Dates & Prices

BOOK HOLIDAY NOW

Dates: 30 May – 6 June 2020

Price: £1,395

Single Room Supplement: £none

Deposit: £150 per person


Price Includes: All meals, accommodation with private facilities, ground transport, services of the guides

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

Conservation Donation: 10% of profits donated to Ponies Help Children

Leader: Matt Doogue (plus second guide for large groups)

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

Holiday Highlights


  • Enjoy a whole week of macro photography under the guidance of expert Matt Doogue
  • Explore a wildlife rich part of north Greece and discover a treasure trove of macro subjects
  • A huge range of macro subjects – insects, amphibians, reptiles, flowers & more!
  • Diverse range of habitats include mountains, meadows, forests, lakes & alpine pastures
  • Relaxed pace and itinerary, designed specifically for photography
  • Tuition & guidance to suit all levels – including basics of macro photography, lighting, composition, stacking, artistic macro concepts & techniques & more
  • Do a much photography as you wish or watch and record the wildlife 

Enjoy a fantastic week in Greece with a focus on close up photography, led by our master of macro Matt Doogue!

BOOK NOW

Holiday Guide

Matt Doogue has always been fascinated with wildlife, especially invertebrates and he discovered that you could get great close up pictures using a macro lens on your DSLR, so taught himself how to get those incredible images he was so used to seeing on the internet and in magazines.

Matt is now a specialist in Macro, showcasing the beauty that can be found beneath our feet and has had worked featured with National Geographic, BBC Earth, Interviewed live with BBC Springwatch, Canon and published with the UK’s leading photography and wildlife magazines. Matt, also a keen conservationist, set up a group called ‘A planet fit for nature‘ to try and educate and inspire future conservationists and naturalists.

Visit Matt’s website to find out more. Plus, you can follow him via his Facebook page.


If you love to see the natural world close up, in all its amazing technicolour detail this is the ideal holiday for you! The tranquil and verdant area of Lake Kerkini and the surrounding mountains are the perfect place – full of butterflies, bugs and beautiful flowers for a feast of macro photography!

The area we visit is rich in diverse habitats within a relatively small area, making it a prime location for finding biodiversity. The habitats we’ll explore include Lake Kerkini and associated wetlands, flowery hillsides, alpine pastures and emerald green mountains covered in forests of beech, hornbeam, oak, black pine and oriental plane. In turn this diversity supports an equally rich flora and fauna, thus a wide range of different and exciting macro opportunities! There can be dragonflies and tree frogs close to the water, orchids and other flowers in the hillside meadows, along with a beautiful palette of colourful butterflies. And everywhere we go there is the chance to find other fascinating insects and other invertebrates, like praying mantids, longhorn beetles, katylids, spiders and much more.

The holiday has been designed to maximise the opportunities for macro photography by staying in one wildlife rich place for the week, where we can spend as much time as possible outside with our cameras. Our home for the week is a very welcoming, family-run hotel, close to Lake Kerkini. It provides the perfect base for our week of relaxing and fun photography in the wide open spaces and verdant mountains that surround the beautiful Lake Kerkini that we’ll call home.

Matt will be on hand to advise on how to capture intimate and interesting portraits of butterflies, spiders,  insects and other invertebrates in their natural habitats. The kind of techniques that will be covered include: basics of macro photography; working with natural light and tools to help optimise it; working with off-camera flash; composing your macro shots and digital workflow with Photoshop (you will need to bring your own laptop with software if you want help and advice on digital workflows).

Our daily schedule is kept flexible as we’ll want to take account and full advantage of the local conditions, which can be changeable.

The potential species to photograph are almost endless and there are always new discoveries made on each trip, but here is a selection of subjects and species that we have a good chance to encounter… (check out the gallery for some example photos).

Butterflies

Southern White Admiral, Little Tiger Blue, Camberwell Beauty, Scarce Swallowtail, Eastern Festoon, Black-veined White, Eastern Bath White, Eastern Wood White, Clouded Yellow, Green Hairstreak, Iolas Blue, Brown Argus, Large Tortoiseshell, Painted Lady, Nettle-Tree Butterfly, Marbled Fritillary, Eastern Knapweed Fritillary, Spotted Fritillary, Queen of Spain Fritillary, Lattice Brown, Large Wall Brown, Yellow-banded Skipper, Woodland Ringlet, Purple-shot Copper, Sooty Copper, Lesser Fiery Copper, Southern Comma & more.

Moths

Spurge Hawk-moth, Giant Peacock, Forester, Wood Tiger, Cream-spot Tiger, Yellow Underwing, Five-Spot Burnet, Nine-Spotted Moth, Six-Spot Burnet, Transparent Burnet, Puss Moth, Small Emperor Moth, Emperor Moth, Spurge Hawk-moth, Hummingbird Hawk-Moth, Olive Bee Hawk, Narrow-Bordered Bee Hawk & more.

