Birdwatching tour through the Guyana’s rainforest and network of rivers.

Guyana offers birdwatchers a fabulous richness of wildlife that is unsurpassable by any of its South American neighbours.

While experiencing Guyana’s natural beauty we dedicate ourselves to bird spotting in a country that offers a great variety of different species.

The difference in landscape from rainforest to Savannah create a wide variety of bird species, including the colourful, bright orange Guianan Cock-of-the Rock.

More on Guyana birdwatching tours

Keep an eye out for birds such as the Pearl Kite, the White-tailed and Savannah Hawk, the Rufous-crowned Elaenia, the Black Manakin and the Red-shouldered Tanager.

Red-bellied Macaws, Sapphire-rumped Parrotlets, the strikingly beautiful Point-tailed Palmcreeper, the Grey-winged Trumpeter and the Double-banded Pygmy-Tyrant await in the forests, while Sungrebe and Sunbittern occur along the streams.

Birdwatching in mature tropical forest brings close species like the Red-fan Parrot, Tawny-bellied Screech-Owl, Racket-tailed Coquette and any of more than 20 species of antbirds.

However, not only birds will draw your attention. Giant river otters, tapirs and black spider monkeys are often spotted along the banks of the Burro Burro River, or even an elusive jaguar.

You will be staying at lodges near the coast in pristine forest settings, and in the south, several ranches offer comfortable quarters close to varied and interesting savannah habitats.

Camping expeditions to truly remote areas of the interior make for a unique nature experience.



Trip Highlights

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  • Enjoy of the best birdwatching tours in South America.

  • Wide variety of eco-systems and birds to spot.

  • Excellent, experienced native guides lead the tours.

  • Private, fully flexible itineraries to suit your needs.

After the excitement of seeing a giant anteater with baby, I thought the trip couldn't get any better until we saw a jaguar close up on the riverbank!

K. Dougal, Guyana

Full Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Guyana, transfer to Georgetown, hotel

Arrive in Guyana and transfer to Georgetown.

Overnight at Cara Lodge, a 150-year old historic building that has been converted into a beautiful small hotel.

Day 2: Kaiteur Falls & Orinduik Falls, hotel (B,L)

We fly by chartered aircraft over the Demerara and Essequibo Rivers and hundreds of miles of unbroken tropical rainforest to land at Kaieteur, the world’s highest free-falling waterfall.

Though Venezuela’s Angel Falls are greater in total height, their filamentous drop occurs by stages whereas Kaieteur is a single, massive, thundering cataract 100 metres wide created as the Potaro River makes a sheer drop of 228 metres, nearly five times the height of Niagara.

The spectacle is even more impressive for its remoteness and it is quite possible that we’ll be the only people viewing it.

Here we will hope to find White-chinned and White-tipped Swifts swirling over the gorge, and perhaps we’ll be lucky enough to see the astonishingly colorful Guianan Cock-of-the-Rock.

Taking off again, we continue to the Brazilian border and Orinduik Falls, where the Ireng River thunders over steps and terraces of solid jasper, a semi precious stone. Take a dip in the cool water of its natural jacuzzis. Set against the backdrop of the rolling grass covered hills of the Pakaraima Mountains, this is truly one of the most beautiful locations in Guyana’s hinterland.

Overnight at Cara Lodge.

Day 3: Surama Amerindian Community, eco-lodge (B,L,D)

We once again depart on a flight over the rainforest to the Rupununi Savannah and land at Annai, where we transfer to a four-wheel drive and travel northward to the Amerindian community of Surama.

The village is set in five square miles of savannah and surrounded by the densely forested Pakaraima Mountains. Surama’s inhabitants are mainly from the Macushi tribe and still observe many of the traditional practices of their forebears. Our accommodations will be in the Eco Lodge, and our meals will consist of excellent local produce, in order to support this little community.

