Category Archives: spain

Wildlife Photography Holidays with explicit changes for social distancing

A solitary Marsh Harrier flies in front of the reed beds within the estate of El Taray in Spain photographed during the NaturesLens Winter Birds of Toledo photography holiday

Whilst the vast majority of our wildlife photography tours have non-shared accommodation, meaning that you would never be sharing sleeping accommodation with someone that is from outside your social bubble, we have made a few changes, with the kind help of several of our suppliers to some of our trips also to enable social distancing away from the accommodation. Perhaps the biggest change is to our Finland trip where we can now offer everyone their own room, as a change from the norm, at no extra cost to you! But more on that further down this blog post.

We have social distancing measures in place for the accommodation elements of a holiday & we are taking measures for the transportation elements. But how do you socially distance when photographing from a hide where you may be spending hours at a time? Some people may not be comfortable sharing with someone who is from outside their social bubble, even if everyone is wearing masks.
We are pleased to announce that our partners in Toledo & Finland agree, meaning that …
Winter Birds of Toledo is now to be conducted on a single person per hide basis. Our partners are building additional hides & taking other measures to ensure that the experience is still the same, just on the basis that takes social distancing into account. Of course, if you want to share with a partner or family member from within your social bubble, then that is fine!
So you can join Pui Hang in the Castile-La Mancha region of Spain, for a 5-night photography tour to the estate of El Taraybetween the dates of 27th January – 1st February 2021, safe in the knowledge that your accommodation on the estate & your time in the hides is to be conducted in a socially distanced manner.
Whilst on this holiday, over 4 ½ days of photography, you will have the use of a collection of brilliant hides to capture images of a range of birds, including the raptors of the estate, that call Laguna del Taray their home during the winter months.
This trip is also temporarily reduced from £1799 to £1599 – plus it is covered by our booking guarantee so if this trip doesn’t take place, we can roll guests trips forward to 2022 at no increase in price!
View Details of the Winter Birds of Toledo trip
Traditionally both the accommodation for our Majestic Brown Bears & Cubs of Finland Photography Holiday & the hide usage has been shared. But for 2021, this is not the case – social distancing rules! The price remains the same; however, we have arranged for the accommodation to be single occupancy & the hide usage to be on the same single occupancy basis. Of course, if you want to share with a partner or family member from within your social bubble, then that is fine!
You can join NaturesLens for our 6-night nature photography tour in Finland, photographing the majestic European brown bear between the dates of 12th – 18th June 2021. You will benefit from the long hours of daylight to capture stunning images of this magnificent predator in swamp, meadow & forest habitats – all from the professional hides located in the Taiga.
Unlike some operators who visit just one location, you will have the opportunity of visiting two of the best locations in Finland to capture incredible images of this secretive species with opportunities also to photograph wolverine & if you are lucky, the wolf. What’s more, you will also be photographing from the professional hides on a single occupancy basis.
This holiday is covered by our booking guarantee so if this trip doesn’t take place, we can roll guests holidays forward to 2022 at no increase in price!

View Details of the Majestic Brown Bears & Cubs of Finland trip
For a summer holiday, we head back to Toledo, to the same estate again, all on the same basis. A single person per hide & a single person per room in the accommodation, unless you are travelling with a partner or family member from within your social bubble.
Birdlife of Central Spain is now also on a single person per hide basis. For the summer season at El Taray, our partners are building additional hides & taking other measures to ensure that the experience is still the same, just on a non-shared basis. Of course, if you want to share with a partner or family member from within your social bubble, then that is fine!
This means that you can join David in Toledo for this 7-night photography trip to Spain between the dates of 27th June – 4th July 2021, safe in the knowledge that your accommodation on the estate & your time in the hides is to be conducted in a manner which takes into account the need for social distancing.

You will spend many hours from dawn to dusk making use of an amazing custom-built hide network within the estate of El Taray, which includes ground-level, water-level & sunken hides to capture images of bearded reedling, warblers, collared pratincole, sandpipers, Iberian yellow wagtail, Kentish plover, kingfisher, lapwing, grebes of various type, moorhen, pin-tailed sandgrouse, shelduck, spotless starling, the brilliant stone curlew, water rail & more; & of course, the lesser kestrel.


This holiday is also temporarily reduced from £2499 to £2099 – plus it is covered by our booking guarantee so if this trip doesn’t take place, we can roll guests trips forward to 2022 at no increase in price!
View Details of the Birdlife of Central Spain trip
At the end of 2021, we have our seal photography weeks, until social distancing restrictions are eased, we are assuming thatthis pair of photography holidays will be conducted on a socially distanced basis.
This means that every social bubble will have their own bedroom & bathroom, we can accommodate any combination of single photographers or couples.
You will not be sharing with a stranger or a person from outside your social bubble.

