Overview

Colombia has more species of birds than any other country - a staggering 1930+ species are to be found within the confines of this incredible nation; of which, at least 89 are endemic. This huge diversity of species results from the equally diverse range of habitats: three Andean Cordilleras (Western, Central and Eastern Andes), two inter-Andean valleys (the Cauca and Magdalena Valleys), the lowland forests of the Amazon and Orinoco regions, the isolated snow-capped Santa Marta Mountains, the Pacific and Caribbean coasts, deserts and lakes, and the rich wet forests of the Chocó all help to make it one of the most exciting countries to bird on earth!

Our series of northern Andes tours focus on the bulk of endemics that Colombia has to offer; working our way through the Central and Eastern Andean ranges and both the Magadalena and Cauca Valleys, as well as the dry Guajira desert and the impressive Santa Marta Mountains.

The Medellin and Magdalena Valley tour sets off with a leisurely walk in La Romera park for Stiles's Tapaculo, Red-bellied Grackle and Yellow-headed Manakin before making a quick stop to find the rediscovered Antioquia Brushfinch en route to Rio Claro. The lowland humid forests of the Rio Claro Canyon Park are one of the best birding site sin Colombia and host to an accessible Oilbird cave, Beautiful Woodpecker, White-mantled Barbet, Antioquia Bristle Tyrant and Sooty Ant Tanager. Staying within the lush, lowland forests, we move slightly north to El Paujil - home of the rare Blue-billed Curassow. While by no means guaranteed, we stand an excellent chance of seeing this once mythical species. Our final site of this tour is the endemic rich Reinita Azul near Bucaramanga. The gardens and trails are home to the striking Black Inca, Gorgeted Wood Quail, Chestnut-bellied and Indogo-capped Hummingbirds, Parker's Antbird, Magadalena Tapaculo and Moutached Brushfinch. We will also spend time birding the eastern Andes near Bucaramanga for Turquoise Dacnis and Niceforo's Wren, as well as the montane oak forests towards the Venezuelan border to find Colombian Mountain Grackle and Rusty-faced Parrot.

Tour Facts Top Birds
Stiles’s Tapaculo, Red-bellied Grackle, Antioquia & Moustached Brushfinches, Beautiful Woodpecker, Antioquia Bristle Tyrant, White-mantled Barbet, Sooty Ant Tanager, Blue-billed Curassow, Gorgeted Wood Quail, Black Inca, Chestnut-bellied & Indigo-capped Hummingbirds, Parker’s Antbird, Magdalena Tapaculo, Colombian Mountain Grackle, Turquoise Dacnis, Colombian Chachalaca, Niceforo’s Wren, Apical Flycatcher
Habitats Covered
lowland rainforest, gallery forest, grasslands, humid forest, east Andean cloud forest, coffee plantations, scrub, Oak forest
Expected Climate
cool in highlands, mostly hot and humid in lowlands (especially at Rio Claro and El Paujil)
Max Group Size
8 with 1 Rockjumper leader and 1 local leader
Tour Pace & Walking
brisk pace, some demanding walks
Accommodation
basic to some comfortable hotels
Ease of Birding
moderate with some challenging species
Number of Species Expected
700+ (Andean Endemics combined with Santa Marta Extension)
Other Attractions
spectacular scenery
Photographic Opportunities
average to good
Tour Route Map Route Map Client Testimonials

Forrest Rowland was superb as usual.  Both his birding skills and people skills are extraordinary.

From the several members of the office staff to the actual tour itself, I have nothing but high praise for my Rockjumper experience. This was my first tour with Rockjumper, but I hope it won't be my last. Alison and Sarah were tremendously helpful. Rob Williams is as good a leader as I have ever experienced. He not only knows the birds, but he made sure that we all got to see them, showing patience way beyond what I thought necessary. When one of our participants lost his passport, Rob bent over backwards to help this hapless person, never complaining while doing so. Rob always told us what the plan was for the next day. When Plan A didn't pan out, he had Plan B ready. If something went askew, he handled it with aplomb, always keeping his sense of humour. Did I mention he showed us wonderful birds? Oh, we saw some beautiful ones!

I would just like to praise Dušan for all the constant effort he put in during a trip with external problems. He dealt with the bureaucracy of all our nations in getting our covid tests and the form filling, and it was no easy task. His knowledge of the birds and especially their calls, gave the the whole trip an extra level and I profited handsomely from his skills. I would be most happy to go on a tour with Dusan again.

Dusan is an outstanding guide. He consistently made sure that all of us saw each bird and knew its name. I have hearing and mild short-term memory problems and Dusan took specialefforts to be sure that these did not interfere with my birding success on the trip. Not only does Dusan know all of the Colombian birds by sight, but he knows all of their calls and is able to talk at length about their biology and behavior - that is, he is an excellent teacher, too. This is something that I appreciate greatly, as I am a retired college professor of biology and I recognize an excellent teacher when I see one in action. In addition to his skills as a guide, Dusan was tireless in making sure that the constantly-changing tour arrangements went smoothly from day to day. I am certain that we got every minute that was possible out in the field looking for new birds; this was the goal of the tour (1000 species seen in 30 days of birding). He has a very pleasant, enthusiastically-encouraging personality and is outstanding at promoting group coherence and morale in difficult and sometimes mildly-dangerous situations.

Tuomas was an excellent guide and organizer.

Dates, Leaders and Pricing
2022 DEPARTURES
2023 DEPARTURES
Tour Enquiry
  • Your details

  • Contact permission

    We would love to send you Newsletters, Promotions, Discounts, Blog Articles, and other content that we think you would find interesting. If you are happy with this then please select your preferences below. If you would like to unsubscribe from previous subscriptions, or leave our mailing list entirely, then please do so by visiting the Preference Centre link at the bottom of these emails.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.