Leopard

The leopard (Panthera pardus) is the most widespread of the wild cats, occurring across sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian subcontinent plus smaller populations in parts of Western and Central Asia and Southeast and east Asia.  There are still classed as ‘vulnerable’ by the IUCN; their global historic range has been reduced by 75% according to estimates and contemporary records.

There are nine subspecies listed, chiefly on the basis of distribution; so African, Sri Lankan, Javan, Amur, Arabian, Persian, Indochinese and Indian.  Leopards are found in dense forests, arid deserts and mountainous regions, and their colour patterns tend to vary according to their habitat.  The dark spots are called rosettes, often a rich golden brown with a darker outline, the rosettes are larger in Asian populations and squarish in South Africa leopards.  Forest and mountain dwellers tend to have a darker beige to golden fur colour, and those in more arid regions have a paler yellow-cream background to the rosettes.

Leopards are opportunistic hunters and will eat birds, reptiles, monkeys, domestic animals, deer and antelope but will also tackle prey much heavier than themselves.  They are most active at night, stalking their prey and springing out from their hiding place to deliver a suffocating bite.  They are very strong climbers and will hide their larger kills high in trees, out of the reach of tigers, lions and hyenas.  Leopards can run at over 35mph, leap vertically to 3m and a long jump of 6m.

Leopards are solitary and territorial animals, like tigers the males tend to have a larger territorial range that will overlap several female territories.  Cubs can be born year-round in litters of 2-4, the females find a cave, hollow tree or similar den to protect her young cubs and will introduce them to hunting after 3 months, the cubs will leave to find their own territory by 18-24 months.

The largest leopards are more often found where they are at top of the food chain, for example in regions such as Sri Lanka that has no tiger or lion population.  Sizes vary greatly geographically, males are a little larger and heavier measuring up to 60-70cm in shoulder height and 40-90kg, whilst females reach 55-65cm in height and weighing 30-60kg.  Leopards are very muscular, with comparatively short limbs, a broad skull and a tail that is more than half the length of its body.

The Amur is the rarest of the leopard subspecies, numbering in the tens in the wild, and found in the Russian Far East and northern China, growing a dense coat to cope with winter temperatures of minus 25C.  Maybe more sought-after are so-called ‘black panthers’ or melanistic leopards which can occur naturally in forested populations due to a recessive gene trait.  The melanistic leopards are actually very dark brown with even darker rosettes that are barely visible, the most famous of course are ‘Bagheera’ from Rudyard Kipling’s ‘Jungle Book’, and the Marvel superhero T’Challa.  Currently a handful of melanistic leopards are recorded in Nagerhole and Tadoba, they seem to live, hunt and mate as successfully as their standard coloured litter-mates.

Yala National Park Photography Tour

Sri Lanka leopard safaris in Yala national park remain one of the best big cat experiences found in Asia. On an island where they are the top predator bar none, they are much more diurnal in behaviour than in India’s wildlife sanctuaries, which thus provides much better opportunities for our wildlife photography holidays to Sri Lanka.  We have been travelling to Yala since 2002 and the safari camp we have hand picked has been chosen because it allows us to access the park from other gates and not have to queue at the main entrance gate which serves the larger hotels. Although we are likely to experience a Yala national park from decades ago, when there were only 10 to 12 jeeps driving around the 5 different zones. Each traveller will have access to a window seat and plenty of space for their camera equipment in a vehicle adapted for wildlife photographers. Ten jeep safaris in Yala will allow us to experience the entire park and focus on leopards, wild elephants and sloth bears.

Yala National Park consists of dry-mixed evergreen forests and scrublands along with open grasslands, water holes, brackish water lagoons and riverine forests. This park’s diverse habitat supports large numbers of mammals, such as spotted, barking and mouse deer, sambar, wild boar, water buffalo and the endangered sloth bear. This is also one of the best places in the country to see wild elephant and the rare leopard. Large water holes and lagoons support the high density of endangered crocodiles. You can also see large flocks of migratory and resident birds—142 species of birds have been recorded in the park. Of particular note is the rare black-necked stork, the largest bird in the country.

