Birdwatching Holidays

13 Items

We are currently planning the following tours and would be happy to forward a brochure on request. Please use the links below to view full tour descriptions.
As well as compiling impressive birdlists, our clients always enjoy carefully selected quality accommodation and a nice social atmosphere.

Sri Lanka ~ Birds, Leopards & Blue Whales – £2695

November 25, 2017 – December 9, 2017

Sri Lanka is only the size of Ireland, and yet it is one of the most biodiverse areas in southern Asia with, for example, 244 species of Butterflies alone! The list of bird species tops 430, including 33 endemics, and with the help of a highly experienced English-speaking guide, who will be with us throughout the tour, we should see all of them, including the rare Serendib Scops Owl, which was only discovered in 2001! Our visit coincides with the presence of winter visitors, including waders from Siberia and songbirds from the Himalayas. In addition to all the birds, Sri Lanka has a wealth of other wildlife and we can therefore expect to see Marsh Mugger Crocodile and various land mammals such as Grey Langur and Purple-faced Leaf Monkeys, Water Buffalo, Sambar and Spotted Deer, Wild Boar, Indian Fruit Bat, Sloth Bear, Leopard and Asian Elephant. On top of all this, our visit to the south coast is timed to coincide with a calm sea and the presence of Blue Whales, as well as several other whales and dolphins, which can often be seen from a boat at close range. We shall have two ’bites’ at this ’cherry’ and with so much to see this tropical island really is a paradise for all nature lovers.
SERENDIB SCOPS OWL

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Rajasthan & Gujarat ~ Lions, Tigers, Leopards & much much more! – £4125

January 3, 2018 – January 18, 2018

This fabulous tour of the northwestern Indian states of Rajasthan and Gujarat offers the amazing prospect of seeing not only Tiger and Leopard, but also the rare Asiatic Lion which is unique to the Gir National Park in Gujarat. Other possible stars of this ‘cat fest’ include Jungle and Desert Cats, while other mammals we may enjoy seeing include Asiatic Wolf and Jackal, Indian and Desert Foxes, Striped Hyena, Sloth Bear, Asiatic Wild Ass, Wild Boar, Blackbuck, Indian Gazelle, Blue Bull, Sambar and Spotted Deer and Large Indian Fruit Bat. We should also see Marsh Crocodile, Indian Rock Python and Bengal and Desert Monitor Lizards, and that still leaves a mouth-watering list of up to 300 species of birds!
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Hats off to Panama! – £4990

February 7, 2018 – February 25, 2018

Our three exclusive bases include the world famous Canopy Tower, ranked number 91 in the top 100 birding sites of the world, with a bird list of almost 550 species! With a breathtaking 360° panorama of Soberanía National Park, few places on earth offer such a comfortable way of observing life in the rainforest canopy. No wonder it is voted one of the top fifty eco-lodges in the world! Our other two bases are owned by the same proprietor, and operated to the same high standard. Canopy Lodge, in a picturesque village inside an extinct volcanic crater at a higher elevation, less than two hours from the tower, has just twelve luxurious bedrooms, while Canopy Camp offers ‘camping’ in style, in eight large safari-type tents, on platforms with chairs and private bathrooms. This fabulous location is at the very end of the Pan-American Highway, next to Darién National Park, an impenetrable jungle on the border with Colombia, where we can hopefully see the magnificent Harpy Eagle! All three lodges have numerous superb birding sites close by, and so there is no need to travel far each day, and we will be accompanied throughout this top quality tour by the lodges’ own English-speaking professional guides, who will be familiar with all the locations, their sights and sounds, and so we can hope to see 350 – 400 different birds!
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Islay & Jura ~ Birds & Otters – £865

March 11, 2018 – March 16, 2018

On Islay there are flocks of wild geese in their tens of thousands, gathering in anticipation of the spring thaw in Greenland. Peak numbers include up to 35,000 Barnacle Geese (70% of the Greenland population) grazing alongside 14,000 White-fronted Geese of the Greenland sub-species; spectacular sights and sounds, and among this throng it is sometimes possible to pick out the odd vagrant Snow Goose or ‘true’ Canada Goose. Loch Indaal, a large sea loch, attracts numerous Red-throated, Black-throated and Great Northern Divers, occasional Whooper Swans and pale-bellied Brent Geese, plus Slavonian Grebe, Long-tailed Duck, Common Scoter, Wigeon, Red-breasted Merganser, up to 2,000 Scaup, Black Guillemot and various waders including Purple Sandpiper, as well as Rock Pipit, Twite and Snow Bunting. As if this were not enough, Islay is a stronghold of the rare Chough, bouncing on the air with fingered wings, and both islands are also home to a wealth of raptors including Merlin, Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Peregrine, Hen Harrier, Buzzard and majestic Golden and White-tailed Eagles. Swarming with birds, Islay in late winter offers some of the best birding anywhere in Britain, in a wild landscape, where ancient high standing stone crosses have witnessed the history of this Gaelic isle through three millennia! On a previous trip we enjoyed daily sightings of Otters on Islay, and on Jura, over five previous visits, we have a 100% success rate for very close views of Otters!
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The Western Isles ~ Hebridean Adventure – £985

