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 southern Andes tours focus on the rarely visited southern Andes. Very few birders have been much further south of Cali. Indeed, even as recently as 2014 – insurgents made it impossible to deviate off Ruta 25 en route to Ecuador. Nowadays, we are able to freely explore the incredible Andean ridges from montane cloud forests all the way to the foothills along seemingly impossible road traverses. After leaving Popyan behind, we head to El Encanto - which takes us through an amazing transect of habitats and scenery. El Encanto plays host to the scarce Tolima Dove, Dusky-headed Brushfinch, Tolima Blossomcrown, East Andean Antbird, Velvet-fronted Euphonia and Chestnut Wood Quail. We then move up to the Mocoa area, birding a number of fincas and virgin forests for such beauties as Rufous-gaped Hillstar, Coppery-chested Jacamar, Ecuadorian Piedtail and Red-bellied Grackle to name but a few of >600 possible speces recorded here! After a satisfying few days at Macoa, we shall make our way up the winding road to the mountain town of Pasto, a route known locally as La Trampolina de la Muerte. We have one more day to venture to Bordoncillo, one of only three sites for the critically endangered Chestnut-bellied Cotinga.

2023 Tour price is an estimate and will change. Tour dates could be adjusted.

Tour Facts Top Birds
Colombian Chachalaca; Chestnut Wood Quail, Indigo-capped Hummingbird; Tolima Blossomcrown; Tolima Dove; East Andean Antird; Magdalena Tapaculo; Velvet-fronted Euphonia; Dusky-headed Brushfinch; Red-bellied Grackle; Shining-green Hummingbird; Rufous-gaped Hillstar; Coppery-chested Jacamar; Scaled Piculet; Bar-crested Antshrike; Schwartz's Antthrush; Bicolored Antitta; Chestnut-bellied Cotinga; Yellow-headed Manakin; White-rimmed Brushfinch.
Habitats Covered
upper and foothill cloud forest, lowland rainforest, East Andean slope forest, subtropial and temperate forest
Expected Climate
cool to cold in the highlands, much warmer with humidity in the foothills
Max Group Size
8 with 1 Rockjumper leader and 1 local leader
Tour Pace & Walking
brisk pace, some demanding walks
Accommodation
mostly comfortable hotels
Ease of Birding
moderate with some challenging species
Other Attractions
rarely visited locations, La Trampolina de la Muerte
Photographic Opportunities
average to good
Tour Route Map Route Map Client Testimonials

Rob Williams and the Rockjumper folks were absolutely fantastic in helping me after I lost my passport. They made sure I got back to Bogota for the embassy appointments, changing plans on the fly. Very impressive dedication to help customers.

Tuomas was an excellent guide and organizer.

Forrest Rowland is an incredible guide.

I was thrilled when Forrest Rowland agreed to run another Colombia Mega, as I really wanted to join a tour led by him – he has such extensive experience of this country and its birds. Even with that expectation, the trip exceeded my wildest dreams. Forrest’s grasp of Colombia’s birds, herps, plants, geography and history sets the scene for a magnificent experience. His humour and personality ensure one enjoys every minute.

Forrest was absolutely fantastic. The best birder/guide that we have ever had the pleasure of travelling with. His enthusiasm and passion for his work were exceptional and made for an awesome birding trip.

Dates, Leaders and Pricing
2023 DEPARTURES
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