Important Note: We look forward to birding with you! To see the most recent update of our pre-tour and on-tour protocols and our requirements for travel, please visit our tour protocols page.
In 2018 we've expanded our "Birds and Wine" tour concept to the Old World with this exciting new itinerary as well as one to France's Loire Valley. Our Portugal itinerary will savor the country's incredible diversity of habitats that influence birds and grapes! We will visit, among other areas, the famous port regions of the Douro Valley and the Alentejo region where wines are prepared in the ancient Roman way, Vinho de Talha (a "talha" is a clay amphora or jar). The birds will rival the wines for our attention, from Great Bustards and Black-bellied Sandgrouse in the Alentejo to the Iberian Imperial, Golden, and Bonnelli's eagles of the Guadiana Valley. We won't have to travel great distances to see an amazing diversity of birds.
Portugal, despite its prime location on the southwest coast of Europe, remains off the beaten track. This small country, about half the size of Florida, boasts no "wonders of the world," no huge metropolises, and no famous film festivals. Yet there are vibrant and lively small cities, a rich music and food culture, and well-preserved historic sites and nature preserves. More than 22% of Portugal is protected in parks and preserves, compared to just under 14% in the US. While no endemic birds call Portugal home, it sports an impressive list of more than 600 species, with 441 of them occurring in the continental portion of the country. Included in the list are some of Europe's most iconic birds, like Spanish Eagle, Griffon Vulture, Eurasian Hoopoe, European Bee-eater, European Roller, Great and Little bustards, as well as seasonal migrants on their way to and from Africa, such as Great Spotted Cuckoo, Common Nightingale, Eurasian Wryneck, European Turtle-Dove, Great and European reed warblers, Common Cuckoo, and the handsome Collared Pratincole.
The avian diversity found in Portugal extends to, or even is surpassed by, the distinct wines and varieties of native grapes, so much so that folks who have birded Europe before may get more lifer grapes than birds on this tour; grapes with exotic names like Touriga Nacional, Antao Vaz, Alvarinho, Lourenco, and many more. The temperate climate and diverse topography supports fourteen different wine regions. We will explore wineries and sample wines from several of these regions, but our tour route will focus on three main wine regions, the Douro (including the world famous Porto!), Alentejo, and Lisbon. This tour's focus will be on specialty birds and wines of the areas we visit. We have carefully crafted the tour to sample the best that Portugal has to offer, not just in terms of birds but also in wine, history, and scenery. We have chosen special accommodations in each area: a lodge in a medieval walled village, a modern hotel with a visible archaeological dig in the lobby, and in two different wineries, where we can wake to birds singing from the grape vines. Spring in Portugal is among the world's fairest, with cool nights followed by days that range between 70 and 80 degrees. The rolling hills and pastures, medieval mountain villages and castles, and charming coastal towns, all bursting with new foliage and flowers, will make for a lovely spring getaway.
Select the KEY INFO tab or click here for our itinerary plus space requests, status, fees, limits, and guides for any departure.
"I have traveled with Field Guides before and know that you do a great job. I chose this particular tour as I not only have an interest in birds but also wine. I thought this would be a fun way to see Portugal, and it did not disappoint. This was an excellent tour! Marcelo Padua, JT, and Pedro make an awesome team. They saw to our every need, made things run smoothly... We laughed our way through the country. This tour has to be in the top three of the many tours that I have taken." J.F., BEYOND THE PORTS OF PORTUGAL 2019: A BIRDS & WINE TOUR
ITINERARIES • TOUR STATUS • DETAILS • SPACE REQUESTSITINERARIES • We issue a separate itinerary for each year, typically at least 9 months before that year's first departure. Most itineraries don't vary much year to year, but there may be small or rarely more substantive changes. A sample previous-year itinerary is usually available even if the one for your chosen departure is not. We do not require any deposit for provisional bookings until the itinerary for the departure is ready.
- 2021 sample (PDF)
- 2022 (PDF expected Oct 2021)
DEPARTURES • We have 2 departures currently scheduled through 2023, with details including limits, guides, fees, and space available listed below.
Apr 26 - May 7, 2022
Guided by: Marcelo Padua & local guide
Tour Manager: Ruth Kuhl
Tour Limit: 12
Status: Waitlisted - The itinerary has not been finalized for this tour. The trip has provisionally filled but, if you are interested, we can waitlist you for the trip. As we do not require deposits until the itinerary and price are finalized, we often have folks drop off a tour when the deposit is required, and so space opens up! Click below to be waitlisted for this tour with no obligation; if you are waitlisted, we will also notify you in case of an added departure of this tour.
Tour Fee: Fee TBD / 2021=$5450
REQUEST WAITLIST OR MORE INFO
Apr 25 - May 6, 2023
Tour Manager: Christine Boilard
Tour Limit: 12
Status: Open - Space is still available on this tour, and we are accepting provisional bookings. No deposit is required until you receive the itinerary. Click below to book space.
Tour Fee: Fee TBD / 2021=$5450
REQUEST SPACE OR MORE INFO
Enjoy looking through the 3 most recent Field Guides triplists for this tour linked below!