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Birding - Best Tours & Trips

Birders are among the most flexible travelers around, always ready to pick up at a moment's notice and fly off somewhere to spot a rare species. They also love to take birding tours to places like Costa Rica, Panama, the Galapagos, Trinidad, Alaska, and Colombia, where they can take it slow and add to their life lists. Whether you're a dedicated birder or more of a devoted backyard birdwatcher who wants to learn more, you can be sure you'll find a birding tour that's just your speed.

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Top Birding Experiences and Attractions


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Birding Trip Reviews


371
Birding Tour Reviews - Summary
99% Recommend

4.8 out of 5
Excellent 302 Great 61 Average 7 Disappointing 0 Terrible 1
Value
4.8 Guide
4.8 Activities
4.8 Lodging
4.8 Transportation
4.8 Meals
4.8

A

Recommends

Brilliant October 2018

5.0

Discover Namibia - Camping

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Certainly the way to see Namibia - early starts frequently and rough roads
but all fades into significance when put into perspective. If your're
considering it, but are uncertain, just book it and enjoy.
Difficult. Standing on top of a massive sand dune at sunrise? The 800 year
old dead acacia trees against the white salt pan, red dunes and blue sky in
Deadvlei? Or elephants drinking at a water hole at sunset? I cannot decide.


Our group leader, Ronney, was excellent. Nothing was too much trouble,
constantly attentive, we lacked nothing. He seems to do the camping trips
end-to-end so there's a good change of getting him.


In July/ August the desert is COLD. A duvet jacket is not out of place, as
are fleece trousers, warm socks and a hat. The days can also be cold despite
the sun, only warming up towards midday. As you go north, after the third
day, it gets warmer and the warm gear becomes unnecessary.
Camping is fun and confortable, the tents are easy to put up (the staff are
supposed to do it, but we found it more fun to do it ourselves, which they
appreciated) but getting organised in the dark in the tent is a pain. I would
recommend a lantern to hang from the centre loop of the tent roof (intended
for mozzie nets which aren't necessary most of the time) and of course good
head torches are vital. Don't bring a cheap one.
Toilets at the campsites are immaculate at virtually all the sites. As are
the service station toilets - you could eat off the floor in most of them.
Even the longdrop toilets (thankfully very few and none in the campsites) are
clean and don't smell. The whole country is clean: I don't think I saw a
single piece of litter the whole trip. It puts our country to shame.
Everything gets a bit dusty and sandy. Packing clothes and sleeping bag into
dustproof bags (or even drybags) helps to keep you organised and everything
stays relatively dustfree.
For all but the most hardened campers, an inflatable pillow is useful. If for
nothing else, sitting on it helps iron out some of the jarring on the dirt
roads!


Batteries AA and AAA are widely available , although quite expensive, so
better to bring plenty of spares. A good camera with a lot of memory cards.
If you are using an SLR then a long lens is a big advantage for the animals
(I took a 500mm) but a wideangle wasn't used.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Action packed October 2018

4.0

Discover Namibia - Camping

  • Value 4.0
  • Guide 4.0
  • Activities 4.0
  • Lodging 4.0
  • Transportation 4.0
  • Meals 4.0
Very good ,well organised holiday.
Enjoyed the hotel and camping food .
No day was boring.
Seeing a leopard.
Climbing sand dune 45 at sunrise.


Ronney was an excellent leader.
Communicated well with the group and took good care of us.


Take plenty of warm clothing in July August
We were surprised how cold it was at the start of the camping
Temperature in the north much much warmer .We went from one extreme to the
other.
Camping is not glamping but one step up from my last camping trip as we had
proper toilets and showers .
Quite a lot of travelling involved ,sometimes on bumpy terrain.


