Wildlife Tours

Did you know that Peru is home to more than 1,800 species of birds? That dolphins live in the Amazon River and are pink? That the largest rodents in the world live in South America and are eaten by the locals? That sixty percent of the world’s seal population resides in Antarctica? That certain birds in the Galapagos are called boobies and have blue feet? Or that the rarely seen two-toed sloth lives in Costa Rica? Well, you do now.
From the driest desert to the lushest rainforest, mountains, wetlands, farmlands, glaciers and icebergs, Latin America and Antarctica are the perfect breeding grounds for a compilation of some of the world’s most enigmatic species of wildlife. Whether you want to get a hero shot of a butterfly the size of a bird, a brightly coloured Macaw, Llama or Penguin, or want to get up close and personal with an Armadillo or a jumping spider - you won’t be disappointed!
Chimu Adventures can help you release your inner David Attenborough. See below our suggested itineraries designed by our specialist team. Choose one of these or alter to design your own journey.

Featured Wildlife Trips & Deals

POPULAR  From 7,430

Penguins, seals, whales and more. An Antarctica cruise with maximum wildlife - if you love animals then this one is for you. Click to learn more.


Cruise the Galapagos Islands and discover the world's most unique wildlife such as marine iguanas, giant tortoises, red and blue-footed boobies, frigate birds, turtles, Galapagos penguins and more. 

POPULAR  From 1,820

Get a close up view of the Amazon wildlife in the Yasuní National Park, canoe along lakes and rivers and hike the forest trails.

Wildlife Tours

9 NIGHTS From 8,700

Get up close to the wildlife of Belize. Although small, Belize has over 145 species of mammals living there including pumas, jaguars & tropical birds.

20 NIGHTS From 14,320

Be amazed by the lost Incan empire 'Machu Picchu' before surrounding yourself with the legendary wildlife and breathtaking scenery of Antarctica.

10 NIGHTS From 3,645

See Costa Rica the way you want to - whether you're a thrill seeker or beach-lover (or both!), this 11 day tour of Costa Rica caters for either.

4 NIGHTS From 2,015

Travel to the heart of Torres del Paine National Park. Enjoy guided treks, wildlife excursions & gaze up at the star-filled sky through your dome ceiling.

11 NIGHTS From 5,400

Our highlights of Brazil tour designed specifically for wildlife lovers. Start in Iguazu Falls then venture into the Amazon Rainforest & Pantanal Wetlands.

26 NIGHTS From 10,390

Take a premium overland trip Patagonia from Santiago to Ushuaia. Designed for the adventurous 40-70 year olds.

Articles On Wildlife

Press release: Affordable Antarctica

Posted on Thu, 07 Feb 2019

Antarctica for just over $7000. Chimu make cruises to Antarctica affordable without compromising on quality and sustainability. Sydney, Thursday 7th February 2019 Latin America and Polar specialists, Chimu Adventures, have made cruises to Antarctica more affordable at a price of just over AU$7000 so that the continent can be accessed by a wider demographic of travellers. This comes at a …


How to Dodge the Crowds in Patagonia

Posted on Wed, 06 Feb 2019

Want Patagonia to Yourself? Do THIS! Revered for being wild, remote, unpredictable and utterly astounding, Patagonia appears – at least on paper – to be an unlikely candidate for tourist overcrowding. Yet the fact remains: when roads are few, highlights world-famous, tourist season short and nature resplendent, you’ll be amazed at just how crowded some of its biggest highlights – …


Affordable Antarctica? You bet!

Posted on Tue, 05 Feb 2019

An affordable expedition to Antarctica is usually considered an oxymoron in many ways. Is this not the most expensive place in the world to visit, after all? Well, not if we get our way! Travel to Antarctica on our chartered MS Ocean Endeavour expeditions 2020, 2021, 2022 Cruising Seasons Prices starting from AU$7,090 The way we see it, whilst travelling …


10 Super Cool Facts About Greenland You Need to Know

Posted on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

Enigmatic, hard-to-reach and impossible to explore by road – discover why Greenland is the most fascinating Arctic destination of all. Greenland is one of the most captivating places you could ever visit – the least touristy in the Arctic in summer and certainly the one people know the least about. If you’ve ever glanced at a world map, you’d certainly …


Long Service Leave Coming Up? Why South America Beckons

Posted on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

Deciding where to take your long-service leave is inarguably one of the toughest choices you’ll ever have to make, travel-wise of course. One works long and hard to accumulate a substantial amount of paid leave and the pressure to do something meaningful and rewarding with the free time is not without its merits. You could stay home, of course, and …


Iceland VS Greenland – Which is Better on Arctic Expeditions?

Posted on Mon, 04 Feb 2019

An icy Arctic conundrum to be solved – Iceland VS Greenland – which one should you visit? It’s certainly a question we get often enough – which destination is better for Arctic expeditions: Iceland or Greenland? Although differences between the two abound, there is a lot they have in common: both are exceptionally picturesque (for different reasons) and both offer …


Why Australian Travellers Should Travel to Antarctica in 2019

Posted on Thu, 31 Jan 2019

Expedition cruises to Antarctica are tipped to be the hottest travel trend for 2019 and it’s really not very surprising. ‘Hottest’ being a more poignant term than we’d ever wish to use in this context. It’s no secret that ice melt in the southernmost region of our planet is increasing at an alarming rate and this means there’s never been …


When is the Best Time to See the Northern Lights?

