Harpy eagles are the supreme avian predator, capable of grasping large mammals from trees and secretive enough to remain hidden from most prying eyes. By living high in the emergents which reach for the skies above the rainforest canopy there are only a handful of places where sightings could occur, and then you have to hope that there are harpy eagles in the area. Where we go on this specialist tour is to the Alta Floresta and an area of jungle where a pair of harpy eagles have been nesting for the last 2 seasons. The hope is that this becomes a permanent nesting site for these amazing aerial predators. But in addition to the wonderful harpy eagles on this tour you will also be surrounded by hundreds of birds. Many of which are endemic and impossible to see anywhere else.
Visit a Harpy Eagle nesting site
Expert local birding guides
Over 250 species of birds
Canoe down rivers whilst birding
Two 50m Canopy Towers
Dozens of endemic bird species
Cryptic Forest Falcon
Tour Dates: 26/7/2021 – 2/8/2021
Duration: 8 nights
Type / Focus: Harpy Eagles & Birds
Alta Floresta / Cristalino Jungle Lodge
Depending on the time of your flight and your arrival at Alta Floresta airport, you will meet your zoologist escort and local guide. If you have arrived in the morning you will be transferred to Floresta Amazonica Hotel for lunch before carrying onto your accommodation (luxury rainforest lodge – Cristalino Jungle Lodge), but if you arrive in the late afternoon or evening you will be taken to your accommodation in Alta Floresta (3* hotel – Floresta Amazonica Hotel). Either way you will receive a briefing about the tour and have the rest of the day will be at your leisure. There are plenty of birds around the hotel grounds and we will try and spot crimson-bellied parakeets and the black-girdled barbet. Your evening meal will be at the accommodation.
Cristalino Jungle Lodge
This morning you will either be offered some early morning birding around the grounds of the hotel before breakfast. After breakfast we will check out and be transferred to your new accommodation (luxury rainforest lodge – Cristalino Jungle Lodge). We will make numerous stops along the way for birding (hopefully spotting red-billed macaws or point-tailed palmcreepers), the journey is involves an hour or so drive north in a vehicle before transferring to a boat for the remaining 1.5 hours to the lodge. Or if you are already here you will have the morning free to walk some of thAfter lunch on arrival you will enjoy an afternoon hike around one of the many walking trails. By walking the forests you stand an excellent chance of seeing dozens of species such as black caracaras, cryptic forest falcon, long-billed woodcreeper, cinnamon attila and the endemic glossy antshrike. You will return to the lodge for your evening meal and a rest before your first chance for harpy eagles tomorrow.
Cristalino Jungle Lodge
Over the next 5 nights you will be free to explore the many hiking trails around the grounds of the lodge as well as using the canopy towers (particularly the Brazil Nut trail canopy tower. This is where the nesting harpy eagles have been seen in the past. By being at the same height as many of the emergents you will be in prime location to spot these majestic birds as they soar the skies and perch watching for any susceptible primates or sloths who make themselves an easy target. The pair were nesting in the wooded area close to the lodge in 2011 and which a 2 month incubation period they would be expected to be seen feeding a fledging close to the lodge well into 2012. The hope is that this pair continue to next around here and the fledglings may even stay around the location once it reaches adulthood. The harpy eagles could be seen anywhere around the lodge but we do recommend the canopy towers. However the beauty of this large (46 square mile) reserve is that there is a huge variety of activities here including many hikes where Gould toucanet, Kawalls parrot, pompadour cotinga, cinerous antshrike and hundreds more can be spotted. You are also free to take canoe and boat trips down many of the rivers during your time here. Whilst here you will have all your meals at the accommodation (luxury rainforest lodge – Cristalino Jungle Lodge). Whilst there are harpy eagles here and they have nested twice in the last 3 years we cannot guarantee that they will be seen, all we can do is recommend the best places and hope that the lord of the South American skies pays you a visit.
