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Home Guides & Staff Staff Bios Aly Jacobsen

Aly Jacobsen

Aly was born and raised in the rustically charming countryside of southern Pennsylvania. She spent the majority of her childhood trying to get lost in the woods, learning about animals from her veterinarian father, and developing an incredible appreciation for nature. Aly got her first taste of international travel at a young age, spending a summer living with relatives on the slopes of the Rift Valley in Kenya. Both high school (Mercersburg Academy) and college (The College of William and Mary) afforded her the chance to study with many international students, where she experienced a world of new cultures, ideas and tasty foods. By this time, her love for the open road (or air space) and new experiences had become well established.

Aly’s travels with Natural Habitat Adventures have taken her from the cloud forests of Costa Rica to Nicaragua, Belize, Guatemala, the Galapagos Islands, Machu Picchu and into the Peruvian and Ecuadorian Amazon. The call of the wild has also taken her to India in search of her favorite animal, the bengal tiger, and kayaking through Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia. She has journeyed from the Canadian Arctic to the opposite end of the pole to explore Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands. Amidst such diverse destinations, Africa has a place in Aly's heart like no other. She has had the great fortune to spend time in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe and Malawi. Travels closer to home have included trips to Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks, the canyons of the American Southwest, and down to Mexico’s Baja Peninsula to kiss a gray whale! When not traveling or working in the office, Aly spends her free time playing in the mountains and eagerly awaiting her next adventure.
 

Kissing a friendly grey whale in the Magdalena Bay in Mexico was the most amazingly up close wildlife encounter – and one I’ll never forget.Hot air ballooning in Kafue, and the champagne bush brunch after, was a highlight of my trip to Zambia. Close encounters of the hippo kind. This big guy surprised our canoe party as much as we surprised him in Zimbabwe’s Mana Pools National Park.Kayaks are the perfect mode of transport on Lake Malawi from one great snorkel spot to another – and a welcome way to relax before or after safari.Iceberg off the port side and we’re steaming south.  My first glimpse of a massive iceberg in the Antarctic Ocean!One incredibly awe inspiring hour with the mountain gorillas in Uganda can feel like the wildlife experience of a lifetime.It’s a true toss up on whether tea and cookie breaks in the morning or savory snacks and sundowners in the evening are the better bonus on a trip into Tanzania’s famous Serengeti ecosystem.The smell of exotic spices, the calm turquoise waters and the echoes of the call to prayer set my soul at ease on the Indian Ocean island of Zanzibar. Yellowstone and the Tetons are a favorite destination closer to home. My mom and sister and I enjoyed a crisp spring evening waiting for Old Faithful to erupt.Everybody who has been to the Galapagos probably has their favorite sea lion picture.  This one is mine. We snorkeled with a very curious and playful set of young sea lions for hours one day. Blowing bubbles, turning somersaults, jumping out of the water – they imitated our every move!A dugout canoe ride along the Napo River and its tributaries was my favorite part of exploring Ecuador’s Amazon basin.Not your typical safari game drive. While visiting Botswana’s Kalahari Desert, I had the chance to try my hand at driving one of these over the pans, and learned that kikoy clothes can be both fashionable and functional in so many ways.The vast expanse of the Skeleton Coast in Namibia is an incredible sight! The colors change in every direction, from red to orange to purple, and the ever migrating sand dunes and desert grasses give you the feeling that the land itself is alive and moving beneath your feet.An exhilarating ride above and through the treetops is a unique way to explore the rainforest canopy in Costa Rica. I laughed the whole way across every single line!No polar bears in this Churchill den, but plenty of room for an Adventure Specialist willing to get a little dirty.My very first trip with NHA was an expedition through Alaska's Inside Passage, from Seattle to Juneau. I'll never forget the awe inspiring sound of ice calving in Glacier Bay National Park!

Aly's Awesome Adventures

2016 Wildlife Webinars

Every 1st & 3rd Tuesday of the month.

See the Full Schedule Here

Voted Best of Travel 2015

Our Base Camp Greenland trip is named Best Splurge by Outside magazine!

In the News

CNN recently joined Natural Habitat’s Polar Bear Photo Tour! Click here to watch.
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