Skip to main content

Million-dollar safari -- would you pay up?

By James Durston, CNN
updated 2:17 AM EDT, Tue April 1, 2014
A UK tour company has launched a 111-day, $1 million "safari." Got cash and time? Here's where you could be headed, starting with an eight-day exploration in Kenya to see northern white rhino, one of the world's most endangered animals. They're extinct in the wild according to the World Wide Fund for Nature though a few individuals remain at Ol Pejeta Conservancy, watched over by armed guards. A UK tour company has launched a 111-day, $1 million "safari." Got cash and time? Here's where you could be headed, starting with an eight-day exploration in Kenya to see northern white rhino, one of the world's most endangered animals. They're extinct in the wild according to the World Wide Fund for Nature though a few individuals remain at Ol Pejeta Conservancy, watched over by armed guards.
HIDE CAPTION
Laikipia Plateau (Kenya)
Volcanoes National Park (Rwanda)
Mahale Mountains NP (Tanzania)
Madagascar
Selinda Concession (Botswana)
Palmwag Concession (Namibia)
Antarctic Peninsula
Big cats in India
Danum Valley and Sepilok (Borneo)
Galápagos Islands (Ecuador)
Pantanal Wetlands (Brazil)
Churchill (Canada)
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The $1 million trip takes in 12 destinations over 111 days to see 18 endangered species
  • Follows other million-dollar vacation ideas, including a stay in converted submarine love hotel
  • Journey to Nature's Edge includes viewing gorillas in Rwanda and penguin-spotting in Antarctica

(CNN) -- How stressed out do you need to be to spend $1 million on a 111-day holiday?

Rhetorical questions come and go, but the latest super-luxe vacation is here to stay, as long as its "attractions" remain -- species close to extinction.

"That money serves to assist the endangered species that potential clients would see," says Will Bolsover, managing director at UK-based Natural World Safaris, which is offering what it's calling a "Journey to Nature's Edge."

Prospective safari-goers (so far no one has booked) will get to gawk at 18 endangered species in 12 countries over 111 days, all from the Hermès-catered splendor of luxury lodgings.

MORE: 11 wildlife experiences that could vanish in your lifetime

The Borneo leg of the trip offers the chance to see little guys like this.
The Borneo leg of the trip offers the chance to see little guys like this.

Guests will fly to each destination in first class, meet local conservation experts and have fiddly things like park entrance fees, transport and excursions arranged and paid for.

The $1 million price tag covers two people and Bolsover himself, who'll accompany guests "to ensure everything runs smoothly."

He says his own costs are greatly reduced by partners in the locales.

Ten percent of the fee goes to the conservation projects involved and conservation administration CITES.

"We want to highlight the plight of endangered species on our planet and bring this to the attention of individuals at the same time as them truly experiencing the natural world and the conservation efforts that are ongoing to protect it," Bolsover says.

Super-luxe holiday trend

It's not the most expensive vacation to have been conceived recently.

A $1.5 million trip to all 962 UNESCO World Heritage Sites was created, and reportedly booked, last year.

Just a few weeks ago a company launched its "Lovers Deep" concept -- converting a submarine into a private love hotel.

A week on that, at nearly $290,000 per night, would cost more than $2 million.

But at an average of $83,333 per destination -- an example of which is a five-day stay to see mountain gorillas in Rwanda -- this Journey to Nature's Edge falls into the just-think-what-else-you-could-do-with-that-kind-of-money category.

Only $1 million away.
Only $1 million away.

"The $1 million price tag does grab people's attention, however this was the cost when we finalized pulling the trip details together," says Bolsover.

He adds that, despite the high-end price, guests may not be pampered every moment.

"People are prepared to pay a premium to get out and experience something entirely different and this may be staying at the most luxurious property in Botswana seeing some breathtaking game.

"Equally it could be staying at a very basic camp in Hemis National Park in India at minus 30 degrees Celsius with no shower facilities in the hope of catching a glimpse of the elusive snow leopard!"

Those interested in booking, or just window shopping, can do so at the Natural World Safaris website.

Would you pay $1 million for a chance to see these endangered species? Let us know below.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 4:42 PM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
From Maastricht to Melbourne, these itineraries make bookish travelers look stylish.
updated 4:58 AM EDT, Tue July 29, 2014
Good cocktails combine with spectacular views across rivers, cityscapes and oceans at these bird-level drinkeries.
updated 2:09 PM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
A California homeowner's nightmare has become a cautionary tale for those who rent their homes to strangers.
updated 10:26 PM EDT, Sun July 20, 2014
Cinema loves portraying the lives of expats. Sometimes it gets it right. Sometimes it casts Nick Nolte as a jungle king.
updated 9:17 PM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Don't be intimidated, says a local expert. Here's how to do China without the hassles
updated 8:33 AM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
When your city has an unenviable reputation for insulting tourists and fleecing them for every cent, inviting hotel guests to pay what they want could be a risky move.
updated 3:10 AM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
1937 Auto Union V16 Streamliner, Audi Museum, Germany
With factory tours and collections of stunning vintage prototypes, southern Germany is petrolhead paradise.
updated 9:44 AM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Every tourist destination has a flip side, a season when prices go down and savvy, flexible travelers can score big savings.
updated 3:11 AM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
A Marrakech lamp bazaar
Morocco's Red City is crammed with stunning gardens, shaded souks and steamy bath houses.
updated 12:52 PM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Santo Stefano Island, Italy
Pristine beaches, unspoiled nature and few tourists -- a stretch on these former penal colonies is no longer a punishment.
updated 5:23 AM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
Life in Joburg can be stressful. Luckily there are some exceedingly non-stressful places close by.
updated 5:07 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Istanbul skyline
CNN's Ivan Watson pays homage to the city he's called home for the past 12 years.
China notches up another superlative achievement as a Nanjing-based artist creates the world's largest and longest anamorphic painting.
updated 4:02 PM EDT, Sun July 20, 2014
In what is undoubtedly the world's "coolest" surf video, photographer Chris Burkhard endures freezing temperatures, blizzards and injury to capture Arctic waves and their riders.
updated 11:39 PM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Few airline routes are as cutthroat as the one that travels between London and New York. It is the world's busiest route and there are few lengths airlines won't go to in the hopes of getting a piece of the action.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT