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Photograph Migrants, Resident Endemics, Stunning Sceneries in 2018

 


The Overview of this trip will tell you the following information.

 I.  Trip Briefing
 II.  Trip Enssentials (Price, Guide, Group Size, Difficulty Level, Dates and Length, etc.)
 III.  Trip Map
 IV.  Trip Itinerary
 V.  Inclusions and Exclusions


I.Trip Briefing

This trip is specially designed for professional photographers to get best bird images toward the end of migration season. In this trip, we will take you to various bird habitats to look for different endemic birds in those habitats. We start our trip firstly in Shanghai, a metropolis in east part of China. After a brief exploring of the city, we go to Yancheng and Rudong to photograph wintering birds in the eastern coast of China including Red-crowned Crane. Then we will come to one of the largest wintering site for migrant birds, Poyanghu Lake and neighboring areas, to photograph migrants and local endemic birds. Then we will go to Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan Province which is one of the most important birding sites in whole China. Here we will take you to different habitats to search for different target birds. After photographing birds and pandas in Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, we drive to Wawushan, hopefully it will be open by the time we visit after almost 10 years of closure for reconstruction. If it is still not open, we will take you to Longcangou, the other side of the same mountain range. This is an excellent place for pheasants, laughingthrushes and pheasants. We will spend two days there. Then we will drive to Wolong Nature Reserve, where we will search for Golden Pheasant, Tibetan Snowcock, Snow Partridge, Chinese Monals and some rosefinches. Then we drive to Maerkang. In the mountain standing by the side of the city, we will search for Chestnut-throated Partridge, Sichuan Jay and some other forest birds. Then we come to Hongyuan and Ruoergai Grasslands looking for raptors, Blue Eared Pheasant and wintering Black-necked Crane. Our last stop is Gongganglin and Jiuzhaigou, if you have interests of photographing gem-like water lakes, we can spend one day in Jiuzhaigou National Park, photographing lakes and some birds. Though in this trip, our focus is birds but you will find a lot more to catch with you lens, the beautiful rape seed flowers, the unique Tibetan houses and friendly Tibetan people, and the spectacular sceneries in the habitats where we look for birds to photograph.

II.  Trip Essentials 
 

• Trip Duration: 22 Days from Feb 28th to March 21st
• Tour Leader: Philip He and An AlpineBirding Assistant

• Difficulty: mostly moderate

• Trip Focus: Photographing migrant birds, endemics and sceneries

• Trip Cost: 4950USD
• Single Supplement:1200 USD

• Deposit: 500USD

• Trip Size: 2~8 birders

• Space: Open for booking. Please note that we accept private booking of this itinerary for 2017

 III.  Trip Map

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IV.  Trip Itinerary


Day 1. (Feb 28) Arrive Shanghai, city tour. Overnight: Shanghai Meals: D
Day 2. (March 1) Shanghai to Yancheng, photograph Red-crowned Crane. Meals: BLD
Day 3. (March 2)Photograph Red-crowned Crane in Yancheng and come to Rudong. Meals: BLD
Day 4. (March 3) Photograph birds in Rudong then fly to Nancang . Overnight: Nancang. Meals: BLD
Day 5. (March 4) Drive to Wuyuan and Photograph birds in Wuyuan. Overnight: Wuyuan Meals: BLD
Day 6-7. (March 5-6)Whole day photographing birds in Wuyuan and neighboring area.  Meals: BLD
Day 8. (March 7) Fly from Nanchang to Chengdu, Overnight: Chengdu Meals: BLD
Day 9. (March 8) Photograph wintering birds in Chengdu. Overnight: Chengdu. Meals: BLD
Day 10. (March 9) Drive to Wawushan/Longcanggou. Overnight: Wawushan/Longcanggou. Meals: BLD
Day 11-12. (March 10-11)Photograph birds in Wawushan/Longcanggou.  Meals: BLD
Day 13. (March 12)Drive back to Chengdu and further on to Wolong. Overnight: Wolong. Meals: BLD
Day 14-15. (March 13-14)Photograph pheasants on Balang Mountain including Chinese Monal, Meals: BLD Tibetan Snowcock, Snow Partridge, Temminic’s Tragopan, Golden Pheasant and Rosefinches.
Day 16. (March 15) Drive from Wolong to Maerkang. Overnight Maerkang. Meals: BLD
Day 17. (March 16)Photograph birds in Mengbishan. Meals: BLD
Day 18. (March 17) Drive to Ruoergai, photograph birds on the way. Meals: BLD
Day 19. (March 18) Photograph birds in Baxi Valley and drive to Chuanzhusi. Overnight: Chuanzhusi. Meals: BLD
Day 20. (March 19) One day Photographing birds in Gonggangling or scenery in Jiuzhaigou. Overnight: Chuanzusi Meals: BLD
Day 21. (March 20) Drive back to Chengdu. Meals: BLD
Day 22. (March 21) Depart from Chengdu Meals: B

