For a summer vacation consider skipping the typical things to do such as unwinding at a beach with a cocktail drink, instead go for a real adventure to connect with mother nature. Take an epic expedition in the pristine rainforest and get an up-close view of the wildlife in its true setting. Whether it’s about encountering the pink dolphins or the orangutans, there is so much to discover. Take a refreshing plunge in a waterhole or hike rugged terrains and switch off completely from the frenetic world. Here is a list of some amazing rainforests to spend summer.
10 Amazon Rainforest, South America
One of the most epic adventures one can embark on is no doubt the Amazon rainforest, which is the largest rainforest in the world covering about 5.5 million square kilometers. Sometimes it is dubbed ‘the lungs of the planet’ as it draws in carbon dioxide and breathes out oxygen. The majority 60% part of the territory is within Brazil, and the rest areas are situated in Peru, Colombia, Bolivia, and other South American countries. Whether one wishes to visit the pink dolphins or meet indigenous people, there is so much to do and see in the rainforest. But one must be well-prepared for such a type of adventure. There are various options of accommodations like the jungle lodges or the riverboats to choose from.
9 Harapan Rainforest, Indonesia
If one is already planning to visit Indonesia this summer, then consider taking a tour to the Harapan Rainforest instead of unwinding at one of the Bali beaches. Nestled near Jambi in Sumatra, the rainforest is home to the most threatened wildlife species such as the Sumatran tiger, the Malayan sun bear, and the clouded leopard. The rainforest is also a haven for over 300 bird species including the Storm’s stork. Unfortunately, because of the logging industry, wildlife is directly affected. Take an adventurous expedition guided by a local to learn more about the ecosystem and the Bathin Sembilan indigenous tribe who reside there.
8 Daintree National Park, Australia
Skip the bustling cities, instead, everyone should visit Australia's ancient rainforest-Daintree National Park for a unique experience. Bestowed with diverse biodiversity, the UNESCO-protected Daintree National Park makes it an ideal off-beaten destination for nature aesthetes to recharge right in the midst of the wilderness. It is made up of two areas notably, the Mossman Gorge, where meaders the Mossman River, and then the Cape Tribulation, which features the forested mountains and the unspoiled beaches. There are also about 430 bird species including the wompoo fruit dove and the endangered cassowary. The national park is equipped with walking tracks, and camping sites as well. Take the cable ferry at the Mossman Gorge to reach the park, and then pick up a copy of a visitor’s guide to know more about the rainforest.
7 Lowland Rainforests Of Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
Take a memorable tour of the last remaining lowland rainforests in the southern part of Costa Rica at the Osa Peninsula. With 300,000 acres of sprawling land filled with 13 tropical ecosystems, the Lowland rainforests are home to towering trees, prowling jaguars, white-lipped peccary, and harpy eagles. The area is considered to be the ‘most biologically intense place on earth.’ It is estimated that the peninsula covers about 2.5% of the world’s biodiversity. Besides its dense rainforests, the peninsula has unblemished beaches. Take an eco-tour to get an up-close view of the flora and fauna of the rainforest.
6 Borneo Lowland Rainforest, Malaysia
One way to encounter endangered animals like the orangutans and Sumantran rhinos is by going on a wildlife expedition to Borneo known to be the third-largest island in the world. Borneo is partitioned between Malaysia, Indonesia, and Brunei. Wildlife enthusiasts can take an eight-day guided tour to the upriver Borneo to hike through the dense jungle. Enjoy spellbinding waterfalls, and meet the Bornean orangutans at a rehabilitation center.
5 Loango National Park, Gabon
Looking for an untapped experience in Africa? Then consider the Loango National Park on the Atlantic Coast of Gabon. The national park is made up of rainforests, which are inhabited by many wild animals such as gorillas, water buffaloes, and a plethora of bird species. It is also home to the ‘surfing hippos’ that were made famous by National Geographic photographer Michael Nichols. These Gabon’s hippos would normally wade out to sea in order to use currents to transit the coast.
4 Tongass National Forest, Alaska
Stretching 16.7 million acres of land, the Tongass National Forest is the largest United States national forest comprising temperate rainforest, majestic mountains, and deep fjords wedged between high cliffs. This is the land for avid backpackers, where they can hike to one of its numerous off-beaten trails and see eagles and other animal species such as the brown and black bears in summer. One of the peculiar things to do here is to fish (depending on the regulations) the Pacific salmon in one of the Tongass streams.
3 Yasuni National Park, Ecuador
Just 200 miles away from the east of Quito lies the Yasuni National Park right at the base of the Andes mountains. The national park is known for being biologically diverse and staying warm as it is close to the equator. Besides its 150 amphibian species, the Yasuni National Park is also home to the Waorani tribes who live in voluntary isolation. One can take an epic adventure trip to this area to learn about the indigenous culture and the diverse wildlife.
2 Khao Yai National Park, Thailand
Thailand is hands down a popular travel destination among backpackers. While many like to do the typical thing-think sunbathing on the stunning white beaches, others prefer to go off the beaten track and connect with nature. One such place is the Khao Yai National Park, which is the oldest national park in the country. The national park is nestled around the Dong Phaya Yen Mountain Range and is composed of tropical rainforests, spellbinding waterfalls, and hiking trails.
1 El Yunque National Forest. Puerto Rico
One of the most rewarding attractions to escaping the hustling towns of Puerto Rico is El Yunque National Forest. The area is covered by tropical rainforest and has several swimming holes and hiking trails. While hiking through the rugged paths, one can easily spot the Puerto Rican Parrot, which has lived in the rainforest for over a thousand years.