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active 2 days ago

Mathias Onisseit

Originally from Germany, in 2010 I set out to explore South America and soon fell in love with the super-diverse country named Ecuador (and its neat little attachment Galapagos). What fascinates me the most about this country is the fact that it has it all: lush rain-forests, mystic cloud forests, snow-capped mountain peaks, endless beaches and the most particular ecosystem, the Galapagos Islands. Everything just a few hours travel away. Diverse landscapes along with equally diverse people. My goal is to make you experience all of this first-hand. If after your trip you wish to return to Ecuador (you wouldn’t be the first!) then my mission has been achieved.

What places and activities do you specialize in?

"I cover all Ecuador, including the Galapagos Islands, but due to interest I focus on off-the-beaten-track regions such as Manabí and Azuay provinces, as well as on cloud and rain forest habitats including their unique wildlife, especially fungi, birds and also insects."

How did you get involved in travel?

"While at the biggest travel fare of them all (ITB in Berlin), I was looking for some new travel inspiration, I stumbled into what would be my future employer, a travel agency in Ecuador. Immediately I got excited about the idea of being able to share the fascination of this country with others and at the same time being able to live here."

Please share a unique travel experience you will never forget.

"To me, there is not the one special travel experience, instead it is the simple things that make memories: waking up to the singing of birds and howling of monkeys, snorkeling with baby sharks on a sunny beach day, a stroll in the rain on a muddy cloud forest trail or the interminable hike to the top of an active volcano. And of course, all the incredible personalities that you meet along the road contribute to awesome experiences that last a lifetime."

Top itineraries and travel advice

Recent trip reviews for Mathias

Excellent Ecuador trip
Galapagos Islands | Feb 15 - Feb 23, 2024

E
Erin T.
Canada | Reviewed on Mar 13, 2024

Good planning by Mathias. Everything went smoothly. Our guide in Quito was knowledgeable, and accommodating to our requests
The five day cruise booked in Galapagos was excellent

Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Mar 15, 2024

Dear Erin,

Thanks a lot for your feedback! I'm happy to hear that everything went smoothly during your trip, including the interesting and flexible city tour in Quito and the wonderful cruise in the Galapagos. If you have any future travel plans for exploring the mainland of Ecuador (Andes, Rainforest, Pacific Coast), please don't hesitate to reach out!

Always safe travels,
Mathias and the team from Authentic Ecuador

EcuadorThe trip was excellent as we got to ...
Ecuador | Feb 16 - Feb 24, 2024

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Nina S.
Newark, NJ | Reviewed on Mar 03, 2024
Ecuador The trip was excellent as we got to see both the old town and the new town of Quito. The country side of both the mountains and jungle gave us interesting perspectives of the culture. We enjoyed eating at the local places that our guide recommended. And a special shout out to Ramona, our simian assistant who enjoyed taking free rides on our families shoulders. Read more

Ecuador

The trip was excellent as we got to see both the old town and the new town of Quito. The country side of both the mountains and jungle gave us interesting perspectives of the culture. We enjoyed eating at the local places that our guide recommended.

And a special shout out to Ramona, our simian assistant who enjoyed taking free rides on our families shoulders.

Hotel Reviews
La Casona de La Ronda
Quito

Nice breakfast, nice location to restauramts

Authenticity & Character
Location
Close to restaurant
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Hotel Sangay
Baños de Agua Santa

Cabanas did not match the identity of the hotel.

Authenticity & Character
Good complete breakfast
Location
Close to town.
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Kuyana Amazon Lodge
Archidona

We liked the space in the middle of the rain forest.

Authenticity & Character
Very authentic food and living. Fun monkey chilling there as well
Location
It’s in the jungle
Staff
Staff very helpful
Cleanliness & Comfort
Tambopaxi Cotopaxi Lodge
Parque Nacional Cotopaxi
Authenticity & Character
Cows
Location
It’s in the National park. Not near anything
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Patio Andaluz
Quito

Breakfast was terrible. Location was ok but not really close to restaurants.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Mar 12, 2024
Hola Nina, Thank you so much for taking the time to share your wonderful review! I'm thrilled to hear that you and your family had an excellent trip exploring Quito, the Andes, and the rainforest, It's fantastic that you found the places you visited to offer intriguing perspectives on the local culture. I'm delighted to hear that you enjoyed the culinary experiences at the local places recommended by our guide. Exploring the authentic flavors of a destination is such an integral part of the... Read more

Hola Nina,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your wonderful review! I'm thrilled to hear that you and your family had an excellent trip exploring Quito, the Andes, and the rainforest, It's fantastic that you found the places you visited to offer intriguing perspectives on the local culture.

