Summer Mammals and more - wildlife watching in the Cairngorms National Park, Scotland

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Run by: Speyside Wildlife

Reference number: Summer Mammals

From: £995.00

All-inclusive wildlife watching single centre houseparty style holiday based at our converted steading in a beautiful wild glen setting in the Cairngorms National Park, where you can enjoy some of the local wildlife from the breakfast table. Transport by minibus, landrover and boat. Includes some late nights which will be compensated for by later starts. With a night drive and boat trips, we focus on mammals, but won’t leave out the birds and other wildlife.

We stay in our converted steading designed for our holidays and you’ll enjoy all the facilities of a small country hotel, simple elegant ensuite rooms, beautiful furnishings and a warm welcome that will linger with you long after you’ve returned home. It’s completely informal, but with all that you might need and the personal attention of all of us as hosts and our chefs often get more praise than the wildlife! There’s every chance to really unwind and it’s all yours for the week.

As colder weather grips northern Scandinavia, thousands of birds stream south to warmer waters. Like grains from a pepperpot, seaduck, grebes and divers are scattered€ross the sea like nowhere else in Britain. Huge rafts of Common and Velvet Scoter, Long-tailed Duck and Eider regularly hold Scaup and even rare Surf Scoter. There’ll be Slavonian Grebe, Red-throated and Black-throated Divers and the chance of passing Great and Arctic Skuas. Purple Sandpiper and Turnstone pick around weedy rocks, estuaries are strewn with Oystercatcher, Dunlin, Bar-tailed Godwit, Knot, Wigeon and Pintail and skeins of Pink-footed and Greylag Geese are constantly on the move.

At Insh Marshes, Icelandic Whooper Swans quietly feed and Goosander and Goldeneye dive in small pools, where furtive Teal skulk in the margins and towards dusk, Hen Harriers fly buoyantly in from the moors. Golden Eagle and Peregrine hunt the higher glens and the roar of rutting Red Deer echoes€ross the valley. Open moorland holds parties of Red Grouse and, weather permitting, we’ll explore the Cairngorms area for cryptically camouflaged Ptarmigan.

In the ancient pines of Abernethy Forest, Capercaillie, Crested Tit, Black Grouse and Scottish Crossbill are found and flocks of Siskin, Goldcrest, Coal Tit and Treecreeper weave through trees that flank the mountains. Flocks of winter thrushes, or even scarce Waxwing may appear on berry bushes. We’ll also visit our hide to see our Pine Martens and Badger up close!

We venture to the remote west coast through dramatic peaks and sea-lochs of wildest Wester Ross, where Rock Dove, Raven, Twite and Golden Eagle can all be found, but it’s imposing White-tailed Eagle that will most astound you. We’ll look for Great Northern Divers amongst more numerous Black-throated Divers, as they ride the waves amongst Black Guillemots, Eider and Shags in a landscape that is quite simply spell-binding.

Book online for a 5% discount.

This trip has no fixed departures but restrictions may apply - check operator website

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