When choosing your next travel destination, there’s a few essentials that you have to keep in mind that influence your choice of location. Firstly, there’s your budget – which is always going to constrain what you might want to do. Secondly, you have to decide if you want to return to a much-loved existing destination, or if you want to try something different. Then there are other considerations such as the time you have available or who you might like to go with – but one thing has a tendency to be forgotten: the things you love when you’re at home.
The chances are, you’d consider yourself an animal lover. Most of us do, excusing the odd phobia and bad past experience. This love tends to manifest itself in the love we bestow upon our pets, but this is something we leave behind when we set off on our travels – the animal lover side of our personality stays firmly at home.
What if it didn’t have to, though? What if you could add another consideration to that long list of concerns – a consideration to find a place that allows you to see and experience animals in a totally different country?
Swim With Dolphins
Swimming with dolphins tends to appear high on many bucket lists, especially for those of us who consider ourselves animal lovers. The beauty of this goal is that it’s so attainable. From aquatic centers in Europe to the natural waters of Australia; swimming with dolphins is something you can incorporate into almost any holiday.
However, it’s perhaps best experienced on coastal resorts in warm countries. Think the Caribbean over the landlocked European countries; aqua parks where the dolphins are kept in as natural a habitat as possible. The Dominican Republic and Jamaica both come highly recommended, so perhaps start your search there.
Volunteer With Conservation Projects
If you don’t just want to experience different animals but actively help them, then offering your help with conservation projects can be a wonderful way of combining travel and your love of animals. You can largely choose any animal that you might wish to assist, with Africa being a prime destination to consider, especially if you’re considering working with elephants or any of the other famed “big five” animals. Namibia and Botswana should be at the top of your list as places to research.
Walk With The Monkeys
Finally, the above two options are wonderful in their own ways. However, they do somewhat separate animals from humans in how the interaction with the animals goes about. If you prefer the idea of a less forced separation, then the island of Gibraltar might be what you need.
The famous local monkeys – Barbary apes, to be specific, but everyone refers to them as monkeys! – are a part of the local tradition and integrate with humanity in ways rarely seen anywhere else in the world. Tourists to the rock are nothing new to these animals, who have grown up seeing humans as a source of easy food and a nice fuss rather than anything to be feared. Gibraltar – a British overseas territory – is nice in and of itself, with a temperate climate and stunning views over the Atlantic Ocean.