Overview

Discover Ghana’s spectacular birdlife, plus learn about mammals, butterflies, flora and culture, while leaving a positive footprint for local conservation and communities.

Situated in the heart of West Africa Ghana is a must visit destination for any birding and wildlife enthusiast. A comprehensive coverage of varied West African habitats from coastal wetlands and lagoons, moving inland through the coastal savannah into the rich Upper Guinea Rainforests that protect so many West African speciality species that include the Yellow-headed Picathartes also known as White-necked Rockfowl amongst many others.  

Continuing northwards enjoying the transition between the southern forests through the broadleaved Guinea woodland and finally the savanna plains and touching the Sahel on the Burkina Faso border, Ghana offers you the chance of seeing a wide range of species and habitats. It was no surprise Arjan Dwarshuis chose to dedicate 14 days in Ghana with us during his successful Biggest Year world record. Most West African Upper Guinea endemic species occur here in Ghana, and our safe, friendly, hassle-free environment and most developed infrastructure of any West African country, makes us a must visit for any birding and nature enthusiast. Travelling with West Africa’s best local bird and wildlife guides, our 100% record of seeing the White-necked Rockfowl (Yellow-headed Picathartes) and Egyptian Plover (recently placed in a family of its own) ensures a spectacular trip awaits our potential tour participants. With so many amazing birding locations globally and so little time and money to enjoy all of them, Ghana simply is the must go to West African destination for birding and wildlife lovers. 

About Our Partner

Conservation Careers has teamed up with a leading local responsible travel tour operator in Ghana which aims to have a positive impact on the countries, communities and environments they visit, leaving nothing but positive footprints.

Their policy of operating low-impact, ethical tours allows them to create authentic, cultural connections, which not only enhances your experience, but also creates economic opportunity and social development, whilst preserving local cultures for future generations. They connect communities to the conservation of their environment and ensuring they benefit directly from ethical tourism.

Their core value ‘Purpose Before Profit’ is evident through the many projects helping locals and conservation.

Key aims:

  • To support local community-run businesses, thereby creating income for local people which reduces the negative impact on local ecosystems through hunting and farming activities
  • To maintain the preservation of locally-run eco-tourism initiatives
  • To provide opportunities for local communities – school projects educating the future generations; free training to educate youths to become self-sufficient and free reading and writing lessons for adults
  • To continue to actively protect endangered and vulnerable wildlife species

If you register your interest below, we’ll put you in touch with our partner to take the booking and to plan your trip!

Explore all our Conservation Travel opportunities.

Your local wildlife guide

Such an important part of any trip. The success and enjoyment of your tour is mainly determined by the local guide assigned to lead it. It has taken us over 15 years and several guides to establish what we feel is the finest group of local birding and nature tour leaders in West Africa.Experts in their chosen field in addition to being professional, personable, friendly, focused and determined to ensure you have the best experience possible during your time with us.

Our guides love their work, care about conservation and have been described by many as the best local guides they have encounteredIt is no coincidence that over 95% of international birding and nature tour companies travelling to Ghana love our company and using our local guides; it is because of the high standards we set. 

Our guides have excellent identification skills, know all birds by song/call and where to find them. Constantly in the field leading tours, researching new locations, and providing data for publications and the Ghana Wildlife Division, our team simply love their work. 

Our company reputation is built on the positive feedback from our trips and we will never offer substandard guides just to take a booking. The passion shown by our guides when leading tours is evident: they are respected, appreciated, paid well, and receive the benefits they are entitled to like pensions, healthcare and they feel an important part of our company. If you are keen to support local guides in Ghana and want the best possible experience, then choose us for your Ghana Birding and Wildlife tour.

Is it important to you that your tour benefits people, communities and conservation locally?

The foundations of our company are built on having a positive impact in the locations we visit during our tours. Connecting communities to the conservation of their environment ensuring they benefit directly from ethical tourism. To us actions speak louder than words and we feel our many projects showpotential tour participants how booking with us benefits locally.

One example of this is our project at the Yellow-headed Picathartes forest and surrounding communities. In 2007 we took the first birding tour group to see the Picathartes in the forests around Bonkro to the backdrop sound of constant chainsaw operators cutting the trees around them.  We had to act! If we did not establish our project after this visit there would be no forest or Picathartes remaining today.  

