Tours that take the strain out of enjoying Europe’s flora and fauna! Tours under this banner will be based in a single good quality hotel, and will have direct flights, and these at kind times of day! And most importantly, field trips will be kept to a maximum of six or so hours, giving you plenty of time to relax before and after.
Ninety kilometres south of still-active Mount Etna we find Monte Ible’s dry limestone slopes, which in spring are adorned with a wonderful show of flowers.
Anemones, Irises and Asphodels are abundant in the abandoned fields and terraces above Syracusa but it will be the orchids that will steal the show. A dozen or more species can be seen in some of these tiny fields. Spectacular Pink Butterfly Orchids are joined by Orchis longicornu whose deep purple, white and pink flowers make it one of Europe’s prettiest orchids. Amid Giant and Naked Man Orchids we’ll enjoy a prolific show of bee orchids with abundant yellow and pink Sawfly Orchid, colourful Ophrys bertolonii and fur-rimmed Mirror Orchid. Sicily is a hotspot in the evolution of this group of orchids. Yellow-edged Ophrys biancae and both Ophrys lunulata and Ophrys panormitana are found nowhere else in the world and several others can only be seen here or on the nearby mainland.
We’ll explore limestone gorges, wooded valleys and even coastal nature reserves, where fascinating saltmarsh and dune flora will keep us busy when we’re not looking at the Flamingos, Black-winged Stilts and Slender-billed Gulls.
Dates and Prices
29th March - 5th April 2024 (8 days)
* doesn't apply if you're willing to share and a room-mate can be arranged
Flowers (in particular Orchids), Birds and Landscapes.
One leader for a group of up to 6, two leaders up to the maximum group size of 12.
All flights. All transport, meals and accommodation in Italy. Services of your leaders. Please note: drinks, tips and items of a personal nature, including insurance, are not included.
Flower and bird checklists are available.
The whole week will be spent at the delightful Feudo Bauly. Feudo Bauly is an ancient property from the 1300s. In the 18th century, it was the noble residence of Baron Gabriele Judica, the archaeologist who started the excavations of the Greek Theater of Palazzolo. Now owned by the Corsino family, Feudo Bauly has been converted into a welcoming 4-star hotel, with comfortable rooms, a restaurant and a swimming pool surrounded by nature and the natural splendour of the Iblean countryside. The restaurant is exceptional and provides plenty of traditional Sicilian fare. All rooms on this tour have en-suite facilities.
Relaxed and easy. Up to two or three miles a day and always at a slow pace, perfectly suited to flower photographers.
UK direct return flights to Catania are available from London Gatwick. Indirect flights are available from various regional airports*.
*These routes may incur a supplement.
Variable. Often warm and sunny with some showers, though sometimes cooler with occasionally prolonged wet weather.
Contact us to check if there is availability for the number of places you require. Click on the ‘Book this Tour’ button on this page to be taken to the online booking form or contact us and we will send one to you which you can complete and send back to us. You will receive confirmation of your place, and then a detailed information pack will be dispatched to you about twelve weeks before departure. This will contain up-to-date health information.