Southern India: Jan 29—Feb 18, 2018

Register for WaitlistTour Details

Price: $9,595
Departs: Bangalore
Ends: Cochin
Tour Limit: 8
Operations Manager: Margaret Anderson
Download Itinerary: PDF (138.5 KB)

Route Map

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Tour Leaders

Hobcroftdion

Dion Hobcroft

Dion Hobcroft has been working for VENT since 2001. He has led many tours (more than 150) to...


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Register for the Waiting List

This departure is sold out! Add your name to the waiting list, or inquire about this tour by calling our office (1-800-328-VENT or 512-328-5221), or emailing us (info@ventbird.com).

Asian Elephant, Nagarhole National Park

Asian Elephant, Nagarhole National Park— Photo: Akash Routh/shutterstock

 

A superb opportunity to see all of the South Indian endemic and near-endemic birds, and a fine range of exciting mammals, reptiles, and some superb endemic butterflies. The food, culture, and attractive landscape provide something for everyone on this very easy tour—a delightful blend of wildlife safaris, moderate walks, and great photographic opportunities.

VENT’s tours to south of the Indian subcontinent have surprised participants with the richness of birds and other wildlife, the splendid accommodations, and the exquisite cuisine. Our Southern India tour has been fine-tuned to increase our chances of a few of the more difficult endemics. This will permit a more relaxed pace and the opportunity to watch at length some of India’s most magnificent mammals, including Tiger, Asian Elephant, Asian Wild Dog, Gaur, Sloth Bear, Nilgiri Langur, and, if we are very fortunate, the endangered Lion-tailed Macaque.

Our accommodations range from beautifully renovated accommodations in Ooty, a classic hill station, to a Maharaja’s palace in the graceful city of Mysore, and Kabini Lodge, located within roaring distance of Nagarhole National Park and some of Southern India’s richest woodland and forest areas. The Western Ghats, a dramatic series of granitic mountains, extend along the entire western edge of the peninsula, rising from emerald-green lowlands garnished with paddies of ripening rice and a mosaic of deep, little-known forests. Here, a large number of species reside that are found nowhere else in the world (some are shared with neighboring Sri Lanka). We will make a special effort to locate as many of these species as possible, including Gray Junglefowl; Malabar Parakeet; Nilgiri Wood-Pigeon; Malabar Trogon; Malabar Gray Hornbill; White-bellied Treepie; Yellow-browed, Gray-headed, and the very local Yellow-throated bulbuls; Dark-fronted Babbler; Wynaad, Nilgiri, and Gray-breasted laughingthrushes; Black-and-Orange Flycatcher; Nilgiri Pipit; White-bellied Shortwing; and Loten’s Sunbird.

Painted Stork and crocodile, Cauvery River

Painted Stork and crocodile, Cauvery River— Photo: tantrik71/shutterstock

 

Southern India is distinctly different from the north; life is more genteel, caressed by a balmy tropical winter and nurtured by frequent rains. Exotic Dravidian temples punctuate the lush countryside and add a special element to our journey. Our explorations will take us to the finest reserves in southern India including Nagarhole and Periyar national parks, which contain the best concentrations of wildlife in the peninsula. In addition to the large number of endemic birds, we will also encounter a number of species rarely, if ever, recorded on our northern India tours: Red Spurfowl, Pompadour Green-Pigeon, White-bellied and Heart-spotted woodpeckers, Indian Pitta, the rare White-bellied Minivet, Indian Scimitar-Babbler, Indian Blue Chat, Forest Wagtail, and Black-throated Munia. We will also encounter a large number of mammals ranging from the spectacular Indian Giant Squirrel to the impressively common Leopard.

Excellent to very good, delightfully comfortable accommodations throughout, many located in the heart of the birding areas; travel by coach and jeep; climate generally very pleasant tending to warm in the middle of the day, and cool in the early morning and at night.