I'm delighted to hear that you enjoyed the culinary experiences at the local places recommended by our guide. Exploring the authentic flavors of a destination is such an integral part of the journey, and I'm glad it added to your overall experience.

And I'm glad to hear that Ramona brought an extra layer of joy to your Amazon adventure!

We appreciate your feedback and hope to welcome you back to explore Ecuador's other treasures in the future.

Safe travels!

Best,
Mathias & the entire Authentic Ecuador Team

The trip was absolutely perfect! The staff,...
Galapagos Islands | Feb 1 - Feb 9, 2024

I
Ivey O.
Atlanta, GA | Reviewed on Feb 16, 2024

The trip was absolutely perfect! The staff, food, excursions, boat etc were the best. We loved every moment. Thank you

Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Ivey,

thanks a lot for your feedback! I'm happy to hear that you and Richard had a wonderful time here in Ecuador & the Galapagos Islands and that you enjoyed every moment of it.

I hope there will be another opportunity for you to visit Ecuador, to live more unforgettable moments in the many other breathtaking locations!

Always safe travels,
Mathias & the Authentic Ecuador team

Explore the World
Galapagos Islands | Feb 1 - Feb 9, 2024

Gary
Gary W.
Atlanta, GA | Reviewed on Feb 16, 2024
Our trip was amazing from the hotel and day spent in Quito to the 5 nights onboard the Eco Galaxy. Our guides were knowledgeable and fun our excursions were amazing. This was a trip of a life time to Equador and the Galápagos Islands. Mathias had every detail perfectly planned out. I look forward to using Kim Kim many times in the future o explore the world Read more

Our trip was amazing from the hotel and day spent in Quito to the 5 nights onboard the Eco Galaxy. Our guides were knowledgeable and fun our excursions were amazing. This was a trip of a life time to Equador and the Galápagos Islands. Mathias had every detail perfectly planned out. I look forward to using Kim Kim many times in the future o explore the world

Hotel Reviews
Hotel Mama Cuchara
Quito

Amazing, rooms were great, roof top food and bar were amazing and the breakfast top notch

Authenticity & Character
Historical but modern
Location
Walking distance to Old Town
Staff
So nice and accommodating
Cleanliness & Comfort
Beds and bathrooms very comfortable
M/C Ecogalaxy
Galapagos

The crew was unbelievable and the food better than most restaurants. They pampered us and covered all the finer details. Felt like royalty

Authenticity & Character
Crew was amazing food unbelievable
Location
Hit all the perfect spots in the Galápagos Islands
Staff
Everyone from captain to cabin boys. Room was always clean and bartender was amazing
Cleanliness & Comfort
Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Gary!

It was a pleasure having you and your travel companions as our guests and also getting the opportunity to meet you in person!

I’m delighted to hear that you had an amazing time in Quito (unfortunately, you didn’t have much time on mainland Ecuador to see all the other highlights), and of course in the Galapagos!
And thanks for sharing those photos, I can see you encountered much of the endemic wildlife.
Also pleased to hear that the service on board exceeded your expectations, and relieved that the bartender did a great job! ;-)

All the best,
Mathias

It was an amazing trip. It was a very action ...
Galapagos Islands | Jan 28 - Feb 4, 2024

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Laurie P.
Chicago, IL | Reviewed on Feb 08, 2024
It was an amazing trip. It was a very action packed trip, lots of walking, snorkeling and sight seeing. We saw such incredible nature and I felt like I got to see a great deal of what the islands had to offer. The guide Astrid was so knowledgeable, we enjoyed the Darwin museum . The entire crew of the Bonita were so amazing, hardworking, kind, people. Renny our island guide and Deanna (lovely hostess) were particularly wonderful. Read more

It was an amazing trip. It was a very action packed trip, lots of walking, snorkeling and sight seeing. We saw such incredible nature and I felt like I got to see a great deal of what the islands had to offer. The guide Astrid was so knowledgeable, we enjoyed the Darwin museum . The entire crew of the Bonita were so amazing, hardworking, kind, people. Renny our island guide and Deanna (lovely hostess) were particularly wonderful.

