How wild can you get?

I have always been a nature and wildlife addict. Well, who isn’t?

But, strange as it may sound to some,  I love to get my hands dirty in soil, squeeze the black earth in my palms. Or, sniff out the smell of the salty ocean as I’m drawing close to it. Or, the feeling  that I get when in the vicinity of wild animals… as insignificant as a pinprick and yet majestic as the chosen one.

So when I want to take a break from the  bustling commotion of New York City (every New Yorker needs it) I tend to reach out for this kind of lesser known natural haven.

Here’s the other thing I may as well confess to. Off late, I am loving the inevitable infusion of the digital in our every step. Rather than shying away from the new technologies out there, I have found myself devouring every little digital launch that may affect me as a consumer and change my behavioral patterns.

So, when I come across a fascinating site that combines both of these passions, I become  a child in a candy shop.

Check out Protected Planet. Lets say you’re thinking of a holiday in India and would like to see wildlife. This site takes you deeper into your trip-planning agenda by providing fascinating  tools to explore lesser-known protected wildlife areas. All from the comfort of your laptop .

The site also has a Wiki (see Wikipedia) based crowd sourcing element. After your trip to the Rhino Sanctuary in India, for example, you can add your own notes and photos for others. You can document your journey with personal tips and provide more info for  the next set of explorers.

Protectedplanet.net is the new face of the World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA), a joint initiative between International Union of the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and United Nations Environment Program (UNEP-WCMC). This program hopes to increase  the potential for increased visits to these spots and the much needed revenue that comes with it.

Gosh, now I have a whole world to discover. While I race back to the protectedplanet screen, I suggest you start exploring too. December is round the corner and tickets will not get cheaper.

http://www.protectedplanet.net/

http://www.iucn.org/

http://www.unep.org/

Photo courtesy:  WWF

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