Aquatic Warbler by Oliwier Myka

Tour Dates: Wednesday 14th – Tuesday 20th May 2025 (Warsaw to Warsaw)
Tour Price: £1,650pp plus flight
Estimated Flight Price: London to Warsaw approx. £250 return
Deposit: £400 per person
Conservation Donation from Wise Birding: £100 – £150
Minimum Number: 4 people
Maximum Group Size: 6 people

Target Species Birds:
Aquatic Warbler, Great Snipe, Hazel Grouse, Great Spotted and Lesser Spotted Eagle, Pygmy Owl and Tengmalm’s Owl and up to 9 species of Woodpecker including Three-toed Woodpecker and White-backed
Target Mammals: Bison, Eurasian Elk, Beaver and with luck Wolf!

Tour Summary
This new 6 night tour to Poland is a superb Spring break based in just two locations, the magical Białowieża Forest and the bird-filled  Biebrza Marshes. Białowieża Forest is the largest remaining remnant of the original European Forest and one of the oldest in the whole of Europe. Often famed for its population of European Bison, but also for its great diversity of Woodpeckers as well as other sought after species like Hazel Grouse and Collared and Red-breasted Flycatchers. In contrast, the Biebrza Marshes and its associated maze of channels, flooded meadows and lakes has a whole different feel to the ancient forest and in mid May it is literally crammed full of bird life from Terns, to Herons, to Waders and Warblers and of course the very special breeding populations of Great Snipe and Aquatic Warbler. Come and join us on this great Spring week of birding with a few mammals mixed in and with our expert local leader.

ACCOMMODATION: 6 nights in Poland  (4 Białowieża and 2 Biebrza)
Meals: Full board

DAY 1: Arrival Warsaw – Białowieża Forest
After arriving at Warsaw airport at around lunch time, we will take the transfer to our hotel in the fabulous Białowieża Forest which is around a 3.5 hour drive. We will of course make the odd birding stop en route and then get straight to experience our first birding around the forest. We are sure to at least hear our first of many Thrush Nightingales and we may get lucky with a Hazel Grouse on our first night. Overnight Białowieża Forest

Three-toed Woodpecker by Oliwier Myka

DAYS 2 – 4: Birding in Białowieża Forest
We will spend the next three days exploring this wonderful forest and the many hidden gems that our local guide knows so well. By visiting the old growth part of the forest we will search of woodpeckers (up to 9 species possible), flycatchers (4 species), Hazel Grouse, Nutcracker, Pygmy and Tengmalm’s Owl. We will also visit  the Siemianówka reservoir in the northern part of the region where we hope to find Greater Spotted Eagle, Citrine Wagtail and maybe some Crakes too. One morning we will look for the forest’s famous Bison and we can also try for wolves on another morning. In the river valleys & mid forest glades we will look for Barred, Marsh, Icterine and River Warbler, whist above us we will be keeping a close eye on the sky for Honey Buzzard & Lesser Spotted Eagles. On one evening we will visit a Great Snipe lek in the neighbouring Upper Narew River Valley. Here, we will be surrounded by Corncrakes calling from the meadows and the wonderful song of Thrush Nightingales singing from the scrubland.

On another day we will visit what is known as the “Strict Reserve” of Białowieża National Park (UNESCO site). We will learn how the European lowlands would have looked over a hundred years ago. We will also learn how this important national park began and how the Wars took their toll on the flora and fauna, and what has been done to restore it, so that it has now become an incredible biological hot-spot for Europe. Overnight Białowieża Forest

Great Snipe video by Oliwier Myka

DAYS 5 & 6: Biebrza Marshes
On day 5 we head north to Biebrza Marshes with a stop en route at the Dojlidy fishponds where we will look for Red-necked Grebe & Penduline Tit. We will arrive at Biebrza Marshes in the evening where we will spend time birding this wonderful spot. The Marshes are one of the only places in the world where you can observe breeding Aquatic Warbler – the rarest songbird of Europe. Aside from Aquatic Warbler, there will be many other  target species that will include Bluethroat, Marsh Terns (Black, White-winged, Whiskered), Savi’s and Grasshopper Warbler, Tawny Pipit, Bee-eater and Ortolan Bunting to name just a few! Biebrza is also the only place where Elk survived during World War II and we will try to see this impressive mammal early one morning. The mosaic of channels and cut-off rivers are also home to many Beaver families and we will make a dedicated evening trip to try and see this species. Overnight Biebrza

Eurasian Pygmy Owl by Oliwier Myka


DAY 7: Biebrza to Warsaw

We will spend our final morning birding on Biebrza Marshes searching for any species that we may have missed or simply try to get some better views of species. We will then take the 2.5 hour transfer to Warsaw where the tour concludes.

Please note this is a flexible itinerary which may need to be adjusted slightly dependent on arrival / departure times, weather conditions and the most recent information from our local guides

Leaders: Oliwier Myka
Included in cost: Accommodation in twin en-suite rooms, all meals, ground transport, park fees and services of leader.
Not included in cost: International airfare, travel insurance, drinks other than water and any airport/visa fees.
Single Supplement: £170 
Transport: Minivan or Minibus dependent on group size
Difficulty: Easy. Walking is easy going with short leisurely walks on open trails and walking distances of up to 8Km a day
Climate: Changeable and still quite chilly in the early morning and evening but getting as high as 20C in the day.
Tour Start Point: Warsaw airport, Poland
Tour End Point: Warsaw Chopin International airport, Poland
Suggested Airlines: LOT Airlines

European Bison by Oliwier Myka