There’s something so pure and special about seeing an animal lover visiting their favorite species in person. While the zoo is home to a slew of wildlife, there’s just nothing like seeing it in the wild.
Sure, this may mean an epic vacation to Asia to do so, but it’s 2020 — live a little.
What’s a wildlife list without mentioning Giant Panda bears in China? This endangered species can be viewed throughout the country in zoos, but for a truly wild experience, the Bifengxia Panda Base (near Ya’an in the Sichuan province) is home to more than 80 pandas. This park offers volunteer programs giving guests up-close encounters, including feedings and cleanings.
Another option, the Giant Panda Breeding and Research Base in Chengdu houses about 60 pandas, including babies.
Observe snow monkeys taking a dip in the steamy hot springs of Joshinetsu Kogen National Park by day before they scatter back into the forest at night.
Traveling families staying in Kyoto can easily take a daytrip from the city to Nara, where more than 1,000 wild deer roam the temple grounds. Purchase crackers outside the park to feed the deer, but look out, these deer are not wallflowers — they will nudge, pinch and even follow you around in hopes of getting fed.
Japan is also home to several cat islands, which you can read more about here.
You’ve seen the pictures of tourists riding elephants in Chiang Mai, but there are actually far better ways to see and interact with Thailand’s national animal.
The Elephant Nature Park, 40 miles outside of Chiang Mai, is a sanctuary for mistreated elephants. These rescues come primarily from abusive situations within the tourism industry. Guests can visit the park for the day, overnight or on weeklong visits and see these majestic animals living their best lives. Join volunteers in feeding, bathing and spending quality time with the elephants — all while knowing admission proceeds go toward the Save Elephant Foundation.
Riding a camel in the desert is a truly incredible experience — and where better to do it than the Pushkar Camel Fair? Each November, this epic event brings thousands of tourists to Pushkar, India, to celebrate the country’s beloved camel. Join in the festivities and see more than 50,000 camels parading around the desert village in decorative garb.
This is a popular event and will take some planning, so if it’s on your family’s list of 2020 experiences, get started!
This Valentine’s Day, give your little ones a Bumpa, a weighted plush doll that hugs you back for soft, cozy comfort. The doll’s weighted hands are shaped as half a heart, so when they are joined together, they create a full heart, perfect for Valentine’s Day.
Plan ahead to finish holiday shopping early and gift your family an award-winning European 2023 summer vacation with Celebrity Cruises and leave the holiday hassle in your wake. With the most unique itineraries of any cruise line, Celebrity is the perfect choice for your summer escape.
The lure of Vermont’s big ski resorts is undeniable, but for family travelers, a day at one of these can be very expensive. Smaller ski areas are usually geared to families, making them wonderful places for children to learn how to ski. Next time you travel to Vermont in search of snow, spend a day or an afternoon at one of these small home-town slopes.
Ski season is in full swing at Southern California’s mountain resorts, making them perfect options for family travelers looking for a mid-season vacay. At Mammoth Mountain, one of the most popular resorts for skiing, snowboarding and anyone looking for some snowy fun, there are plenty of reasons to put this destination on your radar thanks to all the new upgrades they underwent to gear up for the season.
United Airlines officially became the only major U.S. airline to own a flight training school with the opening of United Aviate Academy on Jan. 27. The moment was made even more historic with its inaugural class, which is 80 percent women and people of color.
Safety is top of mind for family travelers interested in a cycling vacation. The cycling experts at IceBike studied 10 years of data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to determine the safest U.S. states for cyclists. The number of cyclist deaths rose from 4,302 in 2010 to 6,205 in 2019. It is more important than ever to consider safe locations when bicycling.