This morning you will have one last hike before breakfast or perhaps a pre dawn visit to one of the canopy towers. Then after breakfast you will be transferred back to Alta Floresta. Once back at the hotel (3* hotel – Flroesta Amazonica Hotel) you will be free to relax and bird in the hotel grounds. Plus if we hear that the harpy eagles are around here, in thisa patch of rainforest we will make them a priority today. Other than the harpy eagle other great birding delights to look out for are white-browed hawk, strong-billed woodcreeper and great jacamars.
This morning you will be transferred to the airport in time to catch your return flight home.
Please note that the itinerary stated above is correct as our planned intentions for the tour. However adverse weather conditions and other local considerations can necessitate some modifications of the itinerary during the course of the tour; any changes will be made to make the best of the time and weather conditions available to us.
This tour is available on different date (subject to availability) please contact us for more details about running this tour on a date which suits you more.
The weather in Alta Floresta during July and August is always hot. The average daytime temperatures are around 30-34 degrees C. Cloud cover is very low and rain per day is not uncommon (being a rainforest i always recommend to expect some rain every day).
Everything mentioned in the itinerary is included. Including three meals per day (breakfast, lunch and dinner). There will be an amount of bottled water (approx 1ltr) available for each guest each day. We have our own private air conditioned vehicle with an excellent local driver. We have a professional zoologist will escort you on all your excursions and when at Cristalino Jungle Lodge you will have the use of their incredibly knowledgeable birding guides.
All our excursions including all the, boat trips, canoe excursions, canopy towers and guided walks are also included.
We recommend you bring along your own binoculars or spotting scope as well as appropriate clothing; which should be light and airy clothes as well as comfortable walking shoes. A light waterproof coat is also a good idea for the unexpected rain showers which can occur throughout this tour. Insect repellent is handy as there can be mosquitoes about during the evenings and nights. Andy medication, books or other items of a personal nature is of course up to you to bring along. Oh and please bring plenty of memory cards or film for your camera. Also do not forget sun cream, sun hat and sun glasses as the sun can be strong here during the day.
We provide a comprehensive species list of all the vertebrates present in the areas we are visiting as well as some of the best field guides and reference books for the areas we are visiting. There is usually a spare pair of binoculars but in a group of 4-6 people these do not stretch too far. We also provide a spot light for nocturnal viewing (this is subject to local condition when we arrive). Camera Traps will also be used to try and capture hard to see wildlife in the dead of night.
Nearly everything is included in this tour. The only things not included are international flights, travel insurance (contact us for more information one what is required from your insurance policy), any food bought outside of the three main meals, drinks outside of any offered with the meals and the bottled water provided each day and any items of a personal nature such as souvenirs and tips. Any applicable departure taxes and not included (but maybe included in the cost of your flights). Please check before departure.
As we are based in Manchester we recommend flights from Manchester International Airport
We recommend KLM as a good airline for flights to Cuiaba. One of the best websites to search for the best fares is www.skyscanner.co.uk. They search 1000s of airlines and booking agents and will direct you to the cheapest flights available for you to book direct with the airline or the booking agent.
Please contact us for more information about flights and we can provide you with a link direct to the flights from another supplier; in which case you only have to enter the passenger information and payment details. By using the above link you will leave our site and we at Royle Safaris hold no responsibility for the content on the site.
All UK passport holders or not required to have a visa for entry to Brazil, although other nationalities such as USA do require a visa. The easiest way to find information is by visiting the website of the Brazilian embassy in your country.
There are no mandatory vaccinations needed to visit Brazil, but it is recommended to be protected against TB, polio, typhoid, tetanus and hepatitis A as well as taking a form of malaria prophylactics. Please also be aware that some countries demand a vaccination against Yellow Fever if you are travelling from Brazil to other South American countries or African countries. Please consult your GP about your individual requirements for visiting Brazil as soon as you have decided on this trip.
Barnaby & Kelly, Norfolk
Joe & Carina, Foulkenstone