Many people think of African safaris when it comes to wildlife holidays, but there are so many other parts of the world with exceptional wildlife experiences too.
No-one’s denying that Africa’s wildlife is top notch, but it doesn’t have the monopoly on amazing animals. The jaguars, howler monkeys and quetzals of Central America are just as exciting, as are the pygmy elephants, orang utans and proboscis monkeys of Borneo and the black bears, wolves and killer whales of western Canada.
When you book a wildlife holiday with Temple World it’s up to you how far you take the wildlife challenge—from easy day trips in Sri Lanka and South Africa to multi-park itineraries or even a full on snow-leopard trek, we know how to get you to the heart of the action, in a way that works for you. Whether your dream is to see wild polar bears, giant tortoises, armadillos or gorillas, we can make it happen.
THE ULTIMATE FOR FAMILY WILDLIFE: BORNEO (MALAYSIA)
Malaysian Borneo offers an easy yet exciting family adventure and is suitable for both young and mature children. With pristine beaches, colonial history and rainforests filled with an impressive array of rare flora and fauna, it is also safe and very easy to get around. Highlights include the world’s largest orang-utan rehabilitation centre in Sepilok and boat trips on the Kinabatang River to look for proboscis monkeys and pygmy elephants. Intrepid families can see Orang Utans in the wild with a 3 night side-trip by 4 x 4 to the remote Danum Valley—no roughing it is required as you can stay at the lovely Borneo Rainforest lodge. Whatever you choose to do, all families will enjoy ending their adventure with a stay on the pristine coastline near Rasa Ria, where you can snorkel, hike or just lie on the beach for a well-earned rest.
Best for: Adults, and kids aged 4-16 (though we can make this work for toddlers too)
When to go: Best weather March to October, so if you have school age children pick Easter or Summer holidays
TW’s favourite Borneo hotels for families: Borneo Rainforest Lodge, Shangri la Rasa Ria Resort, Sukau Rainforest Lodge
THE ULTIMATE FOR LUXURY WILDLIFE: GALAPAGOS ISLANDS
Combine the glittering colonial jewel of Quito with the cloud forest hideaway of Mashpi Reserve, then explore the incredible islands of the Galapagos on luxury cruise. In Quito, discover Quito’s historic plazas before driving to Mashpi, a 1,300 hectare cloud forest. At the luxury Mashpi Lodge, go in search of orchids, monkeys, peccaries and hundreds of bird species. Then fly to the Galapagos Islands for a luxury expedition cruise aboard MV La Pinta. Discover the diverse islands, known for their extraordinary flora and fauna which has evolved without predators. Explore on hikes, swims and dinghy trips accompanied by knowledgeable naturalist guides and enjoy fine wine and food as well as luxurious accommodation. With activities to suit every fitness level, anyone can enjoy this epic and unforgettable adventure.
Best for: Romance, couples, family, luxury, wildlife, birdlife, adventure
When to go: Best weather October to June
TW’s recommended hotels: Mashpi Lodge (Mashpi), Casa Gangotena (Quito), yacht La Pinta (Galapagos islands)
THE ULTIMATE FOR BIRDLIFE: COSTA RICA
A jungle-clad jewel nestled between the Pacific and the Caribbean and fringed by powder white beaches, Costa Rica is considered one of the most biodiverse countries in the world. In this stunning setting, you can see some of the world’s most unusual mammals such as sloths, tapirs and armadillos, as well as a host of monkeys and fabulous birds, from bright toucans, macaws and parrots to the highly prized resplendent quetzal. Discover the waterways of Tortuguero on the Caribbean coast and the lush rainforests, waterfalls and lakes of Arenal Volcano. Experience outstanding wildlife in the mist-covered Cloud Forests of Monteverde and jungle beaches of Manuel Antonio, or fly down to Corcovado National Park in the remote Osa Peninsula in search of shy jaguars. Truly a paradise on earth, Costa Rica is utterly beguiling.
Best for: Adventure, birdlife, beach, family, couples, scenery
When to go: November to May
TW’s favourite Costa Rica hotels: Drake Bay Getaway, Four Seasons Papagayo, Lapa Rios
THE ULTIMATE FOR UNIQUE WILDLIFE: MADAGASCAR
Discover the magical island of Madagascar, uninhabited by man until just 2000 years ago. Totally unique because its isolation has meant it evolved without large predators for 165 million years, 80% of the flora and fauna on this Indian Ocean island is endemic. Madagascar’s protected reserves and rainforests contain amazingly diverse wildlife, from impish ring-tailed lemurs and dancing sifakas to brightly coloured chameleons, frogs and butterflies. There’s a superb array of birds, with the beautiful crested coua amongst the six endemic families and more than seventy species of singing birds and parrots. It’s up to you whether to explore a variety of habitats in a multi-centre exploration with a naturalist guide, or base yourself in just one fabulous destination combining wildlife with white sand beaches.
Best for: Wildlife, beach, luxury, romance, wildlife, families, honeymoons
When to go: April to November
TW’s top Madagascar hotels: Constance Tsarabanjina, Anjajavy le Lodge, Isalo Rock Lodge, Mantadia Lodge
THE ULTIMATE WILDLIFE RESORT : CLAYOQUOT, CANADA
40 minutes by boat from Tofino on the West Coast of Vancouver Island or 45 minutes from Vancouver by floatplane, Clayoquot Wilderness resort is an ultra-deluxe glamping lodge surrounded by 600 acres of lush rivers and valleys. Home to a staggering array of wildlife, from black and grizzly bears to cougar and grey wolf, guests can choose from an array of explorations, from river safaris and kayaking to helicopter hikes. Marine life in the Clayoquot sound includes gray whales , orcas, humpback whales and a variety of other whale, dolphin and porpoise species as well as seals and sea lions. Birdlife includes great blue heron and bald eagles, as well as the iconic golden eagle. Stay in supreme comfort, with superlative service and top-notch food and wine, whilst enjoying the absolute pristine wilderness.
Best for: Scenery, romance, food and drink, boat trips, beach, trekking
When to go: May until October
Other superb wildlife resorts; Southern Ocean Lodge (Australia), Lapa Rios Lodge (Costa Rica), Anjajavy (Madagascar)
We hope you’ve enjoyed browsing this small selection of our wildlife holiday recommendations. There are too many incredible places and experiences to experience wildlife for us to detail them all here, but trust us when we say: if it’s a luxury wildlife experience you’re after: we do it. We have the expertise to hand-pick every lodge and experience to create an unforgettable, personalised wildlife holiday of a lifetime.