Natural Leaders in Western Palearctic

Lowland Steppes of Hungary and High Tatra Mountain of Slovakia, 9 days

Our unique spring tour offers displaying
Great Bustards on the steppe of the Kiskunság National Park in Hungary, as well as all European woodpeckers, owls and the possibility to observe Brown Bear in the unspoilt forests of Slovakia.

Kiskunság National Park, HUNGARY

Similarly to Hortobágy, the scenic Kiskunság National Park still preserves parts of the once continuous Eurasian steppe, the so called "puszta". The park hosts one of the biggest populations of Great Bustards in Europe, but has other highlights to offer as well. Alkaline lakes and temporary flooded areas of grassland attract huge numbers of ducks, geese and waders. Species include Ferruginous Duck, Garganey, Black-winged Stilt, Mediterranean Gull, White-winged Black Tern, Kentish Plover and other migrating shorebirds. We might be able to see Stone-Curlew, Collared Pratincole, Tawny Pipit and Red-throated Pipit as well.

High Tatra, SLOVAKIA

The Tatra Mountains of Slovakia are perfect to observe several highlight species such as Pygmy, Tengmalm's, Ural and Eagle Owl, Hazel Grouse, Golden and Lesser Spotted Eagle, Nutcracker, Ring Ouzel, Common Crossbill, Crested Tit, with a little luck even Wallcreeper and other alpine species. The limestone karst region of the Slovak Karst offers an abundance of rare owl species in attractive habitats, as well as interesting butterfly and bat species.




Fact File

  • 9 days in Slovakia and Hungary visiting national parks famous for rare birds and mammals
  • bear watching from secure hides
  • optional tour to the alpine zone of the Tatras, optional participation in catching bats
  • start and finish in Budapest
  • using 3 accommodations located close to the sites


  • visiting famous National Parks such as Kiskunság, Tatra and Slovak Karst in 2 countries
  • wide variety of birds, mammals, butterflies and habitats
  • plenty of raptors, owls, all 10 woodpeckers of Europe
  • bear watching from comfortable and scenically located hides
  • unique scenery of the High Tatras and the Slovakian Karst


  • 2 nights in a small family run hotel at the Kiskunság NP, Hungary
  • 3 nights in the Slovakian Karst region
  • 3 nights in a lakeside hotel in the High Tatras

Departure Dates



Ask for the actual price.
Our price includes:

  • all travel as noted in the itinerary;
  • all accommodation based on shared rooms (most rooms are twin bedded), at most locations there are single rooms as well for extra charge (Please ask for a single room at the time of booking!);
  • 3 meals per day, generally breakfast at the accommodation, packed lunch, dinner (consists of at least two courses);
  • services of the leader(s);
  • trip materials.

Not included:

  • flights to and from Budapest;
  • optional programmes to places of interest and entrance fees involved;
  • airport and other departure taxes, tips;
  • food beyond generally 3 meals/day mentioned in the itineraries;
  • excess baggage charges;
  • telephone calls;
  • alcoholic beverages;
  • compulsory personal insurance.

If you have questions about the inclusion of any cost item, please contact us.

Activity level

  • Generally easy to moderate walks, some steep slopes in the Tatras
  • Longer driving distances on the third and last day
  • Longer driving distances on the third and last day

Optional programmes

cable car to the higher region to look for alpine species

second evening bear watching from the hide

participation in the capturing of bats at one of the best places for bats in Europe



Days 1-2

After arriving at the Budapest Airport we head towards the Kiskunság National Park. Targets here include Great Bustard, Saker, Red-footed Falcon, Ferruginous Duck, marsh terns, Pygmy Cormorant, Montagu’s Harrier, Stone-Curlew, Roller, Lesser Grey Shrike and Golden Oriole.

Days 3-5

We travel towards Slovakia birding en route, looking for Imperial Eagle and other raptors. We visit the Slovak Karst for Red-breasted and Collared Flycatcher, Rock Thrush, Rock Bunting, White-backed Woodpecker and Eagle Owl; the Szepes-Gömör Mountains for Pygmy and Tengmalm’s Owl, Hazel Grouse and Three-toed Woodpecker. The woods close to the city of Kosice hold a big population of Ural Owl and woodpeckers.

Days 6-8

We head towards the Tatra Mountains to search for Pygmy and Tengmalm’s Owl, Three-toed Woodpecker, Nutcracker, Ring Ouzel and Common Crossbill. As an optional extra, weather permitting, we can take a chairlift from the rocky Demanovska Valley to the scenic alpine zone, hoping to see Water Pipit and the tame Alpine Accentor.

Day 9

We travel back to Budapest to catch the flight back home, birding en route.