The season has started and I am sure many of you have planned a safari trip on this coming New Year. Some of you might have booked a wildlife tour package. I thought I should give you some Do’s and Don’ts based on my wildlife experience to make your trip better. So here goes the list –
Respect locals – Even if you don’t like their appearance or anything else, you have to respect the locals. Don’t be obnoxious. Respect their beliefs, culture, language or clothes. You might have an opinion about everything but that is for you to discuss in your rooms back in the hotel. Don’t say anything in front of them which might hurt their feelings.
Read before you go – Once you have already zeroed in on the place for your safari, try to get as much information as you can, about the place and the species you are going to find there. This will make you feel more connected.
Listen to your guide – So you have read it all and now know everything about the place, still for the sake of others, listen to what your guide has to say. He is more experienced and has conducted real safaris. Whatever he says has an underline motive of either to ensure your safety or to improve your experience. So you better listen to him without arguing.
Keep your mobiles in silent mode – I know you are busy and have unfinished business for which you need to be constantly updated. There is a simpler way of doing this. Do not go on a safari, stay in your office instead. The unusual sound of your mobile phone may irritate the wilds and make them uncomfortable.
Leave no trace – Jungle is a delicate ecosystem and the life of these wild animals depends on its proper balance. Do not treat these jungles as you treat your city. Do not litter and leave no trace behind. This is the least you can do since the humans are already invading and seizing the land once belonged to these poor wild creatures.
Clothing restrictions – I know you love bright colors. Everyone does. But a jungle is not the right place to flaunt your wardrobe. Wear neutral colors as flashy and bright colors might get unwanted attention from the animals. Do not wear animal prints. Leave these prints to the animals, at least in the jungle.
Don’t take kids along – If you want to show big wild animals to your kids, safari is not the right place. Take them to the zoo. Children have this tendency of shouting and making noises when excited or scared. These noises can make the animal feel threatened. He might run away or god knows what the animal decides to do.
Do not try to feed the animals – Yeh, they are cute and beautiful. Yet they are wild. You have to control the urge to feed them.
Do not take food on a safari – Feed yourself well before starting a safari. Taking food along is not a good idea. The smell of food can attract wild monkeys and baboons to your vehicle and I am sure you don’t want that.
Do not get out of your safari vehicle – You are safe till you are inside your vehicle. It is as simple as that, so stay there. I know, you want yourself clicked with that cute deer or that picturesque tree, but you have to compromise on that. Even for the nature’s call, you have to tell and ask permission from your guide.
Do not be in a rush – You are on a safari trip in a jungle. You are not on a trip to the local zoo. You cannot decide what to see first and when. If you don’t have patience, you are not meant for a safari. Go to a beach trip instead.
These suggestions are taken out from our experience of conducting and organizing wild India tours over all these years. If you want a safe and enjoyable trip to the jungle, I advise you to follow these points mentioned above.