Birding Tours in the Neotropics (South and Central America and the Caribbean)

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The Neotropical realm is one of the eight biogeographic realms that constitute the Earth’s land surface. This region includes South America, Central America, the Caribbean islands, and southern North America.

The Neotropics are blessed with a unique geography encompassing different natural zones rich in diversity of animals and plants. There are 31 avian families endemic to the Neotropics, and South America alone holds 3764 bird species, making this part of the planet one of the favorite ornithological destinations in the world. Birding Ecotours offer a great selection of birding tours through some of the most amazing and representative avian destination in the Neotropics.

Birding Peru is a never-ending adventure with its large number of endemic birds, among them Marvelous Spatuletail (the most beautiful hummingbird in the world), Cusco and the nearby magnificent Inca ruins of Machu Picchu, the famous Manu Road, and the macaw clay licks in the Amazon rainforest of southern Peru in the Tambopata National Reserve.

A Bolivia trip will take you to explore some of the high plateaus of the majestic Andes in search of Andean Condor, Titicaca Grebe, and Blue-throated Macaw.

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Brazil will entrance you with its many colorful and endemic beauties restricted to the Atlantic Forest, including birds such as Cherry-throated Tanager and Black-and-gold Cotinga. Brazil will give you the unique experience of a South American safari trip, looking for large birds and animals in the Pantanal, where Hyacinth Macaw will give you unforgettable views in addition to the large mammals that are without parallel on the continent, including encounters with the “Brazilian Big Five”, namely Jaguar, Giant Otter, Lowland Tapir, Giant Anteater, and Maned Wolf. You might come back for more birds after a first Brazil trip, and we can take you to look for the Critically Endangered  (IUCN) Brazilian Merganser of the Cerrado as well as other rarities such as Araripe Manakin and Lear’s Macaw in Northeast Brazil

Chile will give you the chance to explore stunning temperate forest in Tierra del Fuego, looking for King Penguin and Magellanic Plover and for Puma in the Torres del Paine National Park as well as for central Chilean endemics including Moustached Turca and Chucao Tapaculo.

Our Argentina tour selection has been designed to provide you with the finest birds and the best experience in this vast country, from southern Patagonian jewels like Hooded Grebe and Magellanic Woodpecker to north-western Argentina specialties such as Rufous-throated Dipper and Tucuman Mountain Finch.

Our Ecuador trips focus on the west and east slopes of the Andes. Our northern Ecuador tour visits the Tandayapa Valley and the Angel Paz Reserve, where you could spend weeks and still get new species, including Giant Antpitta, Toco Toucan, Plate-billed Mountain Toucan, Ocellated Tapaculo, and an endless list of hummingbirds.

Colombia, the country with the largest number of birds in the world, is one of the best birding destinations, providing an incredible number of birds on our carefully designed trip The Very Best of Colombia, which can yield species like Yellow-eared Parrot, Andean Cock-of-the rock, Hooded Antpitta, Multicolored Tanager, Northern Screamer, Beautiful Woodpecker, and many Santa Marta endemics.

Our Guyana trip is an adventure, exploring this remote South American country where large portions of primary rainforest still remain untouched and species such as Sun Parakeet, Red Siskin, Grey-winged Trumpeter, Crimson Fruitcrow, and Harpy Eagle still find suitable habitat in an enchanted country covered by endless forests and magical waterfalls.

Costa Rica needs no introduction. With 25% of its territory protected, there are birds in all corners of this small and beautiful country, including Resplendent Quetzal, Snowcap, Yellow-eared Toucanet, Lovely Cotinga, Yellow-billed Cotinga, and Great Green and Scarlet Macaws. Our trips focus on bird numbers, regional endemism, and an easy, relaxed pace and will provide you with the best of the country.

Panama conjures up visions of the Panama Canal and the Canopy Tower, and an exciting  trip through Central and Eastern Panama and the Darien offers several sought-after species such as Black-crowned Antpitta, Dusky-backed Jacamar, Black Antshrike, Sapayoa, Ocellated Antbird, and with luck Harpy Eagle and Rufous-vented Ground Cuckoo.

Even though less visited than Costa Rica, Guatemala holds incredible birds as well, and a birding trip to this amazing country is also a unique cultural experience. Birds on offer are Resplendent Quetzal, Pink-headed Warbler, Horned Guan, Blue-crowned Chlorophonia, Fulvous Owl, Belted Flycatcher, and Ocellated Turkey, and the enigmatic Mayan ruins of Tikal will crown a rewarding visit to northern Central America.

