16 Trafalgar trips you can take to experience the best of the world's wildlife

Thrilling safaris in Kenya and India to jungle journeys in Costa Rica and Brazil. Underwater adventures in Australia and Hawaii to icy expeditions in Alaska and Antarctica. The world is filled with extraordinary wildlife experiences. In honour of this, we look at the top Trafalgar trips where you can experience the best of the world’s wildlife.

Africa

1. African Safari Adventure

elephant mother with babies Kenya

What better way to see the best of the world’s wildlife than with a safari through eastern Africa. This extraordinary trip takes you through Kenya and Tanzania to the best safari parks in the world. You’ll visit the Serengeti, Maasai Mara, Ngorongoro Crater, Lake Manyara, Tarangire, Lake Nakuru and more. As you explore the parks, you’ll have the chance to spot all kinds of wildlife including the famous Big Five (lion, leopard, rhino, elephant and African buffalo). You can also spot other big game like zebras, giraffes and hippos, plus hundreds of unique bird species.

If you add Zanzibar Island to your African Safari Adventure, you’ll also experience a traditional dhow sailing and snorkelling trip. Here you can spot dozens of colourful tropical fish, bottlenose dolphins and other incredible marine life. 

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2. Namibia Adventure

rhino in Etosha National Park Namibia

Make tracks through the ancient Kalahari Desert to see the extraordinary desert-adapted wildlife of Namibia. Spot herds of elephants, big cats and rhinos on safari in Etosha National Park. Or see the Marine Big Five (whales, dolphins, seals, mola and leatherback turtles) on a catamaran cruise in Walvis Bay. You can even discover the hidden life in the Namib Desert on a wildlife tour with a local expert. It’s the world’s oldest desert and one of the harshest environments on the planet, yet you’ll find surprising forms of life from transparent geckos to the Namaqua Chameleon.

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3. Best of South Africa

lion in Kruger National Park South Africa

Want to see the best of the world’s wildlife? It doesn’t get much more diverse than in South Africa. Spot the Big Five on a private safari game drive through Kruger National Park, and take a morning cruise on Lake Saint Lucia to see crocodiles, hippos and birdlife. Meet the penguin colony at Boulders Beach on the Cape Peninsula, then go on safari to track the Big Five in Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Park. It’s the oldest park in South Africa with a legendary history of conservation.

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4. Wonders of Kenya

leopard in Maasai Mara Kenya

Tracking the Big Five in the famous Maasai Mara National Reserve is undoubtedly one of Kenya’s greatest wildlife experiences. But we’ll take you further, with a visit to Samburu National Park where you can spot the Samburu Special 5, including unique species like the Grevy’s Zebra and the Reticulated Giraffe. Stay at the Ark Lodge in Aberdare National Park where you can watch wildlife congregate around a floodlit waterhole. And marvel at the bright pink flamingos that flock to Lake Nakuru National Park. We’ll even take you to Ol Pejeta Conservancy, the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa, and Sweetwaters Sanctuary to meet the cheeky chimpanzees.

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Latin America

5. Monkeys Jungles and Volcanoes

little monkey on a leaf Costa Rica

This trip to Costa Rica is all about extraordinary wildlife travel experiences. You’ll take a riverboat through the canals and lagoons of Tortuguero National Park to see sloths, monkeys, caimans, iguana, crocodiles, sea turtles, rare ocelots, manatees and river otters, plus hundreds of bird species like toucans. You’ll also meet a Local Specialist at the Sea Turtle Conservancy Foundation to learn about the sea turtles in Tortuguero. If you’re visiting during nesting season (July to September), you’ll witness the turtles laying their eggs on the beaches. In Sarapiquí, you’ll meet the reptiles and amphibians of the Snake Garden Wildlife Center, while in Manuel Antonio National Park, you can spot 109 different animal species including whooping howler monkeys.

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6. South America Revealed with Brazilian Amazon and Galápagos Legend North and Central Cruise

Galapagos tortoises

You’ll get two of the world’s greatest wildlife experiences on this special trip. First, explore the mighty Amazon, the world’s largest rainforest, where you can spot capybara, anaconda and piranha and hear the signature sound of the Screaming Piha. You’ll also Make Travel Matter when we visit Monkey Forest, a wildlife refuge and rehabilitation centre. Next, we’ll cross the ocean to the Galápagos Islands, renowned for inspiring Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution and its endemic species like Galápagos penguins, tortoise, sea lions and marine iguanas. Whether you go snorkelling, hiking or sailing, you’ll be amazed by the wildlife of the Galápagos.

7. Wonders of Patagonia

guanaco in Torres del Paine Chile

Patagonia’s spectacular landscapes are filled with equally incredible wildlife. We’ll take you to Tierra del Fuego National Park in Argentina, where you can spot beavers, red foxes, eagles and condors. Then, stop by the end of the world in Ushuaia where you can cruise through the Beagle Channel to spot sea lions, Magellanic penguins, petrels, albatrosses and cormorants. From elusive puma to cute guanaco, there are plenty of chances to see wildlife in Patagonia across Chile and Argentina.

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North America

8. Polar Bears in Manitoba

Polar bear in Churchill Canada

Wildlife experiences don’t get much more epic than this. We’ll take you to the polar bear capital of the world in northern Canada, where you’ll spot polar bears by day and marvel at the northern lights by night. Head out on an icy safari in the Churchill Wildlife Management Area where you’ll see polar bears, arctic fox, ptarmigan and other subarctic wildlife in the untamed tundra. And get to know more about these magnificent animals with an exclusive presentation from a local polar bear expert. You’ll also Make Travel Matter when you meet a local dog-sledding expert and learn about the traditional Métis lifestyle… Plus you’ll experience a thrilling dog-sled ride through the boreal forest. 