 

V.  Inclusions and Exclusions
 

The cost includes the following:

1. Transportation throughout the trip, including airport pickups at airports in Shanghai and drops at Chengdu airports, speed train tickets from Shanghai to Nanchang, China domestic flight from Nanchang to Chengdu.
2. Meals in local popular restaurants labeled as as BLD in the itinerary.
3. All the entrance tickets for places listed in the itinerary including cable cars and shuttle buses.
4.Hotel stays from first day to the last day, nice 4-star hotels in big cities and local best in local places.
5.Bottled water,seasonal fruits and snacks throughout the trip.
6. Western breakfast whenever is possible.
7. Service charges including an professional English-speaking birding guide.
8. China domestic travel insurance.
9. Basic tips to the serving staff , guide, driver and hotel bellmen.


The cost doesn't include the following:
a. Any expense of personal nature such as laundry.
b. Extra charges due to change of itinerary from client side or from factors beyond the control of AlpineBirding.
c. Arrival flight to Shanghai and depature flight from Chengdu.
d. Expenses for visa application.

 

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Cick Any Picture Above to view more photos from our past trips.

This trip is specially planned for professional photographers to take the photos of winter migrants and endemic birds in different parts of China. The trip starts in Shanghai, the finacial center of China. Here we will photograph winter migrants in China's eastern coast, after this, we will take speed train to Nanchang, and drive to Wuyuan to photograph endemic birds and beautiful rape flower fields. Then we fly to Sichuan to search for some endemic birds in different habitats. Different location and habitats will give you lots of chances to get some first-rate images of birds and sceneries. This trip is scheduled to run in 2017, but we accept private booking for the same itinerary or customize the existing itinerary, please contact us for more information. 


The Trip Itinerary:

Day 1 (Feb 29) Arrive Shanghai, city tour. Overnight: Shanghai Meals: D
Our journey starts from Shanghai, a bustling city and financial center of China. Upon meeting you at Airport, we drive you to the hotel and some easy walk around your hotel to help you understand this lovely city. Welcome dinner at local popular restaurant.

Day 2. (March 1) Shanghai to Yancheng, photograph Red-crowned Crane. Meals: BLD
We will spend the morning birding and photographing birds in Shanghai Botanical Garden. The place is one of the most popular birding sites for local birders, here will search for birds such as Durian Redstart, Himalayan Bluetail, Yellow-billed Grossbeak, Olive-backed Pipit, Spotted Dove, Chinese Black Bird and Chinese Bulbul. After lunch we drive on to Yancheng to photograph Red-crowned Crane,

Day 3. (March 2)Photograph Red-crowned Crane in Yancheng and come to Rudong. Meals: BLD
We spend the morning searching and photographing Red-crowned Crane. In the afternoon, we drive on to Rudong. Upon check-in in our hotel, we will go to the seaside. On the vast mudflats, we will search our target birds to photograph among massive number of wintering waders including Red-necked Stints, Mongolian Sand Plovers, Sharp-tailed Sandpipers and Saunders' Galls.

Day 4. (March 3) Photograph birds in Rudong then high-speed train to Nanchang . Overnight: Nanchang. Meals: BLD
We spend the morning to continue our search in this area for birds such as Green-headed and Eastern Yellow Wagtail, Pacific Golden Plover, Siberian Thrush, Chinese Penduline Tit, Rufous-tailed Robin and Black-faced Bunting. In the afternoon, we drive back to Shanghai and take high-speed train to Nancang. Upon arrival, pick up by our guide and driver and check-in at our hotel.

Day 5. (March 4) Drive to Wuyuan and photograph birds in Wuyuan. Overnight: Wuyuan Meals: BLD
After some easy birding and photographing birds at Poyang Lake, we drive on to Wuyuan, here we will spend two days searching for birds.