Very good holiday , but I would agree with ‘ not for the faint hearted’


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

How many elephants does it take to fill a waterhole? October 2018

5.0

Discover Namibia - Camping

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
I always hope that my annual holiday will deliver a "wow" moment. This trip
delivered three. Firstly, the trip from Sessriem to Walvis Bay was
astonishing, passing through several radically different environments in one
day - from the fringes of the Namib desert, via plains and mountains to the
sea; then the incredible views from Vingerklip - reminiscent of California;
then best of all the proliferation of wildlife at Etosha - we had 40
elephants young and old playing at the waterhole just yards from where we
were sitting at Okaukuejo. Then there were the walking lions, the sleeping
lions, zebras, springbok, kudu and a dozen giraffes at another waterhole. Oh,
we finally got to spot a family of wild cheetahs after a long game drive near
Namatoni. Mustn't forget Dune 45 and Dead Vlei and the fact that often ours
was the only vehicle on the road.
Etosha, Etosha, Etosha. I guess we were particularly lucky to visit during
the dry season, but even though I knew our chances of seeing the "big"
mammals would be good, I could not have predicted the vast numbers we
actually saw. We ticked off more than 40 species of animal - birds and
mammals - in Etosha overall.


Shane was quite a character who clearly knows Namibia well and is proud of
his country. He ensured everyone in the group got what they wanted from the
trip. Our driver, Benson, was also a star, coping with the harsh African
roads, despite having to repair a double puncture and a shattered window. He
also proved to be a decent campsite cook.


If you love spectacular scenery and spotting wild animals, then this is a
must trip for you.


We took South African Rand to Namibia from the UK and this was readily
accepted as if it was their own currency. We also flew out a day earlier than
the group. This gave us a chance to look round Windhoek, but also meant we
had the opportunity to recover from the overnight flight before starting the
tour.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Awesome Safari October 2018

5.0

Discover Namibia - Camping

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
Whilst the driving at times becomes slightly tiresome the sights and nature
where fantastic. The group were wonderful and the guide Ben was extremely
informative.
At Etosha watering hole where we saw 30 elephants walking with there young


He was incredible


Bring a cushion for the trip and definitely bring some decent binoculars and
camera


I would recommend it to anyone who loves animals


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

A

Recommends

Loved it! October 2018

5.0

Discover Namibia - Camping

  • Value 5.0
  • Guide 5.0
  • Activities 5.0
  • Lodging 5.0
  • Transportation 5.0
  • Meals 5.0
My husband and I have never done a trip like this and we have never camped
before. We loved it. The tour is interesting and varied. The walk in the
dessert was spectacular, climbing the Dune was quite hard, but watching the
sun rise made the climb worth every step. Eating supper round a camp fire
was really nice and sociable and the food was really good. We are vegetarian
and we were well looked after. We saw hundreds of animals: giraffe, rhino
(and a baby rhino), lions, elephants and their babies, springbok, zebra,
ostrich, fabulous birds, warthogs, hyena, jackal, many types of deer and
antelope, baboons... We wish we could do it all over again.
The most inspirational moment of the trip was the herd of elephants that came
to the waterhole in Etosha. So many other animals came too. It was a really
beautiful experience.


The group leader, Ben, was excellent. He looked after us with care and
consideration. He had excellent knowledge on every question that was asked
and he was very good at finding the animals for us to see. The crew (the
driver and the cook - Jonas and Orbert) were also excellent.


July was a good time to travel because it was not too hot during the day.
The temperature does fall at night so a really good sleeping bag and a
blanket (if you feel the cold) is a good plan. The facilities at each site
vary so it is better if you can be flexible. You need malaria tablets, but
there were very few insects at that time of year - it may be different at
other times. We are very cautious so we had insect repellent clothes. You
can get clothes washed at the hotel in Swakopmund and one or two other
places, so you need to plan clothes carefully. Some of the roads are very
bumpy, but then we were travelling through the dessert. It would definitely
help if you have a head torch with you.


If you have a little bit of adventure tucked in your spirit and you like so
see animals in the wild - this is a fantastic trip.


Read more

Operator Exodus Travels

Birding Tours and Travel Guide


Birding Attractions & Landmarks Guide

Birders are among the most flexible travelers around, always ready to pick up at a moment's notice and fly off somewhere to spot a rare species. They also love to take birding tours to places like Costa Rica, Panama, the Galapagos, Trinidad, Alaska, and Colombia, where they can take it slow and add to their life lists.

Whether you're a dedicated birder or more of a devoted backyard birdwatcher who wants to learn more, you can be sure you'll find a birding tour that's just your speed.

