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We will depart Bogotá to head to the mountains at medium altitude (1200m) near Santa Maria, Boyacá. Santa María (800 masl) is one of the best places to see and photograph nature in the entire Eastern Cordillera (eastern slope). Researchers estimate that the Boyacá region is home to about 600 species of butterfly. During the following days, we will visit different locations well known as butterfly hotspots, where we can find species such as Morpho menelaus lecromi, Morpho teseus, Morpho peleides. In addition to unique species such as Prepona praeneste, Heliconius heurippa (ENDEMIC), three species of Epiphile, Doxocopa, Perisama, Leodonta, Catasticta, among many others. 
 
The second half of our trip will take us to the immense plains of eastern Colombia, Los Llanos Orientales. Los Llanos is one of the world's most productive tropical grasslands containing a fantastic diversity of wildlife. Among the gallery forests of Los Llanos, we may even have the opportunity to photograph the elusive Morpho rethenor colombianus.
 
Trip Dates
March 2 –15, 2022, registration cutoff is February 2 at 10:00 pm EST
  • Explore the east of the Eastern Cordillera of the Andes and the Department of Boyacá
  • Opportunity to see such unique species as Prepona praeneste, Heliconius heurippa (ENDEMIC), three species of Epiphile, four of Doxocopa, Perisama, Leodonta, Catasticta, among many others. Fortunately, we will have the chance to find the very rare Theorema dysmenia (Lycaenidae), only photographed in nature from this area.
  • Visit one of the world's most productive tropical grasslands containing a fantastic diversity of wildlife.

Itineraries

Day 1

Arrival in Bogotá

Arrive at El Dorado airport in Bogotá. We will spend the evening in a comfortable hotel, Hotel El Campin.

Day 2-5

Santa Maria

We will depart Bogota for the town of Santa María (Boyacá), approximately 5 hour drive. Santa Maria is one of the best locations for viewing and photographing nature in the entire Eastern Cordillera (eastern slope). The town center is around 800 masl. Santa María (800 masl) is one of the best places to see and photograph nature in the entire Eastern Cordillera (eastern slope). To reach the town we will travel through 14 tunnels built in the 1970s, and along the way, we will make our first stop to photograph butterflies at an elevation of about 1500 masl. In the afternoon, we will arrive at our hotel that will be our lodging for the next four nights. Meals will be at a local restaurant.
Researchers estimate that the Boyacá region is home to about 600 species of butterfly. During the following days, we will visit different locations well known as butterfly hotspots, where we can find species such as Morpho menelaus lecromi, Morpho teseus, Morpho peleides. In addition to unique species such as Prepona praeneste, Heliconius heurippa (ENDEMIC), three species of Epiphile, four of Doxocopa, Perisama, Leodonta, Catasticta, among many others. Fortunately, we will have the chance to find the very rare Theorema dysmenia (Lycaenidae), only photographed in nature from this area.

Day 6

Villa de Leyva

After breakfast we will leave Santa María, heading to the old and colonial town of Villa de Leyva. We will stop along this roughly 4 hour drive to see if we can spot any butterflies.

Day 7

Arcabuco

After breakfast we will venture to the town of Arcabuco, with the hopes of photographing the very special Morpho sulkowskyi and the endemic Ephiphile neildi. This location will allow us to see and photograph many species of medium altitude (2600muns), including several species of Perisama and Pierid speices found at this altitude such as Colias and the endemic Natalis plauta. In the afternoon we will return to the town of Villa de Leyva, where we will spend the night.

Day 8

Visit Chirajara and Villavicencio

In the morning after breakfast, we will head out of the city to an area called Chirajara, a short transect crossed by a small river where it will be possible to find special species such as Morpho menelaus lecromi, Morpho teseus, some species of Perisama among others. In the afternoon arrive in Villavicencio and spend the night in a 3 star hotel on the outskirts of the city.

Day 9-11

Mururito Nature Reserve

Today we enter the vast plains of the Colombian Orinoquia arriving at the private reserve Mururito in the afternoon. Mururito Nature Reserve is a 2000 hectare reserve located just 4 degrees north of the equator dedicated to the conservation of native species of the region. It is a small "oasis" in the middle of the plains with great accommodations and food where white-tailed deer and foxes can be seen near the house. Our main objective will be to see and hopefully photograph the never before photographed in their habitat Morpho rhetenor colombianus. We may find species of Eunica, Prepona, Siderone, or the endemic Philaethrria pygmalion among others

Day 12

Villavicencio

After a day of butterflying near the main house, we will leave the plains and return to Villavicencio for the night.

Day 13

Return to Bogotá

After looking for butterflies in the morning we will return to Bogotá where we will have a special dinner and an evening of rest from our adventure.

Day 14

Flights Home Today

Flights home today. For those with an afternoon flight home you may want to join us as we visit one or two of the sites and museums within walking distance of our hotel, such as the Plaza de Bolívar or the Gold Museum. We may also visit one of the most representative places of the Colombian capital, the hill of Monserrate.

The prices include the following:
  • Guiding services
  • Entry fees into reserves and parks
  • All planned meals and tips at restaurants
  • Hotel nights on the itinerary
  • In-country transportation.
The prices do not include the following:
  • International flights.
  • Alcoholic beverages.
  • Phone calls, laundry or other items of a personal nature.
  • Tips at hotels or guides.

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Please plan your arrival flight into Bogotá's El Dorado international airport.

Assistance can be provided to arrange a hotel stay in Bogotá for those arriving prior to our start date or those departing after our end date.

The Colombian peso is the country's legal tender. It is generally identified with the abbreviation COP, and you'll find that the official peso symbol ($) is used locally.
A wide selection of banknotes and coins are used. You will find 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 peso coins and 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, 10,000, 20,000, 50,000 and 100,000 peso banknotes. The exchange rate is 1 US Dollar to about 3400 COP.

DeVries, Philip. 1987. The Butterflies of Costa Rica and their Natural History. Princeton Univ. Press, Princeton, New Jersey.

Garwood and Guillermo. Butterfly Catalogs. https://www.butterflycatalogs.com/

Glassberg, Jeffrey. A Swift Guide to the Butterflies of Mexico and Central America.

McMullan, Miles. 2018. Field Guide to the Birds of Colombia. Editorial Delfin S.A.S.

Each client is solely responsible for bringing an ample supply of their personal meds, if taken. On occasion, however, if someone forgets their meds we can often find something nearly identical in local pharmacies.

Close focusing binoculars
Camera
Sunscreen
Insect Repellent