9. Hawaiian Explorer

Hawaiian sea turtle swimming through a reef

Swap the ice for the sun with our Hawaii trips to see the best of the world’s marine life. You’ll meet the conservationist at the Maui Ocean Centre and marvel at the world’s largest collection of Hawaiian green sea turtles, tropical fish, sharks and live Pacific corals. We’ll also visit the Manta Ray Learning Centre with a Local Specialist to learn more about these magical creatures. If you’d like to head underwater, you can choose to take a snorkelling adventure in Maui to spot spectacular sea life including colourful fish, coral and Hawaiian green sea turtles. Or you might like to go whale watching with an expert team. You’ll spot humpback whales and listen to their mystical songs through underwater hydrophones.

10. Majestic Alaska

Humpback whale breaching the water Alaska

Alaska’s wildlife is truly magnificent. We’ll take you cruising into the icy Kenai Fjords National Park where you’ll see Humpback whales gliding past glacial icebergs. Explore the wilderness of Denali National Park with a Local Specialist and learn about the rare subarctic animals in the park. Keep an eye out for sea lions, otters, porpoises and seals as you cruise around the giant icebergs of Prince William Sound. You’ll also have an incredible Make Travel Matter experience at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, where they work to rehabilitate injured and orphaned wildlife. 

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Australia and New Zealand

11. Contrasts of Australia

shark swimming in blue ocean Australia

Australia is famed for its unique wildlife and you’ll experience it all on our Australian wildlife tours. Go sailing and snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef, the world’s largest reef, to spot colourful marine and corals. Wander through the Daintree Forest, the world’s oldest rainforest, and Make Travel Matter by helping conservation efforts to restore an important wildlife corridor for native birds. You can even join a Local Specialist on a private boat cruise to see crocodiles lurking in the rivers. 

Near Melbourne, you can choose to venture to Phillip Islands where you’ll watch the adorable penguins make their daily walk from the sea to their beach burrows. And in Sydney, we’ll visit Wendy’s Secret Garden at Lavender Bay, where you can spot all kinds of native birds like laughing kookaburras.

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12. Perfect Tasmania

wallaby in the grass Tasmania Australia

Tasmania is a natural oasis showcasing the best of the world’s wildlife. Take a walk through the extraordinary Cradle National Park and keep your eyes peeled to spot echidnas, wallabies and pademelons grazing in the wilderness. If you want to spot even more animals, you can return at dusk for a special nocturnal wildlife tour to spot wombats, possums and wallabies coming alive at night. Or you could learn about the region’s conservation programs for the iconic Tasmanian Devil. If you’d love to see the famous Tassie Devil, we’ll take you to the Bonorong Wildlife Sanctuary in Richmond for a close-up experience. 

In the gorgeous Freycinet Peninsula, we’ll cruise to Wineglass Bay where you’ll enjoy lunch on the beach and maybe even spot pods of dolphins, sunbathing fur seals, flying sea eagles and migrating Humpback and Southern Right whales. Continue the search for Tasmania’s amazing marine life on Bruny Island. We’ll cruise across the Tasman Sea through deep-sea caves to spot dolphins, seals, whales and seabirds.

13. New Zealand Uncovered

sea lion on the beach New Zealand

You’ll be dazzled by New Zealand’s wildlife experiences that take you from breaching whales to glittering glowworms. Kaikoura is New Zealand’s whale watching capital and you can take a boat or a helicopter flight to see sperm whales and dolphins around the spectacular Kaikoura Peninsula. We’ll keep the marine theme going when you cruise the serene waters of Milford Sound with the chance to spot playful dolphins, or take a wildlife cruise from Dunedin to the Otago Peninsula. 

In Franz Josef, you can visit the West Coast Wildlife Centre to see the endemic kiwi birds. We’ll also explore the beautiful Fiordland National Park, where you can spot wild trout and contribute to conservation efforts to help native birds thrive. As for the glowworms? You can experience these sparkling creatures in Rotorua and Te Anau’s glowworm caves.

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Asia

14. Golden Triangle and the Tigers of Ranthambore

three tigers lounging in the shade Ranthambore National Park India

There are few wildlife experiences more exhilarating than seeing a tiger in the world. And that’s exactly what you’ll get when we take you to Ranthambore National Park in India. You’ll join a local guide for a thrilling game drive through the jungle where you can spot the Royal Bengal tigers, along with other animals like leopards, hyenas, jackals, sloth bears, civets, mongoose, hedgehogs, crocodiles, cobras, turtles, chameleons and more.

15. Best of China with Yangtze Cruise

sleepy giant panda bear Chengdu China

Always dreamed of seeing panda bears? We’ll take you to Chengdu, the home of the Giant Panda and the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. You’ll Make Travel Matter as you meet a Local Specialist and learn about the ground-breaking work being done by this non-profit research and breeding facility for the endangered giant panda. With fewer than 2,000 giant pandas remaining in the world, the team rescues and rehabilitates these adorable creatures. You’ll get to see the team feeding and playing with the cheeky pandas.

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Antarctica

16. Antarctica Peninsula Cruise – Land of Penguins and Icebergs

Emperor penguins with babies Antarctica

If you really want to see the best of the world’s wildlife, it’s got to be Antarctica. Renowned as the earth’s final frontier, this untamed icy wilderness may seem uninhabitable, but it’s brimming with life. Keep an eye out for the pelagic seabirds that fly over the Drake Passage, then head ashore to see fur seals lounging on ice floes. You’ll even kayak through freezing waters to see penguins, whales and unique bird species, and it’s an unforgettable experience.

Planning for an iconic 2022 trip? Request the latest Trafalgar brochure and start dreaming

Where have you seen the best of the world’s wildlife? Let us know in the comments below!

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