Guided butterfly, botanical & birdwatching holidays
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Moths & Butterflies of The Queyras


Dates & Prices


Dates: Please enquire

Price: £TBC

Single Room Supplement: £TBC

Deposit: £150 per person

Price Includes: All meals, accommodation with private facilities, ground transport, services of the guides, printed & bound holiday report & a donation to Butterfly Conservation

Not Included: Flights, travel insurance, drinks and any other personal items

Conservation Donation: 10% of profits donated to Butterfly Conservation

Leader: Tristan Lafranchis

Group Size: Minimum of 4 and a maximum of 12 guests plus 1-2 leaders.

Grade: Gentle pace. Ideally suited to photography

Holiday Highlights

  • Explore the jagged peaks and rolling hills of the Queyras, one of the oldest mountain ranges of the Alps and one of the least well known or visited
  • Led by the best Lepidopterist leader in Europe – Tristan Lafranchis!
  • Regular moth trapping sessions at the hotel + sessions held at various sites in the valley
  • Special butterflies to see include Mountain Alcon Blue, Silvery Argus, Apollo, Small Apollo, Mountain and Shepherd’s Fritillaries, Cynthia’s Fritillary & Alpine Grayling
  • Great chance to access high mountain areas easily for alpine flowers and butterflies
  • Relaxed pace suitable for photography & full enjoyment of the area for its scenery and wildlife
  • Contribute to Butterfly Conservation

A unique butterfly & moth holiday in a rarely visited beautiful area in the French Alps with the charismatic expert guide Tristan Lafranchis!


Holiday Guide

Tristan Lafranchis is a celebrated expert and author. His published works include the highly acclaimed field guide “Butterflies of Europe” and the wonderfully illustrated two-volumed work “Flora of Greece” in 2009. Find out about Tristan’s latest books here. Tristan’s knowledge of the wilder parts of France, Greece and Spain, particularly their butterflies, moths and plants, is almost second to none. This and his friendly and easy-going manner make him an invaluable and much sought after leader.

Tristan was the 2011 winner of the Marsh European Lepidoptera Award, which recognises the efforts of those whose work has had a major and positive impact on butterfly and moth conservation within Europe. In summarising some of Tristan’s special qualities they said,  “Those who have accompanied him in the field are constantly amazed how the combination of botanical and butterfly knowledge produce an insight into a butterfly fauna that is shared by very few. If the food plant is there he will find the egg or the caterpillar. This sort of knowledge is the product of a field season that starts in February and ends in November”.

We’re excited to be able to offer a new summer moth & butterfly watching holiday in the French Alps with the ever popular Tristan Lafranchis!

Let Tristan show you one of the best areas for butterflies in the Alps, which also happens to  one of the most beautiful and scenic!  The flora of the area is equally attractive but we will focus mainly on both moths and butterflies.

During the day we will visit various habitats between 1,300 and 2,700m to enjoy the high diversity of mountain butterflies. Dry grasslands are home of Great Sooty Satyr, Osiris Blue, Mountain Alcon Blue, Escher’s Blue, Turquoise Blue. Woodland clearings and margins host Silvery Argus, Titania Fritillary, Purple Emperor, Large Ringlet etc. Subalpine meadows are full of flowers visited by Apollo, Mountain Clouded Yellow, Mountain Dappled White, Niobe Fritillary and Chestnut Heath. Higher up, alpine grasslands will be explored for Warren’s and Dusky Grizzled Skippers, Small Apollo, Mountain and Shepherd’s Fritillaries, Cynthia’s Fritillary and many species of Ringlets, whilst screes have a specialized fauna with Sooty and Silky Ringlets and the uncommon Alpine Grayling.

Walking will vary from easy short walks on flat tracks, medium-length walks (200-300m upwards) and possibly a longer walk with 700m upwards to find some high altitude species such as Cranberry Blue and Moorland Clouded Yellow.

In the evening we will put a moth trap on a balcony at the hotel. The moth-trap will be open in the morning before leaving for butterflying. On several evenings a moth-session outside in various sites in the valley will be offered. The moth fauna includes many noctuid moths, several nice mountain species of Tigers. There are less species than at low level but most of them are mountain specialists and this will be a chance to see them.

Some of the places we will visit during the holiday include:

Valley around Ristolas the most gentle walk to enjoy subalpine butterflies and flowers.

Belvédère du Viso, where a broad track goes through extensive meadows. On the track itself mud-puddling usually is excellent with many Blues and Skippers easy to observe and to photograph.

Lac Egorgéou: a group of lakes at 2,400-2,500m famous for scarce plants and uncommon alpine butterflies.

Col d’Agniel: on the border with Italy, one of the highest road in the Alps (2,744 m). A good access to high mountain butterflies and flowers.

Abriès: meadows in the valley and dry south-facing slope just above.

Valpréveyre: at the upper limit of the woodland, along a broad stream for an easy walk.

This promises to be a fantastic and very popular tour – we recommend booking early to avoid disappointment!


Day 1: Arrival in Marseille and transfer to the hotel.

Day 2 – 7: Exploration of local area

Day 8: Transfer to Marseille airport for homeward flights.

New holiday – testimonials will appear next year

New holiday – report will follow later

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Telephone from inside UK: 01473 254658 (Mon - Sat 9am - 6pm)

Telephone from outside UK: 0044 1473 254658 (Mon - Sat 9am - 6pm)