Botswana Wildlife Highlights

When it comes to experiencing African wildlife, few places in the continent can beat the fantastic opportunities Botswana offers. From sprawling deserts to lush swamplands, there’s an astounding degree of biodiversity to go around here.

The Okavango Delta

Most Botswana resorts – for example, the Avani Gaborone Resort & Casino – will make mention of how you can see amazing varieties of wildlife in the region. The absolute best location for this is undoubtedly the Okavango Delta. Surrounded by the dry expanse of the Kalahari Desert, the delta serves as an oasis for all manner of species – from wading birds to colossal hippos.

The Kalahari

The desert that surrounds the Okavango is by no means devoid of life either – quite the opposite in fact. The Kalahari contains some of the world’s most recognizable animal species. This included the African elephant and the iconic African lin.

Hp.Baumeler, Säbelantilope Namibia, CC BY-SA 4.0

Lake Ngami

Lake Ngami is full of spectacular wildlife and some breath-taking views. The lake is formed by the overflowing waters of the Okavango and provides a haven for many species. Notable sighting includes wading birds like marabou storks and predators like the Nile crocodile.

Tsodilo Hills

The Tsodilo Hills is an old geological formation that’s over 800 million years old! There are caves here that are full of ancient paintings that depict the region’s wildlife – from scavenging hyenas to roving herds of buffalo.

Visits to the Emerald Pool and Blue Lagoon in Krabi

Looking for a change of scenery while enjoying a sublime coastal escape in Krabi? Head inland to an ancient forest where you will find the idyllic Emerald Pool and Blue Lagoon.

Planning a Trip

These two sites are in the Thung Teao Forest Natural Park in Khlong Thom about an hour away from the main town. An ideal place for excursions from local properties like Avani Ao Nang Cliff Krabi Resort, the Emerald Pool is open from 07:30am to 05:30pm; weekday visits are best to avoid weekend crowds.

The Emerald Pool

Locally referred to as “Sa Morakot”, the Emerald Pool has water sourced from natural streams and has a distinct colour that befits its name. Ideal to visit on a day tour for those staying at a hotel Ao Nang, Krabi has to offer, this pool is a great place for a relaxing swim; remember to bring your own towels!

Maksym Kozlenko, Emerald Pool (Sa Morakot), CC BY-SA 4.0

The Blue Lagoon

Around 400 metres away is the Blue Lagoon with heated water from an underground spring. While you are not permitted to swim here, the stunning azure of the water amidst the forest makes for a soothing sight and some amazing Insta pictures! This site is not always open so check ahead.

Forest Treks

One of the best things to do in Krabi for nature lovers is to combine their visit here with some trekking at the Thung Teao Forest Natural Park. You will come across diverse flora and fauna, charming waterfalls and plenty of birdlife; if you’re lucky, you may spot the Gurney’s pitta, a bird once thought to be extinct!

 

Rock Climbing Adventure in Sri Lanka

There are plenty of great adventures to be had here in Sri Lanka – this includes the exciting and exhilarating sport of rock climbing! There are plenty of places to choose from in Sri Lanka as well, so here’s a quick look at some of the rock climbing adventures to be had here.

Why Go Rock Climbing

If you’re a bit hesitant about getting involved in rock climbing – don’t be! It is one of the most fun and exciting sports you can try out when you’re on vacation. It’ll be a test of your physical and mental strength – it will also help develop your endurance, agility, and balance.

Why Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is a particularly good choice to go rock climbing in. The tropical landscapes coupled with excellent rock formations make for a great combination. There are options for all levels of experience as well – from rookies to seasoned veterans.

The Best Places

If you’re looking to conquer a mountain, you can’t go wrong with the Knuckles Mountain Range. Conversely, you might prefer to scale a single rock formation. If so, you might want to consider a region like Dambulla – there’s plenty of climbing ops to be had here. There’s also quite a lot of fantastic Dambulla hotels to choose from as well. This means you can kick your feet up and relax – perhaps at resorts like The Paradise Resort & Spa – and recover from the day’s excursions.

Rappelling and Abseiling

If you really want to get your adrenaline pumping, you might want to try your hand at abseiling here in Sri Lanka. It can be truly exhilarating to descend along massive waterfalls at high speeds. And don’t worry – with the right equipment and personnel in place, it’s perfectly safe!