We could not end this introduction without mentioning the Caribbean part of the Neotropical realm. The Caribbean is not only a beach destination but also a feast for birders and bird family collectors, as each island hold its own suite of endemic birds and range-restricted species. Most of the species on our short trips to Jamaica, Cuba, and the Dominican Republic are normally easy to find. Where else you could see Bee Hummingbird (the tiniest bird in the world), Orangequit, Palmchat, Cuban Trogon, Jamaican Tody, Broad-billed and Narrow-billed Todies, Ashy-headed Owl, Jamaican Woodpecker, Oriente Warbler, and Black-crowned Palm Tanager?

We invite you to choose any of our tours and contact us for further information if you are thinking about your first visit to the Neotropics. Please look at our available tours and subscribe to our newsletter to get information about new tours coming up in this magnificent region.

Neotropics Gallery

Testimonials from our Neotropical birding tours

“I feel that our trip to Colombia was one of the most enjoyable and rewarding bird tours I have ever been on. You did an excellent job of planning, guiding and looking after the logistics on the tour.
Colombia is a pleasure to travel in with very friendly people, excellent roads and pleasant, clean accommodation. Even the more basic places were comfortable, clean and quiet.
Santa Marta is a wonderful place with plentiful birds and fantastic scenery. Rio Blanco was my favorite part of the tour with the antpittas and Ocellated Tapaculo at my feet. Otun Quimbaya with Red-ruffed Fruitcrows as yard birds was also a very enjoyable.
In all parts of the country I never felt at risk. Colombia is now a safe, rewarding country to travel in. I can hardly wait to return.”

Jim

“We were very impressed by the sheer number of birds we saw and the range of interesting and beautiful habitats on our 2020 Best of Colombia birding tour. We really did think we were seeing the best of Colombia from a birding perspective. Giancarlo was an excellent guide and a very nice person to be with for 3 weeks. It was also very nice that there were just the three of us and we weren’t in a large group.”

John and Maggie

“Peru was extraordinary!!!!!! My “to do” list includes a message to Eduardo with some images that we captured and a tally of the last day’s birds seen with Dennis near Lima, so he can prepare a complete trip report. Wil and I completed our tally while he was still here visiting after our trip and it came in at a staggering 430+ species seen, and a trip total of 460 species either seen or heard by the Taylor brothers. Your guys delivered BIG TIME on this trip, with three stellar guides and nearly flawless logistics, including two excellent drivers as well. Can’t thank you enough, Chris.
Eduardo, as you no doubt already know, was top notch. It was tough saying good bye to him and Raul when they dropped us at the Cusco airport. We could not have had a better guide/driver combo for the core of the trip.
Wil and I have never hesitated to recommend you and BE to our acquaintances, and we now know that our unconditional recommendation can be extended to your Peruvian office as well. Thanks a million for your help in getting the Peru trip arranged. We’ll be in touch. I attach a photo of satisfied customers with their weary guide near the lower end of the Manu Road, with the Rio Union in the background.
For my part, the tour with you was the best overall of all the tours we’ve taken; most memorable, rewarding, and enjoyable.”

John

“Dear Chris,
Thank you for your interest in the outcome of our tour. It is not possible to answer you in one note, so I will try to do so in a few ‘to the point’ remarks.
Yes, the trip met all our expectations, and more! We saw and experienced the Cerrado, the Amazon forest, even better than previously at Tambopata, and the Pantanal with its amazing variety and volume of wildlife. For me the sight of a Hyacinth Macaw, which drew me to the Pantanal, already made it worthwhile. Then, of course, come the excellent sightings of the Jaguars and the Otters and then all the birds for which Eduardo made special efforts to find for his goals.
In the Cerrado we stayed in an excellent farm-lodge where we were lucky to experience the sighting of the Maned Wolf and the Burrowing Owl (which was on Elzine’s bucket list), apart from a number of colourful specials like the Motmot and Jacamar.
In the Amazon we were also very lucky to find another of Elzine’s target species, the Anaconda, and also another member of South America’s big five, the Tapir. We had an excellent session of forest birding on one of the towers where we could really appreciate the advantages of our private tour which, we think, was good value for the additional cost. Together with the Cristalino guide we had the tower for ourselves, and with an excellent guide like Eduardo also with us, we experienced a feast of good sightings.
On EDUARDO: It was a pleasure to travel with him again and having him as a guide who showed his expertise even in the presence of other local guides. It is good to hear that he also enjoyed our company.
In summary, we came back as very satisfied customers of Birding Ecotours and wish to thank you and Lynn for the opportunity to experience the Heart of Brazil.”

Jacques and Elzine