Day 6-7. (March 5-6)Whole day photographing birds in Wuyuan and neighboring area. Meals: BLD
The season we arrive is the best season for watching rape seeds flowers. The villages, the birds and the yellow flower sea will give us lots of golden opportunities to get some excellent shoots of birds and villages with nice background. Here we will also search for birds such as Blue-crowned Laughingthrush, Masked Laughingthrush, Chinese Sparrowhawks, Black-naped Oriole, Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker, Pied Falconet, Crested Kingfisher and Short-tailed Parrotbill.

 

Day 8(March 7) Fly from Nanchang to Chengdu, Overnight: Chengdu Meals: BLD
After morning birding, we will drive back to Nanchang Airport where we will catch our flight to our next destination, Chengdu.

 

Day 9. (March 8) Photograph wintering birds in Chengdu. Overnight: Chengdu. Meals: BLD
Chengdu is not just home to the famous Giant Panda but also an important wintering site for lots of migrant birds due to its excellent location. We will spend one day photographing birds and pandas in Chengdu. In the morning, we will first go to Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding where we can photograph both giant pandas and red pandas at different ages. The panda base is also a very important habitats for wintering birds. In the afternoon, we will also take you to some ancient streets and parks in Chengdu to photograph architecture and lives of local people.

 

Day 10 (March 9) Drive to Wawushan/Longcanggou. Overnight: Wawushan/Longcanggou  Meals: BLD
Wawushan is one of the most important birding sites in Sichuan. Unfortunately, about 7 years ago, the forest park was closed down by local government for reconstruction. We have been told that the reconstruction now has almost come to an end and this park will be open to public very soon. So if the park opens by the time of our visit, we will go to this park and spend a couple of days in the park searching and photographing parrotbills, pheasants, fulvettas and laughingthrushes. In case this park is not open at the time when we visit, we will go to another reserve called Longcanggou Reserve, which shares the same habitats with Wuwushan and is located on the other side of the mountain where Wawushan stands.

Day 11-12 (March 10-11) Photograph birds in Wawushan/Longcanggou. Meals: BLD
We will spend two days searching for birds at different elevations including Great Parrotbill, Emeishan Liocichla, Golden Parrotbill, Temminic’s Tragopan, Silver Pheasant, and Lady Amherst’s Pheasant.

Day 13. (March 12)Drive back to Chengdu and further on to Wolong. Overnight: Wolong. Meals: BLD
Morning birding and photographing birds around our hotel, and then we drive back to Chengdu and then drive on to Wolong. Wolong is one of the first reserves set up in China and now is the largest panda reserve of whole China. Wolong Nature Reserve is extremely important for biodiversity. It is a very important part of Hengduan Mountain Range, which has been listed as one of 26 hotspots for biodiversity in the world. We will spend the day searching for some photogenic endemic birds in Wolong area and lower part of Balang Mountain. Our main Target today will be game birds and rosefinches.

 Day 14-15. (March 13-14)Photograph pheasants on Balang Mountain including Chinese Monal, Tibetan Snowcock, Snow Partridge, Temminic’s Tragopan, Golden Pheasant and Rosefinches. Meals: BLD
We will spend these two days photographing some most fascinating birds in Wolong Area. Balang mountain is the highest mountain standing between Sichuan Basin and Qinghai Tibetan Plateau. It serves as a demarcation line ethnically and in terms of topography with rich flora and fauna resources. On the 15th, we will drive on to Maerkang.

Day 16. (March 15) Drive from Wolong to Maerkang. Overnight Maerkang. Meals: BLD.
Morning photographing birds in Wolong. The newly grown buds will invite some birds like Grey-headed Bullfinch to feed. And the snow on the mountain top will drive down the pheasants to lower places to feed. Depending on the weather, we will choose different routes to go to our next destination Maerkang.

Day 17. (March 16)Photograph birds in Mengbishan. Meals: BLD
Mengbishan is another important birding sites in Sichuan. The big elevation differences, well-protected virgin forest, abundant flora resources and being free of dwellers here have made this site a paradise for birds including the endemic birds like Buff-throated Partridge, Sichuan Jay and Chinese Grouse. In the early morning, we drive to the top of the mountain standing at 3900 meters above the sea level, slowly walking down along the paved road to search for some endemic birds such as Sichuan Jay, Crested Tit Warbler, Alpine Accentor, and Blood Pheasant. In the afternoon, we drive back to Maerkang and photograph Jiarong Tibetans, their villages and Zuokeji Official Mansion.