Please note, that this tour can easily be extended on a private basis to visit other wildlife sanctuaries or cultural locations of personal interest.

Style - Small Group Photographer
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2650
Zimanga: The Ultimate South African Photography Safari

On this unique South African safari experience we are as near to guaranteed as possible to encounter all of Africa’s Big Five, plus an abundance of prey species and a dazzling array of birds. Using classic safari game vehicles, and making full creative use of a network of hides, we will create shots that simply aren’t possible anywhere else.

And what’s more, on this bespoke photography safari we have no crowds to contend with, as we have secured exclusive use of the reserve throughout our stay.  That means there are no constraints on our time with each species, allowing us to observe their way of life, explore appropriate photographic techniques and craft unique images which capture the essence of each animal, their behavior and interactions.

Style - Small Group Photographer
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3695
Yala and Wilpattu Combined Leopard Safari

Beginning with a night in Kalpitiya, and ending with stay in Tangalle can give you that perfect combination of a relaxed beach stay with marine wildlife tours that are not overly commerical and can often deliver amazing wildlife encounters. In between you have safaris at Wilpattu, which will always be the ‘path less travelled’, and here it is more about the quality of your wildlife encounter, rather than the number of sightings (versus the very popular (and prolific) Yala national park). The real pay-off is the escape from the crowds and that more intimate connection with nature and wildlife. En route there is time for cultural diversions, with the Dambulla cave temples and Sigirya Rock fortress, and further off the beaten track safaris by boat at Gal Oya hoping photograph to ‘snorkelling’ elephants, before the highlights that only Yala can bring.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 18
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£4140
Wilpattu Leopard and the Dolphins of Kalpitiya

Compared to the very popular Yala national park, Wilpattu will always be the ‘path less travelled’ and here it is more about the quality of your wildlife encounters, rather than the number. Accommodation near the park remains largely a choice of mobile tented camps on private land, but there is also now a slightly more traditionally built option (the Kulu bungalow is available as an upgrade). The real pay-off is the escape from the crowds and that more intimate connection with nature and wildlife. Kalpitiya became famous for Sperm Whale sightings, but between December and April it is also an incredible location for the resident spinner dolphins. You can have that perfect combination of a relaxed beach stay with marine wildlife tours that are not overly commerical and can often deliver amazing wildlife encounters.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£1880
Wild Dog Magic in Botswana and South Africa

The chance to see African wild dogs, or African painted dogs as they are sometimes referred to, is high on many wildlife lovers wish list. It is important to remember that this is one of the rarest canids in the world and sadly is on the endangered ‘Red List’ of IUCN. Loss of habitat and human conflict are the main reasons for their decline; so it is more important than ever to conserve and protect the few remaining strong holds of this charismatic species. Over the years, Wildlife Trails have enjoyed considerable success in photographing this species and with this knowledge we have created safari holidays which visit the best places to see wild dogs at the right time of year.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 10
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£6000
Wild Camping Safari with Robin Pope

A walking safari in Zambia, particuarly in the South Luangwa valley, is one of the most exhilarating and immersive safari experiences in Africa. Walking with guides who have intimate knowledge of the land and its animals, dipping deeper into the bush from the fixed camps by camping out for a couple of nights, dinner and stories around the fire, simple but delicious food… When staying at Tena Tena and Nsefu you can walk between the two for two or three days, camping on the way. This is simple camping but with that extra touch of comfort. There are stand up tents, mattresses on the ground, sheets and blankets, wash basins, shared 60L bucket shower, bush loo, full bar and food service, fully serviced camp.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 8
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£5500
Visiting Ruaha, Mikumi & Selous

After a nice nights sleep in a quality hotel in Dar, it’s time to start the adventure with your private naturalist with a visit to the world-famous Selous game reserve – famous for big cats and the chance to see African wild dogs. From Selous, we visit Mikumi and it’s large lion prides, before ending up in a beautiful camp on the Great Ruaha River, where big game regularly walks through the camp to the excitement of all visitors.

