Each island that we explore on this epic adventure exhibits its own distinctive ensemble of characteristic and rarely seen endemics, including some of our planet’s least-known species; and, although these oceanic islands and their bird lists are not large, they are nevertheless very special indeed. On this trip, we will be treated to a wonderful assortment of imperial pigeons, fruit doves (one of the most beautiful of all bird groups), parrots and lorikeets, kingfishers, hosts of flycatchers, monarchs, fantails, whistlers, honeyeaters, and white-eyes, all of which are endemic and consequently found nowhere else on earth. In the mid-80s, the Kagu was critically endangered and seemingly impossible to see. Now, thanks to concerted conservation efforts by the local park authorities, it has staged a remarkable comeback, and with special help, we have an excellent chance of seeing this “missing link” in the avian world. And while seeing this iconic species may well be the focus of the tour for many of us, we should also encounter a remarkable diversity of other spectacular avian endemics.

We begin on the islands of Samoa, where we should be able to find a large proportion the Samoan specialities, including the lovely White Tern, Crimson-crowned Fruit Dove, Blue-crowned Lorikeet, Flat-billed Kingfisher, Samoan Fantail, Samoan Flycatcher, Samoan Whistler, the scarce Mao, a large honeyeater, and Samoan Starlings.

Moving westwards, we will next wing our way to the lovely Fijian Islands, where we will wander balmy, sun-bleached beaches and explore luxuriant forests only a short distance from our delightful hotels. We will visit several islands, each supporting its own coterie of exciting endemics and near-endemics. Among mist-draped montane forests, we may be treated to such spectacular surprises as Orange Fruit Dove (an almost unbelievable colour!), the enigmatic Taveuni Silktail, Azure-crested Flycatcher (a real humdinger!) and a plethora of other attractive endemics, including Fiji Goshawk, Golden and Whistling Fruit Doves, Barking Imperial Pigeon, Collared Lory, Maroon Shining and Masked Shining Parrots, Polynesian Triller, Fiji Bush Warbler, Slaty Monarch, Vanikoro Flycatcher, Fiji Shrikebill, Fiji Whistler, Fiji White-eye, Sulphur-breasted Myzomela, Fiji Wattled Honeyeater, the spectacular sounding Giant Honeyeater, Fiji Woodswallow, and the handsome Fiji Parrotfinch. We will also seek out some of Fiji’s most elusive and least-known species, including Long-legged Thicketbird and Pink-billed Parrotfinch.

This is just a sample of what we can hope to see in these remarkable islands on what promises to be a most memorable tour. The islands of the Southwest Pacific have a lazy, relaxed charm about them and one of the features we can anticipate on this tour, in addition to many, many special birds, includes a fascinating collage of landscapes and culture, great food and some lovely accommodations.

Top Birds

Samoa: Crimson-crowned (Purple-capped) & Many-colored Fruit Doves; Metallic Pigeon; Pacific Imperial Pigeon; Blue-crowned Lorikeet; Flat-billed Kingfisher;
Samoan & Polynesian Trillers; Mao; Wattled Honeyeater; Samoan Whistler; Samoan Flycatcher; Samoan Fantail; Samoan Starling; Cardinal Myzomela; Red-headed Parrotfinch; Samoan White-eye. Fiji: Golden, Orange, Whistling & Many-colored Fruit Doves; Tongan Ground Dove; Barking Imperial Pigeon; Fiji Goshawk; Masked & Crimson Shining Parrots; Red-throated Lorikeet (very rare); Collared Lory; Giant, Kadavu & Wattled & Kadavu Honeyeaters; Taveuni Silktail; Black-throated & Fiji Shrikebills; Long-legged Thicketbird; Fiji Woodswallow; Bristle-thighed Curlew; Vanikoro Flycatcher; Slaty Monarch; Sulphur-breasted Myzomela; Polynesian Triller; Vanikoro & Azure-crested Flycatchers; Fiji Bush Warbler; Fiji White-eye; Red-headed & Pink-billed Parrotfinches.

Top Mammals

Pacific Flying Fox; Dugong.

Habitats Covered

various forest types, small islands, beaches, shoreline, open ocean, airports

Expected Climate

mostly tropical conditions; warm and humid with some rain expected, can be very cool in the highlands

Max Group Size

8 with 1 Rockjumper Leader or 9 - 12 with 2 Rockjumper leaders

Tour Pace & Walking

Moderate to brisk paced tours suited for those in good health with good level of fitness. Not suited for anyone with mobility challenges or serious medical conditions. Opportunities for afternoon snorkelling on several days.

Accommodation

Reasonable to very comfortable standard.

Ease of Birding

Moderate to demanding. Several difficult target species.

Other Attractions

great food, little-explored islands, fantastic scenery, fascinating collage of landscapes & culture, lovely accommodation

Photographic Opportunities

Worthwhile to good, tricky in the forests.

Southwest Pacific Islands - Samoa & Fiji 2024

14 Aug 2024 - 26 Aug 2024 (13 days)

USD5,795 - No Spaces Available

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Tour Leader: Glen Valentine

Tour price (Per person): USD5,795 * GBP4,578 * EUR5,347 * AUD8,923

Single Supplement: USD980 * GBP774 * EUR904 * AUD1,509

Flight costs: USD850 * GBP672 * EUR784 * AUD1,309

Can be linked with: Southwest Pacific Islands - New Caledonia Extension 2024

Southwest Pacific Islands - Samoa & Fiji 2025

19 Sep 2025 - 30 Sep 2025 (12 days)

USD6,000 - Spaces Available

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Tour Leader: Erik Forsyth

Pricing notes : *Prices are estimated and dates may change*

Tour price (Per person): USD6,000 * GBP4,740 * EUR5,536 * AUD9,238

Can be linked with: Southwest Pacific Islands - New Caledonia Extension 2025

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