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The Llama Travel Blog

Ten Walks & Treks in Latin America & Africa

Written by  Hannah
  • 13 May 2021

Over the past year, walking has taken on a new meaning for many of us. Whether it's multiple laps around the local park or a day-long hike in the countryside, it's given us a chance to connect with nature and stay grounded in the midst of restrictions. There's no better way to discover the beautiful landscapes of Latin America and Africa than on foot. From nature reserve trails in South Africa and volcanic lake hikes in Ecuador to epic Patagonia treks and the iconic trails to Machu Picchu, there are options to suit everyone. Keep scrolling to find out which walks and treks suit your budget and ability, so you can start planning something to look forward to.

A Traveller's Tale: Bellavista Lodge

Written by  John from Bristol
  • 11 May 2021

Can I tell you about a very special day, my 65th birthday?  We had booked our second trip with Llama Travel having previously enjoyed a holiday in Peru & Machu Piccu.  This time was to be Ecuador & the Galapagos. I wanted it to be special so booked a two day (one night) trip to the Bellavista Reserve to enjoy some bird life, especially the hummingbirds, and flora.  This is my story of the trip.

As concerns about the sustainability of our current lifestyles grow, the tourism industry has seen a strong shift towards greener travel. This is very important to Llama Travel (you can read more about what we do here), and our partners around the world are doing everything we can to support this, from eco-lodges in Costa Rica and Botswana to rhino conservation in Kenya and sustainable projects in the Ecuadorian Amazon. In honour of Earth Day last week, we have compiled a list of eight of our favourite sustainable properties in Latin America and Africa that do their bit to help the planet.

Shortly before the first covid lockdown, I was lucky enough to travel to South Africa on a family holiday. Now, after a year of no travel, I have been reminiscing about this adventure and can't wait to send passengers on a Gondwana safari trip so they can experience the amazing wildlife and beautiful landscapes for themselves when restrictions allow. 

Having spent much of the past twenty years travelling throughout Latin America, this was a fantastic chance to get to know somewhere new. Cape Town was a big hit with all of us, and we loved the journey along the Garden Route, especially the whale watching in Hermanus and getting up before dawn to see the meerkats pop up out of the red earth near Oudtshoorn. But the highlight for all of us was the safari in Gondwana, a game reserve in South Africa's Western Cape, a four hour scenic drive from Cape Town... read my blog to find out why. 

Samburu National Reserve: What To Expect

Written by  Scott
  • 14 April 2021

Our Product Manager, Scott, visited Kenya in 2019, on an epic journey through the country, from the Aberdares Mountains and the Ol Pejeta conservancy where chimps and rhinos reside, to the picturesque Lake Nakuru and the iconic Masai Mara. His time in Samburu though, was a particular highlight. Situated about 350km north of the Kenyan capital Nairobi, Samburu is a lesser-visited national reserve in northern Kenya, teeming with wildlife including the Big Five and rarer species that can't be found in the south of Kenya. One of the national park's main allures is that there are few tourists, so you can stay in beautiful safari lodges and go on daily game drives with a feeling of exclusivity that you don't get in Kenya's more well-known reserves. Keep reading to find out about the rugged landscapes and rare wildlife Scott saw on his trip to Samburu in Kenya. 

Get Back To Nature At Costa Rica's Pacuare Lodge

Written by  Hannah
  • 09 April 2021

Some of the most beautiful places in the world are the most difficult to get to, and this is certainly case for the newest addition to Llama Travel's Costa Rica programme. Hidden away in the heart of Costa Rica’s lush jungle, accessible by white-water raft, Pacuare Lodge is a stunning eco-lodge sitting on the banks of Pacuare River. Pacuare has won notable awards over the years including the National Geographic Traveller’s world’s best lodges, Condé Nast World Savers, exemplary tourism practise by the World Tourism Organisation and first pilot programme for eco-design in Central America. Keep reading for everything you need to know about Pacuare Lodge, from the exhilerating journey and activities during your stay to the bountiful wildlife and luxury facilities.  

Choosing The Right Safari For You

Written by  Hannah
  • 22 March 2021

Going on safari is a classic part of a holiday to Africa, and depending on whether you choose Botswana, Kenya, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe or a combination, each one offers something a bit different. All safari options we offer are planned very carefully to coincide with when you are most likely to see wildlife. However, it is important to understand the factors which make each one unique, and what their implications are for your safari experience.

10 Reasons To Visit Chile In 2022

Written by  Hannah
  • 17 March 2021

Chile is currently one of the fastest countries in the world to be vaccinating, with over 40% of the country’s population already having received their first jab. On April 12th, the UK government is set to announce how international travel will restart, and with this in mind, we want to tell you why Chile should be high on your list for a post-lockdown getaway. To make the most of the warmer months in the southern hemisphere, our Chile holidays run from October to April, so you can plan to travel to Chile in late 2021 or 2022. From the moonlike landscapes of the Atacama to the lakes and mountains of Patagonia, keep reading to find out how you can discover Chile’s wide open spaces and nature at its best.

A Llama Travel favourite and one of the best lodges in Ecuador, Sacha Lodge is a haven for nature lovers, with a stunning setting in the heart of the Amazon Jungle. With fantastic conservation efforts and unique facilities including a rotating exploration crane, canopy walk and observation tower, the lodge promises an unforgettable stay in an area teeming with monkeys, sloths, caimans, turtles and prolific birdlife including vibrant macaws and toucans.

Nature Lovers: Why Costa Rica Should Be On Your List

Written by  Hannah
  • 16 February 2021

With incredible wildlife, lush rainforests and tropical beaches, Costa Rica is the perfect place to book for a post-pandemic retreat, brimming with green spaces and sustainable lodges where you can really get back to nature and appreciate the simple things in life. We’re excited to show you the new options we’ve introduced for those who want to take advantage of Costa Rica’s amazing biodiversity combined with its reputation for adventure, including a three-day extension to the multi-award-winning Pacuare Lodge. Nestled within 25,000 acres of pristine rainforest, the eco-lodge takes you away from civilisation with a fabulous gourmet restaurant, infinity pool, birdwatching and hiking trips, all included in the price.

Read this blog to find out eight of the new and existing activities that allow you to take a step back from the hectic fast-moving world and appreciate the natural paradise of Costa Rica.