Style - Small Group Photographer
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 12
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3750
Two Sides of Yala with Uda Walawe and Central Highlands

Our first visit to Sri Lanka way back in 2002 included visit to Bundala, Uda Walawe and Yala national parks. While Yala is very much the jewel in the crown of Sri Lanka’s wildlife sanctuaries it is important to be transparent with visitors about excessive visitor numbers which have been caused by the building of a ferry/ cruise ship terminal just 1 hour away by road. Given we are writing this during the middle of the Corvid-19 pandemic, the future of the cruise industry is far from certain, but what is certain in that Wildlife Trails has its finger in the pulse of all wildlife sanctuaries in the country and has already designed this tour in such a way, as to avoid the busier areas of the park and provide our clients with the most natural and exciting wildlife safari experience possible. As well as including a short extension to Uda Walawe national park before arriving in Yala, we also take you right into the heart of the Central Highlands. Enjoy the clean mountain air, authentic bungalow accommodation and choose a walking tour which suits your abilities and interests. After your leopard safari in Yala and experiencing the beautiful eastern side of the park; with its mangrove forests and amazing bird life, you will drive west to Mirissa for your small boat whale watcing safaris looking for the largest animal in the world – Dondra Point is one of the best places to see the Blue Whale.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 15
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3560
Sri Lanka Leopard Safari at Yala National Park

The design of all our wildlife safaris focus on longer stays in the national parks and with this one week Leopard safari at Yala national park, our approach is no different. We prefer to break up the long drive from Colombo to Yala with interesting stops en route. Not only will these stops give you a break from the car, they will also allow you to immerse yourself more fully in both the culture and scenic beauty of this amazing island. If you are travelling during the whale watching season from December to April, we definitely recommend you visit Mirissa to enjoy an ethical whale watching tour which does not chase or get to close to the animals. Otherwise, we also often choose to include a night at Galle, as there are some wonderful markets, restuarants and an early walk around town before the heat builds up is always interesting. We can also look at stops at wildlife sanctuaries like Udawalawe and Bundala.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 8
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2380
Shoebills, Tree Climbing Lions & Gorillas

This very special Ugandan gorilla holiday gives you the opportunity to see 3 of Uganda’s most iconic animal species. We start off with a short drive to the Mabamba wetlands on the outskirts of Kampala, where we enjoy a gentle private dugout boat safari looking for the beautifully bizarre Shoebill Stork. From here you wil drive to Queen Elizabeth national park and enjoy both private game drives and boat safaris on the scenic Kazinga channel. We may be lucky to catch a glimpse of a leopard or lion, before driving south to the Ishasha sector; home to the famous tree climbing lions. We then enjoy a long but spectacular journey to the remote community of Nkuringo on the Nteko ridge and if the weather is clear, we will have stunning views of up to 8 Volcanoes, which ‘straddle’ the Uganda, Rwanda and DRC borders. It’s time for you to experience that life changing 1 hour with a Gorilla family before driving to Lake Mburo national park and staying at the stunning Mihingo Lodge. Lake Mburo now enjoys regular leopard sightings during their unique night time drives and is home to many different antelope species within the park. You will enjoy a final breakfast overlooking the park before driving back to Entebbe.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 10
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3500
Safari in South Luangwa, Zambia

Zambia safaris nearly always deliver a spectacular wildlife experience and it is particularly famous for its night time safaris and the incredibly high number of leopard encounters. Many of these safaris take place in the famous Luangwa valley and we feel the perfect budget Zambia safari combines an extended stay in comfortable chalet accommodation close to the beautiful Luangwa river, with a couple of exhilarating nights at a nearby bush camp. Listen to the roar of Lions and other nocutrnal wildlife as you experience an African safari in the truest sense.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 11
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3500
Rhinos and Big Cats