Thankfully, our project has been a major success with over 600 children currently using schools we have built, 300 of these children at our school in the Picathartes communities. The introduction of environmentally friendly farming like bee keeping being introduced that requires the protection of the forest, moving locals away from farming palm oil. In addition, the reforestation phase of our project starts soon, planting indigenous tree species aiming to improve and increase the forest cover.  

The recent completion of tourist accommodation and restaurant will provide additional income and employment opportunities locally. All funds generated go back into the communities.  Sadly, none of the picathartes nesting sites in Ghana fall within protected areas with over 80% being in productive forest reserves with active timber concessions. During the global covid-19 pandemic, mainly due to a lack of presence in these reserves, legal and illegal logging increased.  

In October 2020 we continued to increase our commitment to our conservation efforts by sponsoring an expert assessment of the White-necked Picathartes in the NyamebeBepo Forest Reserve at Bonkro. Our aim is to try and get the forest reserve converted from productive to protected.  All the funding for our projects comes from money generated by our tours. Booking your birding and wildlife tour with us, helps us to continue our fight to protect Ghana’s wildlife and habitat.

Tour Overview

Duration:

17 Days 16 Nights

Vehicle type:

This will depend on group size. Our vehicles range from air-conditioned salon cars, 4x4s, minibuses and coaches.

Focus of this tour:

Our focus on our birding and nature tours is primarily on birds, however our local guides are experts on birds, butterflies, mammals, flora, and culture. This allows us to offer the best overall experience to our tour participants, ensuring the trip is productive and enjoyable.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 | Arrival in Ghana

You will be met upon your arrival at the Kotoka International airport in Accra Ghana which is situated on the beautiful “Gold Coast” (Ghana’s former name during its time under British colonial rule) of Western Africa.

After clearing immigration, collecting your bags, and passing through customs you will enter the main arrival hall where your tour leader/local guide and driver will be waiting to meet you. Our team will take care of you from here and offer you “Akwaaba” (welcome) once you have boarded your air-conditioned vehicle which will be your mode of transport for the duration of your time with us. 

We make the journey (approximately an hour’s drive depending on traffic) to your hotel which is located close to Shai Hills Reserve. After checking you in your guide will brief you on the following days activities and answer any questions you may have.  Depending on your arrival time, you can enjoy your early evening mealwhilst acclimatising yourself to West Africa.

Accommodation – Alexis Hotel (Tema)

Day 2 | Birding Shai Hills ReserveSakamona Lagoon, and transfer to Kakum National Park

Our first morning with you here in Ghana as we head for the open grassland savannah of Shai Hills Reserve hoping to see a good selection of species that include, Northern Crombec, Yellow-fronted Tinkerbird, Snowy-crowned Robin Chat, African Pygmy Kingfisher, Cardinal Woodpecker, Vielliots and Double-toothed Barbets, White-crowned Cliff Chat, Rock Martin, Red-shouldered Cuckoo-shrike, Violet Turaco, Senegal Parrot, Senegal Batis, Blue-bellied Roller, Swallow-tailed Bee-eater, Oriole Warbler, Black-cap and Brown Babblers, Copper and Splendid Sunbirds, White-crested Helmet-shrike, Croaking and Short-winged Cisticolas, African Thrush, Red-necked and Lizzard Buzzards, Lanner Falcon, Green Wood-hoopoe and Stone Partridge to mention a few species on offer here.  

After a wonderful morning we head for more familiar birding at the Sakamona Lagoon.  There is usually an abundance of birds to see here depending on the level of water, we hope to see Black-winged Stilt, Senegal Thick-knee, Common Ringed, Grey and Spur-winged Plovers, Black-tailed Godwit, Whimbrel, Common Greenshank, Spotted Redshank, Wood and Common Sandpipers, Collard Pratincole, Marsh and Curlew Sandpipers, Ruddy Turnstone, Little Stint, Long-tailed Cormorant, Squacco, Grey, Purple, Striated and Black Herons, Little, Cattle, and Intermediate Egrets. 

After a wonderful morning we set off towards Kakum National Park stopping for a slightly late lunch on route.  Our accommodation will be close to Kakum NP and we aim to arrive in the early evening.  On arrival we check in to relax and enjoy our evening meal and checklist in preparation for an early start in the morning. 

Accommodation – Rainforest Lodge (Jukwa)

Day 3 | Birding Kakum National Park with morning and evening visits to the canopy walkway 

An early breakfast as we head for the world-famous canopy walkway at Kakum National Park which is approximately 15 minutes’ drive from our lodge. We aim to get to Kakum for first light enabling us to spend the most critical bird viewing hours 40 meters above the forest floor on the canopy walkway, which 7 platforms are large enough to support Telescopes. The 360 km² Kakum National Park protects secondary upper guinea semi deciduous tropical rainforest and it is a wonderful feeling being so close to the canopy of this beautiful forest.  

