BUCKET LIST TRAVELS – WILDLIFE ENCOUNTERS
What’s on your bucket list? Have you always dreamt of an incredible and unique wildlife encounter?
Here are my top picks for the Worlds best wildlife experiences that maybe should be on your bucket list. Remember to always seek out ethical encounters where the animals are living in their natural surroundings or are being helped by responsible companies in breeding or rescue programs.
What – In my opinion it is the single most incredible wildlife encounter in the World. If you want the ultimate safari experience then this one is for you.
Where – Serengeti, Tanzania. The migration also goes into Kenya but the Serengeti is the best place.
When – July to October. For the most memorable experience you want to see the main river crossings. September sees the main Mara river crossing which is the most spectacular.
Stay– Roving camps are great – Sanctuary Serengeti Migration Camp moves three times a year to get into the best migration locations.
BEAR WATCHING – KODIAK
What– See the largest brown bears in the World in their natural habitat. Visit an isolated unspoilt island where the bears flourish and you have the best chance to see these huge creatures.
Where – Kodiak island – near Anchorage, Alaska. No direct flights from the UK but plenty of options with short stops en-route.
When – Summer months – mid July to late september
Stay – Kodiak Brown bear centre lodge. Lovely wooden cabins with private decks overlooking Karluk lake. The lodge is only accessible by the resorts own floatplane.
IN SEARCH OF POLAR BEARS
What – Search for the elusive Polar bear in the vast icy expanses of the Artic circle.
Where – Svaarlbard which is an island off the coast of Northern Norway in the Arctic circle.
When – Summer months are best for expedition cruises and offer the best chance of seeing these elusive creatures. In winter you have less chance of bear sightings but you could join an exciting husky or skidoo safari. Explore the Arctic wilderness, stay in small lodges and see the Northern lights.
Stay – Join an expedition cruise and learn from the resident scientists and wildlife experts. Hurtigruten have a range of cruises and some great new ships. If you like to travel in style and luxury then you might prefer Silversea.
TRACK GORILLAS IN WILD
What– Track through the dense cloud forests with expert guides to find these gentle giants in their natural habitat.
Where – RWANDA – I think Rwanda offers the best options as you can get to the forests fairly easily from Kigali. The drive into the heart of the national park is just over two hours from the capital. They also have a good choice of lodges to choose from and a very ethical program.
When– June to September is dry season and so the most pleasant time to be trekking through dense forest.
Stay– Start in Kigali and book a official registered tour with accommodation in the national parks included. There are some really great lodges like the sumptuous Gorillas Nest sanctuary, a brand new lodge from One & Only resorts.
SEARCH FOR TIGERS
What– Track elusive tigers in 4wd through stunning scenery of India’s protected national parks
Where – India- the main areas are in central India with the nearest airport being Nagpur which is 90kms away. There are no direct flights so you will need to fly via Delhi.
When – October to March
Stay– I recommend a tour packages that combines different national parks and included expert guides where you stay in luxury tented safari camps. Pench and Kanha national parks are great but it is Bandhavgarh that has the highest density of tigers in India. Some tours will include all three parks.
SWIM WITH WHALE SHARKS
What – Swim up close to the largest fish in the ocean. A truly awe inspiring experience. Whale Sharks are regular visitors and the spotter planes help to find these majestic creatures.
Where – Ningaloo reef Australia in Western Australia. Flights connect Exmouth close by with all major cities in Australia.
When – March to June are the best months
Stay – Sal Salis is a luxury tented camp set in the dunes of the marine park and offers a unique experience in this unspoilt paradise.
GREAT WHITE CAGE DIVE
What– Are you brave enough to drop into the deadly home of the great White Shark? Even if you are safely ensconsed in a cage, this is still a scary albeit thrilling experience.
Where– South Africa – Seal island, False Bay. This is a 45 minute drive from the centre of Cape Town. There are direct flights to Cape town from the UK.
When – May to September
Stay – Cape town has lots of great hotels. For the ultimate luxury try the famous Cape Grace hotel overlooking the marina. Or for beach lovers you might want to look at a hotel out in Camps Bay on the golden sands.
Have you a different Bucket List idea?
Maybe you want to take a cruise to the fascinating Galapagos Islands. Or visit an Oranguatan orphanage in Borneo. You might want to live like a cowboy and join a cattle drive in Texas. Let me know what wildlife encounter would be on your bucket list.
Whatever it is on your bucket list, what are you waiting for? Now is as good a time as any. Contact Paul today and lets start ticking some of those things off.