Tour At A Glance

Cost:

1650.00

Deposit:

350.00

Single Room Supplement:

150.00

Tour Code:

Leisurely

Group Size:

Ten plus Leaders

Isabelline Wheatear Whiskered Tern Dalmatian Pelican Penduline Tit

Romania - The Danube Delta and Dobrugea Plain

Date: 1st - 8th June 2019 [SPACES]
Leaders: Marcus Nash & local guide

Itinerary

 

DAY ONE
Fly London/Bucharest.
 
*Please note the itinerary can run in reverse order*

Upon arrival we will be met by our guide and transfer to your floating hotel in Tulcea. Our journey lasts between four to five hours, as we head northeastwards through the Dobrugean Plain. We make comfort stops and bird from the roadside. We will encounter our first Lesser Grey Shrikes, European Bee-eaters, White Storks and hopefully Golden Orioles, amongst others. We arrive in time for a late dinner.
Overnight Hotel Ibis Tulcea

DAYS TWO & THREE
Besides being the port of entry to the Delta, Tulcea is also an ideal base for exploring the northern Dobrugea Plain. Our journeys take in easily viewed marshes and saline lakes where wildfowl, gulls, terns and passage waders reside. The flava wagtails here include the Black-headed race. The area around Babadag, a historic Turkish settlement, is good for raptors such as Long-legged Buzzard, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Booted Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Red-footed Falcon, Saker and Levant Sparrowhawk, though we’ll need good luck to see them all! We’ll also visit one of Europe's great bird areas, the marshes and saltpans by the ancient Greco-Roman ruins at Histria. Possible terns are Whiskered, Black, White-winged Black, Little and Gull-billed, as well as Mediterranean and Yellow-legged Gulls, Black Stork and in some years good numbers of Collared Pratincole, with occasional records of Black-winged Pratincole.  Shorebirds should include Marsh Sandpiper, Black-winged Stilt, Pied Avocet, Kentish Plover and many species which breed further east pass this way including Curlew Sandpiper and Little Stints in smart breeding dress. Though rare, a few Ruddy Shelduck are regular here, and we’ll also look for Stone Curlew, Little Owl, Spanish Sparrow and Syrian Woodpecker. In the oak woods, we can expect Sombre Tit, Red-breasted Flycatcher and Middle Spotted Woodpecker. Paddyfield Warbler is a regular breeding species in this area, one or two pairs of Pallas’s Gulls have begun to breed on the Black Sea and White-tailed Plover has bred in the past. Calandra and Crested Larks can be found in adjacent farmland and there have been a couple of recent records of Bimaculated Lark and Black-headed Bunting too, while Isabelline Wheatear and Tawny Pipit are common. Scree slopes hold Pied and Black-eared Wheatears, Rock Thrush, Barred Warbler and with good fortune Saker and Eurasian Eagle Owl.
Overnights Hotel Ibis Tulcea
 
DAYS FOUR – SEVEN
Our next four nights will be spent in the very heart of this incredible wetland aboard our hotel-boat, which will take us to those areas that are otherwise inaccessible. We’ll pass along narrow channels lined with water lilies, where the Lipovan people fish from rowing boats for Pike. Besides birding from the upper deck, which will enable us to see over the high reeds, we'll disembark to explore wooded islets, sand dunes, reedbeds and isolated villages before docking each night in a tranquil spot. We'll also have the use of a smaller boat, and our local guide’s knowledge, will enable us to enter the many small channels, secluded lakes and backwaters without getting lost! We will be exploring the Danube Delta the way it should be, without being tied to a land-locked hotel. Huge numbers of birds include Great Crested, Black-necked and Red-necked Grebes, thousands of Pygmy Cormorant, Little Bittern, Black-crowned Night, Squacco and Purple Herons, Little and Great White Egrets, Glossy Ibis, Eurasian Spoonbill, Red Crested Pochard, Ferruginous Duck, White-tailed Eagle, Hoopoe, Common Kingfisher, Grey-headed and Black Woodpeckers, Penduline and Bearded Tits. Thrush Nightingale, Reed, Great Reed, Savi's and Olivaceous Warblers are also possible. You can expect to see large numbers of European Rollers, Red-footed Falcons and squadrons of both White and Dalmatian Pelicans during this fantastic birding experience.
Overnights on board Ibis Houseboat
 
DAY EIGHT
Today we return to terra firma and transfer to Bucharest for our onward flight home. If time permits, we stop at various sites and for a picnic lunch before taking a late afternoon flight back to London.