Day 4: Surama mountain, Burro Burro river, hammock camp (B,L,D)

We rise before dawn to walk across the savannah and make the easy ascent of Surama Mountain in the cool of the morning. Breakfast will be served at a view point overlooking the village, whilst looking for Pearl Kite, White-tailed and Savannah Hawk, and with a broad prospect of savannahs and the rounded peaks of the Pakaraima.

We return to the village for lunch and later, as the afternoon begins to cool off, make our way on foot through the rainforest to the Burro Burro River, where we spend the night in a hammock camp at Carahaa Landing.

Day 5: 4x4 to Iwokrama, Atta lodges (B,L,D)

Soon after daybreak we’ll set out on the river for a quiet and skillfully guided paddle, listening to the voices of a multitude of birds singing in near darkness in the forest – we see many of them later on when the light grows stronger.

We search the river banks for mammals such as Giant River Otter, Tapir, Tayra and the active Black Spider Monkeys.

After a delicious lunch we leave Surama by 4×4 Land Cruiser and travel north through the rainforest stopping at a trail where we hope to find the Guianan Cock-of-the Rock at a locality where the birds are known to display and nest. The journey continues onto the Iwokrama Canopy Walkway. Here we can bird watch from the vantage of 35m up in the canopy.

After dinner we return to the walkway to experience the canopy at night.

Overnight in Iwokrama Atta Rainforest Lodge.

Day 6: Essequibo River & Iwokrama, lodge (B,L,D)

This morning we awake to the dawn chorus from the Iwokrama Canopy Walkway. After breakfast we are off by 4×4 along the trail where there is a good chance we will see the elusive Jaguar.

The Iwokrama forest is rapidly gaining an international reputation for its healthy jaguar populations that don’t seem to be troubled by the appearance of curious humans. No promises, but many have been lucky! Eventually we reach the Essequibo River and the Iwokrama Field Station.

We then set out by boat for half an hour or less to the foot of Turtle Mountain, where we explore the trail for a few hours, visiting Turtle Ponds and climbing to an elevation of about 900 feet for a spectacular view of the forest canopy below.

On the return trip we visit Fair View, a nearby Amerindian village and in late afternoon we take a walk on Screaming Piha Trail near the Field Station. Finally, after dark, we go for a paddle on the river once more, in hope of spotting caimans and listening for the voices of nocturnal birds.

Overnight at the Iwokrama Field Station at Kurupukari.

Day 7: Rupunumi Savannah & Rock View Lodge (B,L,D)

Today we embark in the early morning on the Essequibo and circumnavigate nearby Indian House Island, before returning to the Field Station for breakfast. The wildlife is always easiest to spot at this time of the day. We leave the station with a packed lunch, travelling to Mori Scrub, an region characterised by an unusual low, sandy forest. This supports an interesting variety of bird species, among them Rufous-crowned Elaenia, Black Manakin and Red-shouldered Tanager.

In the afternoon we continue by 4×4 back towards the Rupununi Savannha and Annai, its northernmost community. Rupununi is to Guyana what the Gran Sabana is to Venezuela, an extensive area of grassland with termite mounds and scattered or riparian woodland. Needless to say, the birdlife here is markedly different from that of the rainforest.

Overnight at Rock View Lodge.

Day 8: Pakaraima foothills, Rock View Lodge (B,L,D)

With its tropical gardens and flowering trees, our lodge resembles an oasis in the savannah, and attracts many species of birds, particularly nectar feeders and frugivores.

Nearby patches of light forest are home to certain antbirds and flycatchers, and of course the grasslands support an avifauna of their own. We explore the area on foot, and as the afternoon cools we’ll travel a short distance for birdwatching in the Pakaraima foothills.

Overnight at Rock View Lodge.