Our main target species during our time on the canopy walkway are Violet-backed Hyliota, Chestnut-capped Flycatcher, the upper guinea endemics Sharpes Apalis, Brown-cheeked Hornbill and copper-tailed Glossy Starling, Bioko Batis, Blue Cuckooshrike, Little Green Woodpecker and the White-crested Hornbill.  Other species we hope to see include Blue-throated Brown, Green, Collard, Johanna’s and the beautiful Buff-throated Sunbirds, Red-headed and Crested Malimbes, Rosy Bee-eater, White-breasted and Grey-crowned Negrofinch, Red-fronted and African Grey Parrots, Yellowbill, Western Black-headed and Black Winged Orioles, Rufous-crowned Eremomela, Splendid Glossy and Forest Chestnut-winged Starlings, Preuss’s Golden-backed and Yellow-mantled Weavers, Green Hylia, Golden, Slender-billed and Little Grey Greenbuls, African Green Pigeon, Yellow-billed Turaco, Emerald Cuckoo, Blue-throated Roller, Yellow-throated, Red-rumped and Speckled Tinkerbirds, Hairy-breasted and Naked-faced Barbets, Usshers and Little Grey Flycatchers, Cassins Honeybird and African Pied Hornbill, to mention a few.  

The raptors we have a chance to see include, Congo Serpent Eagle, African Harrier Hawk, Palm Nut Vulture, Cassins Hawk Eagle, European Honey and Red-necked Buzzards. Some of the more difficult but still possible species from the canopy include Long-tailed Hawk, Black Dwarf Hornbill, Yellow-footed Honeyguide and Black-collard Lovebird.  

After a wonderful morning we return to our lodge to freshen up and enjoy our lunch.  During the heat of mid-afternoon, you will have the option of birding around our lodges, grounds, resting in your air-conditioned rooms, around the pool and bar or you could choose to go on a cultural excursion to Cape Coast castle, compliments of us.

We re-visit the canopy walkway in the evening when our main targets will be the Brown-cheeked, Black and Yellow-casqued Hornbills, Great Blue Turaco, Brown Nightjar and Fraser’s eagle owl amongst other specials. Our evening will be spent at the lodges restaurant and bar discussing the day’s sightings, adding to our checklist, and enjoying the atmosphere of our surroundings.  

Accommodation – Rainforest Lodge (Jukwa)

Day 4 | Birding Antwikwaa and Kakum National Park 

Another early start as we visit the Antwikwaa section of Kakum National Park, hoping to add some amazing birds to our growing list – Little, White-throated,  Rosy and Black Bee-eaters, Blue-throated Roller, Piping Hornbill, Red-rumped Tinkerbird, White-spotted Flufftail, Cassin’s Spinetail, Sabine’s SpinetailDidric Cuckoo, Melancholy and Buff-spotted Woodpeckers, Vieillot’s Black and Black-necked Weavers, Kemps and Grey Longbills, Western Nicator, Western Bluebill, Olive-bellied, Superb and Johanna’s Sunbirds, Copper-tailed Glossy and Violet-backed Starlings, Yellow White-eye, Bronze Mannikin, Orange-cheeked Waxbill and the more difficult species include Yellow-billed Barbet, Forest Penduline Tit, Ayre’s Hawk Eagle and Ahanta Francolin, to mention a few. 

We then go to a river site for the beautiful White-bibbed (White-throated Blue) Swallow, Preuss’s Cliff Swallow, Rock Pratincole, White-headed Lapwing, and if we are lucky which we sometimes are African Finfoot may make an appearance. In the afternoon we will concentrate our attention on the many trails within and surrounding the park, which should prove to be very productive. We hope to find White-tailed Alethe, Red-tailed Bristlebill, Grey-headed Bristlebill, Black Dwarf Hornbill, Red-billed Dwarf Hornbill, Olive Long-tailed Cuckoo, Forest Robin, Yellow-billed Turaco, Fire-bellied Woodpecker, Melancholy Woodpecker, and so many others. Once again, we will remain until dark trying for owls and nightjars that we may still need before returning to our accommodation for our meal and checklist. 

