Leaders: Nick Bray and Miguel Castalino.
Ground Price Main Tour: £4995.00 - Santa Cruz/Santa Cruz.
Ground Price (Extension): £1995.00 - Santa Cruz/Santa Cruz
Airfare: £875.00 - £1250.00 (Approx) UK/UK
Single supplement (Main): £550.00
Single supplement (Ext): £125.00
Group size: Minimum for tour to go ahead 5 and maximum 10.
Included in cost: Accommodation in twin rooms en-suite, all meals, all entrance fees to national parks, transport throughout, airfare Cochabamba - La Paz, bottled water, and services of leaders and an English speaking guide. During the pre-tour extension facilities are shared and there are no single rooms available, round trip airfare Santa Cruz - Trinidad.
Not included: International flight, insurance, drinks, tips, and items of a personal nature.
Accommodation: We stay in the best available local hotels closest to the birding sites. In the Comarapa region, which is mostly undeveloped and far from any town that amounts to more than a crossroads, we will be staying at a basic but comfortable hotel. At Bermejo, the lodge has limited occupancy and may have only generator-based electricity (probably only available for a few hours a day), but is clean and comfortable. Hotels for the rest of the regular tour range from good to excellent. Rooms for two nights of the extension will be in the small guest house of a working cattle ranch. There are several rooms with a mix of queen and single beds under mosquito netting and shared bathrooms. Single rooms will not be available at the main ranch, and accommodation is rather basic with shared facilities - however the food and birding are great here.
Tour Code: This is a standard birding tour with regular birding walks along roads and well marked trails, although we do spend some long days in the field. Please note that our birding ranges from 450m to 4720m during this tour, although we will only spend a short time at the highest altitude. We will probably experience a variety of weather ranging from showers in the lowlands to sunny, dry and cold weather in the higher areas. We’ll begin our birding in the lowlands of Santa Cruz and work our way slowly westward by zigs and zags, sleeping five nights at 8300 feet, before ascending to the altiplano to end in La Paz at 12,000 feet. After this acclimatization, we plan to be ready (and eager!) to stroll the invigorating puna grasslands and pincushion bogs near the snowline. Since we do try to sample a wide variety of habitats during this tour, some of the distances covered on our birding days and on days that are primarily travel days are large. In the past several years, however, many of the long, slow dirt highways in the country have been paved, so traversing these
distances in a comfortable bus is no longer the drudgery that it once was. Long distances also tend to produce generally long days in the field, and we will typically rise early and depart after an early restaurant breakfast or enjoy a picnic breakfast in the field either at or on the way to our primary destination. Since our primary birding destinations tend to be a fair distance from the nearest restaurant, our ground crew will be making lots of delicious picnic lunches as well. We’ll do our best to get the group back to the hotel before the sun sets, except, of course, when we plan to do some night birding.
Climate, like the habitat, is extremely varied and there will be days that you will want the lightest of field clothing to provide some comfort in the heat of Santa Cruz, while on other days you’ll be donning your warmest down jacket, wool gloves and woollen cap. Most of the climates will be somewhere in between these extremes, though. We’ll also see an extreme difference in the types of terrain covered, from flat to steep-sided Andean canyons. Hikes in steep terrain are very few, and those hikes are generally short or we avoid them altogether and walk downhill instead (with the bus following). For those sensitive to high altitude, rest assured that your guides are too. Any hiking high up in the Andes will be at a very slow pace and on the flattest ground that we can find.
Documents: A current passport is necessary for UK citizens to enter Bolivia. We recommend that your passport be valid for at least 6 months beyond the dates of your visit, as regulations vary from country to country, and are subject to change. You will also need an International Certificate of Vaccination for Yellow Fever to enter Bolivia. The vaccination is good for 10 years and can be obtained at your local travel clinic or from your physician.