Day 9: Karanambu Ranch (B,L,D)

This morning we travel across the savannah to Ginep Landing and the Rupununi River, where we travel upstream to Karanambu Ranch. This is the home of Diane McTurk, widely known for her work rehabilitating orphaned Giant River Otters. Our birdwatching here will be largely in woodland patches or gallery forest along the river where we hope to find species such as Spotted Puffbird, Striped Woodcreeper and Pale-bellied Tyrant-Manakin.

When water levels are appropriate a wooded swamp near the ranch is the site of a surprisingly large colony of Boat-billed Herons, and at any season the river and airstrip provide habitat for no fewer than eight species of nightjars.

Overnight at Karanambu Ranch.

Days 10 to 11: Karanambu Ranch (2 x B,L,D)

Birdwatching from daybreak to nightfall or later, we’ll devote this entire day to exploring Karanambu and its varied habitats, traveling by boat to certain localities up and downstream, and by Land Rover to one or another forest patch.

Double-striped Thick-knees are among the sparse inhabitants of the grasslands, and at widely scattered ponds we may find concentrations of storks and other waterbirds.

Overnight at Karanambu Ranch.

Days 12-13: Head to Arrowpoint Nature Resort (2 x B,L,D)

After some early morning birdwatching near the ranch buildings we’ll fly back to Georgetown and transfer by bus and travel south along the Demerara River.

For a boat for a trip along the Demerara River to Timehri, the boat then turns into the Kamuni River where overhanging vegetation has stained the water a deep black colour and the chill air is relieved by intermittent bursts of sunlight.

The boat will wind through thick rainforest and then savannah before entering the Pokerero Creek and the Amerindian reserve of Santa.  The river system is the only means of travel here, and you may see families transporting their farm produce to market or canoeing to the village church.

The area is also rich in bird and wildlife, and the lucky visitor may catch a glimpse of monkeys in the trees or a toucan gliding overhead.  We then stop at the Amerindian village of Santa Mission, which is an Amerindian village of the Arawak and Carib tribes, the residents welcome visitors and often will stop to talk or even invite you into their homes.

You will be able to experience village life and see and purchase local handicraft made from materials of the rainforest.

Then it is a 15 minute boat ride to Arrowpoint Nature Resort, where you will be greeted by the friendly staff offering a welcome drink.  Receive an orientation talk on the resort and surroundings.  Arrowpoint Nature Resort’s surroundings offer a variety of habitats: open grassy marsh, scattered stands of moriche palm and fairly tall sandbelt forest.

The resort has an ample trail system and additionally the attractive option of birdwatching by boat along peaceful stretches of water upstream.

This afternoon you can relax, swim, take a pedal boat out on the creek, try a spot of fishing.  Or journey through the rainforest by mountain bike or hiking to Maburi Junction and more opportunity to observed wildlife including a visit to the Bell Bird calling site.

The staff will demonstrate the cassava bread making Amerindian style and you will be able to taste the bread when finished. (this Demo is dependent on availability of cassava crop).  Tonight dinner will be served on the beach.

When the sun goes down, the beach is transformed into a festival of lights provided by traditional mounted flambé and a spectacular large bonfire. An indigenous atmosphere is created as a mouth watering three course dinner is served buffet style on the beach.

After dinner enjoy a night walk through the dark jungle trails with your own head lamp (provided by resort) and experienced local guide.  This is a unique opportunity to experience the other side of the tropical rainforest. The deep beauty of the tropical night comes alive with vast numbers of fire flies sparkling through the trees as the different colors eyes of the night creatures light up the jungle night.

For your return journey you will paddle along the dark waters of the creek which will surprisingly become nearly transparent as you look into it with your head lamp and the colourful eyes of the marine life looks back at you.  Overnight at Arrowpoint Nature Resort.

Day 13: Arrowpoint Lodge (B,L,D)

The adventure continues today with the option of early morning fishing or Birdwatching.

After breakfast free to enjoy activities such as Surf Biking, Canoeing, Swimming, Cricket – Soft Ball, Volleyball, Football and Archery (Arrow & Bow). The trails vary in difficulty and are all located in the jungle and will take you through areas of wilderness for many miles, passing along the way isolated Amerindian dwellings.

