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An Alternative Big Five - 5 Species You Should See in the Wild

Looking for a different wildlife experience than a traditional African safari? Get close to some of the world’s other magnificent wildlife.
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1. Tiger - India

Travel deep into the heart of India on a wildlife adventure that visits four of the country’s national parks in search of the majestic Bengal tiger. Pench National Park is thought to be the inspiration and setting for The Jungle Book, yet it still attracts fewer visitors than some of India’s other wildlife parks. Pench’s teak forests are home to a high density of tiger, but you’ll also see sloth bear, sambar deer, sloth bear, jackal and crocodile.
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2. Lemur - Madagascar

The lemur is endemic to, and synonymous with, Madagascar. With around 100 different species living on the island, you’re likely to encounter lemur throughout your visit to the country. Berenty Reserve, Andasibe National Park and Ranomafanas National Park are three prime spots for lemur sightings, and all feature on the 15-day The Lost Continent trip. You’ll see lemur year-round, but the best time to visit Madagascar to see baby lemur is October and November, at the end of the dry season.
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3. Brown bear - Finland

Spend a long weekend discovering Finland’s wild and beautiful northwest, home to the European brown bear. Take walks in the bears’ habitat, taking in spruce and pine forests and small wetland areas. By night, you’ll observe bears from a specially constructed hide and look out for wolverine, foxes, elks and owls. The long days of June and July make this a perfect time to go, and maximise viewing opportunities.
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4. Orang-utan – Borneo

See the rehabilitation work being done at Sepilok Orang-utan Sanctuary, where you’re almost guaranteed to see some of these critically endangered primates at close quarters. The orang-utans here have been rescued and will be re-realeased to the wild once they are rehabilitated. We’ll also look out for orang-utan in the wild in the rainforest of the Danum Valley, along with the endemic sun-bear, gibbons, Sumatran rhino and pygmy elephant.
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5. Sloth - Costa Rica

Whether it’s their slowness, their unusual faces or their babies - there’s something about sloths that really captures the heart, and most visitors to Costa Rica are desperate to set eyes on this unusual mammal.

Sloths are plentiful throughout Costa Rica, but can be difficult to spot to the untrained eye. They’re well camouflaged, and move so slowly that they can be hard to make out among the trees. Your Explore Leader will be crucial in maximising your viewings of these and other species around Costa Rica. Visit Tortuguero, Mondeverde and Manuel Antonio as well as other sloth hotspots on our Explore Costa Rica trip.

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