The Outback Experience is proud to present a family special – Naturalist and Wildlife Camp. This specially crafted one-and-a-half day camp is a perfect opportunity for parents to get to bond with their children and experience the best that nature has to offer at the same time.
Staying at The Outback Farm & Homestay, our own property on the edge of a gleaming lake, this is the perfect gateway to experiencing the joys of birding, wildlife tracking, angling and wildlife photography. What’s better, with award-winning wildlife photographer Phillip Ross as your camp leader, you and your child are sure to have a fun-filled time getting to explore areas of Bannerghatta seldom visited by tourists.
The campsite is situated right on the fringes of the Bannerghatta National Park. This unique park, home to wild Asiatic elephants, boasts of being the world’s closest wilderness to a metropolis. The park is richly diverse and is also home to a tiger, leopards, wild dogs, sloth bears and an array of nocturnal wanderers including the rare honey badger or ratel in addition to more commonly sighted animals such as gaur, wild boar and various species of deer. The park is also a birdwatcher’s paradise, with over 150 species of bird, including the yellow-throated bulbul and rufous-bellied eagle. Be assured to sight at least 30 species within the property.
Enrol yourself for a family holiday like never before and watch your kids develop into budding young naturalists.
On arrival at The Outback Farm & Homestay in Bannerghatta, camp leaders Phillip & Samantha Ross will welcome all parents and our aspiring young naturalists to this beautiful campsite on the banks of a lake amidst the forest. After check-in, Phillip & Sam will introduce the property to you while you enjoy a refreshing welcome drink and later we will get to know each other through a fun ice-breaking name game.
After the game, Phillip will talk to you about ornithology and will lead you around the beautiful property in search of its avian wonders. We should come across at least 30 species over the hour we spend birding. Once back at the rooms, we’ll give in to the enticing smells coming in from the kitchen. Yes, lunch time has arrived and the chef reveals the delicacies prepared.
After a delicious lunch, a presentation on nature photography will be conducted and then it’s time to pull out your cameras. Phillip & Sam, will teach everyone about the ideal camera settings to use while shooting wildlife, how to carefully approach and photograph wildlife in order to capture those fantastic images and also the best ways to compose a beautiful image.
Phillip & Sam will now lead the group to the bird photography hide, where you and your child can practise what you’ve learnt from the photography lesson, and where you will get to see and photograph birds like never before.
After the hide photography session, we’ll embark on an exciting trek to a nearby hill from where we are treated to a panoramic view of the forests of Bannerghatta. From here, you and your child can witness an amazing sunset, click stunning landscape images and, if lucky, sight some of Bannerghatta’s wildlife in the valleys below. It’s a great place to spend the evening, bond with your child and practise what you’ve learnt from the photography lesson earlier. On the way down, we will learn about camera trapping and set up a camera trap, hoping that Bannerghatta’s nocturnal wanderers choose to walk by sometime during the night or in the wee hours of the morning.
Once back at the campsite, we will have a fun entertainment and sing-along session while enjoying the campfire, and hit the sack soon after a scrumptious dinner.
We awake to the sweet calls of the birds found within the campsite and walk out of our room’s to watch the mist rising over the lake and the sun rays lighting up the surrounding forests. After a hot beverage, it’s time to grab our fishing rods and bait, and head down to the water’s edge. Phillip & Sam, will introduce the art of angling to everyone, and you and your child will learn about the various fishing methods, types of tackle and species of fish found in the lake, and how to cast, set the hook and carefully retrieve the catch without hurting the fish. Please remember that all fish caught will be released back into the lake.
After a working up an appetite hooking onto some of the monsters in the lake, we rush to devour the breakfast buffet.
After a hearty breakfast, we eagerly leave to retrieve the camera trap. What may have crossed the trap during the night? Once the camera trap is checked, we’ll return to the campsite and play some fun games.
During the last hour of the camp, Phillip & Sam, will help put together the bird checklist and talk about wildlife conservation and the steps we can take in order to make a change.
Finally, since all good things come to an end, we bid farewell to beautiful Bannerghatta. On the way back we reminisce about the highlights of the camp and return to the city, after having created new memories with your young naturalists!