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Bangweulu Swamps

This vast, waterlogged wilderness about 55 kilometres north-east of Kasanka is a destination for the connoisseur. The still waters of these swamps and the surrounding floodplains are one of the last remaining habitats of the rare and elusive shoebill who lurk on the grassy fringes after the rains.

  • Destination: Zambia

Southern Pantanal

Conservation projects in the southern Pantanal focus on jaguar and the hyacinth macaw. From a comfortable lodge you can see wildlife by boat, vehicle and on foot. Bonito, on the southern fringe, is a mecca for ecotourism, where you will find grottos with blue lakes and walking trails surrounded by monkeys.

  • Destination: Brazil

Asa Wright Nature Centre

Located at approximately 400 metres altitude in the mountains of the Northern Range, north of the town of Arima, the Asa Wright Nature Centre was established in 1967. It is a world-class birding destination as well as a being a centre for conservation and research into tropical ecology.

  • Destination: Trinidad & Tobago

Bharatpur (Keoladeo Ghana National Park)

Bharatpur consists of scrub, grassland and shallow wetland. A former duck-shooting reserve of the Maharajas, it became a national park in 1982 and is now recognised as one of the finest waterbird sanctuaries in the world, home to more than 300 species, including the highly endangered Siberian cranes.

  • Destination: India

Daphne Islands

The islands of Daphne Major and Daphne Minor lie between Santa Cruz and Santiago. Although tourist visits are restricted by the National Park authorities, these islands are a popular stop for scientists conducting research into Galapagos finches. You can also find Galapagos martins and short-eared owls here.

  • Destination: Galapagos Islands

Española

Española is the southernmost island, its remote location means that it has a large number of endemic species – the marine iguanas here are the only ones to change colour during the breeding season. It has large colonies of blue-footed boobies and is also the only breeding site of the magnificent waved albatross.

  • Destination: Galapagos Islands

Lake Langano, Lake Abijatta & Lake Shalla

The freshwaters of Lake Langano are naturally red in colour and the area is rich with wildlife, including ibex, monkeys and baboons. Lake Abijatta and Lake Shalla are very different, but equally as rewarding in terms of wildlife; the birdlife is particularly excellent, and the islands are home to several breeding sites.

  • Destination: Ethiopia

Tonda Wildlife Management Area

Located in the Western Province of Papua New Guinea, the Tonda Wildlife Management Area is a wetland of international importance and the largest protected area in the country. It has a diversity of birdlife, with 250 species of resident and migratory birds, including most of the world’s population of little curlew.

  • Destination: Papua New Guinea

Carara National Park

This national park protects the last noteworthy tract of primary rainforest in the Central Pacific region. Due to its proximity to the capital, it attracts a lot of visitors – both local and international. However, if you can avoid the crowds it has sufficient wildlife to impress the most avid enthusiast.

  • Destination: Costa Rica

Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary

From the colourful white-bellied blue flycatcher and Malabar parakeet to the Siberian stork, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary is a paradise for bird lovers. Located on the banks of Vembanad Lake along Kavanar River, it is spread over five hectares and provides temporary home to many migrant birds.

  • Destination: India

San Cristóbal

Home to frigatebirds, red and blue-footed boobies, Galapagos tortoises and sealions, this was the first island on which Charles Darwin set foot in 1835. A crater in the highlands holds the largest freshwater lake in the Galapagos, which is home to a lot of birdlife. It has one of the two commercial airports in the Galapagos.

  • Destination: Galapagos Islands

Mashpi Rainforest Biodiversity Reserve

This private reserve is part of a bio-region that stretches along the Pacific slope of the Andes from Panama to Peru. Its rich ecosystem is home to 500 bird species, butterflies, amphibians and orchids which thrive in the moist conditions. An aerial tram offers a unique vantage point in the rainforest canopy.

  • Destination: Ecuador

Machalilla National Park

This Pacific Coast park became a Ramsar site in 1990, when recognized as a vital wetland. One third is ocean, a breeding ground for humpback whales, while the islands provide feeding areas for sea birds such as frigatebirds and boobies. On land you will find tropical dry forest, fog forest and coastal scrub desert.

  • Destination: Ecuador

Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

This reserve is thought to be one of Central America’s finest protected areas. Weather from the Caribbean and Pacific create a cloud forest ecosystem that is home to over 100 species of mammal, 400 birds, tens of thousands of insects (including 5,000 different moths) and 2,500 plants (including 420 varieties of orchid).

  • Destination: Costa Rica

Tari Valley

Also home to the flamboyant Huli people, the Tari Valley is a utopia of pristine, mid-montane jungle, a birdwatcher's paradise! An eiderdown of interlocking tree tops, with splashes of colour from high altitude orchids. Nature trails take you across traditional vine bridges, tracing clear mountain streams to secluded waterfalls.

  • Destination: Papua New Guinea

Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve

Koshi Tappu Reserve is Nepal’s top birding destination. In the shadow of the mountain of Makalu, it consists of the floodplain of Sapta- Koshi, the country’s largest river, a dammed expanse of open water and a patchwork of marsh, lagoon, sandbank and mudflat. It is one of North Asia’s finest wetlands.

  • Destination: Nepal

The Pyrenees

The mountains of the Pyrenees form the natural border between France and Spain. Stretching for 491 kilometres from the Bay of Biscay to the Mediterranean, the range separates the Iberian Peninsula from the rest of Europe, offering great opportunities to see wildlife and various outdoor activities.

  • Destination: France

National Chambal Sanctuary

This beautiful sanctuary was established in 1979 along a vast stretch of India’s Chambal River. Numerous ravines, the product of centuries of soil erosion by flood and rain water, line its banks. The cliffs and vegetation shelter numerous birds, mammals and reptiles, and the river is one of India’s most pristine.

  • Destination: India

The Amazon

The basin of the world’s largest river contains its oldest tropical forest and most diverse ecosystem, with at least 40,000 plant species, and a variety of wildlife. The lodges offer outings on foot and by canoe to explore the rainforest. Alternatively a riverboat voyage can take you deeper into the rainforest.

  • Destination: Brazil

Bleaker Island

This isolated, low-lying island off the south-east coast of East Falkland has wide sandy bays and sheltered coves – it is small and flat, so walking between bird colonies is easy. Of interest is its large colony of rockhopper penguin (over 750 pairs), and its many pools are home to large numbers of waterfowl.

  • Destination: Falkland Islands

Pebble Island

One of the largest in the West Falklands, Pebble Island combines grassy plains and wetlands in the east with moorlands and mountains in the west. Its sandy beaches and rocky cliffs provide shelter to sealions and penguins – it is the only place in the Falklands to see the erect-crested penguin.

  • Destination: Falkland Islands

Udawalawe National Park

Walawe Reservoir and Udawalawe National Park comprise an area of open plains and hills at the foot of the Kaltota Escarpment. The park is good for elephants with herds of 50 to 60 individuals regularly seen and game drives are in open-top jeeps, accompanied by local wildlife guides.

  • Destination: Sri Lanka

Caroni Swamp

Situated on the west coast of Trinidad, this so-called swamp is the second largest mangrove wetland area on the island. Covering an area of more than 5,000 hectares, where the Caroni River enters the Gulf of Paria, it is renowned for the birdlife in its large, pristine mangrove forests.

  • Destination: Trinidad & Tobago

The Shetland Islands

The beauty and charm of this rugged land and seascapes are breathtaking. The region has an astonishing variety of animal and plant life, and the surrounding waters are one of the best places in the British Isles to see marine mammals. The islands are also renowned as a paradise for birdwatchers.

  • Destination: United Kingdom