There is also the option of various levels of mountain biking. The staff will demonstrate the cassava bread making Amerindian style and you will be able to taste the bread when finished. (this Demo is dependent on availability of cassava crop).

Day 14: Return to Georgetown and city tour, hotel (B,L,D)

After watching the day come over the vast expanse of the river, we’ll board a powerful motorboat and travel down to Arrowpoint Marina, then by vehicle to Georgetown.

In the afternoon we’ll take a tour of the city to see its extraordinary wooden architecture and to shop in its exciting markets and craft shops.

We’ll conclude at the extensive and beautiful Georgetown Botanical Gardens, where, if we are lucky, the trip’s ornithological finale will be Blood-coloured Woodpecker, an astonishingly colorful Veniliornis found only in the Guianas and even there almost wholly limited to the narrow coastal plain.

Overnight at Cara Lodge.

Day 15: Transfer to airport, tour ends (B)

Transfer to the airport for your departing flight.


Prices From $6,000 / £5,088 per person

Enquire about booking

What's Included?

Hotels and lodges usually double or twin rooms with private facilities. Iwokrama Field Station dormitory accommodations with shared facilities. Surama guest house, village office or local homes. Camping in hammock style camps. All meals, internal transport, tour leader, local guides.

What's Not Included?

International flights (we can look for these), insurance, tips, alcoholic or soft drinks, personal items, meals not listed


Accommodation

Being mainly rainforest, you will sleep in beds surrounded by mosquito nets. Rooms are comfortable and spacious but please note that in remote locations, such as Karanambu and Surama, insects can enter the rooms at night. Your guide will give any advice or help if you are concerned.

Sleeping within the rainforest and savannah is a fantastic experience, and comes as second nature after a day or two.

 

Rainforest and savannah lodges

Guyana has only a handful of lodges in its rainforests and savannahs, and most of these are small and remote establishments with fewer than a dozen beds. Some – like RewaSurama, and Maipaima – are run by the local Amerindian villagers who turn your visit into something like a homestay experience.

Others – like Karanambu – are captained by British expats who have carved out a slice of unexpected comfort in an otherwise rugged environment.

Others yet – such as Caiman House, Atta Rainforest Lodge, and Iwokrama River Lodge – have a strong science and nature focus and provide amply comfortable hospitality as well as a chance to learn about the vivid surrounding ecosystems.

Running water and at least a few hours of electricity are available at each lodge, and amenities are always clean and comfortable.

While no one comes to Guyana looking for a luxury travel experience, welcome creature comforts are on offer at the charming colonial boutique Cara Lodge in Georgetown as well as the storied Pegasus on the city’s northwest corner.

Meanwhile, Baganara Island on the Essequibo delights visitors with a host of recreational and relaxation opportunities. Georgetown’s newest international-class hotel, the Georgetown Marriott, opened its doors in 2015.

Tour Staff

A variety of expert guides may accompany on this tour, all of whom have many years’ experience and plenty of enthusiasm to make sure your trip is a great one.

Below are a few of the guides.

 

Wally Prince: Unrivalled expertise and experience leading tours and teams in Guyana.

Wally is one of the most sought-after guides for professional birders, documentary teams, and scientific expeditions visiting Guyana. He served for seven years as the guide coordinator, resident wildlife biologist, chief trainer, and operations manager at Iwokrama International Centre for Rainforest Conservation and Development. He has identified more than 700 of the 800+ bird species recorded in Guyana and is intimately familiar with their habitats, behaviours, vocalisations, and mating rituals. He grew up wandering through Guyana’s lush and biodiverse interior.