 

Additional Information

 

WHATS INCLUDED
Return flights London/Bucharest, seven nights en suite accommodation on the houseboat and hotel, all meals, services of leaders, all transport in Romania, Danube Delta permits, mineral water, tea and coffee with meals.
 
NOT INCLUDED
Transport to/from London airport and any overnight stay that might be involved, travel insurance, drinks other than those mentioned, tips to boat crews and any items of a purely personal nature. 
 
NB The boat is extremely comfortable, but we would recommend taking a single room for maximum enjoyment, as most of the cabins are barely large enough to accommodate two plus luggage. There are a couple of larger cabins that are usually reserved for couples. Please note that the itinerary may run in reverse order and that we MAY decide to stay on board for all seven nights if possible.
 
PASSPORT, VISA & HEALTH
Visas are not required by UK nationals. Passports must have 6 months validity beyond the return travel date. Standard health and innoculation requirements apply for UK nationals, visit www.masta-travel-health.com to check these and if necessary, download a free health brief to take to a travel appointment at your local medical practice. 

 

Tour Reports

 

2005   2011   2015   2017   2018

 

Testimonials

 

“A wonderful seven days. The vastness of the area and the quantity of birds was amazing. The relaxed and informal attitude was enjoyable too” G. J. Glamorgan.
 
“Thanks again for organizing such a fantastic tour. It easily exceeded my expectations on the birding front and the company and was great too. You’d be a fool to miss out on this tour!” W. S. Glamorgan
 
"I  hadn’t had an opportunity until now, but just wanted to say that the trip to Danube Delta/Dobrogea was great. From my perspective it couldn’t have been any better – you need 2 days at the very least in Dobrogea to see the range of birds there, and the 4 days on the Delta was fantastic – I thought it would be good but it more than exceeded my expectations – my camera hardly stopped clicking all the time we were there, and pleased with the results, although don’t quite compare with what i saw of Peter’s pics.. A D Edinburgh
 
" We both really enjoyed our holiday to this fascinating part of the world, as well as the spectacular collection of birds seen, many so close up. The guides were a great combination and in addition to taking us to great birding spots, we were able to learn a lot about Romania as a country. Finally, the definitive record of our holiday was captured in an excellent tour report" TJ & MS London
 
" Your holidays are excellent value for money. The guides are highly skilled and always make great efforts to ensure everyone sees all the birds and in my opinion you are simply the best!! On this tour Dan & Ashley were a formidable team, the meals on the floating hotel were very impressive and I enjoyed the trip very much" J F St Albans
 
" A very enjoyable trip, knowledgeable leaders, great food and birding. I especially enjoyed the floating hotel and the surrounding herons, egrets and amphibian chorus - the whole experience surpassed my expectations. Thank you!! " A M Watford
 
" I enjoyed every aspect of the trip from the amazing sound scape and drfting on the delta to the excellent three course meals every day" J H Watford
 
" This was a fantastic holiday with experienced guides. So many special experiences, special places and special birds! It was even better than we expected " S & C C Darlington
 
" I would thoroughly recommend this holiday" S B Isle of Man
 
" Oriole Birding was recommended to me and I have to say that the attention to detail on this holiday was excellent. The guides were extremely knowledgeable on a variety of subjects and the variety of habitats was particulalrly enjoyable" K M Staffs
 
" I really enjoyed all aspects of the holiday including the opportunity to swim in the Danube and the Black Sea. Laurentiu was a very interesting and informative local guide" D R Outer Hebrides.
 
" We thoroughly enjoyed the holiday" A & AT Leicester
 

 

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