The illegal ivory trade results in the deaths of over 30,000 African elephants each year, a gruesome reality that led experts to warn that African elephants could become extinct within a decade. Steppes Travel, a UK-based luxury-travel company, is doing its part to spotlight the plight of the planet’s largest land mammal. The Ultimate African Elephant Conservation Journey (from about $38,400 per person) is a 31-day trip that gives travelers an overview of elephant conservation efforts taking place in five African countries. From grasslands to forests to deserts, tourists will have the opportunity to interact with elephants and learn about the leading initiatives.
The voyage kicks off in the Republic of Congo with a trip to Odzala National Park, where visitors can see forest elephants in their natural element, sleep in tented camps, and explore the park on foot, by car, or by boat. The next leg of the journey is an overview of Zakouma National Park in Chad, where sojourners will participate in game drives and walks both during the day and at night. Guests will also visit Kenya’s Save the Elephants research facility, a nonprofit organization founded by zoologist Iain Douglas-Hamilton, that rehabilitates and protects the endangered species.
Another stop will be Namibia’s Elephant-Human Relations Aid (EHRA), a nonprofit that tracks and protects elephants, safeguards watering holes, and educates locals about how to live in harmony with the gentle giants. The trip wraps up in Botswana (home to the largest elephant population in Africa), where guests will witness elephant rehabilitation efforts at Abu Camp and meet the handlers who care for the animals. A portion of the trip’s proceeds will be donated to Save the Elephants, ensuring these beautiful and intelligent creatures will be protected for years to come.