 

Gary Sway: Amerindian, Expert Naturalist

Gary Sway is a Macushi Amerindian from the village of Surama. Having grown up in the rainforest he has a great understanding and affinity for his natural surroundings and the wildlife. He has been a guide at Surama Eco-lodge for nearly 15 years and is well loved by those who have explored and seen the rainforest through his eyes. Gary is also an experienced birding guide and has represented Guyana at the Bird Expo in Columbus Ohio, USA. His patience and keen eye means great rewards for those birding with him. In his spare time Gary is a leading player in the Surama Makushi culture group.

 

Nadir (Carlos) Allie: Guide, Bird Expert

Nadir (Carlos) Allie was originally from the west coast of the ancient county of Berbice. His family were rice farmers, but Carlos did not want to follow this path, and moved to Georgetown to learn his father’s profession and became a tailor. From an early age Carlos always had a love and passion for birds. He never joined the other boys in trying to shoot them with a slingshot, preferring to rescue and care for the injured ones.

In Georgetown, through his love of birds he became friends with Andy Narine and together they formed the Guyana Amazon Tropical Birds Society (GATBS). Through GATBS, Carlos was able to get involved in many different projects including bird counts for some of the interior lodges, and also collecting information on the avifauna of Guyana for a new Guyana bird list. Over the years Carlos has become an experienced bird guide, leading tours to Guyana’s top birding locations especially along the coastlands where he was born and continues to live. Carlos loves to share his passion and love of birds with visitors and locals whenever he gets the opportunity. He is especially fond of leading tours of the Botanical Gardens in Georgetown.


Meals

Almost all dietary requirements can be catered for – please enquire in advance as we have to organise supplied.

Whilst on tour the food is of a very good standard with fresh beef, chicken and fish and plenty of vegetables and fruit.

On camping trips/in remote areas, use is made of dried and salted produce, supplemented by fishing.

The blend of different ethnic influences – Indian, African, Chinese, Creole, English, Portuguese, Amerindian, North American – gives a distinctive flavour to Guyanese cuisine.

Try dishes such as Pepper Pot, meat cooked in casareep (bitter casava) juice with peppers and herbs. Garlic pork, a specialty at Christmas.  Curry and Roti is popular everywhere. Seafood is plentiful and varied, as is the wide variety of tropical fruit and vegetables. Try casava and yams.

Rum is the most popular drink and Guyana blends some of the worlds best. There are many inexpensive rums that are an excellent rum with mixers. The better rums such as Banks Extra, Banks XM 10 Year and DDL’s 12 year old King of Diamonds are smooth rums and great straight or on the rocks. DDL’s 15 year old El Dorado was voted the best rum in the world in 1999, 2000 and 2001, and is as smooth as a good brandy. The local Banks Beer is a good beer.

The water from the tap is brownish in colour, which is from the tannin in the water, and not polluted. However, it is recommended that bottled water, which is readily available, is used for drinking. Remember to drink plenty of it to prevent dehydration as it does get humid in Guyana.

Activity Level

You need to be have a reasonable level of walking fitness to hike to the prime bird watching points, as well as the patience and ability to sit for some time while the guide finds/calls to birds.

Most days you will walk for a couple of hours, spotting wildlife. The humidity can make a short walk feel a lot harder than it is, and take on board lots of water.

The trip is open to anyone who wants to experience the rainforest and who wants to be active and interesting without it being demanding or without time to relax. An interest in bird spotting is recommended.

Transport could be by dug out canoe, 4×4, light Cessna plane or on foot. Guyana is a fantastic place to travel around as adventure awaits on every corner.

After lunch, we undertake another activity, or move to new lodgings, settle in, and then head out at dusk to see the wildlife once more.

Night walks are possible in some areas – or you may choose to relax – then it is dinner and time to recount the day’s highlights.

Enquire about booking

Practical Information

Introduction to Guyana

Guyana is the only English-speaking country on the South American continent and has a Caribbean feel. 