Accommodation – Rainforest Lodge (Jukwa)

Day 5 | Birding Kakum Forest and Ankasa Reserve 

This morning we will be concentrating our time on the farmland scrub, forest edge and forest trails at Abrafo a section of forest habitat near to Kakum National Park. Our guides are always focused on getting our clients good views of all species and this morning is no different as we search for Pale Flycatcher, Black and White Mannikin, Brown-crowned Tchagra, Sooty Boubou, Puvel’s Illadopsis, Olive-green Camaroptera, Red-faced and Whistling Cisticolas, Lesser Striped Swallow, Fanti Saw-wing, Chestnut Wattle-eye, Naked-faced and Hairy-breasted Barbets, Frasers and Little-green Sunbirds, Yellowbill, Red-cheeked Wattle-eye, Swamp Palm Bulbul, Common Fiscal, Spotted Greenbul, Finsch’s Flycatcher Thrush, Yellow-whiskered and Red-tailed Greenbuls, White-crested Hornbill, African Harrier Hawk and the more sought after difficult species include Long-tailed Hawk, Red-billed Helmetshrike, Rufous-sided Broadbill, Chocolate-backed Kingfisher, Olive Long-tailed Cuckoo, Congo Serpent Eagle, Red-billed and Black Dwarf Hornbills.   

We check out of our lodge after enjoying our lunch and set off westwards for what should prove to be a major highlight of your time with us here in Ghana. Our destination is Ankasa Reserve, Ghana’s only wet evergreen rainforest that is in near pristine condition. An exceptional forest in a remote location, Ankasa protects many rare and sought-after bird and mammal species. 

There is a new lodge being built along the river on the boundary of this stunning rainforest; if this has not been completed prior to your tour commencement then we have a choice of where to stay being a local basic guesthouse 5 minutes’ drive to the forest or camping inside the forest itself. 

If you choose to camp at our private camp inside the forest, our camp leader and his assistants will be waiting to greet us on arrival. The tents are large with comfortable mattresses, pillows, and bed sheets for your comfort whilst we sleep. There are flushing toilets and cold private shower facilities one-minute walk from our tents and our cook will keep us well fed three times a day with cold beers and non-alcoholic beverages available. The camp is supplied with mains electricity and we also have a backup generator if needed.

Most of our tour participants inform us camping here is a major highlight of their tour. If you are not happy to camp as mentioned previously, we can sleep at the nearby guesthouse. 

As we arrive in the late afternoon we settle into our chosen accommodation before heading out for early evening birding where we hope to see Frasers and Akun Eagle Owls. Your guide will also be looking for the legendary Nkulengu Rail, one of our previous tour participants was the first person to get a photo of this species in the wild during one of our tours in 2011. Our evening will be spent at our guesthouse or campsite enjoying good food, cold drinks, and the atmosphere of being at one with nature. 

Accommodation – Guesthouse or Camping (Ankasa Reserve) 

Day 6 and 7 | Birding Ankasa Reserve 

Such an incredible forest protecting so many rare and sought-after species we now choose to dedicate 3 nights here. Your guide will be up before first light listening for the unmistakeable call of the Nkulengu Rail, if he locates this species, he will alert the group before breakfast. Staying so close to a birding location is always a bonus as time is not wasted travelling.  

After breakfast we set off venturing deeper into this lush forest with our main targets being the upper guinea endemics Yellow-bearded Greenbul, Rufous-winged Illadopsis and Green-tailed Bristlebill in addition to Ansorge’s, Icterine, Red-tailed and Western-bearded Greenbul’s, Pale-breasted and Blackcap Illadopsis, Forest Robin, White-tailed Ant Thrush, White-tailed Alethe, Shinning Drongo, Cassin’s Flycatcher, Yellow-spotted Barbet, White-throated Bee-eater, Chestnut-breasted Negrofinch, Blue-headed Wood Dove, Western Bronze-naped Pigeon, Yellow-billed and Great Blue Turaco’s, Black-capped Apalis, Grey-headed Bristlebill, Tiny Sunbird and Red-fronted Antpecker. 

Your guide knows where the speciality species are found inside Ankasa and it is important we give you the best opportunity to see them. Our company provide support landrover 4×4’s enabling us to navigate the difficult forest road ensuring we get to these sites at the best time of daythis also enables us to bird the remote trails around the pools where we have seen African Pitta on a few occasions. 