 

Day 18. (March 17) Drive to Ruoergai, photograph birds on the way. Meals: BLD
We will drive to the vast Qinghai Tibet Plateau, Hongyuan Grasslands and Ruoergai Wetlands. Now it is still too early for the summer breeders to arrive. Our main targets are some endemic birds such as Blue Eared Pheasant, Ground Tits, and some wintering Black-necked Crane as well as some mammals such as Pika, Tibetan Fox and Tufted Deer.

Day 19. (March 18) Photograph birds in Baxi Valley and drive to Chuanzhusi. Overnight: Chuanzhusi. Meals: BLD
We spend the morning searching for pheasants in the forests of Baxi Valley. Our main target is Blue Eared Pheasant, Chinese Grouse, Sichuan Jay, and some wintering rosefinches.

Day 20. (March 19) One day Photographing birds in Gonggangling or scenery in Jiuzhaigou. Overnight: Chuanzusi Meals: BLD
In the early morning, we will go and search for Sichuan Wood Owl in the forest. This forest is also a important site for Blood Pheasant, Grey-headed Bullfinch and Blue Eared Pheasant. If you have interests of photographing some beautiful lakes, we can take you to the famous Jiuzhaigou Valley and spend one day photographing different lakes inside this popular park.

Day 21. (March 20) Drive back to Chengdu. Meals: BLD
Today is our driving day, we will drive for about 8 hours back to Chengdu. We will have several short stops on the way to stretch our legs and take photos of sceneries, birds and people.

Day 22. (March 21) Depart from Chengdu Meals: BLD
Depending on your time of departure, we can arrange some final birding and photographing in Chengdu. We will take you to some local parks near to your hotel and have some easy birding and bird photography in the park. 


 
 
 
Cick Any Picture Above to view more photos from our past trips.

 

Following are some of the feedbacks we have got from our clients we had served.

 
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‘Hi, Philip

I have been busy answering e-mails and writing text for our newsletter and other things since getting back as lots of things needed doing - but things already calming down again.
 
Thank you for your kind words and can I also say it was a complete pleasure working with you too, the words I said on our final evening were all completely from the heart and I can honestly say that the combination of you and Parus made for an excellent experience from the wildlife and cultural perspective.  The guests were all telling me how much they enjoyed the holiday and how much your input made the holiday for them.  To have someone who could explain and point out aspects of Chinese culture as diverse as architecture, food, religion, day to day life and more was just fantastic.   I would say with hand on heart that this was one of the best trips I have led and for that I have you to thank.
 
I am also very aware that you had a huge amount to think about during the trip – timing the travel days to arrive at a sensible time while still giving us time to enjoy a few stops along the way is not always easy and you did it very well indeed.  Organising our evening meals and breakfasts in the field and so much more is all time consuming and needs thinking through and again you did a fabulous job. In fact the trip simply worked very well indeed and I feel very privileged to have worked with you and visited your wonderful country.  I think the itinerary we chose was superb and clearly both the Terracotta Warriors at the start and pandas at the wend were both extremely popular.’
 

 ——Roy Atkins, a professional Bird Guide  from UK in Custom Birding Trip in Sichuan in 2015

'Dear Philip, lily and Jiawei,
We are all now safely back home and I have had time to produce my trip reoprt for the wonderful bird tour that you arranged for us. I attach the docuemtns here for your interest - you may use them and adapt them any way you wish if you need to.

 It was a great experience seeing China - the birds, travel, culture, sceerny with you. You did an absoluteyl first rate job in all respects - some of the best service and professional arrqngements and leading of a tour in my 40+ years of experience worldwide to 100 countries and over 300 tours organised and led.

 Thank you all - I will certainly promote your services to my friends and colleagues and hope your business prospers as it deserves. If I can be of any help do let me know.

 Very Best Wishes ' 
 ——Peter Robert and Pia, Peter Rober, a professional bird guide from UK, in Custom Trip in 2013


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'Hi Philip
Thanks also for this trip, you were very friendly and professional.

I’ll go to Brasil next week for birdwatching and mammals.’

 ——Michel Watelet,Private Birding Trip in 2013


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'Dear Philip,
 
  Despite the hassles, it has been a very joyful journey! We have had countless happy moments and excellent views of birds, many rare birds. Thanks for the excellent arrangements. Looking forward to have chance to bird with you and your colleagues again.
 