It is a destination for the nature lover looking for an off-the-beaten-path destination with many attractions. Guyana offers pristine rainforest, abundant wildlife, jaguars and the mighty Kaieteur Falls.

Start your adventure in the melting pot that is the country’s capital – Georgetown. Here Hindu, Muslim and Christian cultures blend in harmony.

Head off to visit the breathtaking Kaieteur Falls – the  world’s highest single-drop waterfall.

Then the interior beckons. Jungle and Savannah await. With luck you might spot the Cock o’ the rock or a harpy eagle.

Bigger mammals such as the ant eater might surprise you or if incredibly lucky the mighty jaguar. Travel by road or river and stay in rustic but comfortable lodges – all with an authentic Guyanese welcome.

Guyana will be an unforgettable adventure.  

Geography of Guyana

Guyana has five natural habitats to discover, the most famous of which is is its dense rain forest.

This ‘jungle’ is also known as the Forested Highland Region and is in the south of the country, and is very sparsely populated.

The majority (around 90%) of Guyana’s population lives in a marshy plain on the Atlantic coast, known as the low coastal plain.

 

Most of the country’s mineral deposits (bauxite, gold, diamonds) are found a little further inshore in that is called the white sand belt.

The south west of the country gives way to a desert savannah which then becomes an interior savannah.

From here, the grasslands and mountains of the interior highlands start to rise towards the borders with Brazil and Venezuela.

This is the largest of Guyana’s geographical areas and consists a series of plateaus, flat-topped mountains, and savannahs.

The Pakaraima Mountains dominate the western part of the interior highlands and include Mount Roraima, Guyana’s highest peak at 2,772m (9,094 ft) on the Venezuelan border.

 

The largest expanse of grassland, the Rupununi Savannah, covers about 15,000 square kilometres in southern Guyana.

Guyana has three large rivers, the Essequibo at 1,010km(628 miles), the Courantyne River (which forms a natural border with Suriname) at 724kms (450 miles), and the Berbice – 595kms (370 miles).

Weather in Guyana

Guyana is a hot and humid country. February and March are prime times to visit, along with Aug-Jan.

The mean shade temperature is 27°C, while maximum is 31°C and the minimum is 24°C. The heat is greatly tempered by cooling breezes from the sea.

There are two wet seasons in the north of the country, from May to June, and from December to January.

The south and the Rupununi region receive one wet season from May to July.

All wet seasons may extend into months either side.

Rainfall averages 2,300 mm a year in Georgetown.

Kit list

Good kit is vital for every trip.

Book with Andean Trails and get 15% off Páramo’s fantastic ethical and high performance outdoor gear.

 

Overview

Guyana is a hot and humid country.

Take sunscreen, sun glasses and a hat to Guyana.

It can rain at any time, so always have a poncho/waterproof jacket handy.

Give plenty of thought to kit selection, and try to keep weight down.

Passenger/s traveling on internal flights in Guyana are allowed a free baggage allowance of 20lbs/9.1KG exceeding this weight passenger/s will incur a cost of GY$150.00 (price subject to change) equivalent to US$ 0.77cents per pound. Please note that additional baggage allowance is subject to availability and cannot be confirmed until day/time of check-in by the airline.  We can book excess weight on your behalf but it is subject to being within the payload of the aircraft and at the discretion of the airline. We understand you may want more than 20lbs/9.1KG of baggage and wish to have guaranteed excess baggage/weight and so an alternative is to pre-book an extra seat on the flight which will afford you 175lbs/79.4KG for you to use individually or for your group. 

Below is a more detailed guide.