As we approach the watering holes located deeper inside the forest, we hope to see Crested Guineafowl on the road.  Our target birds will include Hartlaubs Duck, Dwarf Bittern, African Finfoot, Shining Blue, White-bellied, Blue-breasted and Dwarf Kingfishers. Forest raptors are always welcome, and we hope to see Long-tailed Hawk and Congo Serpent Eagle. We will scan the sky for Crown Eagle, Square-tailed and Fanti Saw-wings, Black and Yellow Casqued Hornbills in addition to Black Dwarf and Piping Hornbills. 

There are some rare species here and if we are lucky which we sometimes are we may see White-breasted Guineafowl, White-crested Tiger Heron, African Pitta, Grey-throated Rail, Dusky Long-tailed Cuckoo, Forest Scrub Robin, Blue-moustached Bee-eaterRed-chested Owlet and Akun Eagle Owl.

Our evening is spent enjoying good food and discussing the day’s birding over a cold, refreshing drink. 

Accommodation – Guesthouse or Camping (Ankasa Reserve) 

Day 8 | Birding Ankasa Reserve and Brenu Akyinim 

A final morning’s birding at this wonderful location, we will walk new forest trails in different parts of the forest enjoying the exceptional biodiversity of this tropical habitat. At over 500 square kilometres of continuous wet evergreen rainforest, Ankasa is biologically the most diverse rainforest in Ghana and one of the most diverse in West Africa.

Protecting over 800 vascular plant species, almost 650 species of butterfly, in addition to Forest Elephant, Bongo, Diana Monkey, Chimpanzee and several species of Pangolin and the most wanted West African bird species, Ankasa is a nature lovers paradise. After enjoying what nature has to offer, we head back for lunch and to freshen up before our departure after a wonderful 3 nights at this seldom visited location.  

Our vehicle is loaded, and we set off back towards Kakum National Park, during our journey we will be targeting several species not seen in other parts of Ghana. These include Reichenbach’s and Brown Sunbird, White-browed Forest Flycatcher, Orange Weaver, African Pygmy Goose, Carmelite Sunbird, and Little Grebe to mention a few.   

A visit to Brenu Akyinim and the coastal savannah plains will give us some new species to enjoy. There are some special species found in this area and new birds we hope to see include Marsh Tchagra, Compact Weaver, Double-spurred Francolin, Oriole Warbler, Red-headed Quelea, Black-rumped Waxbill and if we are lucky Yellow-winged Pytillia, Wilsons Indigobird and African Wattled Lapwing.  We continue back towards Jukwa and return to our hotel of a few nights earlier to relax and reflect on another great days birding. 

Accommodation – Rainforest Lodge (Jukwa)

Oriole Warbler. Credit: Dick Forsman.

Day 9 | Birding Abrafo Forest and Picathartes Nesting Site 

Today is special and it is difficult to focus our minds on anything other than the afternoon visit to the Yellow-headed Picathartes nesting site, however we will have to as we have a full mornings birding to enjoy. 

We check out of our hotel after an early breakfast and set off for Abrafo forest where we will be targeting species we may still require from this habitat. After an excellent morning we set off northwards stopping for lunch on-route before arriving at a remote village close to a small upper guinea rainforest in the Ashanti Region of Ghana. 

On arrival we check into our accommodation which was built by our company and donated to the communities surrounding the picathartes forest along with a restaurant and school that now offers over 300 children access to education.   

All proceeds generated by the accommodation, restaurant and forest entrance fees go to the community fund showing locals the immediate benefit of conserving their environment on a sustainable basis. The success of this project is so important as if it fails the forest will sadly fall.

As the only local birding tour company committed to conservation projects here in Ghana, we have a huge responsibility to ensure its success and preserve it for future generations. Our fight continues and choosing to travel with us means you are also helping to protect the picathartes forest and all the wonderful wildlife that call it home as our project is funded from our tours.  

The project has created employment in the communities and we also sponsor 24 community forest committee members from the surrounding villages to patrol and stop illegal hunting and logging activities in the forest reserve. Our long-term ambition is to get the reserve which status is currently productive for timber concessions converted to protected as a sustainable eco-tourism project.    

There are 1active nesting sites in this forest, and we will visit one of the largest colony’s that has approximately 30 nests, 16 of these active. As we set off on the walk through this beautiful forest you can see why it is one of the must-see species in the world, the whole experience adds to this mythical bird’s reputation. The walk should take between 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on your fitness levels.  As we approach the nesting site, we need to be incredibly quiet as we take our seat on bamboo benches we have purposely made for your comfort. The overhanging rock face and small cave with mud nests sets the atmosphere as we wait for the birds to come back from foraging for snails, frogs, and insects during the day.   

