The transition from fall to winter sees many animals migrate to warmer weather. Plan family travel to one of these five destinations to witness some of the world’s greatest wildlife phenomenon this year.
1. Whooping Crane, South Texas
Endangered whooping cranes travel more than 2,500 miles from northern Canada to South Texas each fall for warmer weather. As North America’s tallest bird species, measuring 5 feet tall with a 7-foot wingspan, this rare species embarks on a dangerous journey each year. The only migratory population of this species lies in Aransas National Wildlife Refuge, situated about 80 miles northeast of Corpus Christi. The birds rest here from November to mid-March. Visit this refuge, which has helped grow the whooping crane population from a mere 20 in the late 1930s to 543 today, to see these magnificent creatures.
2. Monarch Butterfly, San Luis Obispo, California
More than 85,000 people visit Pismo State Beach Monarch Grove each year to see these beautiful butterflies. As one of just a few sites in the state with more than 10,000 butterflies, this grove allows visitors to see monarch butterflies in troves. Visit between late October and February to see these butterflies cluster in the limbs of eucalyptus trees.
3. Salmon and Eagles, Victoria, Canada
Every fall, millions of Pacific salmon venture upstream to spawn, often referred to as the Salmon Run. Goldstream Provincial Park sees many salmon visit between late October and early November to reproduce. Of course, the sudden influx of salmon also sees other wildlife appear, including bald eagles. Bald eagles accompany the salmon in such high numbers, their arrival has earned the nickname Eagle Extravaganza. When the eagles arrive, Goldstream Estuary closes to allow eagles to safely rest and feed, but visitors can still witness these creatures from a distance.
4. Bison, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Animals prepare for winter as fall draws to a close, making it the perfect time for visitors to spot animals as they travel south or stock up for winter. While elk are commonly seen in early and mid fall, as the temperature drops, bison emerge. Look for bison migrating to lower elevations such as Blacktail Deer Plateau and Gardiner Basin. As bison venture closer to sea level, wolves also appear as they hunt for prey.
5. Monarch Butterfly, Santa Barbara, California
San Luis Obispo isn’t the only place to witness monarch butterfly colonies. The butterfly species also migrates through the Goleta area north of Santa Barbara between November and February. Goleta Monarch Butterfly Grove at Ellwood Mesa welcomes visitors to catch glimpses of these vibrant butterflies for free. While at the grove, be sure to also look for California Ebony tarantulas. Male tarantulas come out in the late afternoon to mate in fall, and the grove’s eight Tarantula Trails allow visitors the best chances to spot these large arachnids.
Read This Next
Destinations / North AmericaJun 1, 2023
Hit the Streets of Chattanooga, Tennessee, for Non-Stop Music Events in 2023
This year, Chattanooga, Tennessee, takes center stage with a full lineup of music events, offering family travelers more than one chance to visit this town. Here are some of the upcoming music festivals and events coming to Chattanooga:
United Airlines Celebrates its First Class of United Aviate Graduates
As the only major U.S. airline to own a flight school, United Airlines already hit a major milestone, and now the carrier celebrates another important — and historic — step as the inaugural class of United Aviate Academy pilots graduates, leading the next generation of aviators. The 51 students in the graduating class were majority, at 80 percent, women and people of color — another stride toward United’s goal of training 5,000 new pilots by 2030 with half women or POC.
Destinations / North AmericaJun 1, 2023
3 Summer Festivals to Experience in New Orleans This Summer
If you think a New Orleans vacation means walking the streets of the French Quarter, eating beignets and drinking chicory coffee, you are only partially right. The city is ripe with fun activities that make it one of the most fascinating destinations for all types of family travelers, including what seems like a never-ending calendar of festivals where visitors can experience fun, food and culture year-round. If you plan to head to the Big Easy this summer, be sure to check out these great festivals that should definitely be on your must-do list.
SlideshowJun 1, 2023
8 Tel Aviv, Israel, Destinations for Family Travel
It’s time to start dreaming of your next family trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through Tel Aviv, Israel, with us.
Destinations / North AmericaMay 31, 2023
The Desert of Maine: A Natural Wonder Great for Kids
The Desert of Maine, near the shopping mecca of Freeport, has been an icon since it opened in 1925. Children of family travelers along Maine’s coast were fascinated by road-side signs showing camels, sand dunes and colorful Arabian tents. At times, live camels were added to the desert landscapes.
DestinationsMay 31, 2023
Top 10 Summer Travel Destinations
Travel insurance company Allianz Partners recently revealed the results of its Top 10 Summer Travel Destinations study, just in time for family travelers looking for some inspiration. The team at Allianz analyzed more than 1.6 million flight itineraries of five–eight days in length booked between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Of those flight itineraries, 73 percent were for domestic trips and 27 percent were for international destinations.