 

Detailed kit list

  • Good binoculars.
  • Camera and film / memory cards (take at least twice the amount you think you will need!).
  • Tight-weave, light weight long trousers.
  • Quick dry socks.
  • Rain suit or long poncho (100% waterproof – test before you leave home).
  • Long-sleeved tight-weave shirts.
  • T-shirts.
  • A warm jumper – it can feel cold on some boat journeys.
  • Water bottle (2 litres approx.) & purification tablets.
  • Sun cream (high factor, min. 30+) and lip salve.
  • A broad-brimmed hat that will not come off on windy boat-rides.
  • Shorts.
  • Sunglasses with UV filter.
  • A pair of trainers.
  • Ankle high hiking boots.
  • Insect repellent.
  • The original and a photocopy of your passport.
  • Yellow fever inoculation certificate.
  • A large, bright head torch, spare batteries and bulb.
  • Cash (small denomination bills, USD or GBP sterling) for souvenirs at the lodge, alcoholic beverages, etc.
  • Daypack (at least 30 litres). Comfortable and with waterproof lining or cover.
  • Personal first-aid kit to include: painkillers, plasters (band-aids), moleskin, antibiotic cream, general antibiotics (ask your GP), after-bite (tiger balm), anti-diarrhoea tablets, throat lozenges, re-hydration salts & personal medication.
  • Towel & wash-kit.
  • Wet Wipes/antiseptic hand-wash cream.
  • Head-lamp (plus spare bulb and batteries).
  • Penknife.
  • Travel alarm clock.
  • Plastic bags – ‘Zip-loc’ & tough bin liners.
  • Book, e-book, mp3 player/ipod or other to help pass the time.
  • Extra snacks i.e. cereal bars or favourite chocolate bars.

 

Miscellaneous others

  • Money belt.
  • Passport.
  • U.S. dollars / GBP sterling cash, mixed-denomination notes, undamaged and unmarked.
  • ATM cash/credit card.
  • Any inoculation certificates.
  • Personal & medical insurance certificates.
  • Presents e.g. Postcards from home.
  • Comfortable clothes for travel, smart clothes for Georgetown

ATOL holiday protection

Andean Trails has two decades of experience of dealing with South America holidays.

We pay a fee to the CAA for every licensable passenger we book since we hold an Air Travel Organiser’s Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. In the unlikely event of our insolvency, the CAA will ensure that you are not stranded abroad and will arrange to refund any money you have paid to us for an advance booking.

We also offer ATOL (Civil Aviation Authority) protected holidays to give our customers peace of mind when booking and travelling.

When you buy an ATOL protected air holiday package from Andean Trails Ltd you will receive a Confirmation Invoice from us confirming your arrangements and your protection under our Air Travel Organiser’s Licence number 6275.

You can read more about ATOL, who is covered and what protections you have if not ATOL-covered, on our ATOL page.

 

What is ATOL?

The CAA’s ATOL scheme offers protection to your money and your holiday if you book with us. Not everybody is covered (see ‘Who is covered?’ for more), as you must purchase an ‘air package holiday’ with Andean Trails to be protected.

And  ‘air package holiday’ is defined as including a flight and some ground services (hotel, transfer, trek etc). This is also known as an ‘ATOL-protected holiday’.

 

Who is covered?

To be covered by ATOL, you must book a flight and some ground services with us and be from the UK. If you are from the UK and only book ground services and no flights, you are not covered by ATOL (see below for more on how non-ATOL clients are covered).

If you are outside the UK and buy flights with us, you will be ATOL protected IF any of the flights booked with Andean Trails touches/stops in the UK at any point during your holiday package booked with us.

If you buy your flights elsewhere, please check with that agent if you are ATOL protected. Be careful with online flight purchases and make sure you know what protection you have, if any, before paying for flights.

Not all holiday or travel services offered and sold by us will be protected by the ATOL scheme. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking.

For land only holidays not involving any air travel, in accordance with “The Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992”, all UK passengers booking with Andean Trails Ltd. are fully protected for the initial deposit and subsequently the balance of all money paid to us, arising from cancellation or curtailment of travel arrangements due to the insolvency of Andean Trails.

 

I’m not ATOL covered, what protection do I have?

If you are not ATOL covered, any payments you make to us go to a Trust account.

