that helps you grow as a person. The posts that give a voice to the adventure guide and to the adventure experience .

One of our favorites (and our reader’s) is the Children´s hospitals in Ecuador: the sad reality. It gives you a clear idea of what happens in a children’s hospital with  few resources and calls for an action on the part of the traveler. We want to let you know that when you travel you can make a big difference in someone’s life with a small gesture of human compassion.

The Pilgrimage to El Quinche was an intense experience.  Other of my favorites is the one that describes how Your first mountain climb can change your life. That one touched us deeply because on the Spanish version (que pasa la primera vez que subes una montaña) in Abriendo Huella a few folks responded and shared their first climbing experiences with us.  This shows that well executed adventure travel changes your outlook in life to a large extent. Adventure travel and climbing is a challenge that only you can conquer. We, the adventure guides are here to help you along the way but the challenge is something only you (internally) can conquer.

Another post we loved  is the one about how Ivan Vallejo conquered 14 Eight-thousanders. We felt so proud of this exceptional Ecuadorian.

In terms of social impact, the post attracted the most attention was the one about Rafting with street children.  Through adventure activities we were able to bridge two different worlds that often exist in parallel. The kids learned they can have access to experiences that they cannot even imagine. This helps them build up their confidence and provides them with the power to choose. Teaches them that there  are other things that they can do with their lives. For the guides and for the people that make Barefoot Expeditions it is important to be a source of new and life changing experiences for a wide variety of audiences by providing equal access to the less fortunate youth as much as our resources allow us to do so. If you are interested in sponsoring an advetnure trip for street children please contact us and we can help you make that happen.

A big thank you to all and every one of you that has read and collaborated to this blog.

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