Activity Reviews
Guided Hike to Tortuga Bay
Guided Hike to Tortuga Bay
Galapagos Islands

We weren't able to spend much time at Toruga Bay.

Visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station
Visit to the Charles Darwin Research Station
Puerto Ayora
Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Astrid was very knowledgeable
Transport
North Seymour Island
North Seymour Island
Cruise Ship
Santa Cruz Island: Black Turtle Cove
Santa Cruz Island: Black Turtle Cove
Cruise Ship
Santa Cruz Island: Highlands
Santa Cruz Island: Highlands
Cruise Ship
Chinese Hat Islet
Chinese Hat Islet
Galapagos Islands
Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Laurie,

Thank you for this kind review! I’m glad to hear that you and Bill had a wonderful trip to the Galapagos Islands and that you enjoyed seeing the incredible wildlife the Enchanted Islands have to offer! I’m also happy to hear that you enjoyed the excellent service of the boat’s crew and I’m sure this only added to an overall wonderful vacation.

Maybe see you again in Ecuador to explore the Andes or the rainforest? In any case, I wish you always safe travels!

Best,
Mathias & the Authentic Ecuador team

Mathias was very prompt and helpful. The tim...
Galapagos Islands | Jan 28 - Feb 4, 2024

Earl
Earl W.
Haslett, MI | Reviewed on Feb 05, 2024
Mathias was very prompt and helpful. The timing and service of the local contractors was excellent. Especially wonderful was the crew of the Bonita. They went beyond to be helpful and enjoyable. The land tours were great, especially the guide on the first day to Darwin Center. We especially enjoyed the chance to be "in" Puerto Ayora before the cruise, staying at a local hotel and enjoying the restaurants and local flavor. We will certainly recommend you to everyone who asks. Thank You. Read more

Mathias was very prompt and helpful. The timing and service of the local contractors was excellent. Especially wonderful was the crew of the Bonita. They went beyond to be helpful and enjoyable. The land tours were great, especially the guide on the first day to Darwin Center. We especially enjoyed the chance to be "in" Puerto Ayora before the cruise, staying at a local hotel and enjoying the restaurants and local flavor. We will certainly recommend you to everyone who asks. Thank You.

Hotel Reviews
Leon Marino (Lobo de Mar)
Puerto Ayora
Authenticity & Character
local, personal.
Location
Excellent price and location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
M/Y Bonita
Quito

Great price; great staff...everyone was very pleased. So much better than the big cruise ships.

Authenticity & Character
Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Review
Guided Hike to Tortuga Bay
Guided Hike to Tortuga Bay
Galapagos Islands
Quality of Experience
Food
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Transport
Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Earl,

thank you for your review and for choosing Kimkim again to plan your trip! I’m happy to hear that you and your travel companions had a wonderful time in the Galapagos, and that you found the days in Puerto Ayora + the cruise to be just the right mix! I agree with you that the Bonita has an excellent crew that elevates the already great wildlife experience in the Islands, and I will make sure to forward your feedback!

Always safe travels,
Mathias & the Authentic Ecuador team

Mathias made excellent calls for us and we had a great time
Galapagos Islands | Dec 28 - Dec 31, 2023

Darryl
Darryl C.
Canada | Reviewed on Jan 24, 2024
Mathias was super honest about the Galapagos and told us in all honesty that we would see more by boat than any land trip and he was right.
He set up a trip for us in the Amazon Rain Forest area. The place was absolutely lovely and we had an excellent time. We loved the walks to the waterfalls and also the night walk, the day trip to the Amazon to meet the animals and the indigenous people all were amazing. The guide from the hotel Leonardo was truly excellent and was extremely kind...
Read more

