A Photography Tour is where we go to take photos of very specific targets and spend a lot of time with them, though occasionally shoot whatever is around such as the Madagascar Lemur and chameleon. Now, ALL of our set departure trips on this page are photography tours, though we can also easily do custom photography tours to a large variety of destination.  A custom photography workshop is where the majority of the time is spent teaching you techniques for a specific type of photography such as hummingbirds in flight.

 

Another type of trip is our Birding With A Camera tour (BwC). We go after target birds and other animals but will shoot anything and try to capture as many great images of a wide variety of subjects as possible. Often you have no idea what you will come home with from the day and these are the trips that non-photographer or hard core birding partners really love.  When there are no birds to photograph, we chase all the birds around. To see if this is the right fit for you please read the paragraph below which describes the experience.

Imagine dawn in the Australian bush. You are with a small group on a Tropical Birding BwC tour. Everyone has binoculars, and is carrying a camera; although they range from point-and-shoots to big-lens SLRs. It is still twilight, but the dawn chorus is amazing and your guide is calling out what is around. The regulars, such as Noisy Friarbird, Pied Butcherbird, and Black-faced Cuckoo-Shrike are all singing. But she also hears a distant call of the Painted Honeyeater, so you go after the rare bird immediately and get some great views, plus noisy record shots. A mixed flock moves through, and you see most things and get a couple of good photos of Rufous Whistler and Jacky Winter. The light improves and a Spotted Pardalote calls nearby. The guide knows that if she works it, all the clients will get fantastic shots of this snappy-looking bird, so the focus changes immediately. She says “guys, this is a tiny bird, but it will probably come in really close when I ‘pish’. It is most likely to settle on these branches at eye-level so get ready for that, and I suggest you set your depth-of-field to be between f5.6 and f8 so you get a good out-of-focus background.” The bird duly arrives and everyone gets cracking photos. Meanwhile, the guide has noticed a group of Little Lorikeets high in some tall eucalypts, so she puts the spotting scope on them and explains that the backlighting is so terrible it is best to probably just get good looks at these temperamental little parrots, as we might not see them again on tour. “But be quick guys” she says, “I hear a Crested Shrike-Tit singing nearby and we are going to want to see and photograph that baby”. Sound appealing? Then you need to join the Birding With A Camera (BwC) tour

 
ALASKA

The Last Frontier has something to offer everyone. That is especially true for photographers, with everything from dapper ocean ducks to crowded seabird cliffs to shorebirds as you’ve never seen them before, in their breeding finery and singing on the wing. On this tour we focus on two main locations: Barrow and Nome. Barrow, the furthest northern point in the United States, gives us the quintessential North Slope tundra experience. Gorgeous Eiders abound on the melt ponds, jaegers fly overhead looking for a quick meal, and shorebirds are in full breeding regalia and fearlessly displaying on the tundra.

AMAZON BwC TOUR​

Wildlife photography in the Amazon is as tough as it gets, but with determined shooters, the rewards are well worth it.

Sani Lodge is really working hard on developing their photo program. The staff and guides are determined to improve things, and are setting up feeders and blinds to make the most of the photo opportunities, as well as constantly looking for new stakeouts.

ANTARCTICA PHOTO CRUISE

If you are looking for the most extensive trip lists of birds and animals in the Antarctic this is the trip for you. This offers the very best sites in Antarctica, and is a must for both world listers chasing endemic birds, as well as photographers looking for the greatest wildlife spectacles in the Antarctic region. A combination of the Falklands, South Georgia and the Antarctic Peninsula provides the ultimate mix of sites to create the best trip lists in the region for birds and also other Antarctic wildlife, as well as providing a spectacular photography tour. 

ATLANTIC ODESSY

This is an incredible trans-Atlantic sojourn aboard an ice-strengthened Polar expedition ship. This cruise takes in the amazing and remote South Georgia archipelago before heading to the seldom visited Gough and Tristan groups in the mid-Atlantic, and finally plying the subtropical waters of St. Helena and Ascension Island. For those of you who still have not had enough, onward passage to Cape Verde is in the offering.

