Colombia: Endemics of the Choco-Pacific Lowlands: Oct 06—16, 2018

Register for WaitlistTour Details

Price: $5,995
(Internal flights included)
Departs: Medellin
Ends: Bogota
Tour Limit: 7
Operations Manager: Margaret Anderson
Download Itinerary: PDF (1.6 MB)

Route Map


Tour Leaders


Steve Hilty

Steve Hilty is the senior author of A Guide to the Birds of Colombia, and author of Birds of...

Local Leader

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El Cantil Ecolodge, Nuqui, Choco, Colombia

El Cantil Ecolodge, Nuqui, Choco, Colombia— Photo: El Cantil Ecolodge


Long regarded as one of the most endemic-rich avifaunas in the world, the Chocó-Pacific is known for high rainfall, beautiful green mountains, spectacular waterfalls, ever-changing panoramas of cloud-filled valleys, and unparalleled tanager diversity. Expect exciting birding, a number of endemic or near-endemic species, and a few previously seen by few others.

This new trip is designed as an introduction to one of the most endemic-rich regions in the New World—the Chocó-Pacific lowlands of western Colombia. In Colombia the Andes split into three distinct cordilleras, each offering a distinctive array of localized birds.

In order to maximize coverage of this beautiful and remarkably complex country, we have for several years offered two trips that sample some of the best birding sites in Colombia’s Andes. The first, offered since 2009, focuses primarily on the Eastern Andes and the Magdalena Valley; the second tour, since 2010, is devoted to sites in the Western and Central Andes. We also offer a shorter trip to Colombia’s Caribbean region but, until now, we have not offered a trip devoted entirely to the Chocó-Pacific lowlands of Colombia’s western coast, a region that extends from near the Panama border southward to Ecuador. This exciting area is known for high rainfall, incredibly lush forests, and a large number of birds that occur nowhere else. And, as a bonus there are spectacular beaches fronting all three lodges, a chance to catch sight of whales offshore, and perhaps even one or two of those extraordinarily colorful little Dendrobates frogs, which reach their greatest diversity here, and from which native Amerindians famously extract a potent poison for hunting.

Good overnight facilities on this trip now give us access even to such rarely seen species as Sooty-capped Puffbird and Baudó Oropendola, as well as Blue-whiskered Tanager, Scarlet-and-white Tanager, and many others. If you are looking for a relatively short birding trip into one of the world’s most diverse avifaunas, this may just be the trip for you.

Good lodging and excellent food in two localities; lodging rustic one night, but food good and surroundings spectacular; moderate pace with bird walks ranging from fairly easy on roads and level terrain to more demanding on a couple of days where trails may be muddy, humidity high, and terrain hilly; most birding on foot, but with a vehicle nearby on two days; some birding and travel by boat; nights and early mornings cool, middays hot.