Mathias was super honest about the Galapagos and told us in all honesty that we would see more by boat than any land trip and he was right.
He set up a trip for us in the Amazon Rain Forest area. The place was absolutely lovely and we had an excellent time. We loved the walks to the waterfalls and also the night walk, the day trip to the Amazon to meet the animals and the indigenous people all were amazing. The guide from the hotel Leonardo was truly excellent and was extremely kind and helpful. The pet monkey at the resort "Ramona" was the star of the show. We had a great time with her and she came on the walk to the rain forest hanging on one of us the whole time. We thoroughly enjoyed it. The chocolate making class was fascinating and the chocolate was excellent that we made. The resort also had a lot of locals from Quito and we had an amazing time interacting with them. So all in all, a great choice of resort and just the right amount of activity for us. On the way back we stopped at a bird sanctuary and also the famous hot springs. We had an excellent time swimming between the very cold pool and the very hot pools. All in all the choices that Mathias made were totally on the money and the whole thing was effortless and was enjoyed by all of us.

Hotel Review
Kuyana Amazon Lodge
Archidona

The lodge is amazing, the staff are attentive and they go out of their way to make sure you have a good time. I can't believe Leonardo, our guide. He worked tireless hours and showed us around and helped the servers and was all around amazing. Ramona (their adopted pet woolly monkey) is the star of the resort. She's extremely sweet and cuddly and so much fun. The guests were also quite wonderful. Many were locals and we had a great time with them. The activities they had were fun and the place was completely relaxed and laid back. Totally recommend for a lovely time.

Authenticity & Character
Nice lodges and great authentic food
Location
Out of the way
Staff
Leonardo is amazing
Cleanliness & Comfort
Rooms were clean, hot water is slow and not much but being in the middle of the jungle that is what can be expected
Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Darryl,

thanks again for choosing Kimkim and Authentic Ecuador for planning your trip to Ecuador!

I’m happy to hear that after evaluating the options together, you made the best decision and were able to spend a very special Christmas holiday in the Galapagos and the rainforest!

We are looking forward to welcoming you and your family again in Ecuador one day to explore the other amazing locations!

All the best,
Mathias

Trip was great, Kim Kim support was lacking
Galapagos Islands | Dec 12 - Dec 19, 2023

Miranda
Miranda S.
Canada | Reviewed on Jan 08, 2024
We used KimKim's services to book a 7 night cruise on the Natural Paradise, cruising yacht in the eastern galapagos islands. Our rep, Mathias, had been helpful at first, suggesting a wide variety of ships that we narrowed our selection down from. Once we booked however, all proactive communication stopped. As the trip drew nearer, we had to follow up with Mathias repeatedly to obtain any information about the cruise. We were not notified that there had been an itinerary change, and we had... Read more

We used KimKim's services to book a 7 night cruise on the Natural Paradise, cruising yacht in the eastern galapagos islands. Our rep, Mathias, had been helpful at first, suggesting a wide variety of ships that we narrowed our selection down from. Once we booked however, all proactive communication stopped.

As the trip drew nearer, we had to follow up with Mathias repeatedly to obtain any information about the cruise. We were not notified that there had been an itinerary change, and we had to ask repeatedly about inclusions on board. In spite of our proactive outreach on all these topics, it was clear from our time on the ship that we had been misinformed about a number of inclusions. On the one item that Mathias had been somewhat proactive about - wetsuit sizing - he reached out the night before we set sail to advise us that the sizes and suits we had requested weren't available and offer a preposterous solution that involved us being taken to a dive shop to rent our own suits in the hours before we sailed. This information would have been helpful weeks in advance when we could have packed differently or made other arrangements, but this constant lack of information - and misinformation - put a damper on an otherwise great trip.

Once we were on the ship, the crew and guide on the Natural Paradise were phenomenal and did their best to accomodate any need or request. If we were doing it over, we would book directly with them and take KimKim out of the mix.

