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Mark Jordahl

There are two ways to travel—you can pass through a place, or you can immerse yourself in it. Travel that is steeped in knowledge and awareness gives the visitor a richer experience and shows respect to destinations and their communities. Mark has spent more than 20 years working in conservation and travel and is passionate about helping people learn about and explore the amazing places this world has to offer.

While doing his master's research on conservation education in Murchison Falls National Park, Uganda, he realized that in many parts of the world, wildlife conservation and tourism are intimately connected. Tourism funds the operations of national parks, helps people around the world care about threatened and endangered species and, when done right, incentivizes local communities to be partners in conservation by bringing in much-needed income. On the other side of the equation, active conservation efforts protect the beautiful places and charismatic species that people want to see. If people stop visiting national parks and other protected areas, those sanctuaries will not survive long.

Mark's travels over the years have taken him to Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Mexico, Alaska, Brazil, Canada, Scotland, India, Nepal, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Belgium, Germany, The Netherlands, Sweden, England, Turkey, and Honduras. Top on his bucket list are Antarctica, Botswana, Namibia, the Galapagos and China.

In his work at Nat Hab as manager of our pre-departure communications, Mark hopes to send travelers off not just with packing lists, but with an understanding of the conservation issues in their destinations and a belief that they can have a positive impact on the world around them. Mark is also a proud member of Nat Hab’s Green Team, which actively looks for ways to increase the sustainability of our office and our trips.

“One’s destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things.” — Henry Miller
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Mark's Adventures
    Does an animal exist that is cooler than a polar bear?!? Seeing these powerful creatures up close in Churchill, Manitoba is a completely unforgettable experience.Layovers en-route to Africa are a great way to “see” Europe. My son, Nile, makes sure I “see no evil” in Brussels, Belgium.Sightseeing with my son at the Blue Mosque in Turkey. You know you are in an amazing city when you don’t bother to stop at buildings that are “only” 1,000 years old.We stopped in the middle of a mountain-bike safari in Lake Mburu National Park, Uganda, to try to help this zebra get un-stuck. The park service ended up having to pull it out with a truck.Sailing on a dhow off the coast of Lamu Island, Kenya, home of the longest-inhabited Swahili town in the world.Watching the rare hybrid solar eclipse in Pakwach, Uganda.Just trying to earn my keep in northern Uganda.Who knew it could get so cold in the Ethiopian highlands?!? This was the first night on a trek in the Simien Mountains.One of MANY flat tires in Serengeti. Thanks to Tanzania National Park staff for all the help!That’s me driving my Toyota station wagon in Tanazania on what was intended to be a trip around Lake Victoria, passing through the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater. Let’s just say it didn’t quite work out as planned. The view from the float plane as we dropped into Ford’s Terror Wilderness in southeast Alaska for a week-long kayaking expedition.You can almost make out Denali in the haze in the background here.My guiding career started right here, along the Lynn Canal in southeast Alaska. Still one of my favorite places in the world! Humpback whales and sea lions frequently escorted us on our paddles.Joining a community meeting in a village near Hyderabad, India.Just another statue at Borobudur Temple in Indonesia.On the way out to snorkel at the Perenthian Islands off the east coast of Malaysia. We were accompanied by dolphins and flying fish the entire way, and watched a giant sea turtle lay eggs on the island!Boudhanath Temple in Kathmandu, Nepal. There aren’t many other places in the world where you can combine such fascinating, ancient culture with the ability to trek in the highest mountains in the world!On top of 13,200 ft. Forester Pass while through-hiking the 210-mile John Muir Trail. One of the best experiences of my life!During my first real trip out of the U.S., a friend and I decided to go backpacking in Itatiaia National Park in Brazil, where the movie The Emerald Forest was filmed. Just a suggestion – never go hiking off-trail in a jungle! It’s…ummm…easy to get lost.
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