To a dedicated birder, nothing is so thrilling as to search for -- and find! -- a new life bird. The search will bear any kind of difficulty, from getting up at 3 am to hiking through remote mountain jungles, just for the excitement and exhilaration … along with the sense of accomplishment. Novice birders can experience this same delight, reveling in the exquisite beauty of birds seen through binoculars and beginning to learn the basics of “field marks” and the overall gestalt of a bird (casually referred to as “jizz”).

A Worldwide Activity

One of the true benefits to birdwatching – and one reason why birding is one of the fastest growing sports today – is that birds can be seen anywhere. Hence, birdwatching can be combined with all other elements of exciting travel. Join a birding tour to Bhutan and celebrate the Black Crane festival with the King! Revel in the sight of magnificent Albatrosses soaring over peaks in Kauai; or wade through African swamps in Uganda to find the prehistoric-looking Shoebill.

You can watch birds at the Parthenon, and then travel with your guide to the smaller Greek islands to immerse yourself – literally alone! – in the beauty of ancient ruins, watching whimsical Hoopoes. Birding in India includes a visit to the Taj Mahal, followed by immersion in deeply mystical forests; Svalbard and the great northern forests are fantastic places to spot birds.

Photography

Bird photography can be especially difficult; birding tour guides (and other guests) can provide beneficial assistance and give pointers for managing to photograph birds hiding in elusive dark forests or winging through the skies. In general, having a telephoto lens will be extremely helpful to see farther away finds.

If you're lucky enough to get up close, a macro lens will capture beatuiful colors and detail! Because you will be outdoors, using a Neutral Density filter or Polarizing filter can help with glare, and make sure your subject doesn't become washed out. There are techniques for particular local conditions which can be gleaned from guides but may be more difficult to figure out for yourself.

Benefits of Using a Guide

When arriving in a new area, it can be extremely difficult (and disappointing) to try to figure out the likely locale and typical timing of local birds unless you are familiar with the ecosystem. These details can make or break a birding experience, and are very hard to glean from reading travel or birding books.

It’s hard to know which birds will respond to a playback; which birds are likely to be low in the understory or perched on tops of trees; even something as particular as which side of the road they like to frequent!

A local guide knows where to look, when to look, and how to look for each bird … and if he or she suddenly hears birdsong, will know which bird has vocalized (and can quickly find the proper playback for assistance).

Benefits of a Planned Tour

Although local bird guides for most areas can be found from an internet search, there are significant advantages to signing up for a tour package, both for experienced and novice birders. The tour will provide you with a guide who speaks your language, which is instrumental in finding birds.

Imagine trying to understand “it’s hidden behind a small branch on the left side of the ebony tree” in a foreign language. Even “see where my laser is pointing?” is difficult sometimes!

This leader will also arrange for additional local guides, to serve as an extra repository of knowledge and the latest details for rare or unusual birds sighted locally – and your leader will be able to communicate with them in their language in case you can’t!

The advantage of having hotels, meals, and travel logistics arranged cannot be overemphasized … leaving you free to enjoy the birds! This is exceptionally important if you want to travel around a destination to different birding ecosystems. It is a joy to have the arrangements made for you!

Another benefit from signing up for a birding tour is the other people on the tour itself. There is great pleasure in sharing the adventure; making new friends who have a common interest and expanding your network of connections.

Each night after a day of birdwatching, the group will gather and discuss the day’s sightings, cementing your memory of each bird. Photos will be shared; anecdotes related. Even a novice’s foibles will be fondly reminisced – the camaraderie of a group of like-minded individuals can be extraordinary!

Related Guides

Popular Continents:

AfricaAustralia & PacificSouth AmericaCaribbean & Central Amercia & North America

Popular Countries:

PeruEcuadorBrazilCosta RicaTanzaniaKenyaNew ZealandPapua New Guinea & United States

Popular Birdwatching Spots:                                                           

Manu National Park, Peru; Cape May, U.S.; Kruger National Park, South Africa; Borneo, Malaysia; Panama Canal, Panama; Royal Manas National Park, Bhutan; Veracruz & Yucatan Peninsula; Mexico, Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta, Colombia; and Many More

Popular Amongst: 

Nature Lovers50+ 

 

Related Trips & Tours


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All Birding tours, river cruises, expedition cruises, and adventure trips. Find the best guided trips and expert planned vacation and holiday packages. Average rating of 4.8 for all Birding trips.

754 trips from 99 tour companies with 371 reviews

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