We will try to include moth trapping during the week for nocturnal species, which we can then photograph before releasing unharmed back into the wild the following evening.

Dragonflies & Damselflies

Green-Eyed Hawker, Blue Chaser, Broad-bodied Chaser, Black-tailed Skimmer, Southern Skimmer, White-Tailed Skimmer, Red-veined Darter, Balkan Goldenring, Lesser Emperor, Broad Scarlet, Common Darter, Yellow-winged Darter, Small Pincertail, Beautiful Demoiselle, Banded Demoiselle, Bladetail, Green Snaketail, Large Red Damselfly, Common Bluetail, Common Clubtail, Small Blue-tailed Damselfly, Variable Damselfly & more.

Reptiles & Amphibians

Sand Boa, Grass Snake, Balkan Whip Snake, Salamander, European Glass Lizard, Common Wall Lizard, European Green Lizard, Hermann’s & Spur-Thighed Tortoise, European Terrapin, Green Toad, Common Toad, Tree Frog, Eastern Spadefoot, Yellow-Bellied Toad, Marsh Frog, Agile Frog, Pool Frog & more.

Other insects, beetles, spiders, grasshoppers etc

Ladybird Spider, Philaeus Chrysops (a jumping Spider), Praying Mantis, Balkan Spoon-Winged-Lacewing, Rose Chafer, Giant Centipede, Predatory Bush Cricket (Saga sp.), Violet Carpenter Bee, various Robber Flies, Longhorn beetles & many more!

      

Please note: The following itinerary is subject to changes in terms of running order or content, depending on local weather and other factors. We will use our experience and local knowledge to maximise the wildlife you will see and be able to photograph.

Day 1: Arrival and transfer to our hotel in a small village close to Lake Kerkini. Afternoon excursion to sites at the northern end of the lake for our first taste of the areas habitats and wildlife we’ll be photographing.

Day 2: Mandraki harbour and environs + the eastern embankment area of Lake Kerkini.

Day 3: Western side of the lake and surroundings.

Day 4: Lailias Mountain, various habitats and altitudes.

Day 5: Mount Belles at the northern end of Lake Kerkini. Exploration of habitats at various altitudes.

Days 6 & 7: Magical macro mystery tour! We’ll take you to several secret locations we’ve discovered over the years. A chance to explore the countryside and find many macro photography subjects!

Day 8: Transfer to Thessaloniki airport for homeward flights.

Michaela, June 2019…Fantastic holiday! Matt was so helpful and knowledgeable and certainly knew where to look for photo subjects. Matt was always on hand to help if you needed it and I learnt good photo techniques from him. Great locations, lots of insects to see but also lovely scenery, birds, buffalo etc. We visited lots of lovely locations and I will always remember this holiday with happy memories, thank you!

Caroline, June 2018…I learned so much on my first Greenwings Wildlife Holiday! Macro specialist Matt was inspiring, encouraging and patient. He knew just where to look to find the best creatures and offered composition, technical and entomological insights in a way that made it all feel accessible. I appreciated his enthusiasm and consideration for the photography subjects. The trip was well worth the journey from the Pacific Northwest!

Malcolm, June 2018… Very good range of habitats with a wide variety of insects and arachnids. Knowledgeable and helpful guides, coupled with, in my experience, above average accommodation and food. The boat trip was an added bonus for those interested in birds and your subsequent help with identifications was much appreciated. Overall great value!

What will I need to bring?

A camera – DSLR, compact or bridge. A macro lens if you have one – don’t worry if you haven’t as we can get creative with telephotos, zooms & wide angles too! External flash (if you have it). Memory cards & batteries – make sure your spare batteries are fully charged! A tripod/monopod (only if you wish to use one, we try to promote hand held technique).

What do I need to know?

It would be useful to come to the workshop with a basic understanding of your camera. For example, knowing how to control shutter speed and aperture can be very important in achieving technically good macro shots so being familiar with these settings is a good start. But please don’t worry if you don’t feel you do understand these settings or any others, we will be able to help you learn throughout the day.

How will the holiday be run?

The daily workshops will cover techniques and approach for different subjects, as well as lens and accessory choice, use of flash, and camera settings. You’ll spend your time in the field taking photos, with Matt on hand to offer guidance throughout the day. At the end of the holiday you will have received a good introduction into close-up and macro photography and found out about the possibilities for taking your own macro photography further by the use of the techniques learnt and the equipment options available to you.

Are there any age restrictions?

No. Children and adults of all ages are welcome. We do ask that children (anyone under 18) are accompanied by a parent or guardian though.