Coastal Bliss Adventures
In our hearts, we all live on the land. That is the real world. We take away the obstacles to experience what is real, to experience your bliss. We show you the way. That's Coastal Bliss Adventures.
Who We Are
Our Mission and Philosophy
We all live on the land. That is the real world. We take away the obstacles to experience what is real, to experience your bliss.
The owners and guides at Coastal Bliss Adventures work to provide the highest quality of instruction and vacation experience for all our clients. We are professionals that consitently increase our training and knowledge to provide you with the best service in class. We are members and follow the standards of the Paddle Canada, Association of Canadian Sea Kayak Guides, Canadian Federation of Ocean Kayak Educators, the Sea Kayak Guides Alliance of BC, and the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides.
We are committed to being good stewards of the environment. We try to take as many aspects into account as possible to help preserve the environment. Although we practice Leave No Trace principles, we try to go beyond them. This means we have to think through all our operations at all times to try to consider every possible consequence of our actions. Our values and commitments stretch beyond just the environment without humans. Human beings are part of Earth and all environments on it.Some of the ways we work to be good stewards:
- We strive to be safe at all times.
- We strive to feed well and nourish all those we encounter.
- We strive to think globally and act locally.
- We value and engage with First Nations and indigenous people as much as we can.
- We educate others about the land, sea, sky, first peoples, and all our relations.
- We transport people by group as far as possible, provided it is safe, to be more efficient and save fuel and emissions.
- We clean up beaches and trails as we go.
- We buy local or grow our own as much as possible.
- We recycle as much as we can.
- We limit fires on trips.
- We do as much electronically as we can, limiting paper use.
- We buy in bulk as much as possible to reduce packaging.
- We follow or exceed Leave No Trace principles.
Ultimately, we want our clients to have had a real experience along the way, to reconnect to something primal and awe-inspiring. Each trip is a journey, constantly watching, constantly moving forward, constantly renewing.
Who We Are
Coastal Bliss Adventures is a Vancouver Island, BC company, founded in 2009 by Georgia Newsome and Gary Ward. We originally specialized on the West Coast Trail and other Vancouver Island hiking trails. After years of multi-day tours on Vancouver Island, we expanded internationally by founding Kilimanjaro Bliss Ltd. with Aristarick Benard Swai, a safari and Mt. Kilimanjaro guide, in 2016. In the spring of 2017, we expanded our kayaking offerings with our shop in our home of Cowichan Bay, starting Cowichan Bay Kayaking and Adventure Centre, moving closer to our original intention of being a kayaking company. We are happy to be serving more fully in our community. Since 2078, we have tried to begin operations in the UK with our Pembrokeshire Trails Tour in south Wales. We're still working on that. In November 2022, Sea to Sky Expeditions joined our family of companies, with tours in BC and the Yukon.
Georgia Newsome has worked as a guide for backpacking, kayaking, and canoeing for various adventure companies since the mid-1990s. She worked as lead guide with Sea to Sky Expeditions for 13 years before co-founding Coastal Bliss. Growing up in the New Forest, in England, Georgia developed a love for nature and the outdoors. First visiting Canada in 1989 she immediately knew she had found her home. She moved to British Columbia, where the Canadian wilderness spoke loudly to her passion for adventure and activity as well as nourishing her with its natural beauty. Georgia’s initial profession as a physical education teacher laid the foundation for the desire to share her passion for the outdoors with others. It set her on a path of knowledge and skill development to enable her to provide the best for the guests in her care. Georgia “commuted” to BC to guide each summer after returning to the UK to complete a physiotherapy degree, returning to live in BC in 2006. In 2007, Georgia started her own company, Georgia’s Strait Recreation, which focused on skill development in a variety of sports and activities. In 2009, she founded Coastal Bliss Adventures Ltd. with partner, Gary Ward, focusing on multi-day adventures. The activities of Georgia’s Strait Recreation eventually folded into Coastal Bliss.
Gary Ward trained as a physicist and mathematician in the US, but found more interest in being an educator. After moving to Vancouver, his passion for experiential education took him into leading wilderness trips in the 1990s to deepen the learning experiences of his students. Following the idea of making life practical, he took a position in the UK teaching and managing at a college based on practical skills. He has founded and ran a natural soap-making company, a renovation contracting company, and managed a small secondary school. Since returning to North America in 2002, Gary founded Coastal Bliss Adventures with his partner, Georgia Newsome, and became certified as an SKGABC Level 2 sea kayak guide, and an ACMG Assistant Hiking Guide. Since 1990, Gary has led trips in BC, the UK, Greece, Italy, and Egypt. He completed an MBA in 2016 from the University of Victoria.
Guides and Staff
We have a number of highly qualified guides that we trust who work with us on a seasonal basis.