Wakeboarding in Maldives

Planning a holiday to the Maldives and looking for some speed-filled thrills? With plenty of adrenaline-pumping fun on offer, wakeboarding is the water sport for you!

What is Wakeboarding?
This water sport is like a combination of several activities; the board is somewhat like what you will see in snowboarding, techniques used are similar to surfing and you are pulled at pace by a speedboat as in water-skiing. Besides staying at villas in Maldives resorts, you should try this experience too!

Where to Try It
Not all accommodation options provide this activity so do check ahead; properties on private islands such as Amilla Maldives Resort and Residences do offer it and you can soon be out in the water. April to October is a great time to try wakeboarding though it can also be enjoyed at other periods.

Lagoon and Sea
When looking to enjoy such water sports in Maldives, you can try it either out at sea or in more tranquil lagoon waters. Most operators will provide the needed training and guidance for novices, while seasoned pros can take part in this activity as soon as possible and show off their aerial tricks and manoeuvres too!

Tips to Remember
While you will get help with the techniques of wakeboarding, it’s always good to keep in mind a few basics;

• Figure out which foot you should lean on / place forward
• When standing up, put more than half your weight on the front foot
• When in the water before starting, keep the board on its side

 

 

Water sports in East coast

Coastal cities such as Trincomalee and Pasikudah come under the umbrella of the East Coast in Sri Lanka and is indeed a coastal paradise.

The East Coast of Sri Lanka
The Sri Lankan East Coast is best to be explored from April to September, considering the waves and the winds. Spend your vacation at one of the best hotels in Pasikudah such as Uga Bay and get exposed to a wide array of Sri Lanka water sports.

Surfing
Surfing is a must-do activity when you are on the South Coast. There are coaching centres to teach you how to surf right from the basics here, and there are also the equipment hirers.

Diving and snorkelling
The seas are calm and have the best visibilities from May to September. Diving on the East Coast will expose you to a colourful underwater world, and you’ll love it.

Fishing
Fishing has always been a part of Sri Lankan life. You can also join the local fishermen on one fine afternoon and go fishing with them to have a wonderful experience. If you wish, you can forget the trout and join the big game fish too.

 

A Handy Guide to Sail in Hidden Islands in Krabi

Around two hundred islands and islets are sprawled around Krabi’s magnificent coastline, with many outcrops rising precariously out of the sea, which can only be admired from a distance. Others, although largely uninhabited, offer enrapturing white sand beaches, and ethereal cave exploration opportunities.

Best Times to Sail

Since Krabi is located to the equator, it has a tropical monsoon climate, which means that it’s quite hot and humid, with April and May being the hottest months of the year. Stormy weathers frequent the region between May and October, during which not all islands can be visited. November to March is considered the best time to visit.

Image by nextvoyage from Pixabay

Accommodation

Ao Nang beach is where navigators usually anchor off when they arrive at Krabi. One can find a myriad of facilities around the beach such as restaurants, spas, and many a hotel in Ao Nang. Krabi offering all kinds of accommodation from guesthouses to luxury properties such as Avani Ao Nang Cliff Krabi Resort.

Sailing Charters

You can select from a variety of choices from powerboats to motor yachts and super yachts to sail around the Krabi Islands. Yacht chartering to Krabi is ideal for a sense of adventure.

Best Sailing Locations

Talabeng Island, Phang Nga Bay, Thalane Bay, and Bor Thor Village are some of the best places you can have leisurely sailing experience.

Whale Watching in Mirissa

While Sri Lanka is popular for leopard and elephant safaris, don’t forget it is also one of the best places to see majestic whales, especially in the coastal town of Mirissa.

Planning Your Visit
Mirissa lies tucked away along the island’s south coast and is around 150 km from the commercial capital, Colombo. The main season for whale watching is from November to April and the town offers beachside accommodation at properties like Sri Sharavi Beach Villas & Spa close to the harbour where excursions launch from.

The Adventure Begins
When it comes to whale watching, Mirissa Harbour is the place to go to; excursions usually departaround 7:00am and can take around three to five hours. Do have a hat or cap since it can get quite hot; some tour operators will offer snacks / breakfast, while it’s a good idea to have motion sickness medication just in case!

