BRAZIL - MANAUS The Best of Amazonia

Thoughts of the Amazon conjure up an image of vast rainforests, remote rivers, secluded islands and some of the strangest, most colourful and rarest birds on the planet. Our unique, short tour is based around the fabled forests and rivers of Manaus and this region hosts a good selection of Guianan Shield endemics, as well as a number of Brazilian endemics, plus many rare, local and sought-after Amazonian species. We will make several excursions to explore isolated islands by boat, visit canopy towers offering a unique insight into canopy species, search numerous trails into the vast wilderness and visit a surprising series of different habitats on our exploration of this fascinating region. 

We begin in Manaus, once considered a mythical part of Amazonia where few birders have had the fortune to travel to. This is the heart of the immense Amazon rainforest, the greatest avian-rich ecosystem on our planet. It is situated near the confluence of the Negro and Solimões rivers and is located in the middle of the Amazon rainforest and where these rivers join they form the mighty Amazon River. Access to the city is primarily by boat or airplane and this isolation helps to preserve both the natural environment as well as the culture of the city. And the birding is awesome! Our very first morning will be spent at a canopy tower where species such as Guianan Puffbird, Caica Parrot, Glossy-backed Becard, Guianan Toucanet, Guianan Woodcreeper, Black-spotted Barbet, Red-billed Pied Tanager, Black-faced Dacnis and Spotted Tanager can be seen. Moving on to Novo Airão and Anavilhanas National Park we will target awesome species such as Dark-winged and Grey-winged Trumpeters, Marail Guan, Agami Heron, Crested Eagle, White-winged Potoo, Red-fan, Black-headed and Festive Parrots, Brown-banded Puffbird, Ivory-billed Aracari, Blue-crowned Manakin, White-plumed Antbird and more. Then we transfer to the other side of the Manaus area and Presidente Figueiredo. From our delightful pousada close to a Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock lek we have access to many more great new birds. The list of potential species is huge and includes Rusty Tinamou, Amazonian Pygmy Owl, Purple-breasted Cotinga, Capuchinbird, Dusky Purpletuft, Variegated and Alta Floresta Antpittas, Harlequin Antbird, Reddish-winged Bare-eye, Black Manakin, Pelzeln's Tody-Tyrant and Crimson Fruitcrow to name just a few.  And there's a wide variety of primates in this area including Colombian Red Howler Monkey, Spix's Night Monkey, Golden-handed Tamarin, Guianan Bearded Saki Monkey and Guianan Capuchin amongst others. And let's not forget there's a really good chance of Pink River Dolphins too.

This new shorter tour is designed to give us plenty of time to immerse ourselves in the amazingly varied avifauna of this splendid and little-explored corner of Amazonia. With expert local guides and the best lodges and pousadas located just a stones throw from the birding sites we will have the very best experience imaginable in this incredible area.

Thursday 15th July - Saturday 24th July 2022


Here are just a few of the key species we will be targetting on this tour:

  • Rusty (Short-billed) Tinamou
  • Dark-winged Trumpeter
  • Grey-winged Trumpeter
  • Black Curassow
  • Agami Heron
  • Zigzag Heron (rare)
  • White-crested Guan
  • Crested Eagle
  • Harpy Eagle
  • Black-faced Hawk
  • Green Aracari
  • Great Jacamar
  • Green-tailed Jacamar
  • Tawny-tufted Toucanet
  • Varzea Piculet
  • Black-spotted Barbet
  • Golden-collared Woodpecker
  • Golden-spangled Piculet
  • Crimson Topaz
  • Racket-tailed Coquette
  • Olive-spotted Hummingbird
  • Caica Parrot
  • Festive Parrot
  • Short-tailed Parrot
  • Santarem Parakeet
  • Golden-winged Parakeet
  • Cryptic Forest-Falcon
  • Pavonine Quetzal
  • Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock
  • Black-necked Red Cotinga
  • Crimson Fruitcrow
  • Pompadour Cotinga
  • Amazonian Umbrellabird
  • Capuchinbird
  • Brown-banded Puffbird
  • Guianan Puffbird
  • Chestnut-headed Nunlet
  • Blue-cheeked Jacamar
  • Glossy-backed Becard
  • Variegated Antpitta
  • Alta-floresta Antpitta
  • Reddish-winged Bare-eye
  • Natterer’s Slaty Antshrike
  • Mouse-coloured Antshrike
  • Black-throated Antshrike
  • Black-and-white Antbird
  • Black-headed Antbird
  • White-plumed Antbird
  • Harlequin Antbird
  • Rufous-throated Antbird
  • White-cheeked Antbird
  • Chestnut-crested Antbird
  • Cherrie’s Antwren
  • Lesser Hornero
  • Red-and-white Spinetail
  • Scaled Spinetail
  • Rufous-crowned Elaenia
  • Amazonian Black-Tyrant
  • Musician Wren
  • Wing-banded Wren
  • Snethlage's Tody-Tyrant
  • Saffron-crested Tyrant-Manakin
  • Tiny Tyrant-Manakin
  • Yellow-crowned Manakin
  • Black Manakin
  • Wire-tailed Manakin
  • Double-banded Pygmy-Tyrant
  • Pelzeln’s Tody-Tyrant
  • Chestnut-belted Gnateater
  • Dusky Purpletuft
  • Pale-bellied Mourner
  • Dotted Tanager
  • Pearly-breasted Conebill
  • Brown-headed Greenlet
Pompadour Cotinga

Leaders: Gabriel Leite and Nick Bray 

Ground Price: £2950.00 - Manaus/Manaus

Airfare: £700.00 - £850.00 (Approx) - UK/UK

Single supplement: £250.00 per person 

Deposit: £500.00 per person 

Group size: Minimum for tour to go ahead 5 and maximum 10

Included in cost: Accommodation in rooms, mostly en-suite, all meals from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 10, all transportation within Brazil, a variety of vehicles including  4x4’s and boat excursions as required, all reserve entrance and land owners fees, bottled water and services of leaders and local guides. 

Not included: International airfare, insurance, drinks, tips, and items of a personal nature.

Accommodation: Our hotels, lodges and pousadas vary in quality but all are within easy reach of the areas we wish to visit. In Manacapuro we stay in a decent hotel that offers a couple of trails and has a feeder as well that attracts a good selection of birds and great photo opportunities. At Presidente Figueiredo we will stay in a lovely pousada and there’s a lek of Guianan Cock-of-the-rock only 15 walk away. In Manaus we will stay at a very convenient hotel that is easily accessible to the places that we go birding. In Novo Airão we will stay in a comfortable and quiet hotel that is only 10 minutes drive from the jetty where we take the boat to Anavilhanas National Park. Hot water may not be available at some lodges, and you will find showers are set at 'tropical temperature'.

Tour Code: This is a standard birding tour with all day birding. To see a good amount of endemics and specialities you need to be prepared for full days, so we will generally start early and either have an early breakfast or return for breakfast. Lunches will usually be back at the hotel/lodge/pousada. Our Amazonian adventure is scheduled for the dry season, but we still may encounter some rain. Expect the weather to be hot to warm and humid (we will always take afternoon breaks during the hottest times of the day), but this humid weather is what makes the birding so awesome! Average daytime temperatures range from 80 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, with pleasant nighttime lows down to about 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Some of the trails can be muddy and we should bring wellies/rubber boots.