Wildlife Holiday News

A Naturetrek first: The ‘African Galápagos’ of São Tomé and Príncipe!

These two idyllic islands, lying 150 miles or so off the coast of Gabon, are often called the ‘African Galápagos’ due to the high number of endemic birds present in such a small area. This little-known corner of the world is home to at least 25 endemic bird species (depending on which taxonomic rules you follow), along with many of the West African mainland specialities. Besides being a birders’ paradise, they also host a small number of endemic reptiles, amphibians and several plants!

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Príncipe island

This new 11-day tour will begin with a morning flight to Lisbon, from where we will take an onward flight to Sao Tomé. We will spend three nights at a well-appointed boutique-style hotel within walking distance of the island’s idyllic beaches. We will start by exploring the hotel surroundings for our first endemics such as São Tomé Prinia and Newton’s Sunbird. Further afield, we’ll venture into Obo National Park set in the São Toméan highlands in order to look for more endemics such as the São Tomé Speirops, Princípe Seedeater and São Tomé Weaver.
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Newton's Sunbird

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Príncipe island

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Príncipe Seedeater

A short flight will take us next to São Tomé’s sister island – Príncipe – where we’ll spend six nights in a comfortable converted cocoa plantation house. We will spend the next few days exploring the nearby ‘roças’ (cocoa plantations), as well as the island’s unspoilt forests where we will be searching for species such as Príncipe Sunbird and Príncipe Golden Weaver, among others. On one of the days, we will take a boat trip to the Tinhosas islets 13 miles south of Príncipe, which are home to a huge number of nesting seabirds including Brown Boobies, Sooty Terns and Black and Brown Noddies. There can be close to a million birds present!

All this against a backdrop of unspoilt deserted beaches and vibrant tropical forests!

The dates and prices are still to be finalised, but the first departure will likely be in September/October 2019. If you would like to register your interest in this exciting new tour please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call Lara Broom on 01962 733051.

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