  Yes we indeed need to produce appropriate documents in order to claim insurance. To simplify matters, we will draft a sample letter to you, so that you can reprodue several copies of it, one for each member of the group, with the individual's name and identity appear in the letter. The draft letter should be ready within the next few days. Thanks.
 
  Regards'
 
 ——KC Lee from Hong Kong, Custom Winter Birding in Tibet in 2014 and 2015.

 

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'Dear Philip and Jiawei
Thank you very much for your email and hope that you got back safely to Chengdu yesterday. We got back home a couple of days ago, but work is already busy! I hope that you had a good time surveying future opportunities near Chongqing.
 
We had a really great time with the three of you, and talking on the way home we rated the day hike at Zhuque (along with the Great Wall) as our best day in China. The birding was better than expected there, especially with Jiawei working extremely hard to lure species out with calls - his (and your) knowledge was fantastic and I owe you for about 10-20 species that I would not have found myself. The scenery was excellent, and also the food - this was the lasting memory of the trip we had with you. We also learnt so much about China and its culture, and are indebted to you for this. I think my bird highlights were the Rosefinches and Crested Ibis. I've yet to start editing my photographs.
One thing is for sure though, that I will be back in China for a real birdwatching holiday at some stage in the future. Especially with those direct flights to Chengdu.
 
Many thanks once again for all of your hard work.'
——Richard and Carol who went birding with AlpineBirding in August of 2013

 

Hi Philip,            
How are you? This is to tell you we had a great tour to Sichuan, everything was well organized and special thanks to Jay who did a great job!’

——Laurens Steijn, Birding with  AlpineBirding in June of 2014

1. How about the guide of this trip?
The main guide of this trip is Philip He, the founder of AlpineBirding. In Shanghai, we will have a local bird guide going with us to ensure the quality of the trip. He has worked in the travel industry for more than 15 years and has guided many birding trips. He himself is a birder, photographer and cultural enthusiast. In this trip, he will try his best to make your best bird photography trip for you with his professionalism, passion and knowledge about local places in cooperation with local bird guide and driver.

 

2. How difficult is this trip?
Generally speaking, this trip is quite easy. But we need to know that this trip happens in early Spring. The unpredictable weather may bring us some difficulties, especially when we travel in high elevation areas in Sichuan. But the number of endemic birds you could photograph and the wonderful blooming rape flowers will give you some awards you can’t get if you travel in other seasons.

 

3. How about the food? Is there always western food available?
 Food is very important part for all AlpineBirding trips. Please note that in this trip, we will travel in one of the remotest places in China. Though we will try our best to arrange authentic local food, we have to eat in some small and basic restaurant when we travel to those small places.

 

4. Can AlpineBirding help me to get Chinese Visa?
 Yes, we can provide necessary documents needed for your visa application. Once you confirm to participate our trip, our staff will help you with this.

 

5. Do I need vaccination for this trip? Do I need bring medicines?
 Generally Sichuan is very safe destination. You don't need. The best way is to consult your personal doctor for suggestions. Yes, you'd better bring your own medicine. Though we have lots of phamacies in China, all the medicines are explained in Chinese. So the best way is to consult your doctor and bring some medicines in case of needs.

 

6. What kind of gears do I need to bring?
 For this trip, it is important that you have your own binocular and camera. There are some chances we will photograph birds like rosefinches, Black-necked Crane, game birds and some other endemic birds. So if you have a long lens, you can bring with you. It will be very useful to get those wonderful moments of birds. Sceneries, people and architecture are also something you can ignore in this trip. So bring your best lens for those things. We will bring a Swarovski spotting scope and A Field Guide to the Bird of China, you need to bring your own binoculars. We will also print a checklist for each of our trip participants.

 

7. What does AlpineBirding trips include and exclude?
 Please read the inclusions and exclusions given in the same page where you find the trip cost.

 

8. How do you compare your trips with birding trips provided by other world famous birding companies?

The world only becomes so colorful just because of the existence of so many different things. We hold great respects toward all the other companies in the world, but we want to show our specialties accumulated from many years of running trips. As a local company, we have our own advantages about local birds and local culture. We want to build up our own team of professionals. The growth of our professional team will not only bring direct benefits to our customers in a way that they can travel in cheaper price at the same trip quality but also will exert positive impacts on locals in terms of protecting environments, appreciating local birds and knowing better of local resources. We care about your enjoyment of the trip and we will do everything we can to ensure your full enjoyment of your trip and realize the best value of each penny you have paid to us.

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