There is something in us that longs to connect in some way with the other living things we share our planet with. If you’re one of those people, then have we got the trip for you. Though they may not be as tied to wildlife as Africa in traveler’s minds, the American West, California and Alaska all offer countless opportunities to observe and learn about wildlife during your vacation.
The wildlife of the American West is deeply woven into the history and culture of the region. It’s no wonder that the bison is the National Mammal of the US – its presence in herds as far as the eye could see was at the center of life and culture for numerous Great Plains tribes and it remains an enduring symbol of the West. Its fellow inhabitants of the region – elk, moose, wolf, wild mustangs, grizzly and black bears and the Golden Eagle, the National Bird – also conjure up images and emotions of the great wild places of America. California’s abundance of wildlife includes countless marine animals, including humpback whales, sea lions and dolphins. And Alaska’s wildlife is one of its main draws. Polar bears, brown bears, black bears, caribou, moose, mountain goats, wolf, and Dall sheep rule on land, while the marine attractions extend beyond the salmon – which offer a spectacular show of course – to humpback whales, orca, beluga whales, and bowhead whales, as well as seals and sea lions.