Readers Weigh in on Best Travel Spots for Wildlife

Last week  ran a story “Go wild every month of the year,” in which they featured a month-by-month guide to where best to see the world’s most exotic wildlife. The feature story prompted a flurry of responses, ranging from where to see tigers in India to the best way to spot dolphins in Cornwall. The writers of the letters are published below.

Dolphins in Cornwall

“Cornwall is a fabulous place for wildlife encounters – the surprise of a migrating hoopoe popping up on a coastal walk, the winter spectacle of a swirling murmuration of starlings, or, in early summer, basking sharks spotted through crystal-clear waters. My most memorable experience must be the sight and sounds of a pod of 300-plus dolphins bait-balling a few miles off the south Cornish coast.

Viewed from the large Orca Sea Safaris rib, the dolphins initially surrounded the boat, a few of them bow riding, close enough to hear their clicks and whistles even without the on-board hydrophone. Then the water seemed to boil as the dolphins gathered and swam in circles around a massive shoal of unfortunate fish. To witness “bait-balling”, an example of cooperative behaviour by these amazing, intelligent creatures, at such close quarters was a privilege I will never forget.”

-Elaine Drury, St Austell

Big Game in Maasai Mara

“I recently had the most amazing safari at Cottar’s Twenties Mara Safari Camp in Kenya. This was a revisit, in April 2013. I had previously stayed at Cottar’s 30 years ago, when I used to live in Nairobi. That visit was very good but this time it was sublime, exceeding all expectations. Every little detail had been thought of, down to hot water bottles in our bed at night and – a very nice touch – a decanter of sherry to greet us on arrival, in our very well-appointed tent.

The game viewing was also very good. We saw all the usual types of antelope plus copious numbers of zebra, elephant, lion, bushpig, wildebeest, warthogs, jackals, hyena and loads of brilliantly coloured birds. At night we sat in the main tent, eating dinner by candlelight with the owner and the other guests. It was like being at some exclusive house party, and such was the Out of Africa atmosphere, you expected to see Karen Blixen, Dennis Finch-Hatton, Lord Delamare and Viscount Cole turn up as well!

Another nice touch came at the end of a walking safari. We found ourselves in a glade complete with chairs, sundowners, canapés and a blazing fire to match the sunset over the Mara. What an experience – absolutely brilliant! Well done Cottar’s! I shall be back!

-Patti Sherratt, Cyprus

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