June in Kenya is the last month of the shoulder season and a stunning time to visit on your Kenya wildlife holidays before the crowds of the high season arrive. By booking all accommodation through the famous Serena lodges we obtain an additional discount on your behalf, but we also retain our independance and privacy by booking an expert naturalist/driver, who will be your friendly, personal guide from the moment you touch down in Nairobi.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 10
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2500
Ranthambhore Safaris and Culture with Ramathra and Taj Mahal

We have been visiting Ranthambhore since 1997 when the owner Allan Blanchard spent a month there looking at conservation projects in the buffer zone areas the park. His fascination and love for the area brought him back many more times, and along with local guides that are now close friends, he has developed many interesting side trips away from the park to help spread the income from tourism further afield. There is a great road from Ranthambhore which takes you to the village of Bhoori Phadi and the small but beautiful Banas River; which forms one of the boundaries of Ranthambhore National Park. There are activities here organised by local people, such as boat and camel safaris and the chance to camp wild for the more adventurous. In addition, you can take a wonderfully rural 4-wheel drive route from Ranthambhore to the imposing Ramathra Fort, and create a tiger safari with a twist. Don’t just go to Ranthambhore with a standard tour operator and stay locked behind your hotel walls when not on safari. Go with Wildlife Trails and see a side of this park and the surrounding country that few get to see.

The historic Ramathra Fort stands on the Daang plateau between Ranthambhore and the Chambal River Valley, with spectacular views of the villages and countryside below.  The surrounding landscape is characterised by a network of gorges, scrubland and small traditional farms, and on evening drives there is a chance to see Indian Fox, Jackal and Hyena. It is just 10 minutes away from a large lake which attracts a wide variety of bird species and on which a leisurely boat safari can be taken.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£1790
Panna and Bandhavgarh Tiger Safari with the Temples of Khajuraho

Wildlife Trails first visited Khajuraho and Panna tiger reserve way back in 2002 and during the last 17 years there have been more ‘downs’ than ‘ups’ in this beautiful reserve bordering the idyllic Ken River. Like Sariska, Panna lost all its tigers in the mid-2000’s and it is now one of the main recipients of translocated tigers from famous tiger reserves like Bandhavgarh and Kanha, as they attempt to recapture former glories. For us, Panna was never just about the tigers, as we enjoyed starting our trip with time wandering around the beautiful temples at Khajuraho, before the short drive to our wilderness lodge at Panna. Here we will not just enjoy morning and afternoon jeep safaris, but also boat safaris on the Ken River and two nights of nocturnal drives in the buffer area – not permitted in most national parks in India. From there we head to the world famous Bandhavgarh tiger reserve – on a much better road these days thankfully – before enjoying 7 jeep safaris in a park that is just exploding at the moment with tiger action.

Safari vehicles will have a maximum of 4 guests per jeep.  At Bandhvagarh we have handpicked a specialist local naturalist to accompany all safaris.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 11
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2490
Mara Predator Big Cat Conservation Safari

‘In 20 years if nothing is done, there will be no Lions left in Kenya’ Neils Morgensen, Mara Predator Conservation Program.

Niels Mogensen, Senior Programme Scientist at the Mara Predator Conservation Programme, and award-winning natural history photographer and film maker Trai Anfield invite you to join them on a truly unique wildlife photography safari and survey experience, focussing on the two most iconic predators of Kenya’s Maasai Mara: lion and cheetah. Leopard will also be likely, alongside the prey species that make up this complex ecosystem. Should African wild dog be in the vicinity during our stay, then of course we will prioritise this species too.