Hotel Review
Natural Paradise
n/a

This ship and the journey on it made for a fabulous week. The ship was a nicer category of vessel than we'd anticipated, and the crew on board were friendly and willing to please. The food was delicious, with great variety. For any special dietary requirements, they were quick to accomodate. Our Naturalist guide, Maria, was AMAZING. She totally made the trip and because of her knowledge and planning, we saw so many amazing and rare wildlife sites and experiences. She was also so willing to chat about the region, astronomy... and just about anything else we might have asked her about. She helped out with anything that came up, and connected a number of people on the ship (my party included) to other guides and experiences for the upcoming parts of our travels. The one caution I'd offer other travelers, is to potentially avoid the split itineraries on this ship. We were on the boat for 7 nights, which was a combination of the 4 night and 3 night eastern cruise. We did find that this many nights in a small geography began to feel a little repetitive, and the feeling was exacerbated by the change in passengers. With new people on board partway through our trip, the staff and guide had to repeat things the existing guests already knew, and spend more time spotting and watching animals that the guests who had been on since the beginning of the week had seen plenty of. It we had to do this over, we'd have done the 4 night cruise and then spent 2-3 nights on Isabella; or, considered a one week itinerary that carried the same passengers and guide throughout. Overall though, we were so happy with our time on the Natural Paradise and a huge thanks to the crew and guide.

Location
Staff
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Review
Charles Darwin Station & Tortoise Breeding center
Charles Darwin Station & Tortoise Breeding center
Galapagos Islands

The Charles Darwin research station was a fun and interesting stop. Our guide walked us through the various stages of breeding and species of tortoises on site. It was very cool! We also enjoyed watching the saddle-domed turtles and learning about Solitario Jorge. Definitely an interesting stop for travelers wanting to know more about evolution and the foundation of what makes the Galapagos so fascinating.

Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024
Hi Miranda, thanks a lot for your feedback on your trip to the Galapagos Islands! I'm happy to hear that you enjoyed a wonderful cruise. As for the issue with the communication you mentioned, our agency depends on the information provided by the cruise operators. In this case, we were informed late about the lack of the special type of wetsuits requested (standard gear is always available) and tried to find and offered a solution immediately. Nevertheless, I am sorry for the inconvenience!... Read more

Hi Miranda,

thanks a lot for your feedback on your trip to the Galapagos Islands! I'm happy to hear that you enjoyed a wonderful cruise.

As for the issue with the communication you mentioned, our agency depends on the information provided by the cruise operators. In this case, we were informed late about the lack of the special type of wetsuits requested (standard gear is always available) and tried to find and offered a solution immediately. Nevertheless, I am sorry for the inconvenience! The specific operator has agreed to be more proactive in the future to guarantee that information is provided promptly.

But I'm glad to hear that you enjoyed the cruise we selected for you and had a wonderful time in the Galapagos!

Always safe travels,
Mathias

Amazing time!
Ecuador | Dec 24 - Dec 30, 2023

S
sreeram m.
Flagami, FL | Reviewed on Jan 03, 2024

We had an excellent trip thanks to tour guide Robert and trip organizer Mathias. We visited most of the places within 7 days, thanks to great planning. We requested additional activities and they were also accommodated with in the time frame. Highlights were horseback riding in Cotopaxi , chocolate tour in Mindo, rafting and cooking class in Banos.
Would definitely use Kim Kim again for our future trips. Highly recommend Mathias and Robert, they are a great team.

Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hi Ram,

Thanks for your nice review! I’m glad that your two families had an excellent vacation in Ecuador. The schedule was tight but I believe the itinerary we crafted together allowed you to see most of the highlights, without making it too taxing for the kids.

Hopefully, you can return one day to discover the rest of the country, for example, the Galapagos Islands!

All the best,
Mathias, Robert & the rest of the team

Everyone involvEveryone involved in the planning and execution of this trip was topnotch!
Galapagos Islands | Dec 19 - Dec 31, 2023

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Noe N.
Lake Isabella, CA | Reviewed on Jan 02, 2024

Everyone involved in the planning and execution of this trip was topnotch! A special thanks to Mathias for pulling it all together though and having excellent communication and flexibility! This was our 3rd trip through KimKim and I highly recommend their platform/service. Fantastic trip in terms of meeting what we were looking to do/see. Would highly recommend!

Local specialist: Mathias Onisseit
Mathias
Mathias Onisseit
Local specialist in Quito, Ecuador | Replied on Feb 27, 2024

Hola Noe & Jessy,

thank you both for repeatedly entrusting local Kimkim specialists with the planning of your trips abroad!
I’m happy that you enjoyed the trip we put together, and I hope that you will return someday to visit the places that, unfortunately, you missed out on this time around!

Always safe travels,
Mathias & the Authentic Ecuador Team