AUSTRALIA PHOTO TOUR
 
A bird and nature photography trip cherry-picking the very best places in Oz for photography. From parrots to fairywrens and kangaroos to platypus, there will be a swathe of both birds and strange Australian animals to photograph on this tour that stretches from Cairns all the way to Tasmania. 
AUSTRALIA BwC TOUR
 
This tour is designed to see as many birds as possible as well as photographing as many birds as well.
BELARUS PHOTO TOUR
This new tour takes us to the eastern end of Europe where things get wild. We will be looking for many birds such as woodpeckers which are hard to find in western Europe, and mammals such as the European Bison.
BORNEO BwC Tour

Borneo is a nature photographer’s dream; a large island with steamy jungles and waterways which play host to some of the strangest creatures on Earth. From the “Old Man of the Forest”, or Orangutan, to the portly, bulbous-nosed, Proboscis Monkey, to large flashy hornbills with bright orange casques; Borneo has plenty to offer the intrepid nature photographers that explore the island. This tour visits the Malaysian state of Sabah in northern Borneo, which comes loaded with a circuit of of high quality eco-lodges, and which rightly prides itself on its substantial ecotourism potential and excellent facilities. 

BRAZIL PANTANAL​

The world-famous Pantanal, a huge seasonal wetland the size of Texas, offers some of the best wildlife viewing in the world. We have timed this tour for the dry season, so birds are concentrated in the areas where there is still standing water. The feeding frenzies of hundreds of herons, ibis, storks, terns, screamers, jacanas, vying with dozens of hungry caiman offer truly unforgettable spectacles and amazing photo-ops. A sure highlight will be the huge electric blue Hyacinth Macaws, truly one of the world’s most spectacular birds, and we see them in good numbers, up close, on most tours.

COLORADO PHOTO TOUR
Imagine a football sized bird, strutting across the prairie with bright orange air sacs inflated, modified neck feathers sticking up like rabbit ears, tail cocked and fanned, while emitting an otherworldly booming noise.  Now imagine that same bird only thirty feet in front of your camera lens, lit by the soft glow of the sunrise. Colorado is THE place to experience these “chickens” in the midst of their surreal displays, and this tour visits leks of four different species.  There’s more to photography in Colorado than chickens, though, and everything from sweeping mountain vistas to bighorn sheep and pronghorn to colorful finches in the snow make this one of the meccas for photography in the United States.
COSTA BwC TOUR

Costa Rica has long been a favorite among nature lover’s and wildlife photographers; a system of excellent lodges and a long-established network of well-protected areas, combined with easy access from North America, have made this a natural destination for them. Costa Rica is frequently noted as one of the greenest countries on Earth, with a long history of protecting wildlife areas, meaning that many animals and species normally difficult to approach, are amazingly photogenic, and even tame there, making this a top notch choice for the nature and bird photographer.
 

COSTA RICA PHOTO TOUR

Costa Rica has long been a favorite among nature lover’s and wildlife photographers; a system of excellent lodges and a long-established network of well-protected areas, combined with easy access from North America, have made this a natural destination for them. Costa Rica is frequently noted as one of the greenest countries on Earth, with a long history of protecting wildlife areas, meaning that many animals and species normally difficult to approach, are amazingly photogenic, and even tame there, making this a top notch choice for the nature and bird photographer.
 

ECUADOR PHOTO TOUR

​This short tour will visit two famous hummingbird lodges: Tandayapa Bird Lodge on the west slope, which boasts extraordinarily high species numbers; and Guango Lodge on the east slope that has a very different selection, including the incredible Sword-billed Hummingbird, a living cartoon. This is our most popular tours with multiple departures every year. If you want to first dip into the Neotropics with a taste of toucans, barbets and tanagers, then this is the trip for you.

ECUADOR (South) BwC TOUR

​This tour is all about seeing and photograph the best birds of southern Ecuador, spending time at the Jocotoco Foundation reserves. 

