The six million acres at Denali National Park provide a home for all manner of wildlife, but are especially great for the 2,000 moose that roam the area. Fall is a great time to shoot them as the antlers of the males are fully grown and the coats of the females are particularly shiny after a summer of feasting.
The marshy land in the Okavango Delta attracts an impressive lion population. The prides in this African enclave have learned to swim in order to pursue their prey, and they have even been known to climb trees for shade. Lionesses watching over their cubs provide particularly arresting portrait subjects.
Zoologist Diane Fossey did her studies on gorilla behavior in Volcanoes National Park, and the mountains were the location for the scenic film about her life, Gorillas in the Mist. More than half of the world’s mountain gorillas—over 350 of them—reside in this area, made up of nine volcanoes. Dry season, which is May through October, is prime gorilla tracking time.
November through March is hatching season for the penguin population on King George Island, just south of the tip of South America. It’s also the “warmest” time of year—reaching 30-40 degrees F—providing a comfortable climate for viewing the gentoo, chinstrap, and adelie penguins. Visitors can come via cruises, or even zip in on a plane for a day trip from Chile.
There are plenty of howler monkeys, known for their distinctive call, and capuchin monkeys, with their signature white beards, inhabiting this beach-rimmed park in Costa Rica. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch a glimpse of the small, endangered squirrel monkeys in Manuel Antonio National Park, one only three places left in the world to see these creatures. Though monkeys can be spotted year-round, dry season in November through April is most convenient for humans.