The Ultimate In Birding Tours

Asia (and its islands)

VIETNAM BIRD PHOTOGRAPHY – Pheasants, Pittas, Laughingthrushes & More

Friday 17th January – Wednesday 29th January 2025

Leaders: Mike Watson and a local guide

13 Days Group Size Limit 5


Vietnam is home to an amazing diversity of stunning rainforest-dwelling birds and other wildlife. However, these inhabitants of the rich but rapidly diminishing lush tropical rainforests, have long remained almost invisible to keen photographers! The habitat itself makes the photography difficult, but coupled with the shyness of most of the wildlife (mostly due to intense hunting and poaching pressure), it has, until now, been nearly impossible to achieve decent images of these superb species. However, in recent years, with the expansion of ecotourism, and the realization that wildlife photographers bring value to the local economy, the tide is beginning to turn.

The rainforests of the stunning Indochinese region are home to a great array of Southeast Asian birds, including a number of species restricted to Indochina itself. On this particular trip, we will concentrate on just three areas in the south of Vietnam. Here, with the help of some excellent local contacts, we will focus on finding and photographing a number of the more spectacular species. In recent years, dedication has led to several species being lured in to feeding areas, where they can be viewed from relatively spacious mesh hides. The nature of the photography means that one does not need to spend too long in any one hide, and can come and go relatively as one pleases.

Of prime interest to many a birder and photographer alike, are the gorgeous, though usually ultra-elusive pittas, and during our visit, we should have the opportunity to photograph the stunning Bar-bellied Pitta as well as Blue-rumped and Blue Pittas from these hides. Equally impressive are colourful Siamese Fireback pheasants and jewel-encrusted Germain’s Peacock-Pheasants. These same hides also play host to a number of other gorgeous species, including such delights as Orange-headed Thrush and Siberian Blue Robin.

We will also have the opportunity to explore some of the areas on foot and by jeep, where other subjects will have our fingers twitching! Gorgeous photogenic Red-cheeked Gibbons are often approachable, as are impressive Great Hornbills, and we will also spend some time in the natural grasslands attempting to photograph the stunning Green Peafowls and with luck, even the impressive Gaur.

Although we will spend most of our time in the forest, we will also have a chance to experience some of ‘real’ Vietnam! A transit through Ho Chi Minh City is an eye opener for anyone: the numbers of mopeds have to be seen to be believed! We will also get to experience the exquisitely tasty Vietnamese cuisine at each of our bases!

If you are interested in full details about this tour please click here.