Wildlife Viewing

Vermilion Flycatcher atop a Galápagos giant tortoise
Willow Ptarmigan in Denali National Park
Grizzly Bears Fishing for salmon
Sally Lightfoot Crab Galapagos
Galápagos giant tortoise
Bison in Yellowstone National Park
Bald Eagle near the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park
Orca Whale and seabirds
Marine Iguana Galápagos
click to add caption
Blue-Footed Boobies Galápagos
Dolphin swims alongside a boat in Baja
Frigate Bird Galapagos Islands
Sally Lightfoot Crab Galapagos Islands
Otter swimming in Kenai Fjords National Park
Mule Deer crossing the Snake River in Grand Teton NP

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Wildlife Viewing Adventures

Have you dreamed of whale watching while paddling among a pod of whales? Would you prefer to bob with the Blue-Footed Boobies of the Galapagos Islands or snorkel with dozens of sea turtles, penguins, cormorants, sharks and rays, and hundreds of colorful reef fish flitting among shallow rocks, set alight by the filtered sun rays?

All O.A.R.S. adventure vacations offer the best guide-to-guest ratio in the adventure travel business (1:4), and our outdoor guides are the single-most complemented component of our business. They’re your extra set of eyes on the water and anxious to share with you the abundant wildlife that can be found in many of the areas we visit.

Wildlife viewing is an inherent element of many O.A.R.S. outdoor adventures. Keep an eye out for turtles, deer, black bear, otter, osprey and great blue heron on the Wild & Scenic Rogue River in Oregon or watch for elk, bighorn sheep and bald eagles, and see for yourself The West as Lewis and Clark experienced it over 200 years ago on the Middle Fork or the Main Salmon River in Idaho. O.A.R.S. offers a unique and unobtrusive opportunity to view wildlife in their native habitat on dozens of trips, including, but not limited to, the following itineraries.

Featured Wildlife Viewing Adventures from O.A.R.S.

Tatshenshini River, Alaska
Travel through territory utterly untouched by human development and witness a vastness even greater in magnitude than the Grand Canyon. Walk on a glacier and follow well-worn (elusive) bear trails high into alpine country. You may quite possibly see mountain goats, bighorn sheep, grizzly or black bear, mountain goats and moose. This region, the largest contiguous wilderness area in the world, is home to birds of prey including eagles and osprey.

Baja Whale Watching, Baja Mexico
Our Sea of Cortez Island Hopping itinerary is our most popular Baja excursion. This trip includes kayaking, snorkeling, hiking, fishing and visiting local fishing villages. Adventurers should expect to see dolphins by the hundreds, sea lions sunning on rocky pinnacles, mantas leaping from the water and on spring trips very possibly blue, humpback, sperm or fin whales as we cruise from island to island.

Galápagos Islands, Ecuador
This is a wildlife lover’s dream destination. Our experience puts you in the right place at the right time on our all of our Galápagos vacation itineraries. We strive to show you the most wildlife and the most scenic places - without the crowds. Due to the lack of any natural predators, animals meander freely and fearlessly around the islands, giving you endless photographic opportunities, as well as time to gaze into the eyes of some pretty bizarre wildlife. All plants and animals that live in the Galápagos Islands today are descendants of those that arrived from elsewhere.  Native mammals are rare in the Galápagos, and include only those that could make the journey from Central or South America.

Expect to see giant tortoises, Marine iguanas, land iguanas, lava lizards, geckos and harmless snakes, in addition to countless bird species, including penguins, Darwin's finches, frigatebirds, albatrosses, gulls, boobies, pelicans, Galápagos Hawks and the Flightless Cormorant.

There are over 450 species of fish in the Galápagos Islands. There are 4 varieties of shark including the whitetip and blacktip reef shark, scalloped hammerhead and Galápagos sharks.  There are stingrays, eagle rays, golden rays and manta rays, as well as at least 16 species of moray eels.


O.A.R.S. has been a leader in adventure travel for four decades. Our goal, since 1969, has been to help people enjoy "the best outdoor experience of their lives."



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Outside Travel Awards 'Best Outfitter' Runner Up National Geographic Adventure Magazine - Best River & Sea Outfitter on Earth As Featured On 50 Tours of a Lifetime - National Geographic Traveler Mindy Gleason, O.A.R.S. Reservations Manager Condé Nast Traveler Top Travel Specialist 2007-2013 (River Rafting) Best of the Bay Area Winner

For consecutive years, O.A.R.S. has been named the "Best River & Sea Outfitter on Earth" by National Geographic Adventure and one of the top two outfitters in the world by Outside Magazine in its annual Active Travel Awards recognition program. In multiple years, O.A.R.S.trips have been honored as "50 Tours of a Lifetime" by National Geographic Traveler and since 2007, Condé Nast Traveler has recognized Mindy Gleason, O.A.R.S. Reservation Manager and International Adventure Travel Consultant, as Condé Nast Traveler's standalone Top Travel Specialist in the River Rafting category.

Questions about trips or making reservations? Contact info@oars.com or call 800-346-6277 in the USA or Canada or 1-209-736-4677 if outside the USA or Canada.
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O.A.R.S. Companies Inc.,
PO Box 67, Angels Camp, CA 95222