Our Tours: What to Expect

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The perfect formula for superb birding tours

How can the 13th person in line see a skulker?
While a group of 12 people can be fun in the Galapagos or in the savannas of Africa, group size is something we take very seriously on forest trails in South America, Asia, or Africa. We limit group size to eight on tours that spend significant time in enclosed forest habitats, where silence is vital to seeing secretive species.
Guaranteed departures
The only thing more annoying than being packed in like sardines is losing your tour because of insufficient interest. To counter this, Tropical Birding is the world’s only company that offers guaranteed departures on certain tours. This means that even if you are the only one booked, the trip proceeds exactly as planned, just you and your own personal guide. Even when we do have a minimum required number, it is very low at two, three, or four people. To date we have never disappointed anyone by canceling their reservation.
Our trips can be intense but not demanding
Some days will require early rises to be in the field, ready for action, at dawn. People of reasonable fitness will have no trouble undertaking any of our tours. When there are optional excursions that require a difficult hike, we will inform you well ahead of time. On many days we have lunch back at the lodge, and those people wishing some down-time can spend the afternoons relaxing.
A variety of set-departure tours
Our various tours meet the needs of birders with different levels of experience and enthusiasm. Introtours are for birders who have limited exposure in a region, and who would like to spend more time in one area learning about the new families of birds. At the other extreme, on some of our more intense trips we can show you some of the planet’s rarest and most difficult species.
Custom tours made easy
While many companies offer custom tours, few are able to efficiently arrange a trip around your personal target list. The trip reports on our website attest to this; just take a look at some of the brilliant private tours we have put together, and then think about what you would like to do in 2007.
We make the hard birds easy
Our game plan is to target the endemic, the rare, the difficult, and the spectacular species. Of course, along the way we will see most of the other birds in the area.
Other interests
Although birding is always first and foremost on our trips, we can usually offer a variety of other nature-based activities along the way. It is fairly usual for our trips in Southern Africa to see over 50 mammal species in a three-week trip. Our leaders are interested in mammal night-drives, Madagascar’s chameleons, reef fish of the Indian ocean, and many other aspects of natural history. Should you have any other particular interest, be sure to let us know so you get the most out of your tour. Furthermore, on our tours there is seldom a dull moment. The characters that make up the Tropical Birding team are a lot of fun to be around, and people that we meet as clients often leave as good friends.
Even our bad days are good
No matter what you do, sometimes the birding is slow or the weather is bad. Although your guide is sweating and doing everything to find you birds, he also strives to maintain a friendly atmosphere so you still have a great time. We always remember that it is your holiday, not ours.
A “typical” Tropical Birding client
Our clients come from a variety of nationalities, professions and backgrounds, brought together by the same passion for birds. We visit many places where we may be the only foreign visitors; in effect we are ambassadors from our countries and our hobby, and we always act accordingly. While on tour we encourage people to express their very wide range of opinions from vastly different life experiences, but our guides and clients are never disrespectful to other tour participants or the people we encounter.

The perfect formula for superb birding tours
How can the 13th person in line see a skulker?
While a group of 12 people can be fun in the Galapagos or in the savannas of Africa, group size is something we take very seriously on forest trails in South America, Asia, or Africa. We limit group size to eight on tours that spend significant time in enclosed forest habitats, where silence is vital to seeing secretive species.
Guaranteed departures
The only thing more annoying than being packed in like sardines is losing your tour because of insufficient interest. To counter this, Tropical Birding is the world’s only company that offers guaranteed departures on certain tours. This means that even if you are the only one booked, the trip proceeds exactly as planned, just you and your own personal guide. Even when we do have a minimum required number, it is very low at two, three, or four people. To date we have never disappointed anyone by canceling their reservation.
Our trips can be intense but not demanding
Some days will require early rises to be in the field, ready for action, at dawn. People of reasonable fitness will have no trouble undertaking any of our tours. When there are optional excursions that require a difficult hike, we will inform you well ahead of time. On many days we have lunch back at the lodge, and those people wishing some down-time can spend the afternoons relaxing.
A variety of set-departure toursOur various tours meet the needs of birders with different levels of experience and enthusiasm. Introtours are for birders who have limited exposure in a region, and who would like to spend more time in one area learning about the new families of birds. At the other extreme, on some of our more intense trips we can show you some of the planet’s rarest and most difficult species.
Custom tours made easy
While many companies offer custom tours, few are able to efficiently arrange a trip around your personal target list. The trip reports on our website attest to this; just take a look at some of the brilliant private tours we have put together, and then think about what you would like to do in 2007.
We make the hard birds easy
Our game plan is to target the endemic, the rare, the difficult, and the spectacular species. Of course, along the way we will see most of the other birds in the area.
Other interests
Although birding is always first and foremost on our trips, we can usually offer a variety of other nature-based activities along the way. It is fairly usual for our trips in Southern Africa to see over 50 mammal species in a three-week trip. Our leaders are interested in mammal night-drives, Madagascar’s chameleons, reef fish of the Indian ocean, and many other aspects of natural history. Should you have any other particular interest, be sure to let us know so you get the most out of your tour. Furthermore, on our tours there is seldom a dull moment. The characters that make up the Tropical Birding team are a lot of fun to be around, and people that we meet as clients often leave as good friends.
Even our bad days are goodNo matter what you do, sometimes the birding is slow or the weather is bad. Although your guide is sweating and doing everything to find you birds, he also strives to maintain a friendly atmosphere so you still have a great time. We always remember that it is your holiday, not ours.
A “typical” Tropical Birding client
Our clients come from a variety of nationalities, professions and backgrounds, brought together by the same passion for birds. We visit many places where we may be the only foreign visitors; in effect we are ambassadors from our countries and our hobby, and we always act accordingly. While on tour we encourage people to express their very wide range of opinions from vastly different life experiences, but our guides and clients are never disrespectful to other tour participants or the people we encounter.