Arrive in colorful and culturally rich Bali, a tropical paradise of rice paddies, temples, volcanoes and spectacular beaches. This is the first stop on a journey halfway around the world to wildlife rescue centers where you’ll have the opportunity to work with rare and endangered species like orangutans, babirusas, sea eagles, sun bears, cassowaries, sea turtles, gibbons and peacocks. But first, begin with a thrilling rafting adventure down the Ayung, Bali’s longest river at close to 46 miles. Before digging in to the veterinary medicine you came for, visit the Tegenungan Waterfall, which is breathtakingly surrounded by lush jungle.
No time is wasted as you get to work at the wildlife rescue center. Here, part of the focus is on avian and exotic animal medicine. Log hours alongside veterinarians while learning how to perform necropsies on birds as well as fecal analysis and physical examinations. Practice both preventative and rehabilitation medicine as you help with ongoing re-release efforts. Find real reward in volunteering with endangered species at the center and make a positive impact on their chance of long-term survival. In addition to your work at the rescue center, get a behind-the-scenes look at the Bali Bird Park, learn how to handle snakes in a workshop, visit a cat-centric village and take a break from vet life to experience Bali’s unique temples.
Travel to Ubud, Bali’s cultural center. This area is distinct for its unique crafts and rich history and for being a place of natural healing. That healing spirit extends to animals as you volunteer at a community spay and neuter clinic, visit a monkey forest and conclude your service with check-ups of Bali dogs being protected in canine foster homes. You’ll have plenty of time to soak up Balinese and Ubudian traditions by attending an authentic Kecak Fire Dance, taking part in a batik-making workshop and spending time exploring nearby villages.
Refreshed and eager to get back in the water and complete the Rescue course, take a high-speed ferry to Gili Air, the smallest of Indonesia’s three Gili Islands. Off the beaten path, you’ll find plenty of white sand beaches but no roads or cars, the perfect spot for hunkering down to perform your final scenarios and become certified PADI Rescue Divers! Embark on two or three dives a day, including a night dive and participate in an all-island scavenger hunt. Practice stand-up paddle boarding, yoga and meditation and meet with Gili Island elders to learn about the life and history of the islands, its strong community ties and a culture that revolves around fishing the surrounding seas.
Venture to South Denpasar, in Serangan, to learn about marine animal protection. Like many animals in this region, turtles are endangered. Your work is focused on educating the public about ways to support turtle populations and providing sanctuary for young turtles until they are old enough to be released. As program comes to a close, we also explore Manta Point’s pristine reef in search of wild giant manta rays and surf the rolling waves of Kuta Beach.