Style - Small Group Photographer
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£4790
Magical North East with the Elephant Gathering and Leopards of Yala

Although we have of course visited Sri Lanka multiple times before, it will be our first visit to Jaffna and the famous port of Trincomalee which is a whale watching hotspot in the ‘summer’ season. In August the sea conditions will be at their best on the north east coast and we can take advantage of this with both whale watching, snorkelling and diving opportunities. Jaffna will be an intoxicating mix of culture, food and history and we will also try to gain an understanding of how the north is rebuilding itself after the long conflict which causes so much devastation and suffering for the local Tamil population.

After filling up on culture, history, marine life and some coastal R&R, we focus on elephants, first with ‘the gathering’ at Minneriya where depending on recent activity we may in fact find the biggest herds at Kaudulla, Minneriya or Hurulu National Parks.  Then onward to Gal Oya with a wonderful diverse choice of activities, we will take a night time drive in the buffer forest, a morning guided walk and a boat safari hoping to catch sight of elephants as they ‘snorkel’ their way across the huge lake.  The route to our campsite at Yala for more elephants and of course the leopards, takes us via the hill country, with a train ride through tea country, treks to view the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka, and to Ravana Falls, Little Adam’s Peak and/ or Ella Rock.

Style - Small Group
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 22
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3850
Luxury Tiger and Leopard Safari in Rajasthan

Back in the early 2000’s, rumours drifted across from rural southern Rajasthan, that there was a new big cat paradise in India and this was one where the Leopard – not the Tiger – ruled! It is important to remember that tiger sanctuaries are far from the best place to see leopards as they are out competed by their striped cousins. A visit to the Bera region of Rajasthan, is like stepping back in time two hundred years. The traditional Rabari trbes still make a living from their colourful goat herds and it is these goats that form a large part of the Leopards diet. Astonishing levels of tolerance by local villages to see beautiful spotted cats have created an unofficial sanctuary for leopards and it has become one of our very favourite wildlife locations in India – Yes, we are regular visitors!

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 9
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£4680
Lower Zambezi and South Luangwa Zambia Safari

This bespoke Zambia wildlife holiday focuses on quality long stays at two fabulous safari lodges in two very different and diverse parks. First you will fly from Lusaka to Livingstone and transfer to the Lower Zambezi . There is a lot of wildlife in this park, although the variety isn’t as diverse as in Kafue or South Luangwa. The lower Zambezi is know for its large elephant and buffalo herds and the birding is spectacular. The main apex predators seen here are leopard, spotted hyena and large prides of lion. From here you will fly to Mfuwe, which is the gateway to South Luangwa national park, rightly known as one of the best national parks to see big cats in the whole of Africa. You will be staying at Flatdogs Camp, whose naturalists have won international awards for their quality of guiding. Expect full on action during both the game drives and the night time safaris, as you are allowed to stay inside the park until 20:00.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 8
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£5000
Gorilla Trek and Volcano Climb for Adventure Seekers

For our return to Uganda and Rwanda to celebrate my 40th birthday I was keen to bring an adventerous element to the trip and as well as camping in many of the beautiful national parks, we also included a few more strenous activities on top of the Gorilla Trekking we did in Nkuringo. These included paddling across Lake Mutanda, walking with the Batwa tribals at Magahinga and the absolute highlight of a full day trek up the beautiful Mount Sabinyo, which stands at an impressive 3600M. Not only did this provide us with the elation of achieving our goals, but it also took us away from some of the more mainstream locations on the Uganda wildlife circuit and provided more village life and colour into our Uganda wildlife holiday.

Style - Wildlife Adventurer
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 11
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3850
Exploring the Botswana Wilderness

Safari through the wilderness of Botswana. Experience the Okavango Delta by traditional dug-outs and the abundant wildlife of Moremi game reserve and Savuti. Explore Chobe NP by boat and enjoy wonderful views of Victoria Falls!

Style - Wild Camping
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 12
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2500
An Epic Botswana Safari

This exciting 12-day adventure takes in some of Northern Botswana’s most prolific parks, including Moremi, the private Khwai concession and Botswana’s jewel in the crown; Savute. Before finishing on the Chobe Riverfront in Chobe National Park.