It will be hard to contain your excitement as these legendary prehistoric looking birds hop and jump on the rocks whilst preening themselves just meters from our eyes (no telescope needed). Once we have enjoyed good views, we leave the birds in peace as we set off back through the forest to our accommodation and a well-deserved cold drink. Our hosts will have prepared a wonderful celebratory meal and we enjoy our evening, reflecting on one of the best birding days of our life. 

Staying in this remote local community is a definite highlight of our time together, meeting the locals and relaxing in this perfect setting. Previously, before we had built the accommodation for the community, we used to travel 3 hours through the night to Kumasi arriving around 10pm. Having the facilities to stay here not only benefits the protection of this forest but also allows us to enjoy the other wonderful birds and wildlife that call it home. 

As always there will be the option to go for night birding and nature walks before we settle down for the evening. 

Accommodation – Picathartes Guesthouse (Bonkro)

Day 10 | Birding Bonkro Forest and Kwabena Sam Forest 

Slightly more relaxed breakfast as we are so close to the forest this morning. There are several trails we can enjoy; your guide will determine which one we take based on the bird species we have already seen and species we still need.  

Such a productive forest and species we could see include White-crested and Black-dwarf Hornbill, Gray-headed and Red-tailed Bristlebill, Rufous-sided Broadbill, Fire-bellied Woodpecker, Yellow-throated and Thick-billed Cuckoo, Forest Woodhoopoe, Blue Cuckoo-shrike, Sharpe’s Apalis, Black and White Shrike Flycatcher, Gray-throated Tit Flycatcher, Long-tailed Hawk, Congo Serpent Eagle.

This is also the forest we where we have seen the extremely rare and difficult to see Western-wattled Cuckoo-shrike on the most occasions. Our specialist mammal tours also spend quality time in this forest location as it has been the best place for us to see Long tailed and Tree Pangolin. 

well-deserved afternoon rest during the heat of the day. If rest is not for you then why not visit the school we have built or head into the village to meet some of the locals. Our relationship with these communities is excellent and you will have the opportunity to join one of the families to see their cocoa farm or learn the process of gari that is made here.  

Our bar and restaurant are always open, and we will all meet to enjoy lunch before heading out back into the forest for afternoon and evening birding. The nearby Kwabena Sam forest is the final forest location before we head north tomorrow to the drier guinea woodland and savannah habitat.  

Target species this afternoon and evening include, Fraser’s Forest Flycatcher, Yellow-browed and Olive-green Camaroptera, Western Nicator, Puvel’s Illadopsis, Tit Hylia, Yellow-footed and Hairy-breasted Barbet, Green Crombec, Kemp’s Longbill, Black-cap ApalisBlue-headed Crested Flycatcher, West African Wattle-eye, Red-cheeked Wattle Eye, Black-throated Coucal and Western Bronze-naped Pigeon amongst others.  Depending on which nocturnal species we still need we can also stay after dark looking for owls and nightjars. A final night in this remote community as we enjoy a wonderful evening meal, checklist and relax at the bar and restaurant. 

Accommodation – Picathartes Guesthouse (Bonkro) 

Day 11 | Mole National Park 

After an early breakfast we set off northwards towards Mole National Park. Today is mainly a travel day and we can expect to see different species of birds as we head northwards as the habitat changes to the drier broad-leaved guinea woodland and savannah. Your guides will be keeping an eye open for the many raptors we hope to see during our journey which include Beaudouins Snake and Long-crested Eagles, Grasshopper Buzzard, Yellow-billed Kite and Shikra amongst others during our regular leg stretch stops.  

Lunch is enjoyed in Kintampo before we continue our journey to Mole which is Ghana’s largest National Park protecting an area of 4847 square kilometres of habitat, almost 100 species of mammal and 330+ species of birds.  

Situated on a 250-meter-high escarpment overlooking this 4,840km² park, it offers breathtaking views. It is an amazing feeling to be sitting around the pool on the hotel terrace watching African savannah elephants bathing in the two nearby watering holes which are inhabited by crocodiles.

After our evening meal, we shall set off for an evening of birding around the Mole Airstrip where we hope to see displaying Standard-winged Nightjars. The airstrip is also productive for owls and we will be looking for Grayish Eagle and Northern White-faced Scops owls before we retire for the evening. 

