Gourmet spring birding and wine in the Languedoc
Tour dates: Monday 16th to Monday 23rd May 2022
(This trip has been privatised for 2022 – we are taking enquiries for 2023)
Tour code: BLMGBW-22
This trip is developed in partnership with the Narbonnaise regional park.
A week-long tour that combines some superb birding (most of the emblematic Mediterranean species) with exceptional accommodation at a 4* hotel serving top food and the opportunity to taste some great Languedoc wines – a truly unique combination!
- 8 days / 7 nights
- From €1680 per person
- 50€ Discount for travel by train
- Local expert birding guide
- English speaking tour leader
- Group size 6 – 12
Discount available for 7 or more participants booking together.
Our Partners for this trip
An exceptional opportunity to see many of the emblematic Mediterranean species, whilst at the same time enjoying some creature comforts!
After the challenging times of the past few months, we think you deserve a treat!
The programme may be changed or re-arranged to take advantage of the weather conditions or other last minute birding opportunities!
Aude river plain &
The open pasture and vineyards near the Aude river should add Hoopoe, Lesser kestrel, Bee-eater, Roller and Spotted flycatcher with Ortolan bunting a bonus if we are lucky.
We will picnic in Fleury as we watch the Lesser kestrel swirl around over the village roofs.
Then it’s over to the coast to check out some filtration ponds for various terns and Purple heron, plus the nearby reed-beds for Moustached warbler, Bearded reedling, Great reed warbler. Open patches of samphire and low shrubs offer a good chance of seeing Yellow wagtail and other passerines resting on migration. We may also spot the Bonelli’s eagle hunting in this area.
Migration, “garrigue”, vineyards & lagoons
Then we’ll have a walk around the garrigue habitat of the Leucate headland where we may see nesting species such
Inland garrigue and vineyards
Former ochre quarry: Rock sparrow, Black-eared wheatear + Ortolan bunting, Bee-eater and Roller on migration. Other active migration possible: Honey buzzard, Black kite…)
Picnic at quarry
Inland agricultural plains
There are also some reed beds we can check out too and the surrounding wild flower meadows are also known for a range of orchids.
Marshes, reed-beds, vineyards & migration
Cliffs & Galamus gorge
Coffee break in the village.
Today’s main focus however,
After lunch we will drive down the spectacular Galamus Gorge where we’ll be looking out for Alpine swifts, Crag martins,
Mixed agricultural and steppe habitat & rocky escarpments
Some morning birding before transfers to station / airport for departure.
Bee-eater, Roller, Golden oriole, Woodchat shrike, Iberian shrike, Blue rock thrush, Common rock thrush, White stork, Woodchat shrike, Ortolan bunting, Lesser kestrel, Spotted flycatcher, Black-winged stilt,
• Bird list from 2018
• Bird list from 2017
We offer a discount of 50€ if you come by train and choose the “low carbon birding” option!
It’s really quite easy and you get to see more of the beautiful French countryside.
There are various routes and one client travelled south via Paris and Bordeaux, returning north via Narbonne and Lille.
See the Getting here page in our DIY birding section, and do get in touch if you need any help!
See the links below for train times and bookings all the way through from London St Pancras to Narbonne.
We do recommend however, in order to avoid the stress of potential missed connections, that it is better to take the Eurostar to Paris the day before and then catch the TGV down to Narbonne the day the trip starts. We will pick you up at Narbonne train station. Timetables and tickets are available 3 months in advance. Or you can talk to your local travel agent to book your tickets through them!
Transfers are included from Carcassonne airport and nearer the time we will give details below of the flights we meet as part of the included transfer.
Other transfer options may be available, but may incur an additional cost, please contact us with you preferred departure airport in the UK.
Click on the links below for flight details and pricing (you can track the price to get the best deal!).
We recommend that you do NOT book your flights until the trip is confirmed!
This trip explores the Narbonnaise regional park
The team for this trip combines the expert knowledge of a local ornithologist and a resident British tour leader for the logistics.
Karline Martorell - Independent Guide
Local Expert Bird Guide – French, English & Esperanto
Drawn to wildlife conservation from very young, Karline studied Biodiversity Analysis and Surveying Techniques. She continues to be an active naturalist, with a particular interest in birds, reptiles and amphibians. Particularly passionate about birds, Karline volunteers for migration counting and bird ringing. A few wildlife trips abroad have helped widen her knowledge base and she currently works part time for a consultancy firm specialised in ecological impact studies, doing surveys of birdlife and herpetology.
Philippa Benson - Birding Languedoc
Co-founder/Tour Leader – English, French & Spanish
Like many Brits, Philippa has a keen interest in natural history and enjoys learning about the amazing birds and wildlife of the Languedoc. Resident in this lovely area for over 15 years, she now has a good working knowledge of where the best spots are for birds, flowers and other species and enjoys sharing these with interested visitors.
A background in project management and hospitality combined with being fully bilingual are helpful skills for organising and hosting tours, and Philippa has a particular focus on customer service!