Traveler + Animal Lover = Endless opportunities of encountering animals.
I have been adventurous during my travels and have been lucky to have encountered quite a few animals. Few under supervision and few in absolute wild condition. Thought of listing down few here:
- Bitten by tortoise
So this happened in 2005, when we were on vacation to northern India and we were visiting a lake in Jammu, Mansar lake. There you can stand on a platform and feed the tortoise, I was dumb enough to go in water and feed them with my bare hands. One of the tortoises took a very small chunk of flesh off my palm, it was more than a scratch and less than a bite kind of wound. Had to rush few kms before getting any sort of treatment and I swore not to do such things again 😀
- Holding the Octopus
This was at Narara island in Gujarat, India. Where you can get real close with marine lives. So I was walking in ankle deep water and spotted a beautiful Octopus. Something urged me and I wished to pick it up. Yes I was scared a little, got more scared when I tied to reach it and it spat dark Blue ink. But then eventually…
- Feeding peacock in wild
This was in Gir forest, Gujarat, India. There is a check post where you’ll see plenty of peacocks and peahens. Our guide made a particular noise which attracted plenty of peacocks towards us. While some of them kept distance, few were brave enough to come close to humans. Specially when they saw food in our hands. I was just feeding them biscuits
- Suri, the dog in Dune Village
We visited a beautiful resort called Dunes Eco Village in Pondicherry, India. The property has 3 dogs, One of them got really friendly with us and literally stayed with us for 2 days. Even at night he made sure to come inside our hut to sleep. Because my wife is scared of dogs I had to push him out. To our pleasant surprise, when I opened the door in the morning, he was right outside the door 🙂
- Dolphin in Thailand
This was under observation, we were visiting a park in Bangkok Thailand which had Dolphin shows. And after the show you can pay some amount and touch the Dolphins. My wife absolutely adores Dolphins and I am glad we did this.
- Horned Beetle (Horny beetle as I called it)
This was in Kenya, when we were returning from one reserve to Nairobi city. We halted at one place for lunch and I spotted a horned beetle. I don’t know what made me do this but I picked it up and held it on my hands. Before I left it back in the woods in peace.
- Kissed a Giraffe, a MALE Giraffe.
We were visiting Giraffe center in Nairobi city. A place where you can stand on an elevated platform and be up close with giraffes. They give you food pellets which you can feed to Giraffes. You keep the food pellet in your month and let Giraffe give you the wettest kiss ever. 😀
- Tiger on my lap
This is actually pretty easy to do as this is in controlled environment and tiger cub is busy drinking its milk. In Siam Ocean world in Thailand you can pay some amount and click a picture with tiger/lion cub in your lap.
- Feeding Giant Tortoise
In Giant Tortoise and Croc park in southern Mauritius you can get real close with huge tortoise. You can also feed them some carrots/leaves if you wish to. I thought twice before doing this, considering my earlier experience with tortoise but couldnt resist anyways.
- Marine lives and Mauritius
I got chance to do scuba dive in Mauritius where I was able to see school of fishes, squids, eel fish, flute fish. Very difficult to get close to them. Have a piece of bread in your hand and you’ll get covered with hundreds of fishes. What an experience.
- Little Elephant babies
Back to Nairobi, where we have David Sheldrick elephant orphanage. Everyday the elephant house is opened for an hour and they let the babies play with tourists (under supervision ofcourse). It was too cute to see tiny little elephants, and sad at the same moment as they are all orphans. You can even adopt the elephants there.
- I love crocs
Did I tell you that I love crocs? This was again in a controlled environment with a baby croc but I like it. 🙂
I have fed crocs in Crocodile Bank in Chennai, India. They give you a bucket full of meat and you can feed the hungry crocs. Not able to find the video of that.
- Ensuring Olive ridley turtle hatchlings make it to the ocean
In Chennai, India again, hundreds of ridley turtles come on the beach to hatch and there are few volunteer groups who take care of eggs as they lay eggs pretty close to public beaches. Watching them go to ocean for the first time is indeed a delight 🙂
So that’s my list of Animal Encounters during my travel. If you liked my blog and like my travel stories then please like and share my Facebook page to spread the word 🙂