May 24, 2018 – May 29, 2018

The Western Isles are one of Britain’s wildest places, home to some of our rarest birds, including Red-necked Phalarope, Black-throated Diver and half of Britain’s Corncrakes! This westernmost outpost of Britain also receives transatlantic vagrants such as American Coot, and is regularly visited by Arctic wanderers such as Gyr Falcon and Snowy Owl!
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The Western Isles ~ Hebridean Adventure ‘take II’ – £985

May 29, 2018 – June 3, 2018

The Western Isles are one of Britain’s wildest places, home to some of our rarest birds, including Red-necked Phalarope, Black-throated Diver and half of Britain’s Corncrakes! This westernmost outpost of Britain also receives transatlantic vagrants such as American Coot, and is regularly visited by Arctic wanderers such as Gyr Falcon and Snowy Owl!
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North Spitsbergen Cruise ~ A Polar Bear Special – £4245

June 18, 2018 – June 27, 2018

Spitsbergen, meaning ‘pointed mountains’, is the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago, which straddles the 80th parallel, just 600 miles from the North Pole. This is a remote and wild wonderland of rugged snow-clad peaks, dramatic fiords sculpted by mighty glaciers, and tundra, which in the perpetual daylight of midsummer, is carpeted with wild flowers. The highly specialised wildlife offers a wealth of unforgettable experiences. With almost a quarter of the world’s Polar Bears living here, we have the very real chance of encountering this ‘king of the Arctic’ as well as other high Arctic specialities like Bowhead Whale, Walrus, Bearded and Ringed Seals, Arctic Fox, Sabine’s and Ivory Gulls, Grey Phalarope in resplendent red breeding plumage and some spectacularly huge seabird colonies, with Little Auks alone numbering around 15 million!
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Ecuador ~ Andean Highlights – £2275

September 19, 2018 – September 27, 2018

The lofty Andes have a range of habitats which vary with the altitude, and so Ecuador has the world’s fourth longest bird list, despite its small size! To minimise travelling time, with just two lodges, this extension concentrates on the area around Quito, which has more than 10% of the world’s second largest bird family, the dazzling Hummingbirds, and so we may see up to thirty different species of these stunning little birds, including the amazing Sword-billed and Giant Hummingbirds, as well as a multicoloured spectrum of other exotic species, such as Golden-headed Quetzal, Toucan Barbet, Plate-billed Mountain Toucan, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, numerous Tanagers and even the mighty Andean Condor! No wonder this area is ranked number 64 in the world’s top 100 birding sites! Throughout this fantastic trip we shall be accompanied by Juan Carlos Calvachi, one of Ecuador’s top bird guides, who knows all the songs and calls.
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Voyage to The Falkland Islands – £6845

October 27, 2018 – November 9, 2018

We sail from Puerto Madryn on the coast of Patagonia to the Falkland Islands for an unsurpassable wilderness and wildlife experience. The Falklands are home to the endemic Falkland Steamer Duck and Cobb’s Wren, plus restricted range specialities like Blackish Cinclodes and Striated Caracara, the world’s largest colony of Black-browed Albatross and five breeding species of Penguins; Magellanic, Macaroni, Rockhopper, Gentoo and the mighty King, totalling around one million birds! As well as all these birds, literally within touching distance, we can also see a variety of whales and dolphins, plus South American Fur Seals, Southern Sea Lions and impressive Southern Elephant Seals, the world’s largest seal, with staggeringly colossal 16.5 foot long bulls weighing up to 8,800 pounds! Imagine getting close to all of this and more.

