Leapin’ Leopards!

Way past wild…

Indefatigable and intrepid multi-award-winning, UK-based Biosphere Expeditions offers eco-adventures all over for volunteers but we love the leopard study ones to Oman, the exotic sultanate on the Arabian Peninsula, and Namibia, bordered by two immense African deserts –and land rich in unique wildlife and fantastic, otherworldly scenery.

Thrillingly, volunteers (you!) will work alongside scientists of the Royal Omani Court in the Dhofar region of southern Oman as part of a small international team to monitor the life of the elusive Arabian leopard.

From the field base in desert and mountain camps in both countries, volunteers venture out in expedition Land Rovers and on foot looking for tracks that indicate leopard life, surveying the surrounding waterholes for leopard prey such as gazelle, ibex, and hyrax, setting up cameras, and talking to the locals.

Camps are well-equipped, reached on foot or by Land Rover with the assistance of luggage-laden camels. Sleep in comfortable dome tents; survive on Bedouin-style meals and enjoy a peak lifetime experience together with a small group team.  Not an endurance contest. They do their best to make participants comfortable and a great trip for solo travelers.

Biosphere offers one- and two-week trips; very well priced, and very, very high value.  These learning adventures sell out the minute they are announced and no surprise: many are award-winners. Check the latest dates and prices and also their other wild ecoventures, such as coral reef study in Honduras, jaguar and puma study in Brazil, dolphins in the Azores, and whale sharks in the Maldives!

Click:  www.biosphere-expeditions.org. In the U. S. call 800-407-5761.


Búzios, the little finger of Brazil that juts into the Atlantic, hit the headlines when Brigitte Bardot arrived there in the 1960’s. Two and a half hours from Rio by car, or a 1-hour flight, Búzios has been a resort magnet since then for hip Brazilians and even hipper Europeans …so… Americans, listen up! . Dune buggies, good food (dinners begin at 10, 11 p.m.), great drinks, fishing villages, sambas, surfers and sugar beaches, and … TAH TAH …amazingly low prices.

Best bed: check out the 33-room simple, stylish and charming Casas Brancas, complete with restaurant and spa. For info and good hotel pix: La Datco Tours.