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The tour: Our longest tour transects the Carpathian Basin and takes you to all the important habitats of the region, with an emphasis on the breeding birds of the steppes and the Carpathian foothills and mountains. Raptors (Eastern Imperial, Golden and White-tailed Eagles, Long-legged Buzzard, Red-footed Falcon and Saker), owls (Eagle, Ural, Pygmy, Tengmalm’s and Scops), all ten European woodpecker species and a wide selection of warblers (Barred, Savi’s, River, Moustached and Marsh) are the main focus of our tour. A great selection of other highlights includes: Pygmy Cormorant; Great Bustard; Little Crake; Corncrake; Collared Pratincole; Alpine Swift; Wallcreeper; Thrush Nightingale; Red-breasted and Collared Flycatchers and Ortolan and Rock Buntings. We will also try to see the magnificent Carpathian Brown Bear in its wild and natural habitat.

Locations to be visited: Zemplén Forest Reserve (2nts), Slovenski Raj National Park (1nt), Hortobágy National Park (4nts), Torockó Hills (1nt) and Hargita Mountain and Békás (Bicaz) Gorge (3nts). We usually start in the Zemplén area but this can change according to the latest bird news! 

Group Size: The tour is a guaranteed departure from 3 participants upwards with a maximum group size of 10 participants plus Sakertour leader.

Bear watching: We will visit hides in the forest where we have a good chance to see this shy mammal.

Accommodation: Comfortable rural accommodation with great birding right outside our hotels in the Zemplén area (2 nts), in the Ore Mountains (Slovenski Raj, 1nt), Hortobágy area (4 nts), Torockó area (Székelykő, 1nt) and Székelyudvarhely area (Hargita Mountain, 3nts). All rooms are en suite.

Meals: All are included in the price. The food is good! Breakfast and dinner at the hotels. Lunches will either be taken at a traditional Hungarian inn (or csárda), or as picnics in the field. We supply hot drinks throughout the day.

Walking: In the Hortobágy, easy walks over flat terrain. In the Zemplén, Slovakia and Transylvania our walks are typically shorter, mostly along forest trails with some slopes but all taken at a gentle pace. A few optional longer walks are also possible. Sturdy waterproof walking shoes are recommended. May weather can be mixed especially in the mountains, so pack waterproof walking boots and overtrousers, just in case.

Travel: Budapest to Budapest. The type of vehicle for ground Transport depends on the number of participants. Car for up to three persons and coach/minibus for four persons and above. If we use a coach/minibus we will also have a local driver

Expected birdlist: 190-210 species