Accommodation – Mole Motel or Zaina Lodge (Mole National Park) 

Pel’s Fishing Owl. Credit: Mike Nelson.

Day 12 and 13 | Birding and Wildlife Viewing at Mole National Park 

Mole is a real nature lover’s paradise, and we are in for a real treat over the next 2 full days as we immerse ourselves into the exceptional West African birds and mammals found here at Mole National Park. We will be setting off after breakfast walking and driving deeper into this national park.

Your expert guides know all locations for species we hope to see which will include Red-cheeked Cordon-bleu, Scarlet-chested, Beautiful, Pigmy and Western Violet-backed Sunbirds, Lavender and Orange-cheeked Waxbills, Familiar Chat, White-fronted Black Chat, Chestnut-crowned Sparrow Weaver, Red-headed Quelea, Red-billed, Bar-breasted and Black-bellied Firefinch, Fine-spotted, Grey, Golden-tailed and Brown-backed Woodpeckers, Violet-backed, Long-tailed Glossy, Bronze-tailed Glossy, Lesser Blue-eared and Greater-Blue-eared Starlings, Abyssinian Ground, African Grey and Northern Red-billed Hornbills, Stone Partridge, Double-spurred, White-throated and Ahanta Francolins, Senegal Eremomela, Pin-tailed, Exclamatory Paradise and Togo Paradise Whyda’s, Bush Petronia, Little, Heuglins Masked, Village and Red-headed Weavers, Melodious and Willow Warblers, Brubru, Thick-billed Jacobins, African, Black and Great Spotted Cuckoos, Fork-tailed and Square-tailed Drongos, Northern Puffback, White-shouldered Black Tit, Red-faced, Rufous and the more difficult Dort’s Cisticolas, Hadada Ibis and Wilsons Indigobird. 

Mammals are in abundance here in Mole and we hope to see Kob, Bushbuck, Waterbuck, Hartebeest, and the beautiful Roan Antelope in addition to getting within a few meters on foot to Africa’s largest land mammal the African Elephant. Green Vervet and Patas Monkeys will greet us in the bush as we enjoy our morning walks.

Patas Monkeys. Credit: Bob Stamp.

During the heat of the midday sun, we can enjoy a siesta or relax around the pool after our lunch. We set off for afternoon birding around 3pm and stay after dark for nocturnal species. Birds we hope to see include Yellow-breasted Apalis, Bearded Barbet, Swamp, African Blue, Lead Coloured, Pied and the sought after Gambaga Flycatchers, Giant, Shinning Blue and Grey-headed Kingfishers, Red-throated Bee-eater, Bruces Green Pigeon, Senegal Batis, Snowy-crowned and White-crowned Robin Chats, Flappet and Sun Larks, Sulpher-breasted and Grey-headed Bush-shrikes, African Golden Oriole, Oriole Warbler, Cinnamon-breasted Rock-bunting, Abyssinian, Blue-bellied, Rufous-crowned and Broad-billed Rollers, Black Scimiterbill, Violet Turaco Raptors are common here in Mole and we hope to see Martial, Booted, Long-crested and Tawny Eagles, White-backed, White-headed Vultures, Lizzard Buzzard, Gabar and Dark Chanting Goshawks, Western Marsh Harrier, African Fish and Wahlbergs Eagles, Brown and Short-toed Snake Eagles, Osprey and Lanner Falcon to mention a few. 

During our time here we obviously have our main target species of birds not easily seen in other parts of the world and these include Forbes Plover, Pel’s Fishing Owl, Spotted Creeper and Rufous-rumped Lark.  The species above are only some that can be seen during out time here. Our evenings will be spent at our hotel enjoying the atmosphere of being so close to nature. 

Accommodation – Mole Motel or Zaina Lodge (Mole National Park) 

Day 14 | Egyptian Plover and transfer to Kumasi 

After an early breakfast we set off from Mole heading back southwards to Kumasi. Before heading south, we take a detour to see the beautiful Egyptian Plover found along the White Volta River. Due to the importance of this species which has recently been placed in a family of its own we dedicate quality time enjoying and photographing it in flight and walking along the sandy banks of the river. 

During our time here, we will be looking for any other species that occur before setting off to Kumasi. On arrival in Kumasi, we check into our hotel to relax in preparation for an early start in the morning. 