ETHIOPIA BwC Tour

Ethiopia is one of the best countries on earth for bird photography due to the abundance and tameness of its birds. This country also holds charismatic mammals like the gelada baboon and Ethiopian wolf, and endless beautiful landscapes and fascinating people. 

FALKLAND ISLANDS​ BwC

The first thing to make clear about the Falkland Islands is that it offers, by far, the easiest wildlife photography in the world. The birds and animals on the Falklands are similarly fearless, and this archipelago is still largely off the beaten track, as most visitors just stop in for all too brief visits as part of an Antarctic cruise, missing both the essence of the islands, and the best photo spots. Thus, we expect to be largely alone, amongst a sea of photo opportunities for much of the trip. We’ll have an extended stay on the islands, which is absolutely crucial if you want to truly capture many of the wildlife images available.

FINLAND PHOTO TOUR

On the far reaches of Europe, the Siberian wilderness sneaks over the Russian border and enters Eastern Finland. Here, the wilderness has not been tamed (Finland is one of few under-populated countries in Europe, with plentiful boreal woods, and vast areas of wilderness still in tact). On this itinerary, we will use a series of perfectly situated, and comfortable, blinds to attempt to photograph both Brown Bears and Wolverine. An extension to far northern Norway gives photographers chances to photograph a whole different set of Arctic breeding birds.

FLORIDA PHOTO TOUR
Florida is famous countrywide, and internationally, for its incredible concentrations of waterbirds, which make the state a more than worthy destination for both birders and photographers. Florida is spoilt with many sites to visit, which are varied in nature, so that long photo shoots can be spent getting close-ups of caracaras, storks, pelicans, terns, limpkins, bitterns and egrets. The range of sites and varied birds on offer are sure to see you leave with memory cards packed with unforgettable images of birds confined to southern North America like the unique Limpkin, aquamarine Florida Scrub-Jay, agile Reddish Egret, scavenging Crested Caracara, and swollen-billed Black Skimmer.
GUATEMALA PHOTO TOUR

This Photo Tour will combine some forest bird photography with shoots around Mayan ruins where we will spend time going for atmospheric shots. This trip, while intense, is designed so that a non-shooting partner could join and enjoy visiting the ruins while you shoot rainforest birds in style.

INDIA PHOTO TOUR

One feature which characterizes India from many other destinations both in the world is that nature and “man” often live, side-by-side, with complete indifference/respect of each other. Therefore, much of the wildlife having been left unharmed for centuries is approachable and abundant. It is not uncommon to see people tilling their fields with birds like Indian Peafowl, plovers, and egrets feeding, unconcerned, right alongside. Aside from birds this tour offers plenty more besides; ancient buildings, and a suite of interesting animals from the giant Nilgiri (“Blue Bull”), and menacing Bengal Tiger, to the armor-plated One-horned Rhinoceros, and Asian Elephant to name but a few.

INDIA BwC TOUR

One feature which characterizes India from many other destinations both in the world is that nature and “man” often live, side-by-side, with complete indifference/respect of each other. Therefore, much of the wildlife having been left unharmed for centuries is approachable and abundant. It is not uncommon to see people tilling their fields with birds like Indian Peafowl, plovers, and egrets feeding, unconcerned, right alongside. Aside from birds this tour offers plenty more besides; ancient buildings, and a suite of interesting animals from the giant Nilgiri (“Blue Bull”), and menacing Bengal Tiger, to the armor-plated One-horned Rhinoceros, and Asian Elephant to name but a few.

JAPAN PHOTO TOUR
Japan – A jagged set of islands that are a lot wilder than most people think. The trip begins in Hokkaido, frequently called “Asia’s Alaska”, where a lot of the most spectacular settings are. Pack-ice, seascapes, and jagged snow-clad mountains are commonplace, and these form the backdrop to some of the most amazing wildlife photography opportunities on the planet. In February, the Red-crowned Cranes start their nuptial displays, and watching courting cranes dancing in the snow is every bit as spectacular as it sounds.
MADAGASCAR PHOTO TOUR

​Of all of the photo tours that we offer, this is one of the least bird-oriented. This isn’t because there aren’t abundant opportunities to photograph birds… we will go after the bounty of endemic species on offer, and you are sure to end up with magnificent photos of vangas, ground-rollers, mesites, and many others. What makes this a less bird-oriented tour is not the lack of birds, but the astounding variety of other subjects also on offer… you will fill many cards with striking lemurs, predators like Fosa and Narrow-striped Mongoose, colorful chameleons, peculiar geckos, and bizarre insects. Night walks are a major part of this tour, so flashes are recommended.

