The relationship between humans and animals seems to have changed over the years, helped along in no small part by YouTube and Twitter. If you haven’t posted a picture of your cat or dog, or shared a video of a raccoon doing something amusing, then you’re pretty much a novice when it comes to social media.
Of course, sharing videos is one thing, but this internet-based enthusiasm for animals has grown, for many of us, into a full-blown interest in the creatures with whom we share the planet. It’s an interest that remains academic for most of us – let’s face it, the most exotic things get in the UK is the occasional fox and the outside chance of seeing a badger every so often. Which is fine, but it means we need to travel if we want to see for real some of the creatures that steal our hearts when we see them on a screen.
So why not do that? Going on holiday is something we like to do anyway, and if we can combine the relaxation of a break with the chance to see some fascinating creatures, so much the better. Ask yourself two questions: What do I want to see, and where can I see it?
Dolphins: Off The Coast of Mexico
Dubbed by many as the most intelligent creature on the planet aside from humans, the dolphin is a sight to behold. One of very few creatures with the ability to communicate vocally, they swim in warmer seas such as the idyllic Sea of Cortez, off Baja California. While there, chances are you’ll also witness sea lions, blue whales and the exotic manta ray.
Big Cats: The Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
The magnificent Serengeti is a sight to behold from the moment you set up camp within it. What sets it apart from other areas, though, is its rich population of migrating creatures. On Serengeti National Park holidays, you’ll see wildebeest; and where you see wildebeest, you can be sure lions and cheetahs won’t be far behind. These big cats are incredible to see up close – although if you really look close, you may see that a lot of their behaviour is similar to the ordinary domestic cat. Which will give you a new appreciation for Mittens when you get home.
Polar Bears: Svalbard, Norway
Of course, not all majestic creatures live somewhere warm. The enthralling experience of seeing a polar bear will require that you invest heavily in winter wear and voyage towards the Arctic Circle. Situated between mainland Norway and the North Pole, Svalbard is the best place to see these remarkable creatures in the wild. As an added bonus, you’re likely to also see more than a few Arctic Foxes as well as walruses and a few native birds, such as the Eider duck.
There are plenty more options to see – indeed, if you have an interest in endangered species then a conservation holiday may be more your bag. Which animals are on your list to see? Have a quick search online and start planning your next holiday!