This trip is covered by our booking guarantee so if this trip doesn’t take place; we can roll guests trips forward to 2022 at no increase in price!
View Details of our Seal Photography Holidays
We are grateful to our partners, who have implemented changes to their offerings to accommodate the need for social distancing.

Best Value Wildlife Photography Holidays including Full-board & Drinks

One of the amazing Golden Eagles found at the mountain side hide photographed on the estate used for the NaturesLens Eagles of Extremadura Photography Holiday

For 2021, if you want a nature photography holiday that has everything included, you’d do a lot worse than taking a look at the following trio of what we would call our best value wildlife photography holidays – all are in Spain, all are full-board with all meals included & wine & beer with the meals too. Two are for the summer while the middle one is for the Winter.

The tremendous Birdlife of Central Spain

The first nature photography tour is the 2021 visit to the tremendous Birdlife of Central Spain, for the wildlife of the estate of El Taray, 2019 saw some fantastic species photographed including the Stone Curlew, a superb Lesser Kestrel colony & some stunning Marsh Harriers – plus a lot more besides. We’ve written about the experience before & we previously published a number of blog posts relating to the 2019 visit as well

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Dan’s images from the Winter Birds of El Taray

A lone Marsh Harrier stares intently at the photography hides within the estate of El Taray in Spain photographed during the NaturesLens Winter Birds of Toledo photography holiday

This was my second visit to the estate of El Taray, but the first time I have visited during winter. The contrast was fantastic with temperatures exceeding 35C in summer, but now, in winter we were looking at sub-zero misty mornings. The summer migrants have gone, but the raptors have swelled in numbers & the bearded tits are making use of the food on offer – if anything, winter makes the setting even more impressive!

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Birds of Central Spain at El Taray

One of the estates fabulous raptors flies across grassland photographed during the NaturesLens Birds of Toledo photography holiday at Hides del Taray

Our photography tour to El Taray to photograph the Birds of Central Spain was a new trip for 2019 but I can see how it may well become our flagship Spanish birding tour. There is literally something for everyone whether you like raptors, pretty little birds or wading birds.

Ellen was one of our guests on our inaugural trip and she very kindly sent in these stunning images for us to share with you.

We were originally attracted to El Taray because it is home to the largest colony of lesser kestrels that we have ever encountered. However, we soon discovered that the number of species that can be photographed here is simply phenomenal! This includes wild Goshawk that is not live-baited.
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Lammergeier and Golden Eagles – Trip report

A Lammergeier soars above the hides wings fully outstretched photographed during the NaturesLens Lammergeier Golden Eagles of Spain photography holiday

Early December, I headed off to Spain with a lovely group of photographers to photograph lammergeiers or bearded vultures, griffon vultures, black vultures and golden eagles in the Pre-Pyrenees of northern Spain. I was especially excited about leading this trip because photographing the lammergeier has long been a dream of mine.

The drive to the base for the hides from the hotel took around 45 minutes. Once off the main road; the drive up was very picturesque with views across the mountains and valleys topped off with some wonderful autumn colours.

On the first day, we all went to the lammergeier hides. This was a short drive or a lovely walk up to the feeding site with a choice of three hides. Each offered a different perspective from the chance to capture close up portraits to wider angle flight shots.
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The Winter Birds of El Taray

One of the Harriers poses on a small tree stump in front of the hides on the photography estate photographed at the Winter Raptors of Toledo photography holiday at El Taray

During early-November 2019, after our Polar Bear trip & before I headed out to Costa Rica to run multiple trips back to back,I headed to Toledo in Spain, to the estate of El Taray, this is the estate that is our base for our summer trips that encompass a massive variety of species & also the Winter Birds of El Taray photography holiday – the estate at this time of year is a real mine of gold for those raptor loving photographers. During winter the number of harriers present on the estate increases & several other species become bolder or make use of El Taray to spend winter upon – it is not only raptors that make use of the estate, there are impressive starling murmurations – that have to be witnessed to be believed – & a large population of cranes also make use of the pools of El Taray, which of course have hides strategically positioned in adjacent positions.

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21 fabulous images of the wildlife of the estate of El Taray

Locked in the stare of a harrier an example of the wildlife of Laguna del Taray that may be photographed during our Spanish Wildlife Birdlife of Toledo Photography Holiday

This was my first visit to the hide network that David had spent a year raving about; this hide network facilitates photography of the wildlife of the estate of El Taray & I was blown away by the accommodation, the setting & the wildlife.

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21 images of the captivating Wildlife & Birdlife of Toledo

A lesser kestrel perched on a tree photographed during the NaturesLens Spanish Wildlife Birdlife of Toledo Photography Holiday

Graham was one of the group of guests that joined me & Dan in Spain during July 2019, to photograph the fabulous Wildlife & Birdlife of the estate of El Taray – we had a superb group of guests join us, who were a lot of fun, totally engaged & there to make the most of the week of photographic opportunities; along with the superb organisation skills of our hosts, this made for a most enjoyable time.

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