• Fly from London to Berlin and journey west, via Brandenburg and Rathenow, to Semlin, a village by a large lake.
    • Accommodation: Semlin, 4-nights on full board basis.
    • We have three full days to explore the area, and we can expect to come across flocks of geese as they fly over or feed in the fields almost anywhere. East of Semlin is one of the best areas for great bustard. Further east are the fishponds at Linum, which hold a variety of waterfowl including red-crested pochard – the common crane roost here is the largest in northern Europe.
    • West of Semlin is a large area of damp and sometimes flooded meadows, where whooper swans, geese, and large numbers of dabbling ducks such as pintail and wigeon winter here. There are often flocks of cranes, and white-tailed eagles are also to be seen. Nearby Gülper See, a large lake, which forms one of the best birding sites in Brandenburg. In and around the lake the air can be filled with the calls of flying bean geese, white-fronts and greylags and there are large numbers of wildfowl.
    • A short journey from here takes us into the neighbouring atate of Saxony-Anhalt towards the old Hanseatic hill town of Havelberg. There will be the opportunity of walking around Havelburg and along the river, before returning to Semlin.
    • Leave Semlin after breakfast. Depending on flight times there may be time to stop to view some lakes and woodland on the way to Berlin airport for the return flight to London.

All prices are per person and include:

  • Services of the naturalist leader
  • Flights
  • Transfers
  • Accommodation
  • All meals
  • Guided activities

Accommodation

We stay in a comfortable hotel, where all rooms are en suite.

Meals

All main meals are included in the price. Evening meals will be taken in nearby restaurants.

Birds

Our two short tours are timed to coincide with those times when bean, and white-fronted geese, and crane numbers are at their maximum. Brandenburg holds northern Europe’s last remaining population of great bustards (around 100 birds), and other raptors are easily seen. We also have a good chance of finding black, middle spotted, and lesser spotted woodpecker.

  • Barnacle goose
  • Rough-legged buzzard
  • Goshawk
  • Common crane

Facilities for birdwatching are excellent with hides and observation towers at key sites.

Scenery

Brandenburg is in the old German Democratic Republic (DDR). The terrain is mainly flat, wetlands abound – lakes, rivers, polders, marshes and reed-fringed fishponds – interspersed with forests and meadows. Swathes of heathland remain from the previous Russian Army occupation.

Walking

Walks are gentle, over easy to moderate terrain.

Flights

Price includes return scheduled flights London – Berlin – London.

Ground transport

Ground transportation is by minibus, with driver.

  1. October 2016
  2. October 2014
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