We can only access this money once your tour has been completed, meaning that if anything happens to Andean Trails Limited while you are on holiday, then your money is secure and you can either complete the trip or be able to make it home.

If you pay for your holiday with a credit card, some offer payment protection – please check with your cardholder.

You also should have cancellation protection written into your insurance (which we recommend you have at the time of booking) in case you need to cancel.


Atta rainforest lodge, Guyana

Get up into the trees like monkeys at Atta Lodge, for some up close and personal wildlife viewing.

The major attraction here is a 154m/505ft long canopy walkway, with four platforms some up to 30m into the canopy.

An array of birds and animals you struggle to see from the forest floor soon zoom into view.

Among these are endangered and protected species such as the jaguar, the bullet wood tree, greenheart and the waramadan (endemic in Guyana only to the Iwokrama Forest).

The lodge provides comfortable accommodation with 8 private rooms, three home-cooked meals per day, and ample opportunities to explore the surrounding rainforest by foot, canoe, or 4X4.

Caiman House, Guyana

You’ll need to keep quiet in your kayak as you help researchers from Caiman House search and tag black caiman at night time.

By staying here, you’ll get an inside look at the work of those trying to protect this endangered species.

You can help to collect the data of any captured caiman – some reaching up to 12 feet in length! – before they are released back into the wild.

Caiman House is once-in-a-lifetime and thrilling part to any tour of Guyana, especially for wildlife enthusiasts who can also look out for snakes, frogs, bird spiders and more

 

Georgetown, Guyana

The Atlantic gateway to Guyana, Georgetown is a fascinating mix of people, history fusions.

The ex-British colony contains influences from Amerindians, Asia, Brazil and more, making it a lively and welcoming destination.

The Natural History Museum is well worth a visit, as well as the world’s largest wooden cathedral and the thrumming market.

English is widely spoken and friendly local people are normally up for a chat about the unique atmosphere of Georgetown.

Iwokrama Field Station , Guyana

Deep into Guyana’s enormous rainforest lies Iwokrama, a one million acre wilderness full of wildlife.

Birds, trees frogs and the elusive puma live in the forests, whose verdant canopy you can enjoy from the Turtle Mountain vantage point.

The area is protected and known as Iwokrama International Centre for Rainforest Conservation, with the full involvement of the local people.

You can see their history in the Amerindian petroglyphs close to some rivers, a fascinating insight into how animals and humans have coexisted for centuries in this pristine rainforest.

Kaieteur Falls, Guyana

Flying over the jungle canopy, the views confirm that there are no other falls in the world with the magnitude of the sheer drop existing at Kaieteur.

Being so remote, you can walk right up to the flowing water, which gushes 822 feet into a deep and forested gorge.

Look for Golden frogs, unique to a tiny area, living in bromeliads growing in the warm, humid air.

Most likely your group will be the only souls in this remote location, adding to its incredible appeal.

Karanambu Ranch, Guyana

Famous for rescuing orphaned giant river otters, Karanambu also represents the spirit of travel of old.

An outpost, miles from civilisation, there’s a warm welcome and great wildlife.

See the giant Victoria Regis water lily bloom at dusk, or cruise the river looking for giant otters and caiman.

If you wake early enough, you may be able to find a giant anteater snaffling around for a treat.

Sadly, Diane McTurk is no longer with us, but the ranch continues to write its own chapters in the history of conservation.

Roraima Mountains, Guyana

Rumoured to have inspired parts of Conan Doyle’s Lost World book, ‘Tepuys’, or table top mountains, after visiting, it’s easy to see why.

From the sabanna that links Guyana’s western front with Venuzuela, the Tepuys rise dramatically.

They provide unique eco-zones for many species and the lunar-like surface is home to species found nowhere else on earth.

Waterfalls, rapids and rainforest criss-cross the various faces and sections of the Tepuys, making Mount Roraima one of the most acclaimed sights in South America.

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