Top Seven ‘wow moments’ with Sanctuary Retreats
With mindfulness one of last year’s biggest buzzwords, we can’t think of any other activity that encourages you to stay so wholeheartedly in the moment better than travel. For all of us at Sanctuary Retreats, the best holidays are measured by the myriad of life-affirming memories that we bring home. Which is why our team of passionate travel experts scour the world, gathering the most unforgettable experiences that can elevate a great trip to an extraordinary one.
So, if you share our philosophy that life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away, we're sure some of the following will capture your imagination.
Witnessing elephants in their natural habitat is one thing. Enjoying a leisurely stroll with one of these majestic creatures as your personal guide is quite another. For an authentic Africa safari with a difference, this rare opportunity to interact with some of the Okavango Delta's biggest characters and explore the Botswana bush trunk-in-hand is hard to beat.
Boat back in time through the Three Gorges
Whilst cruising along the Shennong River is the ideal way to absorb the area's serene beauty and distinctive gorges, this fascinating China tour is enhanced by the chance to meet the people who call this remarkable region home. One of China's most ancient people, the Tujia people traditionally made their living from the waterways so you'll board one of their Sampan - or longboat - and learn more about their customs as your boat is skilfully poled along by local boatmen.
Al fresco star-bathing
As if a Botswana safari wasn't immersive enough, we can reveal the most indulgent way to unwind after an epic day's game-viewing. The eco-friendly suites at Sanctuary Baines' Camp take pure bliss to a new level, with the chance to soak up the magic of Botswana's night skies from a sumptuous bathtub on your own private viewing deck. As you luxuriate beneath a glittering canopy awash with stars and the hippo-rich waters of the Boro River babble below, this intimate eco-camp will take you one step closer to heaven.
Mingle with mountain gorillas
The dramatic volcanic landscape of Bwindi Impenetrable Forest is home to hundreds of gorillas, making it the ideal base to come face to face with one of man's closest relatives. On this unique Uganda safari you'll venture deep into the rainforest to track the resident mountain gorilla families and, thanks to the camp's remote location within the UNESCO World Heritage Site, perhaps even encounter Silverbacks from your exclusive base.
Canoe the Zambezi
For most of us, the word Zambezi conjures up images of legendary adventurers returning from unspoilt wilderness with tales of derring-do. Thankfully, Zambia's famous river remains much unchanged today, teeming with phenomenal wildlife and ripe for exploring. Those staying at Sanctuary Sussi & Chuma can head out on their own two-hour canoeing expedition along the dramatic stretch of river before heading back to the lodge. And if you still have a thirst for the intrepid, the lodge has 12 luxurious treehouses sure to appease even the most daredevil amongst us.
Watch the greatest game show on earth
As far as game drives and Tanzania safaris go, the chance to watch the annual pilgrimage of over 1.5 million wildebeest between Kenya and Tanzania play out in front of you has to be one of the most spectacular. And, as the Sanctuary Serengeti Migration Camp moves between a trio of locations, you can beat the crowds and marvel at one of life's greatest circles of life all year round.
Candle-lit dining on the banks of the Irrawady
There's no denying the romance that comes with relishing a delicious meal in a dramatic outdoor setting. Which is why the sandbank dinners offered on the Sanctuary Ananda might go down as our favourite premium 'picnic' experience of all. Here, against the lantern-lit backdrop of silhouetted pagodas and enveloped by an enchanting blanket of stars, you'll savour freshly prepared Burmese delicacies before returning to your luxurious all-suite ship to enjoy the rest of your Myanmar tour.