Awe-inspiring Sights
Because Mirissa is near the migratory routeof whales, it offers an ideal chance to see these marine mammals. While no sighting can be guaranteed, you still have a good chance to spot the largest creature on the plant; the blue whale. On your voyage, you may also see sperm, fin and killer whales too.

More Marine Marvels
As a bonus, you have a chance to encounter dolphins, some of which can get quite animated and acrobatic! Bottlenose, common, striped and spinnerdolphins are amongst the species one may spot in the ocean. Keep your eyes peeled for you may also see turtles, flying fish and even sharks.

Pidurangala Rock Hike in Sigiriya

It is deemed that the Pidurangala hike offers a far more memorable experience than climbing Sigiriya as the former lets you engulf in the warmth of nature.

The Hike

The hike begins with a long flight of stairs that doesn’t take much time to climb. Halfway through the journey, you’d be greeted by Pidurangala Temple, which has a rich history of its own. You can reach the summit of Pidurangala within 20 minutes despite some off the beaten tracks you’d come across during the hike.

Pidurangala Temple

At present, one can only see the remnants of this temple in which a reclining Buddha can be observed. The foundation of the rock temple remains intact although it has been restructured with bricks.

Reaching the Summit

Once you pass the temple, you can expect to reach the summit within 5 to 10 minutes. However, one might have to cross large boulders along the way, which would prove relatively easy to experienced hikers. Fret not! Even the less experienced can boulder with the help of others.

The View

While you’re enjoying a fabulous vacation at some of the Sigiriya hotels the likes of Aliya Resort and Spa, head over to the Pidurangala trail to access the most stunningly beautiful sunrise you’d ever witness in a lifetime.

 

 

Best hiking trails in Sri Lanka

Hiking in Sri Lanka is a wonderful activity to do to help relax your mind and get away from the hustle and bustle of the busy metropolitan city! Here are some of the best hiking trails on the island that one must consider before going on a hike!

Little Adams Peak

A hiking trail in the mountainous town of Ella, the view from Little Adam’s Peak is of luscious tea plantations covered in fluffy white mist. The hike is not too hard and should take you approximately 2-3 hours in total. If you are looking to take up accommodation close by, many hotel offers in Sri Lanka can be taken advantage of including those offered by properties belonging to the famous Heritance Hotels and Resorts.

Rahubaddhah, Wondering while wandering, in Paradise, CC BY-SA 4.0

Ella Rock

About 1000 metres above sea-level, the Ella Rock is a day hike for those who are visiting the town and want to go on an adventure. They say it is best to leave your hotel in the early morning hours as afternoons bring in the rain on this part of the island. Once you are at the top its all about amazing views of the Badulla green valleys.

Horton Plains

A UNESCO national park in Sri Lanka, Horton Plains is a must-do hike if you are ever in Nuwara Eliya. Consisting of a rich plateau of thick forests and grasslands, the Horton Plains hike is a breeze even for beginners! Another important thing to see here is the World’s End which is a steep 800 metre fall overlooking the countryside.

Knuckles Mountain Range

Also located in the central highlands of Sri Lanka, between Kandy and Matale, the Knuckles Mountain range is a camper’s haven! There are many options for hikers who wish to trek the Knuckles Mountain range. There is a day hike (done on one of the lowest mountain peaks) or the three-day, 2-night hike that includes overnight camping and nights under the stars. The choice is yours!

 

The Wildlife of Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is surely a paradise for those who love biodiversity. Due to this same reason, the country has become so popular for wildlife safaris among tourists from all around the world.

Witnessing the Sri Lankan elephant

There are 26 National Parks in Sri Lanka and you can definitely spot Sri Lankan elephants at several of these parks. The Minneriya National Park and the Udawalawe National Park are just to name a few.

leopard sri lanka

 

Leopards – a rare scene

Tourists love to arrange most of their adventure tours in Sri Lanka around the Yala National Park. In Yala, there is an unmatched leopard density worth exploring, and this is in addition to the other wildcats such as jungle cats, civet cats, and rust-spotted cats.

Watching the blue whales

If you travel to Mirissa or Trincomalee in Sri Lanka with Walkers Tours, you will get this rare privilege of exploring the largest animal species on earth- the blue whale.

Bird watching in Sri Lanka

Peacefully engage in birding at national parks such as Kumana and Bundala. The Sinharaja Bird Wave is also another popular attraction among bird watchers who come from all over the world.