Dates & Prices
Dates: 15 – 22 September 2017
Single Room Supplement: £100
Deposit: £150 per person
Price Includes: All meals, accommodation with private facilities, ground transport, services of the guides, 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
- A rare opportunity to spend time with Tristan Lafranchis, one of the best guides in Europe – in his local patch!
- Relaxing week of wildlife watching; all sites we’ll visit are less than 2 hours drive and most are only 30 mins to 1 hour away
- Habitats include Olive Grove, dry scrub & hillsides & coastal meadows on either side of the border with France
- Regular moth trapping sessions at hotel and further afield; dry limestone hillside, sand dunes, reed bed etc
- Butterflies to see include Lesser Purple Emperor, Langs Short-tailed Blue, Long-tailed Blue, Graylings, Provence Chalkhill Blue, Two-tailed Pasha & if we’re lucky Plain Tiger
- Enjoy the rich bird life of the area during migration. Sites include Aiguamolls Natural Park
- Contribute to Butterfly Conservation
An exclusive opportunity to share a week of wildlife watching with Tristan Lafranchis on his local patch in northern Spain!
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”.
A relaxing week in Catalonia with one of the best and most enigmatic guides in Europe, Tristan Lafranchis!
This is a special holiday with one of our most popular guides, Tristan Lafranchis, in his very own local patch! We offer you a rare opportunity to spend a week in the field with Tristan, enjoying a whole host of wildlife but focusing especially on moths, birds and butterflies.
Our hotel is located in a perfect place for early birdwatching walks, at the junction of Ter River, the sea and a nature reserve with reed beds and sandy grasslands. We will also make at least two visits to the Natural Park of Aiguamolls del Emporda. Most migrating birds travelling through western Europe are possible there. Permanent resident birds in the area include several Ducks, White Stork, Flamingo, Cattle Egret, Little Egret, Great White Egret, Bonelli’s Eagle, Marsh Harrier, Goshawk, Red Partridge, Purple Gallinule, Hoopoe, Thekla Lark, Sardinian Warbler and so on.
Every night we’ll aim to use a powerful actinic bulb at the hotel and to go moth hunting with a blacklight on a portable battery serveral times during the week, to explore other habitats including dry limestone hillside, sand dunes and reed bed.
Lots of interesting butterflies are also still on the wing in September and Tristan will track down numerous species – 46 seen on our 2015 visit. Some of the potential highlights include; Lesser Purple Emperor, Provence Short-tailed Blue, Short-tailed Blue, Spotted & various other Fritillaries, Woodland, Striped and other Graylings, Two-tailed Pasha, Cleopatra, Geranium Bronze, Long-tailed & Lang’s Short-tailed Blue, Provence Chalkhill Blue, Southern White Admiral, Swallowtail and more!
What we promise you is a relaxing and rewarding week of wildlife in this beautiful corner of Spain, with one of the best wildlife guides one can share their time with!
Our hotel is located near to some excellent bird watching, so we’ll have options for some early morning walks. We will also go at least twice to the Natural Park of Aiguamolls del Emporda, depending on our programme that will be either mornings or late afternoons. we will also aim to leave a powerful actinic bulb every evening at the hotel and to go moth hunting with a portable light 3 or 4 times to explore other local habitats.
Day 1: Arrival and transfer to the hotel.
Day 2: hillside above Banyoles. A good spot for Fritillaries with Short-tailed and Provence Short-tailed Blues. We will also bait to tempt down some stunning Two-tailed Pashas!
Day 3: southern end of Montgri hillside for Swallowtail, Southern Small White, Cleopatra, Geranium Bronze, Long-tailed and Lang’s Short-tailed Blue, Provence Chalk-hill, Southern White Admiral, Woodland Grayling, Mallow Skipper and more.
Day 4: Today we will pop into France to visit part of the Pyrenees. Here we will visit a good spot for Lesser Purple Emperor, Lang’s Short-tailed Blue and other butterflies.
Day 5: A hillside above Figueras for Adonis and Provence Chalk-hill Blues, Spotted Fritillary, Striped Grayling and more!
Day 6: Montgri castle. A hilltopping site with Swallowtails, Striped Grayling, Blue Rock thrush and lots of other interesting wildlife.
Day 7: Sparsely populated valley area with a mosaic of small fields, woodlands, scrub and grasslands.
Day 8: Transfer to the airport for return flights to the UK.
New holiday – testimonials will appear next year