17 most biodiverse places on earth
1. The Daintree, Queensland, Australia
Famously known as the place where ‘the rainforest meets the Reef’, the Daintree, in North Queensland is home to one of the largest ranges of animals and plants on earth. Although it is wildly popular, you can still experience the indigenous atmosphere of the place.
2. Cloud forests of Ecuador
Mainland Ecuador has three general regions, Amazon, Sierra and Pacific Coast. Traveling up from the coast and over the Andes, you pass through an array of ecosystems. The cloud forests occur on both sides of the Andes (East and West) and contain incredible biodiversity, especially of birds.
3. The Amazon, Amazon-North, Brazil
Amazon is the world’s largest rainforest. The majority of the forest (60%) is contained in Brazil, yet extends into Colombia, Peru and other countries in the South America. Famed for its immense biodiversity, it is home to a third of all the world’s species.
4. Alaska’s backcountry, United States
The vast backcountry rainforest is the largest expanse of temperate rainforest on the planet. Don’t skip the Chilkoot Inlet, near Haines in Southeast Alaska, that lead up through old growth forest into the mountains.
5. Sapo National Park, Monrovia, Liberia
Sapo National Park in Sinoe County, Liberia, is the countries largest protected area of rainforest and it’s the countries only national park. It is also one of the last places on Earth to experience virgin rainforest. If you wish to visit Sapo, please note, it’s vital to inform the appropriate authorities and have a professional support network.
6. Monteverde Park, Costa Rica
Monteverde Park is located atop Costa Rica’s continental divide, looking down over coastal towns that dot the country’s shoreline. The park is home to over one hundred mammal species, four hundred species of bird, tens of thousands of different insects and two and a half thousand different plants, including more than 400 different kinds of orchid.
7. Mt. Kinabalu National Park, Sabah, Malaysia
Mt. Kinabalu National Park is one of the first national parks in Malaysia and the country’s first World Heritage Site since 2000. The park is located on slopes of the massif and is Southeast Asia’s highest protected park. It’s an excellent place to see the diverse range of Borneo’s endemic plants and animals.
8. Sinharaja Forest, Sabaragamuwa, Sri Lanka
Located in south-west Sri Lanka, Sinharaja is the country’s last viable area of primary tropical rainforest. More than 60% of the trees are endemic and many of them are considered rare.
9. Chapada dos Veadeiros and Emas National Park, Mato Grosso Central, Brazil
Chapada dos Veadeiros and Emas National Park are habitats that characterize the Cerrado – one of the world’s oldest and most diverse tropical ecosystems. They have acted as a refuge for species during periods of climate change.
10. Dja Faunal Reserve, Cameroon
The Dja Faunal Reserve was founded in 1950 and it is an integral part of the rain forests that form the Congo Basin. This vast range is one of the largest and best-protected African rainforests: 90% (5,260 sq km) of its landscape remains undisturbed. The Reserve is home to many animal and plant species, several of which are globally threatened (western lowland gorilla, chimpanzee, forest elephant).
11. Mount Field National Park, Tasmania, Australia
Mount Field National Park is a national park in Tasmania, Australia, 64 km northwest of Hobart. The landscape ranges from eucalyptus temperate rainforest to alpine moorland. You can travel from incredible old growth Swamp Gum forest (the tallest flowering plant in the world) and massive tree ferns into rainforest dominated by species found nowhere else on the planet.
12. Kahuzi-Biega National Reserve, Bukavu, DR Congo
Homes one of the last communities of 250 eastern lowland gorillas. Conversation groups are working to protect the species from poachers who are present in the Congo. The park is named after Mt. Kahuzi (3,308m) and Mt. Biega (2, 790m) located in the South Kivu Province, eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo.
13. Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, Bolivia
Noel Kempff Mercado National Park is a national park in northeast Santa Cruz Department, Bolivia, on the border with Brazil. It one of the largest and most intact parks in the Amazon Basin.
14. Gunung Leuser National Park, Sumatra, Indonesia
Gunung Leuser National Park is Indonesia’s largest reserves and one of these species is the endangered Sumatran Tiger. Of the estimated 400 Sumatran Tigers still living in Sumatra, more than 110 live in the park.
15. Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve, Mexico
Sian Ka’an is located on the east coast of the Yucatán peninsula, this biosphere reserve contains tropical forests, mangroves and marshes, as well as a large marine section intersected by a barrier reef.
16. Periyar Tiger Reserve, Jalpaiguri, India
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the 27 tiger reserves in India. It is located high up in the Western Ghats of Kerala. It spreads over 777 sq km of rainforest and shelters tigers, elephants, bison, langurs and a host of smaller wildlife.
17. Manú National Park, Peru
Manú National Park is huge covering 1.5 million hectors. It is a biosphere reserve located in Madre de Dios and Paucartambo, Cusco. The park is an area protected by the Peruvian government. Before gaining this status the park was conserved thanks to its inaccessibility. Jaguars are often sighted.