This 18 day birdwatching tour in northeastern India takes us to a number of low altitude national parks where a variety of birds and mammals can be seen, up into the foothills of the Himalayas on the border with Bhutan. A world class birding area, Eagles Nest Sanctuary is famous for the variety, numbers and accessibility of the bird species found there.
Over 450 species of have been observed in the Eagles Nest area and the surrounding higher altitude forests. In addition it is home to some great mammals including Asiatic Elephant whilst butterflies, amphibians and reptiles are also represented.
This tour is designed for people of a reasonable fitness level. The ridges around the sanctuary area rise to over 3000m and while no long treks are planned there will be trails up into the hills to negotiate. The road up into the sanctuary is unpaved so can be bumpy. The weather may determine where we stay each night when up in the mountains.
Accommodation is a mixture of tented camps of various standards up in the mountains, basic local hotels, and more luxurious western style hotels with en suite rooms and even air conditioning in the more populous areas.
Featured Tour Video – Great Indian Rhino via Elephant
Past Trip Reports
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2016 Trip Report
- 17 nights accommodation
- Meals as itinerary (check PDF itinerary)
- Transport including fuel
- Airport Transfers
- Guide services of the tour leader
- Site & entry fees
- Travel insurance and other emergencies
- Visa fees and entry clearing fees
- Flights (Domestic or International)
- Drinks & Snacks
- Items of a personal nature
Day 1 - Arrival day
Arrive in Kolkota and transfer to your hotel. A welcome dinner will be held that evening.
Day 2 - Local sanctuary and Jorhat
Start the day birding in a nearby sanctuary where Blue-throated Barbet and Lineated Barbet, Striated Grassbird and Asiatic Jackal are amongst the species that can be seen. Around lunchtime you will transfer to the airport and fly to Jorhat where some late afternoon birding amongst the tea estates can take place.
Day 3 - Kaziranga National Park (1)
Start the day with a birdwalk in the local gibbon sanctuary looking for species like Snowy-browed Flycatcher, Small Nitiva, and Red-headed Trogon. Later drive to Kaziranga National Park where an afternoon drive can be very productive not only for birds like Grey-headed and Pallas’s Fish Eagle, Swamp Francolin, and Golden-fronted Leafbird but also for mammals such as Asiatic Elephant, Indian Rhinoceros, Bengal Tiger, Smooth-coated Otter and the rare Hog Badger.
Day 4 - Kaziranga National Park (2)
Further exploration of Kaziranga National Park.
Day 5 - Nameri National Park (1)
A 2.5 hour drive takes you to Nameri National Park. Target birds here include Pied Falconet, Grey-bellied Tesia, several species of owl, Greater Flameback and Grey-backed Pygmy Woodpecker, Streaked Spiderhunter, Red-breasted Parakeet and Vernal Hanging Parrot.
Day 6 - Nameri National Park (2)
Today the highlight is a boat ride down the river at Nameri looking for Ibisbill, Eurasian Griffon and White-rumped Vultures, Himalayan Crested Kingfisher, Stork-billed Kingfisher and more.
Day 7 - Himalayan Foothills and Eagles Nest
Leaving the lowlands today we will head up into the foothills of the Himalayas and Eagles Nest Sanctuary. Target birds today will include Bugun Liocichlia which was only discovered in 2004, Short-billed Minivet, White-breasted Parrotbill, Spot-winged Grosbeak and Tickell’s Thrush.
Day 8 - Lama Camp & Eagles Nest Pass
The morning will be spent birding the area around Lama Camp for Himalayan Wood-Owl, Collared Owlet, Grey Nightjar Ward’s Trogon, Mrs Goulds Sunbird, Green-tailed Sunbird and more. Weather permitting, in the afternoon you will drive up over Eagles Nest Pass where looking for Fire-tailed Myzornis and Brown Parrotbill with the rare Temmincks Tragopan is an unlikely possibility.
Day 9 - Local area & Eagles Nest Pass
Exploring the local area. Crossing the pass is an option today if not done on day 8.
Day 10 - Local area
Today will be spent exploring the local area and going down to Bompu Ward’s Trogon, Snowy-browed Flycatcher, Brown Parrotbill and Greater Rufous Parrotbill, Rosy Pipit etc. are all possibilities.
Day 11 - Eagles Nest Sanctuary lower areas
Today we will visit some of the lowest areas of the sanctuary. The Beautiful Nuthatch lives up to its name as does the Streak-breasted Scimitar Babbler. Other birds to be seen include Wedge-tailed Green and Mountain Imperial Pigeons, Rufous-necked Hornbill and Pygmy Blue Flycatcher. Later we will head back up to Bompu.
Day 12 - Looking for Blyth's Tragopan
The main target today will be Blyth’s Tragopan. A variety of Wren babblers can be found in the same area.
Day 13 - Tenga & Dirang
After some last early morning birding at Eagles Nest we will start downhill to Tenga and then Dirang, birding on the way.
Day 14 - Mandala Road
An early start will see us birding the Mandala Road for Rufous-bellied Eagle, Himalayan Swiftlet, Spotted Laughing Thrush, Spotted Nutcracker are amongst the species which can be seen. Later if time permits we will visit the Sangti valley where Long-billed Plover and Black-tailed Crake can be seen.
Day 15 - Sela Pass
Another early start this time visiting the Sela Pass which may give us Lammergeier, Grandala, Blood Pheasant, Green Cochoa, Purple Cochoa, Snow Partridge, Himalayan White-browed Rosefinch, Red-headed Bullfinch and White-browed Bush Robin.
Day 16 - Tenga & Nameri
Early morning birding in the hotel gardens will be followed by a drive back to Tenga and then to Nameri where a very comfortable hotel awaits us. A visit to a tea plantation and some tea tasting can be arranged if time allows.
Day 17 - Gibbon Sanctuary & Kolkata
A visit to the gibbon sanctuary may give us more birds including Scarlet Minivet and Abbots Babbler but we will also be looking for mammals including Stump-tailed Macaque, Pig-tailed Macaque, Malay Giant Squirrel and Wild Boar. Later we will fly back to Kolkata where we will overnight in a comfortable hotel.
Day 18 - Onward flights home
Transfer to the international airport and take your onward flights.