Our specialist Ecuador nature photography tour takes you for an unforgettable week into Ecuador’s Choco cloudforest, looking to capture amazing shots of birds, plants & flowers, frogs, lizards, insects & with luck some small mammals. This area is world famous as a biodiversity hotspot, so amazing photo opportunities are not hard to find!
- Spend a whole week immersed in Ecuador’s cloudforest, visiting some of the very best sites for wildlife photography opportunities.
- Join a specialist photography guide who will share his expert knowledge and tips to help improve your skills, as well as offering optional photography workshops.
- It does not matter if you are a beginner, intermediate or advanced photographer, the tour can be tailored to your needs, and you will be able to return home with some amazing images.
- Enjoy comfortable lodging and easy organization throughout, so you can focus entirely on nature and photography.
- Day 1 : Pickup from airport or hotel in Quito, Visit Yanacocha. We head first to Yanacocha, a huge reserve where we walk the main trail to its end, photographing birds along the trail, or focus on the bird feeders which attract Mountain-Tanagers, Brushfinches, a pair of Andean Guans, many hummingbird species and more! In the afternoon we can take a walk to look for other things to photograph like orchids or birds that won’t come to the feeders, and at night a walk looking for insects, frogs and lizards.
- Day 2 : Suamox, Milpe. These are both lowland Choco sites, with an observation tower near the parking lot ideal to photograph birds. At Rancho Suamox, a walk around the property may yield some surprises as they have resident Spectacled Owls among other delights. Later at Milpe we have a good chance of photographing toucans and lots of foothill hummingbirds! Optional night walk.
- Day 3 : Birdwatcher’s House (Santa Rosa). We will head early to birdwatcher’s house in order to take full advantage of the light setup which attracts insectivorous birds. Some of the main targets to photograph are Plate-billed Mountain Toucan, Yellow-breasted Antpitta, Gorgeted Woodstar, and Blue-capped Tanager. In the afternoon an optional flower macro workshop will be offered or we can focus on hummingbird photography. Optional night walk.
- Day 4 : Paz de los Aves & Tony Nunnery’s House. This morning is a real treat – we will be visiting one of the best cock-of-the-rock leks in the country! For the rest of the morning we will be looking for other stars such as Wild antpittas and other birds (like Blue-winged and Black-chinned Mountain-Tanagers, Toucan Barbet, Sickle-winged Guan, Crimson-rumped Toucanet. In the afternoon we visit a site boasting the world’s highest list of hummingbirds in the world, truly stunning for photography. Optional night walk.
- Day 5 : 23 de Junio & Mindo. If we are in the right spot at the right time, then we will have a decent chance of photographing the very strange and charismatic Long-wattled Umbrellabird. We then descend into the touristically-famous Mindo Valley, to visit either a garden with various new bird species, or an orchid garden ideal for practicing macro photography. Afterwards, we can look for Sunbittern or other large charismatic birds to photograph along the Mindo River. Optional night walk.
- Day 6 : Mashpi Amagusa & Oilbird Caves. Mashpi Amagusa is a very wet cloud forest where we will spend time walking the road, looking for birds like the Orange-breasted Fruiteater, Rose-faced Parrot, Glistening-green Tanager, White-throated Quail Dove, Rufous-throated Tanager, and Moss-backed Tanager. If we are lucky and patient, they may also attract mammals, such as a resident Tayra. In the afternoon we head to an easy-to-access ravine to photograph oilbirds. Hopefully one last night walk opportunity.
- Day 7 : Sachatamia, Alambi Reserve, and Return to Quito. Once there is enough light for photos, we will head outside and check the bird activity, searching for Woodcreepers, woodpeckers, flycatchers. Our final stop is at Alambi, a really good site for photographing hummingbirds, & the best place around for Quetzals (when avocados are in season). Finally we head back to Quito where the tour ends.
Accommodation and Destinations
7 Days / 6 Nights