A tour focusing on the photography of wintering pelicans at Lake Kerkini in Greece and the resident species of vultures in the Eastern Rhodope Mountains in Bulgaria
The tour starts from Sofia at 14.00 h in the afternoon (2 p.m.), at the latest. The tour participants will be picked up either from Sofia Airport or from their accommodation place within the city of Sofia, if they have arrived earlier. Then we will be driving south (for about 3 hours) to Lake Kerkini in northern Greece, on the other side of the Bulgarian-Greek border. We will check in at a small family-run hotel near the lake for three nights.
Day 2 & 3
We will be taking photos of Dalmatian Pelicans and Great White Pelicans in the lake both from the lakes’ banks and from a boat. Apart from the pelicans, the lake offers good opportunities to photograph Greater Flamingo, Pygmy Cormorant, Great White Egret, Tundra (Bewick’s) Swan, Eurasian Spoonbill and various waterfowl.
We will spend the day transferring to the Eastern Rhodopes mountain region in southern Bulgaria. The approximately 5-hour scenic drive will take us to our base – a lodge in the vicinity of the town of Krumovgrad, where we will be staying for four nights.
The Eastern Rhodope Mountains is an area of exceptional biodiversity in all seasons. Here we support the local vulture populations by regularly bringing carcass to feeding places. To take photos of the action of feeding we use the adjacent hide. For more detailed information about the vulture photo-hide you can check out our Vulture Hide Photography Tour.
Day 5, 6 & 7
We will spend these three days trying to capture the two resident species of vultures in the area, the Griffon Vulture and the Cinerous (Eurasian Black) Vulture, from our fixed hide. Besides the vultures, we may have good opportunities to photograph White-tailed Eagle, Common Buzzard and Common Raven. It sometimes happens a Red Fox, Golden Jackal, Wild Cat or a Wolf to turn up at the feeding table too.
If time allows we can also try to photograph a variety of passerine birds, like the Hawfinch, Siskin, Brambling, Sombre Tit, etc. visiting the feeders, which we maintain in this area. In the periods with less activity at the hide we can go off to explore the region, looking for other wildlife. We will be sure to visit a nearby reserve where reintroduced populations of European Bison and Red Deer roam in the wild – another setting that makes for good wildlife photography.
After breakfast we will be transferred back to Sofia airport (3 ½ hours drive) for your return flight.
The prices include the ground transport, accommodation in an en-suite double/twin room in middle standard hotels/lodges, all meals, guiding, use of hides and use of boat for pelican photography for 8 hours in total.