Everyone is familiar with the thrills associated with a wildlife safari – a ruggedly-charming jeep chauffeurs you around the wild terrain of the African Savannah or the lush, green valleys of Hawaii. But did you know you can also enjoy the experiences and views of a untamed nature by boat? Yes, it’s true. Instead of having to rough it out in the country, you can take to the high seas or even just meander through placid rivers, lakes, or swamps.
Here are five unforgettable boating safaris from around the world:
Ocean Safari on the Great Barrier Reef of Australia
Stopping at two prime snorkeling locations, individuals and families on the tour have the opportunity to get up close and personal with sea turtles, clown fish, and any other exotic marine life they happen to find. The tour costs $140 per adult, and you can choose to extend your vacation exploring the beauty of the ocean by staying at the Jungle Lodge. A private room with king sized bed costs around $200 per night. Enjoy the authentic and unique experience of living in a comfortable, modern lodge in the middle of a rain forest. Jungle Lodge features several tiny homes on a plot of land in the tropical North Queensland near Cape Tribulation, where guests of Jungle Lodge have the opportunity to witness marine life in their natural, colorful habitat in the Great Barrier Reef.
Whale Watching Cruise in Alaska’s Kenai Fjords National Park
The definition of a safari is an “expedition to observe or hunt wildlife” so why shouldn’t this list include The Last Frontier? Alaska is admired worldwide for its awe-inspiring glaciers, blue, blue waters, majestic mountains, and its native wildlife. For a little over $200 you can be humbled by Alaska’s untouched, regal beauty and maybe even spot a whale or two. Major Marine Tours offers a six-hour tour of the Kenai Fjords National Park, ensuring that its patrons see all the major attractions of the park: white, gleaming glaciers, orcas, whales, sea birds, and other marine life. Lengthen the trip by staying at the Harbor 360 Hotel, which – you guessed it! – offers 360 views of Resurrection Bay and the Kenai Mountains. Summer rates for a room with view of the harbor start at $200.
Madu Ganga River Safari in Sri Lanka
Cruise through this delicate ecosystem of mangroves, explore a world you’ve never known, and see hundreds of exotic species that call the world home – all this for just $150 per person. Relax at Heritance’s Ayurveda Maha Gedara boutique hotel. They specialize in relaxation and hospitality, even offering detox and yoga packages to guests. A suite during prime season costs around $450 USD. Other excursions, in addition to the river safari, are going to a turtle hatchery, moonstone mine, and the Brief Gardens.
The River Club Boating Safari and Suites in Zambia, Africa
The River Club is dedicated to offering an authentic and luxurious experience for their guests. Their rates vary per season, with highest prices occurring June, October, December, and January. Even the most basic accommodations are beautiful and located right off the Zambezi river at around $500 per adult (cost of boating safari included). You can choose a “luxury” suite for just 2-300 hundred dollars more a night. For your all-inclusive pricing during your stay, you will witness the beautiful Zambezi river at sundown and possibly even stumble upon elephants, hippos, crocodile, and local, colorful birds. The slow, peaceful pace of the cruise will allow you to relax, really take in your amazing surroundings, and even capture a few photos.
Boat Cruise at Chobe National Park, Botswana
This is truly Africa, and it is truly luxury at its finest. Chobe Game Lodge offers all-inclusive prices for their guests so each individual or family may take on as many activities as they’d like or simply relax at the five-star hotel with a morning cup of coffee. Situated on a national park, means uninhibited access to the wildlife of the bush. Chobe Game Lodge’s boating safari is one of the best in Africa and boasts views of the beautiful river the animals that frequent it: elephants, giraffes, hippos, impala, and more.
The boating safari offers a table and relaxing chairs for its passengers – enjoy a glass of South African wine while you take in an unbelievable scene. An all-inclusive stay at the Lodge will cost you around $1,200, depending on season, per night. The lush accommodations have air-conditioning to comfort you after a day in the sun and no television sets, so you gain an undisturbed experience of your time spent in the wild, breathtaking land of Africa.
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