All locations offer excellent photographic and wildlife viewing opportunities. Where the predators, including lion, leopard and wild dog are regularly seen. The areas are also a haven for other wildlife, such as elephant, hippo, buffalo, giraffe, zebra, lechwe, kudu and many other iconic African mammals and of course a vast array of bird species.

With a large well-equipped game vehicles for a maximum group size of 6 people there is plenty of room assured for each guest. This tour will be characterized by maximising time in the field to take advantage of all available wildlife viewing opportunities. Fully supported camping ensures long days in the parks enjoying wildlife and a warm and friendly welcome back at camp in the evening.

Best time to visit Botswana on safari?

One of the best times to visit Botswana for wildlife is the dry season which runs approximately from June to October. This is the best time to see the predators in Botswana; as they share the same depleting water resources as their prey and it is at the lagoons and still flowing rivers where the majority of the hunting action takes place. We can also witness large bull elephants in Chobe national park and take a peaceful Mokoro safari looking for Hippo’s, giant crocs and a wonderful diversity of birdlife in the Okavango Delta. Temperatures will climb steadily throughout this period and reach their peak in October, but the game viewing in Botswana will remain vibrant throughout. We will have the chance to see African Wild Dogs in Moremi or Khwai and some large prides of lions in Savuti.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 12
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£3500
Black Panther Wildlife Tour and Safari in Nagarhole Kabini Wildlife Trails

Black Panther wildlife safari in Nagarhole national park

Sometimes circumstances come together at just the right time in the world of wildlife travel and big cat safaris, to inspire you to put together a specialist photography wildlife tour that will focus on just one species; and this is exactly what we have here with this small group Black Panther safari in Nagarhole national park. Not only was I lucky enough while in India during May 2017 to make contact with a wildlife guide who has seen and photographed the Black Panther on a number of occasions; but he also agreed to be our main guide for the entire stay at Nagarhole national park – this is crucial to the success of the Black Panther wildlife tour due to the ‘intense’ bureaucracy in India’s national parks. Not only do we need to apply for special permissions to have the right type of vehicle for our photography group; we also need a wildlife guide at Nagarhole that can optimise our choice of zone or route in order to maximise our opportunities to see the Black Panther in Nagerhole.

Best time to see Black Panthers in Nagarhole national park?

According to sources in Nagarhole national park the best time of year to see the Black Panther is March and April, so on this basis we have meticulously planned our dates to (1) Avoid the very busy Easter Holidays and (2) Avoid some local holidays in South India to be at the park at a ‘relatively’ quieter time. This is relative, as with such a longer, specialised safari lasting 7 days, it is impossible to avoid the weekend; which is what we would normally do.

Nagarhole national park – what did we see during the March 2018 and 2019 tours?

Both trips in 2018 were a huge success, with both groups enjoying a single sighting of the Black Panther which was the main objective of the trip. However, even more enjoyable was the almost constant action inside the park, as we enjoyed up to 7 tiger sightings, 5 leopard encounters and multiple superb encounters with a pack of 8 wild dogs, that were an absolute joy to photograph. It is important to point out that a rapidly growing tiger population could make seeing leopards in general (not just the Black Panther) more difficult in the future, so we would strongly suggest visiting ASAP. We just completed our third trip for the Black Panther in March 2019 and this time we missed out on a sighting of the melanistic male leopard. However, the great combination of good quality tiger and leopard action continued for our group members.

Client feedback from 2018.

