Welcome to Birdquest


Tuesday 23rd April — Saturday 4th May 2019
(12 days)

Leaders: Steven An and Mark Beaman

Group Size Limit: 6

Tour Category: Easy to moderate walking and mostly comfortable accommodations

Priority birds on this special expedition will include a series of Birdquest lifers, including the endangered and rapidly declining Silver Oriole, the only quite recently described Nonggang Babbler, Hainan Partridge, Hainan Peacock-Pheasant, Chinese Barbet and Hainan Leaf Warbler.

A rich supporting cast includes the beautiful Cabot’s Tragopan, Rickett’s Partridge, Silver Pheasant, Ratchet-tailed Treepie, White-winged Magpie, Rufous-cheeked Laughingthrush, the stunning Red-tailed Laughingthrush, Huet’s and Dusky Fulvettas, and Yellow-billed Nuthatch.

Our expedition will focus on three different areas.

The first part of our journey will take us to the island of Hainan, where we will explore the Jianfengling reserve for three endemics, Hainan Leaf Warbler, Hainan Partridge and Hainan Peacock-Pheasant, as well as Chinese Barbet, Ratchet-tailed Treepie, Rufous-cheeked Laughingthrush, Huet’s and Dusky Fulvettas, and Yellow-billed Nuthatch.

Next we explore rarely-visited southwestern Guangxi province, on the borders of Vietnam, where we will have no trouble finding the recently-described endemic Nonggang Babbler, as well as the gorgeous White-winged Magpie.

Our final area is Nanling National Nature Reserve (also known as Ba Bao Shan) in northern Guangdong province, where the mega-bird is the Silver Oriole, but where we can also expect to see the superb Cabot’s Tragopan, Silver Pheasant, the restricted-range Red-tailed Laughingthrush, as well as Golden-breasted Fulvetta, Golden Parrotbill, Brown-chested Jungle Flycatcher and quite possibly Rickett’s Partridge.

White-eared Night Heron & Blyth’s Kingfisher Extension: We are going to visit an area in the Guangdong/Jiangxi borderlands for White-eared Night Heron and Blyth’s Kingfisher before the main tour starts. This extension will add five days and the cost will depend on the number of participants. Please contact our office at the time you book to register your interest in this extension.

Accommodation & Road Transport: The hotels/guesthouses are mostly of good or medium standard. The guesthouse at Nanling is fairly simple, but all rooms have private bathrooms. Road transport is by minibus and roads are mostly very good or good.

Walking: The walking effort is easy for the most part, sometimes moderate.

Climate: Conditions will range from warm or hot in the lowlands to cool at the highest altitudes. At this season the weather is mainly sunny or overcast and dry, but periods of rainy weather are not uncommon. It is sometimes rather humid, especially near the coast.

Bird Photography: Opportunities are worthwhile.


Day 1  The expedition begins this morning at Sanya airport. Sanya is situated on the southern coast of the large island of Hainan off southern China. From Sanya we drive inland to Tian Chi (‘Heaven’s Lake’), a beautiful area in the mountains where we will stay for four nights. This afternoon we will make a first visit to the Jianfengling reserve.

Days 2-4  The Jianfengling National Forest Park protects an extensive area of upland native forest in the interior of Hainan. Here we will be looking for the endemic Hainan Leaf-Warbler (which is quite easy to find), the endemic Hainan Partridge (which is shy but which we should see with persistence) and the endemic Hainan Peacock-Pheasant (which we should hear but have only a slim chance of actually seeing!). Other great birds in this fine area are the restricted-range Chinese Barbet, Ratchet-tailed Treepie, Rufous-cheeked Laughingthrush, Huet’s and Dusky Fulvettas, and Yellow-billed Nuthatch, all of which we should see, and in addition  the more widespread Silver Pheasant.

Day 5  Today we will return to Sanya and catch a flight to Nanning, the capital of Guangxi province in southern China. From Nanning we head southwestwards to the town of Longzhou in southwestern Guangxi, where we will stay for two nights.

Day 6  Today we will visit a reserved area where we will surely get wonderful views of the recently-described Nonggang Babbler, which was only discovered in 2005. Another good bird here is the beautiful White-winged Magpie.

Day 7  This morning we will return to Nanning and catch a flight to the city of Guangzhou (or Canton), capital of Guangdong province. From Guangzhou we head northwards to Nanling National Nature Reserve for a five nights stay.

Days 8-11   Nanling National Nature Reserve is one of the last reliable places to see the beautiful but fast declining and endangered Silver Oriole. We should see a number of these lovely creatures during our visit. Other good birds here are Cabot’s Tragopan, Rickett’s Partridge, Brown-chested Jungle Flycatcher, the lovely Red-tailed Laughingthrush, Gold-breasted Fulvetta and Golden Parrotbill.

Day 12  Today we return to Guangzhou airport where the expedition ends.

Prices are provisional

Tour Price: £3090, €3470, $4230 Sanya/Guangzhou. Single Room Supplement: £385, €432, $527. Deposit: £400, €480, $560.

Includes surface transportation, accommodations, meals, water, entrance fees and tips/gratuities.

Also includes these flights: Sanya-Nanning, Nanning-Guangzhou.

Base prices for this tour are in US Dollars. The exchange rates used are: £1 = $1.370 and €1 = $1.220.

Air Travel To & From The Tour: Our in-house IATA ticket agency will be pleased to arrange your air travel on request, or you may arrange this yourself if you prefer.

Many of the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information, or for more for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOL Certificate

Birdquest Ltd is Registered in England, Company No. 01568270. The address of our registered office is Two Jays, Kemple End, Stonyhurst, Clitheroe, Lancashire BB7 9QY

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