Tanager Tours - Birding in Peru and South America

Tanager Tours is a leading tour operator for birding trips to Peru and other South American destinations. The company’s name alludes to the magnificent colours and diversity of South American tanagers and symbolizes the richness and variety of our tours.

Active in Peru since 1999, Tanager Tours’ trademark is a high degree of reliability against relatively low prices. We offer tailor-made tours as well as standard routes.

What makes us different?

Tanager Tours is a small but stable travel agency. Our staff consists of good guides supported by reliable drivers. Our guides have extensive language skills, speaking Spanish, English, and Dutch. We have minimal overhead and advertising costs: Tanager Tours’ philosophy is that our customers will find us because we offer quality tours that result in satisfied clients.

Our quality is based on the use of reliable and robust equipment and keeping group sizes small – generally between 2 to 7 clients. To back up these strengths, our drivers are not just good chauffeurs, but also skilled mechanics.

We are realistic in what is possible when birding – although we also do our utmost to show our customers as much as possible of Peru’s splendour and do all we can to answer the clients’ wishes for endemic or difficult to find species, we do not build castles of air. Our strategy is to make a realistic plan, based on thorough correspondence, to attain our clients’ targets. Tanager Tours’ guiding principle is that our tours should surpass your expectations, not to evoke unrealistic expectations that we cannot substantiate. After all, birds remain birds, and that is exactly their attraction.

Birdwatching Trips

Tanager Tours offers a variety of trips in Peru, visiting an astounding diversity of habitats. Please have a look at the Bird Tours Peru page to get an impression of what is possible. It goes without saying that the various itineraries can be adjusted – the itineraries presented are based on the minimum number of days to make them successful, but adding days increases chances of finding hard to see or rare species.

These itineraries form templates for our Customized Tours and Fixed Departures. Most of our trips are small groups of birders who ask us to build itineraries for them, often using our standard itineraries and adding days where they have particular interest. The sky is the limit for these tours - we have the necessary experience in Peru to advise you as to what is feasible and how best to acheive your wishes, be they a long list of difficult endemics or a relaxing holiday in a birdwatching paradise. We vary our fixed departures from year to year, mostly based on previous successes and client feedback, but also because our guides are passionate birders, not simply list-builders - they truly enjoy birdwatching in all its variety, and it shows during our tours.

Nature / Culture Tours

Not all of our clients are dawn-to-dusk birders - we regularly include visits to Peru's many cultural attractions in our tours. We have two such itineraries, combining relatively relaxing birding with visits to Incan, Chachapoyan, and/or colonial historical sites. They can be found on our Nature / Culture Tours page. Of course customised tours in this vein are also possible.

Research trips

Occasionally, Tanager Tours organises research trips to deepen our knowledge or to explore previously unknown areas. On these trips, we cannot guarantee what we'll see or what travelling conditions we will encounter, but they offer good value for the adventurous birder. We often undertake very long drives, spend many nights camping, and use rustic accommodations and restaurants. Those interested in this kind of travel should contact us to see if we have anything planned.

Other destinations in South America

Tanager Tours started as a specialist in Peruvian birding, but the enthusiasm of its staff to visit other areas in South America has led to cooperation with similar agencies in other countries. In particular, we are active in Colombia and Venezuela in conjunction with Trogon Trips, and are working on building a partnership to offer tours to Argentina. In general, the other agency organises the ground logistics while we provide the guide (mostly David Geale).

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