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Galapagos Islands, Antarctica and More One-of-a-Kind Wildlife Destinations Worth the Travel

by Angelique Platas

Feb 4, 2020

Linortis | Dreamstime.com

Listicles

For any family of curious minds and animal-loving kids, traveling across the world or crossing the street is of equal excitement if there’s the promise of a wild creature sighting. Whether sparking your own interest in all things wild or following your animal instincts, there are plenty of family-friendly excursions your crew can take in search of a wild experience. See your favorite zoo animals in their natural habitats and appreciate a new perspective — all while planning an epic family adventure.

 

Let this list be your guide to wildlife sighting opportunities beyond even the kids’ wildest imaginations.

 

Giant Tortoises on the Galapagos Islands

While the Galapagos Islands are known the world over for being a wildlife haven, the archipelago off the coast of Ecuador offers a one-of-a-kind experience and educational twist for all ages. Visit the Charles Darwin Research Center on Santa Cruz Island, tour the highlands to see tortoises in the wild or check out the Tortoise Breeding Center in Puerto Villamil on Isabela Island. There are, of course, many more wildlife opportunities in this regionexplore a few here.

 

Komodo Dragons in Komodo National Park

A bucket-list destination and wildlife wonderland all in one, Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara Province, Indonesia, is something to behold. This UNESCO World Heritage site and New 7 Wonders of Nature locale is home to nearly 6,000 komodo dragons. The park includes 30 islands, including Rinca, Padar and Komodo, and is the only place in the world where these prehistoric lizards roam. They’re gigantic, some weighing 300 pounds and earned the dragon moniker thanks to aggression, venom and massive size.

 

Arctic Penguins in Antarctica

Seeing penguins anywhere is a great time, but there’s no greater expedition than the end of the Earth: Antarctica. Traveling to Antarctica is not the simplest task, but most epic expeditions aren’t — and for good reason. For families seeking a unique getaway, G Adventures, among many others, offer expertly led tours to the polar destination. There is something majestic about the vast frozen landscape, also home to 17 penguin species, including the mighty emperor.

 

Penguins in Antarctica. Photo: Avstraliavasin | Dreamstime.com

 

Narwhals in the Arctic Circle

In keeping with the newly established bitter-cold theme, the Arctic Circle is another hot spot for incredible and unique wildlife. The Circle includes the frigid waters off the coasts of Greenland, Russia and Canada and is home to narwhals, rare tusked whales often nicknamed the unicorn of the sea. With just 80,000 left in the wild, these incredible creatures are worth the trip. With National Geographic Expeditions, guests can see wildlife, stunning frozen landscape, and maybe even the midnight sun and Aurora Borealis.

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