Posted on Thu, 31 Jan 2019

Want to chase the dancing Aurora Borealis of the Arctic? Read on to find out when you should be planning your voyage to the northernmost region of our planet. The Northern Lights are one of our planet’s most astonishing natural phenomena and, as such, are about as predictable as the weather. Which is to say, not very predictable at all. …


Patagonia Highlights – The Best Things to See and Do

Posted on Thu, 24 Jan 2019

The southernmost region of South America, shared by Argentina and Chile, is the prime destination for nature-lovers and active travellers who head to the continent at the end of the year. They know that during the Austral summer, between November and March, Patagonia is at her most resplendent. Her lakes shimmer in an abundance of sunlight, her mountain peaks appear …


Meet The Wildlife of Svalbard

Posted on Wed, 23 Jan 2019

Known As the ‘Wildlife Capital of the Arctic’, the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard is a magnificent place to visit if spotting polar bears, whales, walruses and other unique wildlife is on your bucket-list A magical world of ice, snow and unique wildlife – this is Svalbard in a nutshell. One of the northernmost inhabited places on earth, about halfway between …


Frequently Asked Questions

I love wildlife, where are the best places to see wildlife in Latin America?

The best places to see wildlife are the Pantanal, Amazon, Ibera Wetlands and of course the Galapagos Islands. The Pantanal has the highest concentration of wildlife in Latin America and encompasses the largest tropical wetland area in the world. The Galapagos Islands are home to vast numbers and varieties of wildlife, both land and marine, with many of the species being unique to the archipelago. There are also good opportunities to view wildlife in Patagonia, in particular in Torres del Paine National Park, and within Central America, Costa Rica offers some good wildlife spots - for example Manual Antonio National Park and Tortuguero.

What types of animals can I expect to see in Latin America?

There is a vast array of wildlife in Latin America, ranging from capybaras, sloths, monkeys, giant anteaters, pumas, jaguars, armadillos, tapirs, whales and dolphins to llamas, alpacas, vicunas, guanacos, marsh deer and maned wolves. Reptiles include caimans, turtles, iguanas and anacondas. Bird life is also prolific with hummingbirds, toucans, parrots, macaws, waterfowl, flamingos and rheas as well as penguins, boobies, frigatebirds and Andean condors. 

What is the best cruise to see wildlife in Antarctica?

Although all Antarctic cruises offer exceptional wildlife viewing, the best cruise to see wildlife is a South Georgia and Falklands Islands Cruise.

What animals can I expect to see in Antarctica?

The Antarctic abounds with wildlife including 10 species of whales, 7 species of seals, 8 species of penguins and a vast array of seabirds including albatrosses. Penguin species include emperor and Adélie that make the Antarctic continent their true home, chinstrap, gentoo and macaroni that breed on the northern tip of the Antarctic Peninsula and king penguins only found on the more northerly and warmer subantarctic islands. Whale species that you are likely to encounter include orcas (killer whales), minke and humpback whales. Seal species include Antarctic fur, crabeater, Weddell, leopard, elephant and Ross. The line-up of birds is extensive but includes petrels, prions, shearwaters, skuas, sheathbills, terns, gulls, cormorants, pipits, snow petrels and several species of albatross.

Are there any naturalist guides on my cruise to Antarctica?

Yes all of our cruises to the Antarctic include naturalist guides who accompany you on shore excursions and offer lectures whilst on board. 

Do you offer wildlife focus tours?

Yes we offer an extensive range of wildlife focus tours. Obviously the main focus of tours to the Galapagos, Pantanal and Amazon is wildlife viewing and it is a major focus of Antarctic cruises. In Torres del Paine National Park we offer a Patagonia Wildlife Safari and a Patagonia Puma Tracking Photo Adventure and in the Pantanal we offer a Pantanal Jaguar Photographic Expedition. In Central America there is a Tortuguero Escape in Costa Rica and a Belize Wildlife tour.

Which is the best place to see wildlife in the Amazon?

Wherever you go in the Amazon, you are likely to see a good range of wildlife, especially birds, but the deeper you venture into the Amazon, the more likely you are to see mammals. Tambopata Research Centre in Peru is one of the most remote lodges in the Amazon, its location in uninhabited wilderness resulting in excellent opportunities for wildlife spotting.

I want to learn more about the wildlife of South & Central America and Antarctica, can you suggest some books to read ?

  • Andes to Amazon: A Guide to Wild South America by Michael Bright
  • Tropical Nature: Life and Death in the Rain Forests of Central and South America by Adrian Forsyth & Ken Miyata
  • The Mammals of Costa Rica: A Natural History and Field Guide by Mark Wainwright
  • Jaguar: One Man's Struggle to Establish the World's First Jaguar Preserve by Alan Rabinowitz
  • Galapagos: A Natural History by Michael H. Jackson
  • Birds of Southern South America and Antarctica by Martin R. de la Pena
  • The Complete Guide to Antarctic Wildlife by Hadoram Shirihai
  • Antarctica: A Guide to the Wildlife (Bradt Guides) by Tony Soper
  • Snarl for the Camera: Memoirs of a Wildlife Cameraman by James Gray