Join one of the very few holidays focused on moths in Europe. A twelve days tour in search of some of the rarest and most attractive moths and butterflies on the continent.

Jewels of Macedonia

Dimanche 30 Juillet - Lundi 7 Août 2017

This holiday is focused again on two main target species of butterflies which are not to be seen on our spring and early summer tours. The Grey Asian Grayling is a very local Balkan endemic emerging only after the beginning of August and thus requires a special visit in its nice home range in Macedonia – Galitchitsa mountain. The other highlight in our holiday is the beautiful Two-tailed Pasha – probably the most exotic European butterfly. It is not that rare at all, in fact it is quite spread throughout the Mediterranean. But as its first brood is not abundant at all and the second one emerges not before the beginning of August, it also needs a special visit in order to find it. This one we will find in Greece, Chalkhidiki peninsula. Beside the two main species, we will find roughly 100 or so other species of butterflies, including other rarities, such as Macedonian Grayling, Little Tiger Blue and possibly the beautiful Balkan Clouded Yellow. It will be a relaxing holiday with only two hotels to be used, both situated near a lake and the sea respectively, providing options to swim and cool down.

ITINERARY

Day 1
     Arrival  at Thessaloniki  airport (Greece) and  drive to Macedonia, our base for the next four days is small hotel, situated on Lake Prespa, and not far from the Albanian border. Accommodation and dinner.

Days 2 to 4 
    A short drive from the hotel bring us at the top of Galitchitsa Mountain, declared a national park, rich in wildlife, and nicely surrounded by both Prespa and Ochrid lakes. For two days we will be looking for our target species here – the very fine and extremely local Grey Asian Grayling. Beside it we will find many other butterflies, including Esper’s Marbled White, Apollo, Dusky Grizzled Skipper, Lesser Lattice Brown Woodland  Grayling, Hermit, Damon Blue,  Grecian  Anomalous Blue, False Eros Blue, Russian Heath, Purple and Brown hairstreaks and many more. Another rare butterfly is possible here – the Balkan Clouded Yellow. On day 4 we will drive to Prilep town as its surroundings hold a different variety of species – the endemic Macedonian Grayling, but also White-banded, Balkan, Delattin’s, Eastern Rock and Tree  graylings, Great Sooty Satyr,  Little Tiger Blue, Large Tortoiseshell and Lattice Brown.

Day 5 
    Today we will drive towards Chalkhidiki peninsula, entering Greece again, which we will reach late in the evening, but will break the journey with several stops on the way. Overnight in the village of Vourvourou for three nights. 

Days 6 and 7     Both days we will look for the beautiful Two-tailed Pasha, our main target here, and we have enough time to find it and see it well, and also to photograph it. The dry foothills does not hold many other species but we will also see Cleopatra, Lattice Brown, Southern White Admiral, Nettle-tree Butterfly, Scarce Swallowtail, Long-tailed blue.The hotel we stay in is next to the beach and we have the option to cool down in the Mediterranean sea.

Day 8     Transfer to Thessaloniki  airport for you flight back home. Time permitting we will have few stops on the way.

Note:
this tour requires early booking as its dates coincide the peak of the summer season in both areas we will be staying in so all the hotels are booked long before the summer. 


Large Tortoiseshell

   Large Tortoiseshell by Val Walker.