Accommodation – Royal Basin Resort (Kumasi) 

Day 15 | Birding Bobiri Butterfly Sanctuary and Atewa Range 

An early start as we head back into the Upper Guinea Rainforest habitat where so many of Ghana’s sought-after special species are found. This morning we hope to see Tit and Green Hylias, Magpie MannakinNarina Trogon, Red-billed Dwarf and Black Dwarf Hornbills, African Grey and Brown-necked Parrots, Purple-throated Cuckoo-shrike, Black-throated Coucal, Golden-backed Weaver, African Piculet, Red-chested Owlet, Dusky Tit, Blue-headed Crested Flycatcher, Yellow-billed Barbet, Grey-headed and Red-tailed Bristlebills and the much sought after Yellow-footed Honeyguide amongst other species.   

We set off after a productive morning heading further south towards Atewa stopping for lunch on-route.  After some rest and relaxation we set of for the lower farmland bush at Atewa where we hope to see Black-necked, Maxwells Black, Compact and Grosbeak Weavers, Whistling Cisticola, Black-crowned and Marsh Tchagras, Emerald, Klaas’sLevaillants and Yellow-throated Cuckoos, Red-bellied Paradise Flycatcher,  Western Bluebill, Tessmann’s Flycatcher and if we are lucky Baumann’s Greenbul and Bat Hawk before we check into our nearby guesthouse for the evening to relax, reflect and enjoy our evening meal. 

Accommodation – Nelsban Palace Hotel (New Tafo) 

Day 16 | Birding Atewa Range 

Atewa is critically endangered highland upper guinea rainforest and as it protects so many quality and rare species, we will dedicate a full day birding here. It is quite a consistent hill walk to get to the top of the range and we will take a packed lunch with us to minimise the walking and maximise our time birding here.

Target birds here will include Red-cheeked Wattle-eye, Purple-throated Cuckoo-shrike, Blue-moustached Bee-eater, West African (Bioko) Batis, Chocolate-backed Kingfisher, African Hobby, Long-tailed Hawk, Congo Serpent Eagle, Red-rumped, Yellow-rumped and Speckled Tinkerbirds, Little Green, Buff-throated, Blue-throated Brown, Olive-bellied and Collard Sunbirds, African Goshawk, Red-tailed and Green-tailed Bristlebills, Red-headed and Crested Malimbes, Forest Robin, Little, Little Grey, White-throated, Icterine, Red-tailed, Western-bearded and the upper guinea endemic Yellow-bearded Greenbul, Many-coloured Bushshrike, Western Nicator, Brown Illadopsis and Western Bronze-naped Pigeon. 

Sadly, Atewa forest range is under severe threat as the Ghanaian government are considering allowing it to be mined for bauxite.  Several NGO’s that include our company are petitioning the government to establish Atewa as a National Park to protect this beautiful habitat for future generations.

Atewa protects some rare species of birds and we hope to get good views of Red-fronted AntpeckerNimba Flycatcher, Crowned Eagle, Brown-chested Alethe, Forest Scrub Robin and Lowland Akalat amongst other speciesAfter another wonderful day’s birding, we return to our guesthouse for our evening meal and to reflect on another enjoyable and productive day in the field over a cold drink at the guesthouse restaurant during our checklist. 

Accommodation – Nelsban Palace Hotel (New Tafo) 

Day 17 | Birding Atewa Range and Departure  

Another early start as we set off back to the Atewa Range aiming to find species we still need or would like better views of. A full morning will be dedicated to enjoying this forest habitat that protects so many rare and sought-after species.  

We return to our hotel for lunch and to shower, freshen up and pack our bags before setting off for Accra. An amazing end to a wonderful tour as we enjoy an early evening meal and final checklist on our arrival in Accra. After our meal and final checklist, we transfer you to the airport for your departure after a wonderful Ghana birding and wildlife tour. 

Costs

The tour cost for 2 participants travelling based on dual occupancy is $4,375.00 USD per person. The Single Supplement if applicable is $475.00 USD per person.

The tour price is inclusive of the following:

  • Airport transfers
  • Accommodation: mid range
  • All meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Mineral water:  unlimited and available to every participant for the duration of the tour
  • Fruits and Snacks on our vehicles
  • Transportation around Ghana in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Experienced and safe driver
  • Fuel – Unlimited mileage
  • All park entrance, site guide and excursion fees as mentioned in itinerary
  • Expert wildlife Guide fees: fully escorted by Ghana ‘s finest professional award-winning local guides
  • Professional indemnity, public liability and vehicle accident insurance cover
  • Professional care, attention and 24/7 local office support

Excluded:

  • International flights
  • Visa
  • Items of a personal nature

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