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Incredible wildlife experiences across the world

In the words of Sir David Attenborough, “the natural world is the greatest source of excitement, and the greatest source of visual beauty”. With expansive savannahs home to killer cats and huge mammals, Africa is a continent that usually comes to mind when you think of wildlife trips. Of course the Africa is a fantastic choice for wildlife – with elephants, lions, leopards, giraffe and impala aplenty. Our Africa experts have travelled extensively around the continent so they can advise the best destination, park and safari for you based on what you are looking for.

Throughout Asia, wildlife experiences are diverse and can be added in a luxury itinerary. From watching snow monkeys bathe in Japan’s hot springs, to washing elephants in Thailand’s Chang Mai, the continent offers something for everyone. The beauty of wildlife experiences in Asia is that it can be easily combined in an itinerary without being the focus. For example, the tigers in India can be tied in alongside a trip highlighting the country’s cultural and historic treasures. We have put together some of the world’s most iconic wildlife experiences and tours, which our destination experts can help organise.

Birds in Costa Rica

Home to expansive forests and protected national parks, Costa Rica is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. During a trip to Costa Rica, you could see three-toed sloths hanging from the trees, tapirs walking across the forest floor, and, if you’re lucky enough, you could spot the oncilla which is a small spotted cat. But above all are the resident and migratory birds that fill the skies with colour and life. One of the most famous birds native to Costa Rica is the Scarlet Macaw. This exquisite bird is a vision of colour and beauty. They live in coastal forests and are particularly abundant in Manuel Antonio and on the Osa Peninsula. Other birds you will get the chance to see in Costa Rica include the Hummingbird, the Toucan, Tanagers, the Motmot, and of course, the Roseate Spoonbill – arguably the most distinctive birds to see in the country.

The Underwater World in the Maldives

While there are so many wildlife experiences on land, we must give the underwater world the attention and exposure it deserves. In the Maldives, the amount of land that sits above the sea level represents only a tiny fraction of the country’s overall land mass. Surrounded by volcanic ranges under the ocean, the majority of the Maldives is below sea level. The waters, dive sites and lagoons are home to around 200 different species of coral, 300 fish species including sharks, stingrays, reef shark and turtles. There are also species that migrate through the waters of the Maldives such as whale sharks. With all of this in mind, it is no wonder that thousands of people travel to the Maldives islands for its underwater world. Whether you are exploring the Maldives on land, or by a cruise trip, we can help plan your perfect adventure!

The Big Five in South Africa

Seeing the “Big Five” in the wild has arguably become the most desired part to an African safari. The term “Big Five” actually derives from old safari hunting days and includes five animals proved to be the most difficult to hunt. These include the African elephant, the Cape buffalo, the lion, leopard and rhino. Of course, today these animals are protected as best they can in the national parks and reserves by safari guides and rangers who work around the clock, but the “Big Five” name has stuck. For those who want to tick the Big Five off, South Africa is a great option. Sabi Sands for example, is a private reserve offering a fantastic, and very reliable, possibility to see these five animals. Over the years, other groups have been formed which also great to see, such as the “Little Five”, the “High Five”, and many others. Our favourite is the Ugly Five which consists of the Lapet Faced vulture, the Marabou stork, the hyena, wildebeest and the warthog! Sorry Pumbaa!

Primates in Borneo

The orangutans share Borneo’s forest with more than ten other primate species, making it one of the most diverse and reliable destinations to see primates in. Asia’s only ape – the orangutan – is the largest mammal that climbs trees and Asia is the only place it is found in the wild. Like so many other primates and animals in the world today, these incredible apes are sadly losing their habitat due to deforestation and forest fires. One of the best ways to explore Borneo’s wildlife is to book a boat safari and spend two to three days on the river and another two to three days in an interior jungle lodge that offers forest walks. At the beginning and end of the trip, cities, beaches, and other attractions like the dramatic caves of Mulu can be explored, or perhaps time in one of the isolated Iban longhouses inside Batang Ai National Park. We have a couple of itineraries to inspire you but feel free to get in touch with our Asia specialists to answer any questions.

Elephants in Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is an Asian island in the middle of the Indian Ocean, famous for its tropical beaches, iconic hikes and tea plantations across the beautiful country. The island is a great choice for those looking for an active trip or those interested in good food and local culture. But on top of that, Sri Lanka is a great choice for wildlife enthusiasts, especially those whose budget may not stretch for an African safari. Across Sri Lanka’s national parks, you have the opportunity to see leopards, monkeys, sloth bears, crocodiles and of course, elephants. Although not as big, Asian elephants are incredibly beautiful to see in the wild and with the country homing around 6,000 of them, Sri Lanka is a very reliable place to see them. To find out more, speak to our Asia specialists or have a look at our recommended trips.

Bears in Canada

When thinking of Canada, most people will think of the incredible scenery and picturesque landscapes such as Lake Morraine, Lake Louise and the Nahanni National Park to name a few. These expansive landscapes and protected national reserves are home to a variety of mammals, including the grizzly and the black bear. Tofino is a small district on Vancouver Island, in western Canada. Along with its beautiful lakes, inlets and ancient forests, Tofino is known for its black bear sightings. Watching the bears from a boat is a good option as it allows a respectable distance to be kept. Along the way, you will often see other wildlife species such as river otters, seals and a range of birds like blue herons and eagles. During the right months, Canada is also a great destination to see whales from. To find out more about Canada’s wildlife experiences and tours, visit our itineraries or get in touch with our specialists.

Gorillas in Uganda and Rwanda

With only around 1,000 mountain gorillas left in the wild today, it is no surprise that seeing them in the wild is an exceptionally humbling travel experience. Mountain gorillas are the King of primates – a silverback can weigh anywhere up to 250 kilograms! The most reliable place to see the gorillas in the wild is Uganda’s Bwindi National Park, and Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park. Both these parks have undergone a habituation programme with the gorillas which means that a long period of time, the gorillas have become comfortable with the presence of humans. Our Africa travel experts have done the gorilla treks themselves, so their knowledge about the experience and logistics involved, is invaluable. To get some inspiration initially, have a look at some our recommended itineraries.

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