My Worldwide Wildlife Travel Bucket List
During this time when we are not able to travel and while many of us have concerns over the future, be it for our family or for our income, there is one thing that Coronavirus cannot stop. It cannot stop us from dreaming and from talking about all the places we want to go and will go when all of this is over.
The below are just a few of the wildlife destinations that I want to get to when this is over, near and far, and for once, a list that is not Africa focussed. It was really hard to keep this list to only 5 destinations and I have kept it short as I am no expert on these areas, at least not yet!
I have been very fortunate in my travels and have seen Orangutan in Borneo, Sharks in many places while working as a diver, and of course all of my African wildlife, however, there are so many things left on my bucket list.
Lundy Island – Devon, UK
Starting close to home this is just up the road in North Devon, and is only one of a number of UK wildlife destinations I would like to get to and was hoping to visit this summer. This is an incredibly accessible escape, stay in the coastal towns of North Devon and visit for a day or either camp on the island or stay in one of the small number of cottages available to rent. There are sea birds a plenty as well as seals but the big draw here is the Puffins.
Somewhere that until the last few years really held little interest for me, the wildlife experience is very different from that in Africa but there are now more parks that are commercially run and also more ecologically sensitive. The main focus is of course to see Tigers in their natural habitat but there are also sloth bears and leopards as well as Indian wild dog and a plethora of birds.
Something that often seems like a pipe dream due to the costs but has been on my bucket list for so long that it if I were to order the list this would probably be at the top by some way, however, it is important to have something to aim for and this is the biggest wildlife goal for me…. The only difficulty is that boats have, for a while, been separated into diving activities and land activities, so I will have to just do it twice!!
A change for me and a need to wrap up warm… bears are the king of this land. The polar bear is not only a captivating icon of climate change and conservation but also on so many peoples list of wildlife to see in the wild. Svalbard is an archipelago between mainland Norway and the north pole home to one of the northern most settlements on the planet, in the summer months it is light 24 hours a day and it is possible to search the fjords and glaciers for wildlife.
With white sandy beaches and not at initial glance not a huge amount to do this may not seem like the sort of place that would be on my radar, that is until you get involved in some of the incredible marine life, for me, I long to see a whale shark and have done for as long as I have been diving (16 years). There are lots of places to be able to see this majestic creatures, including a juvenile feeding ground off of Mafia island in Tanzania, but the Philippines has for me been the destination I want to go to experience this interaction.