MAGEE MARSH WARBLERS​
PHOTOGRAPHY TOUR

An intense week of insane warbler photography. North West Ohio does not conjure up images great photography, but at the right time of the year it is absolutly amazing. Superlatives aside, when it is pumping here it is as good as anywhere in the world. We time our trip for just that. 

NAMIBIA BwC Tour

Namibia is no longer synonymous only with barren landscapes, dust and heat. The secret has been revealed, and most travelling photographers now covet the chance to traipse the sands, camera in hand, searching for a different angle, a unique moment of light, and a chance to capture the wealth of diversity and stark beauty this untamed wilderness has to offer.

 

SOUTH AFRICA PHOTO TOUR

South Africa is a mega-diversity country. In the southwest it contains habitats found nowhere else in the world, holding a host of endemic species. Among these are sensational birds such as the African Penguin, African Black Oystercatcher, Blue Crane, Cape Rockjumper, Knysna Turaco, and Chorister Robin-chat. This is “safari” country, and holds some of Africa’s most impressive mammals, like leopard, lion, cheetah, wild dog, elephant, hippo, zebra, and giraffe.

SUBANTARCTIC CRUISE​​

South of New Zealand there is a string of islands that offer the avid seabirder some of the best bird photography on the planet, coupled with awesome opportunities to get close up to a variety of these same birds at massive breeding colonies. No other tour offers the variety of penguins and seabirds possible on such a short cruise, thus boasting the highest diversity and numbers of seabirds of any of our tours. Like any Antarctic destination this tour offers much for the non-birding partner and non-birding nature photographer; a wealth of wonderful landscapes awaits, as do some truly close encounters with Antarctic wildlife. 

SVALBAD POLAR BEAR CRUISE​​

Teetering on the brink of the North Pole, Svalbard is a dramatic archipelago of rocky crags, mountains and ice. Our visit is timed to be perfect for Arctic wildlife; specifically the majestic Polar Bear. We hope that our trip, timed for early-mid June will be optimal for the breakup of the pack ice on the northern stretches of the archipelago. This is where the white bears hunt seals, and much of our time will be spent tracking down Polar Bears, Walrus, Reindeer, seals and perhaps some whales too. 

TAIWAN BwC TOUR

The Taiwanese explore their island in droves, but westerners tend to think of it as a concrete megalopolis with little wilderness. Nothing could be further from the truth, with some 60% of the original forest cover remaining, making Taiwan one of the wildest and least altered lands on Earth—a stark contrast to many of its neighbors. . In addition to stunning landscapes, Taiwan boasts friendly people, stunning culture, and a wonderful distinctive cuisine.

TEXAS BwC TOUR

The great state of Texas boasts the biggest bird list of any American state, and offers wonderfully diverse photo opportunities besides. The tour offers a chance to photograph everything from the tropical species of the Rio Grande, to the packs shorebirds on the Upper Texas Coast, to the absorbing breeding colonies of spoonbills, herons, egrets and cormorants on High Island, to the migrant traps of High Island that can attract a host of colorful warblers.

TOP END BwC Tour

The great state of Texas boasts the biggest bird list of any American state, and offers wonderfully diverse photo opportunities besides. The tour offers a chance to photograph everything from the tropical species of the Rio Grande, to the packs shorebirds on the Upper Texas Coast, to the absorbing breeding colonies of spoonbills, herons, egrets and cormorants on High Island, to the migrant traps of High Island that can attract a host of colorful warblers.

Tropical Birding Tours is a registered trade name of Capturing Nature Tours LLC. Maryland, USA

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