02 January 2023

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Price: From £1395/€1575/person

Date: 17th to 24th May 2023

Your Local Herpetologist Guide: Matthieu Berroneau

Chance to see 30+ Reptile & Amphibian Species

Herping in the threatened ``Landes de Gascogne`` habitat

Enjoy the stunning views of the French Pyrenees

Looking for Vipera seoanei and other interesting snakes

Looking for Fire Salamanders, Spadefoot toads and other exciting amphibians

Great photography opportunities

Day 1: Arrive in Bordeaux and travel to your hotel in the Gironde Area

Arrive at Bordeaux airport in the afternoon. The group will meet at the hotel in Saint-Médard-en-Jalles (12km from the airport). The dinner will be served in the hotel’s restaurant. After dinner, we will visit an old football field that has been taken over by Bufo spinosus and Epidalea calamita. We might also be able to see Hyla meridionalis, Salamandra s. terrestris, Pelophylax sp., or Rana dalmatina.

Overnight in Saint-Medard-en-Jalles.

Meals included: Dinner

Natterjack toad in France

Day 2: Herping in Gironde

Enjoy a relaxed day herping at the Girode region. In the morning we will look for Asp vipers (Vipera aspis), and in the afternoon, we will visit a habitat famous for Green whip snake (Hierophis viridiflavus). In the evening, discover the Invasive American bullfrogs. Other possible Species to see during the day: Natrix helvetica, Coronella austriaca, Zootoca vivipara louislantzi, Podarcis muralis, Lacerta bilineata, Hyla molleri, Rana dalmatina, Hyla meridionalis, Emys orbicularis

Overnight in Saint-Medard-en-Jalles.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Vipera aspis in France

Day 3: Herping at Coastal Dunes and the Costal Lake

Today will be a long, adventurous day. We start by driving to a lake near the Atlantic Coast, where we will look for Natrix maura, Vipera aspis, Hierophis viridiflavus and Natix helvetica. After our picnic lunch, we continue to the Dunes to visit the largest lizard in Europe (Timon lepidus). After another hike, we will have our well-deserved picnic dinner. Once the sun sets, we will explore the coastal dunes at night, searching for some unique amphibians: Pelobates cultripes, Alytes obstetricans, Hyla meridionalis, Epidalea calamita, Rana dalmatina, Bufo spinosus, Triturus marmoratus, Lissotriton helveticus.

Overnight in Saint-Medard-en-Jalles.

Meals Included: Breakfast, picnic Lunch , picnic Dinner

Pelobates in France

Day 4: Travel to the Pyrenees

After breakfast, we will move to the Pyrenees. We will stop for a quick lunch on the road (payable locally), and then in the afternoon, we will look for Vipera seoanei, and in the evening for Salamandra s. fastuosa & Calotriton asper.

Overnight in the Iraty Area (Pyrenees).

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Vipera seoanei in France

Day 5: Herping in the Iraty area

We start the day with visiting some spots near the road. We will search for Vipera seoanei & Podarcis liolepis. We will enjoy our picnic lunch and some breath-taking scenery, where we will try to find Rana pyrenaica. We will spend the evening looking for Salamandra s. fastuosa, Calotriton asper and Rana pyrenaica.

Overnight in the Iraty Area (Pyrenees).

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Rana Pyrenica in France

Day 6 : Travel to the Central Pyrenees

We leave Iraty in the morning and make our way to the Ossau area. We will stop at different spots looking for the local herpetofauna. Enjoy the impressive views of the mountain range. We will stop at Chemin de la Mature, and explore the surroundings. Possible sightings for the day: Podarcis liolepis, Lacerta bilineata, Anguis fragilis, Coronella austriaca, Zamenis longissimus, Vipera a. zinnikeri, Natrix maura, Natrix helvetica, Zootoca vivipara louislantzi, Salamandra. s. fastuosa, Calotriton asper, Lissotriton helveticus, Bufo spinosus.

Overnight in the Ossau area.

Meals included: Breakfast, Dinner

Newt from the Pyrenees

Day 7: Herping in the Ossau region

Today is our final full day of herping in the Pyrenees. We spend our day at a spot where we will look for Vipera a. zinnikeri (melanistic and lined morph if we are lucky). Lunch will be served nearby. After dinner, we will be searching for Natterjack toads and other frogs.

Overnight in the Ossau area.

Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Vipera Zinnikeri from the Pyrenees

Day 8: Departure from the Pyrenees

After breakfast, we head back to Bordeaux Airport, where the trip will end. Depending on the departure flight times, we might be able to stop at some spots.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Lizard from the Pyrenees


Hotel Restaurant Les Bruyeres (Basic)

Les Bruyeres is a simple hotel at the edge of Saint-Medard-en-Jalles. It has an onsite restaurant and an outdoor pool. It is at a great location for our herping expedition.

Pyrenees- Iraty area

Hotel Source de la Nive (Classic)

It is a small hotel, in a beautiful setting, in the heart of the Pyrenees. It has an onsite restaurant and an outdoor pool.

Pyrenees- Ossau area

Hotel Richelieu (Standard)

Hotel Richelieu is located near Laruns, it is a simple hotel at a great locatio for our trip. They offer half board and rooms with en-suite bathrooms.

Prices & Inclusions

Date: 17th May to 24th May 2023

Holiday Price:



min. 4 participants

Single Supplement on request


  • Accommodation at mentioned hotels or similar for 7 nights on a twin share basis
  • Daily breakfasts, 3 Lunches (1 picnic), 7 Dinners (1 picnic)
  • Transportation as per the itinerary
  • Local Herpetologist expert throughout the holiday
  • Tour Leader
  • Guided daily walks as per the itinerary
  • Full financial protection by Protected Trust Services



  • International flights
  • Airport transfers
  • Meals not mentioned in the program
  • Tips
  • Travel Insurance

The Gallery

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.

+44 738 888 45 30


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