Foxes in Japan and parakeets in London: 6 of the best destinations for animal lovers

With wildlife that varies so much from country to country – and even regionally – traveling can be one of the best ways to learn more, immersing yourself in the local ecosystem as well as cultures. .

The following destinations provide opportunities to spend time with wildlife for a more holistic travel experience.

Zao Fox Village, Japan

The Japanese village of Zao Fox is a sanctuary full of foxes, located in the Miyagi Mountains.

Historically, foxes have played an important role in Japanese folklore. Their magical counterparts, the kitsune, are seen as messengers of the Shinto Inari spirits and are often seen as statues in shrines.

The foxes at Zao Fox Village are docile enough to be kept, and food bags can be purchased to play with the bushy-tailed lovers.

Pig Beach, Bahamas

Pig Beach is located on an island in Exuma, Bahamas. The story of how the pigs came to live there is a mystery.

They are not indigenous and the island is uninhabited, so people have created their own origin stories. Some say they were left behind by sailors, while others say they swam from a nearby wreck.

The pigs have gone through the distress and their numbers have declined in previous years. However, restrictions were put in place during the pandemic, which were only relaxed recently.

Emas National Park, Brazil

Emas National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Literally translated from Portuguese, “Emas” refers to rheas, a type of large bird related to emus and ostriches.

A wildlife viewing trip to the park offers the chance to see not only its namesake, but also maned wolves, jaguars, macaws and more.

Sita Ram ji temple, India

Galtaji refers to an ancient Hindu pilgrimage to the Indian state of Rajasthan. The area contains several temples built in a narrow crevice in a ring of hills surrounding the city of Jaipur.

One of these temples, the Sita Rami ji temple, has become known for its monkeys. Cheeky tenants are sociable and can be fed by visitors. The site also offers magnificent views of Jaipur, making it a multi-faceted gem.

Hyde Park, England

Hyde Park might not be the most exotic place that comes to mind when thinking about vacation destinations. However, this park in the heart of London offers a hidden gem.

Far from the gray of the city’s standard pigeons, visitors to Hyde Park encounter green parakeets and squeal. Like the Exuma pigs, no one knows how these exotic birds got here, but they assimilated well into the local space and made a home for themselves.

Kangaroo Island, Australia

Located just off the southern coast of Australia, Kangaroo Island is well known for its wildlife.

While the name may make it obvious, kangaroos aren’t all the island has to offer. It is also home to an endangered Australian sea lion breeding colony, with rangers offering guided tours of the colony.

Although they must be kept at bay, sea lions are incredibly forgiving, providing visitors with plenty to see, from brawls to cuddles.

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