HERPING CENTRAL SPAIN

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31 December 2022

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Price: £995/person

Date: 6th to 13th April 2024: Sold out | 2025 Dates: Coming soon

Your Local Herpetologist Guide: Max Benito Smeele

Chance to see 43 reptiles & Amphibians

Herping in a premontane habitat and in the Mediterranean bioregion

Looking for Vipera latastei and other interesting snakes

Looking for Fire Salamanders and some exciting frog species

Explore the diverse Monfragüe National Park

Great photography opportunities

Tour Summary

This holiday takes you through the Sierras and valleys of Central Spain, in Avila, Salamanca and Caceres provinces. It provides a great introduction to the herpetofauna of the Iberian-Peninsula with 43 possible species to be seen. The highlights are Lataste’s viper, the Western Montpellier Snake, The Iberian Worm Lizard, Fire Salamanders and some colourful newts, like the Marbled or Bosca’s newts. Expect to hike in beautiful habitats with an average daily walking distance of 8-10 km.

Day 1: Arrive in Madrid and travel to El Barco de Avila

Arrive at Madrid airport in the early afternoon, where the group will meet. We will then drive to El Barco de Avila, where we will stay for the night. Dinner will be served in a local restaurant.

Overnight in El Barco de Avila.

Meals included: None

Snake in Central Spain

Day 2: Herping at a premontane habitat

We start our day by discovering endemic lizards like Lacerta schreiberi, Podarcis guardarramae in a  premontane habitat. We will also look for snakes like Natrix astreptophora, Vipera latastei and some exciting amphibians. (Rana iberica, Bufo spinosus and Lissotriton boscai)

Overnight in Salamanca.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Vipera latastei in Spain

Day 3: Herping at “Dehesa” habitat

After breakfast, we will explore a tipical habitat in the Mediterranean bioregion with some fantastic species like Malpolon monspessulanus, Zamenis scalaris, Mauremys leprosa, Blanus Rufus, Timon lepidus or Podarcis lusitanicus.

At night we will look for amphibinas at nearby ponds: Pelobates cultripes, Hyla molleri, Alytes cisternasii and Triturus marmoratus.

Overnight in Salamanca.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Malpolon monspessulanus in Spain

Day 4: Discover Southern Salamanca Province

We will move to one of the mountain ranges in Southern Salamanca Province. Here we will look for some reptile species like Chalcides bedriagai, Chalcides striatus, Vipera latastei, Natrix astreptophora and Tarentola mauritanica. At night we will try our luck with Salamandra salamandra bejarae, Triturus marmoratus and Discoglossus galganoi.

Overnight in Candelario.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Salamander in Spain

Day 5: Herping at Sierra Bejar

We will herp in Sierra de Bejar, to look for the endemic and beautiful Iberolacerta cyreni, Coronella austriaca and to have our last chance with Vipera latastei. At night we will move to Monfragüe National Park and visit some ponds to observe new amphibian species like Hyla meridionalis and Triturus pygmaeus.

Overnight near Monfrague National Park.

Meals included: Breakfast

Newt in Spain

Day 6 : A Day at Monfrague National Park

We will wake up early and go to one of the best places to look for birds in Spain, where we will have the chance to see Golden eagles, Griffon vultures, Black storks or Blue rock thrushes.

After that, we will hike through the trails of the National Park to observe species like Podarcis virescens, Psammodromus occidentalis, Timon lepidus and Hemorrhois hippocrepis.

At night we will go to some streams and ponds to look for Discoglossus galganoi, Hyla meridionalis, and the beautiful morphs of Salamandra salamandra bejarae that occur around there.

Overnight near Monfrague National Park.

Meals included: Breakfast

Lizard in central Spain

Day 7: Monfrague National Park, Segovia Mountain Range and travel to Madrid

We will spend the last morning outside the National Park to look for Macroprotodon brevis, Zamenis scalaris and Coronella girondica.  At night we will stop in the southern mountain range of Segovia to look for Salamandra salamandra almanzoris and Alytes obstetricans.

 Overnight in Madrid

Meals included: Breakfast

Pelobates in Spain

Day 8: Departure Day

After breakfast, free time and individual departure from Madrid.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Natrix in Spain

El Barco de Avila

Hotel Mirador de Gredos (Classic)

The Hotel Mirador is a comfortable hotel with classic-style that is located in the historic El Barco de Avila. It has spacious rooms, some of them with great views and a nice restaurant.

Salamanca

Hotel San Polo (Classic)

Hotel San Polo is a simple, but comfortable in the centre of Salamanca. It will be a good base to enable us to discover the region and also to have a glimpse of the town.

Candelario

La Casa Chacinera (Standard)

La Casa Chacinera is a 18th century stone house that has been converted as a guest house. They offer breakfast and rooms with en-suite bathrooms. it is probably one of the most unique accommodation on this tour.

Monfrague National Park

Hospederia Parque de Monfrague (Classic)

Hospederia Parque de Monfrague is a nice, 4-star hotel near the National Park. It is a perfect place to discover the park and rest in comfortable rooms.

Madrid

Hotel NH Madrid Barajas Airport (Classic)

NH Barajas is located near Madrid Airport. It is a comfortable 3-star hotel that has easy access to the airport.

Prices & Inclusions

Date: 6 -13 April 2024: Sold Out, 2025: Coming Soon

Holiday Price:

£995/person

Single Supplement £250/person

Inclusions

  • Accommodation at mentioned hotels or similar for 7 nights on a twin share basis
  • Daily breakfasts
  • Transportation as per the itinerary
  • Local Herpetologist expert throughout the holiday
  • Guided daily walks as per the itinerary
  • Full financial protection by Protected Trust Services

 

Exclusions

  • International flights
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals (lunches and dinners)
  • Drinks
  • Tips
  • Travel Insurance
The Gallery
Your
Next Holiday

France & Spain, both countries are among the five biggest in Europe. Both have fantastic biodiversity. Currently, we have two guided holidays in the region that feature their diverse herpetofauna. Come and explore these countries, enjoy the hikes, hospitality, and cuisine, and discover endemic species. We will trek through high mountains, valleys, wetlands, dunes and rich forests. Local herpetologist experts and an extra group leader lead our holidays, providing a guest-to-guide ratio of 3:1.

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