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Sri Lanka ~ Birds, Leopards & Blue Whales – £2895

November 24, 2018 – December 8, 2018

Sri Lanka is only the size of Ireland, and yet it is one of the most biodiverse areas in southern Asia with, for example, 244 species of Butterflies alone! The list of bird species tops 430, including 33 endemics, and with the help of a highly experienced English-speaking guide, who will be with us throughout the tour, we should see all of them, including the rare Serendib Scops Owl, which was only discovered in 2001! Our visit coincides with the presence of winter visitors, including waders from Siberia and songbirds from the Himalayas. In addition to all the birds, Sri Lanka has a wealth of other wildlife and we can therefore expect to see Marsh Mugger Crocodile and various land mammals such as Grey Langur and Purple-faced Leaf Monkeys, Water Buffalo, Sambar and Spotted Deer, Wild Boar, Indian Fruit Bat, Sloth Bear, Leopard and Asian Elephant. On top of all this, our visit to the south coast is timed to coincide with a calm sea and the presence of Blue Whales, as well as several other whales and dolphins, which can often be seen from a boat at close range. We shall have two ’bites’ at this ’cherry’ and with so much to see this tropical island really is a paradise for all nature lovers.
SERENDIB SCOPS OWL

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Highland Hogmanay – £1295

December 29, 2018 – January 5, 2019

This exciting trip has been organised in conjunction with Heatherlea, one of the premier Scottish tour operators, and the only one in the highlands awarded a Five Star Wildlife Experience, by the Scottish Tourist Board. Their experienced guides have a detailed local knowledge of the area and know where best to look for the specialities of the wonderful Caledonian pine forest; Crested Tit, Scottish Parrot Crossbill and the elusive Capercaillie. At this time of year dawn is at a civilised hour and so we won’t even need early starts to look for these magnificent birds! A little further afield, we can also expect to see Golden Eagle, Black and Red Grouse, and Ptarmigan and Mountain Hare, both of which will be pure white, in tune with the dramatic scenery of the mountain tops. We will also visit the Black Isle and the bird rich Moray coast, where we can hope to see all three Divers, Slavonian Grebe, Pink-footed Geese, Red Kite, Hen Harrier, Merlin, Peregrine and possibly White-tailed Eagle, plus Short-eared Owl, Iceland and Glaucous Gulls, Twite, Snow Bunting, waders galore, and large concentrations of sea duck including Red-breasted Merganser, Eider, Long-tailed Duck, Scaup and Common, Velvet and maybe even Surf Scoters. We shall also listen out for news of possible northern rarities such as Snow Goose, King Eider and Great Grey Shrike. By the end of this rewarding trip we should have seen at least 85 bird species, as well as some exciting mammals, and all amid superb scenery.

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Cruise the Enchanted Galapagos Islands – £4500

July 16, 2019 – July 25, 2019

Straddling the equator, 600 miles west of the South American coast, is a remote and spectacular volcanic archipelago, nicknamed ‘The Enchanted Islands’, inhabited by an astonishing array of unique creatures, which inspired Charles Darwin to formulate his Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection in 1859. The animals here are so incredibly tame and obliging that going ashore is like becoming invisible, as one literally has to step over the fearless wildlife! Due to their isolation, many of the islands’ species are endemic, such as the five species of mammal and twenty different reptiles, including numerous prehistoric looking Marine Iguanas, the only lizard which feeds at sea, capable of diving down to thirty feet, and the iconic lumbering Giant Tortoises, which have such a long lifespan that some present day individuals may have been around when Darwin published his theory! There are also twenty-eight endemic bird species, including the celebrated Darwin’s Finches, of which there are thirteen, all derived from a common ancestor, and each now occupying its own niche thanks to a remarkable variation in bill size and shape, ranging from the deep heavy bill of the Large Ground Finch, to the fine pointed beak of the Warbler Finch. In addition to these extraordinary land birds, there are large colonies of equally approachable seabirds including around 18,000 pairs of the majestic Waved Albatross, which perform their comical courtship displays on Española (also known as Hood, as each island has both Spanish and English names). No wonder then that The Galapagos are ranked as the fifth most important birding site in the whole world!
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Ecuador ~ Andean Highlights – £2895

July 24, 2019 – August 1, 2019

The lofty Andes have a range of habitats which vary with the altitude, and so Ecuador has the world’s fourth longest bird list, despite its small size! To minimise travelling time, with just two lodges, this extension concentrates on the area around Quito, which has more than 10% of the world’s second largest bird family, the dazzling Hummingbirds, and so we may see up to thirty different species of these stunning little birds, including the amazing Sword-billed and Giant Hummingbirds, as well as a multicoloured spectrum of other exotic species, such as Golden-headed Quetzal, Toucan Barbet, Plate-billed Mountain Toucan, Andean Cock-of-the-Rock, numerous Tanagers and even the mighty Andean Condor! No wonder this area is ranked number 64 in the world’s top 100 birding sites!

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