Seeing 6 tigers ( 3 very good sightings) and 4 leopards (one amazing sighting) in Nagarahole (including the one with the all important black features) was truly beyond our expectations. Arjun was really very helpfull in managing the jeep safaris into the park. We only had to go on a boat safari once and the 2 last days he even arranged it so we could go both morning and afternoon drives into zone A. Thanks Arnie

Just a brief note to thank you for a superb trip to Nagarahole. We were fortunate to see the black panther, albeit briefly, early on during the trip. It was not through lack of trying that we didn’t see him again but had excellent big cat sightings of leopard and tiger as well as other wildlife including elephant, squirrel, mongoose, otters and python. Good food and great company with Richard, Arnie and Edith. Thanks John

Style - Small Group
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 8
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2710
Big Tigers of Corbett National Park

Corbett National Park was the first park to be brought under the ‘Project Tiger’ umbrella due to its magnificent scenery and large unspoilt wilderness area, which in turn supported a healthy tiger population. The reality for many visitors over the years had been occasional sightings glimpsed on elephant back and a feeling that the park is a better location for birders than more general wildlife enthusiasts; based on our visits in April 2006, April 2010 and March 2011 and our clients trips, we can confirm this view point is now completely redundant.

Not only does this beautiful park afford the visitor an excellent chance to see tiger, it also provides spectacular elephant sightings in the hotter months, with groups as large as 30 animals making the daily crossing over the Ramganga river. It is possible to view both wild elephant and tigers in a jeep safari from Dhikala, and the real highlight, is the rare chance to stay inside a Tiger Sanctuary at one of the simple lodges and you have a wildlife experience that rivals anything else in India.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 7
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£1380
Big Cats Galore on this Bespoke Zambia Safari

Zikomo Lodge is a real gem and is attracting a lot of interest from film companies like the BBC and Smithsonian channel; due to regular sightings of Wild Dogs, Lion and Leopard. From here we continue our journey through the most famous game reserve in Zambia, staying 4 nights at Flatdogs Camp where we can continue to observe game by both vehicle and high adrenaline walking safaris. The South Luangwa is one of the few parks in Africa to allow night drives, and the Flatdogs guides’ knowledge of animal behaviour really pays off after dark – get ready for action. After our stay at South Luangwa, we fly back to Lusaka and then drive south to Mukambi Lodge; gateway to the beautiful and less visitied Kafue national park. After a night in Mukambi, we can enjoy a morning game drive as we head towards the superbly located Busanga Plains Camp. Busanga Plains Camp is strategically located between the teeming floodplains frequented by several lion prides and the papyrus-edged Busanga Swamps, abundant with birdlife and home of the shy sitatunga. Famed for its tree-climbing lions, Busanga Plains is also known for its endless parade of wildlife and birds – huge herds of lechwe, puku and buffalo, which in turn sustain the top predators, including cheetah and wild dog.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 15
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£6500
Big Cat Magic in the Serengeti and Mara

Can you really wish for more than three dream wildlife destinations in the same safari? This amazing private big cat safari in Tanzania and Kenya, combines a 3 night stay in the northern Serengeti to coincide with the great wildebeest migration, with a full day drive into the world famous Ngorongoro crater, before heading back to Arusha via a quick visit to Tarangire national park. You then fly to Nairobim where you have a night to catch your breath, before driving to the Masai Mara for a 4 night stay at the dearly loved Mara Bush Camp – where you will stay in the private wing. All your safaris will be in a Covid-19 secure vehicle, with just yourself and the driver/naturalist heading out on the game drives.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 13
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£4490
Big Cat Magic in the Masai Mara

The Masai Mara is one of those most special of wildlife places in the world which just keeps you wanting to come back for more and more. We know that from many regular clients who visit multiple times a year and it is one of those safari destinations which can deliver great wildlife encounters outside of the main high season, which runs from July to October. It is without doubt one of the best places in the world to see big cats and it is not unsual in the Mara to have regular sightings of the Big 3; Lion, Leopard and Cheetah. This June departure will see cheaper options available on international flights and less crowds in the park, so why not join us on this Big Cat safari at Mara Intrepids in June 2021.

Style - Bespoke Wildlife
Duration (Excl. Flights) - 10
Activity Level
When to Go
  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
Price (Excl. flights)
£2590