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The largest of the parrot family, the hyacinth macaw is almost certain to impress nature travelers, who are likely to see it soaring through the canopies of the Pantanal like a blaze of sapphire light.


The bold, cobalt blue plumage is by far this bird's most distinguishing factor. Its overall body color contrasts with the citron yellow ring around its eye and the yellow patch of skin next to its lower bill.

January 13, 2012

Indulge in Indian Cuisine

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Indian cuisine is relatively common in the U.S. — it can be found in hundreds of restaurants, cafes and even at the grocery store. However, there is nothing like experiencing the delights of the cuisine first-hand during an India expedition with IE.

The most common delicacies of India can be enjoyed nearly anywhere, but when travelers visit the country itself, they have the opportunity to explore the vast range of elements that make up authentic Indian food.

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Kathmandu Valley is home to seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites, groups of monuments and buildings that showcase the rich history and art culture of Nepal. Durbar Square in Kathmandu, the nation's capital, is one of the sites that visitors should consider including in their custom Nepal travel package.

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Tanzania's Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest peak in all of Africa and the tallest free-standing mountain in the world. Its summit is nearly 3.7 miles above sea level — just 10,000 feet shorter than Mount Everest — and it is much easier to climb to the top of this peak than that of Everest. Mount Kilimanjaro National Park gives travelers a chance to ascend one of the highest peaks in the world, spend time in tropical jungles and photograph snowy mountains all in one place.

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Birders and intrepid travelers looking for a new nature travel destination in 2012 should add Costa Rica to their list. Here, they can visit the La Amistad International Park and the Cerro de la Muerte region for immersion in a lush, tropical wonderland.

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Photographing landscapes seems like the easiest type of photography. The subject is still and straightforward, yet many times, the end result is flat, dull and boring - nothing like the breathtaking and memorable scenery that was there.

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South America's Amazon region is one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world, and Amazon river tours can give travelers a chance to see the natural beauty of the region first-hand. The entire region is considered to be endangered, primarily due to industrial companies clearing the land of forests to use it for profit, but the positive effects of preservation efforts are starting to be seen.

January 04, 2012

Four Tips for Packing Light

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Whether trekking Machu Picchu on the Inca Trail or birding in Borneo, nature travel often requires you to be able to readily grab your bag and head off to the next adventure. Large, bulky suitcases can make it difficult to meet the luggage restrictions imposed on small, in-country flights, so the best way to pack for these expeditions is with as little as possible.

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Often recognized from cartoons and cereal boxes, many may misunderstand toucans, a bird that thrives in Brazil's Pantanal.

While the bird is widely recognized internationally, those visiting Brazil may get a close-up view of the red-breasted toucan, one of the 40 species of the bird that exist.

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Many children dream of climbing on Pride Rock in the Disney-created land of Simba and Nala, but those on an IE custom Tanzania safari can get as close to that dream as possible.

At Lake Manyara National Park in Tanzania, the game drive will offer sightings of lions, the king of the big cats. One of Africa's Big Five, the lion used to be widespread across the African continent, but now is confined to the sub-Saharan region.

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