Auroras and Kings
Aurora and wildlife holiday: Auroras, birds, mammals, winter scenery and photography
Tromsø area (Norway)
rooms with private facilities at our country inn. Excursions by minibus.
King Eider, White-tailed Eagle, Otter, Reindeer
In search of the Northern Lights, King Eider and other winter birds.
To watch coloured lights shifting and swirling in the night sky above you is a magical and mystical experience. Winter 2013/2014 is expected to be another of high auroral activity and we are pleased to offer this short break in Northern Norway, in search of the northern lights and a small but delightful selection of winter birds, set in splendid scenery. Our recce trip in January 2012 yielded multiple views of the Dance of the Spirits on two of our three nights, full plumaged male King Eiders, Long-tailed Ducks, White-tailed Eagles and Reindeer, all set in a winter wonderland setting. Many modern digital cameras are able to take good pictures of the sky dancers, a tripod and remote shutter release will be required for the best results. Join Nigel Goodgame for this uplifting short winter break.
We will fly to Tromsø and take an hour’s drive to our accommodation where we will stay and eat all our meals for the duration of the trip. A small, very friendly country inn set on the shores of a bay, will be our delightful home for the next few nights. Above the Arctic Circle, Tromsø offers one of the best opportunities’ to view the at times jaw-dropping Northern Lights. With snow-capped mountains and stunning scenery we hope for clear and cold nights to ensure we capture this spiritual and spectacular event but we are at the hands of Mother Nature ultimately. January/February is an excellent time of year to enjoy the Northern Lights and we will have the maximum time and opportunity to chase and view in comfort. Our group in 2013 enjoyed fantastic views of the Sky Dancers, directly overhead our accommodation!
This time also offers us the chance to look for birds and mammals as we have between five to six hours of daylight. We will look for both Glaucous and Iceland Gulls, King Eider, White-tailed Eagle, White-billed Diver, and Purple Sandpiper and have a chance of Steller’s Eider and other goodies. Also, we have excellent chances to see Otter, one was watched catching and eating it’s breakfast opposite our hotel this year.
Each night we will set aside the whole evening to maximise our time to see the Northern Lights. Activity can take place from soon after dark but later in the evening is usually better. For the first and second nights, we will search by minibus if the lights are not apparent from our accommodation, but for the third night we will venture out by dog-sled!
On the first evening there will be a short introduction to aurora photography, the pre-trip information will also include advice and tips.
Depart Heathrow 0705 via Oslo and arrive Tromsø 1335, transfer to hotel for coffee and introduction on how to photograph auroras. Later in the evening we will drive into the wilderness in search of the northern lights if they are not visible from our immediate surroundings.
Birding around the Tromsø area looking for Iceland and Glaucous Gulls, King Eider, White-tailed Eagle, White billed Diver and Otter. In the evening we may drive into the wilderness again, aurora hunting.
Birding around the Tromsø area again, looking for Willow Ptarmigan, Gyr Falcon, Golden Eagle and Arctic Redpoll. In the evening we will take a trip to seek the sky dancers by dog-sledge. This should be a truly memorable experience!
Our last day, either birding and exploring the area or time free to explore Tromso. Late afternoon departure via Oslo arriving back into Heathrow at 2135.
Please note: All itineraries are subject to weather, local conditions and final approval by the relevant authorities.
Dates: 30th January – 2nd February 2014
Leaders: Nigel Goodgame plus local guides.
Cost: £1789 per person sharing a twin room.
Single supplement: £130
Group size: 6 to 8
Price includes: International economy class flights including pre-paid taxes, all ground transportation by minibus, accommodation with private facilities and meals, dog sledge trip, services of WildWings leader. Bird and mammal checklist.
Price excludes: Travel insurance, laundry bills, drinks, other items of a personal nature, gratuities.
30th January – 2nd February 2014