Join GEO Pictorial in 2017 for your next photographic odyssey... the first and original photographic tours and workshops to Lake Kerkini and other amazing locations throughout Greece....
Lake Kerkini, in the Northeast of Greece close to the border with Bulgaria is one of those very rare places in Europe where you can get really up close to nature and bird life.. it is a wetland area like no other you have ever experienced before... it is home to over 300 species of birds... many of which are endangered... and some like the Lesser White Fronted Goose.. perilously so.. last year (October 2016) we counted 136 on the lake!
Dalmatian Pelicans, White Tailed Sea Eagle, Red Crested Pochard, Yellowhammers and Buntings, Cormorants, Herons, Egrets, Cranes and Storks, Kingfishers, Booted - Golden - Greater Spotted - Short-toed Eagles... so many it is impossible to list them all... not to mention the mammillian, reptilian and amphibian fauna.. including wild boar, otters, wolves, jackals, deer, wildcats, river snakes, frogs and salamanders... and if macro photography is your thing... the insects and flowers are incredible... with 100's of varieties, for example, of dragonfly.
Spring/summer courses will also include three excursions in the price... one by 4x4 into the wetland delta, one by canoe and one by boat... weather and conditions permitting... otherwise we will find alternative excursions for you. Other excursions which we can undertake under our own steam will include general photography of the wetlands and its inhabitants... forays into the surrounding mountains to find, observe and photograph birds of prey... and many more alternatives.
Photographic tuition will cover many aspects of wildlife and bird photography... depth of field, ISO's and shutter speeds, focussing, pre-focussing and panning... but aside from all the technical aspects of photography we will also spend a lot of time concentrating on composition... my aim is to show you ways to think a little differently to the standard way that wildlife and birds are photographed... we will look at how to create portraits of birds as well as setting them in their environment showing the beauty of the landscape in which they live, their relationship to it and to put them firmly in their own context.
I will show you techniques for handling large heavy lenses needed to capture wildlife photos... if you fancy having your own lens for the duration of your trip their are a couple of links on the "RESOURCES" tab in the menu above from where you can rent practically any lens of your choice.
Ideal camera equipment to help you gain the most of your week with us at Lake Kerkini would be a standard digital SLR camera with a wide and a telephoto lens.
The ideal camera kit would include the following:
- DSLR Body
- wide angle lens
- mid telephoto - 70-200mm
- long telephoto lens - 300mm, 400mm, 500mm or 600mm
- macro lens anything from 100mm up... for photographing bugs and little creatures..
- 1.4x and/or 2x teleconverter
- laptop, portable external hard-drive to back-up and store your photos, card reader, european plug adaptors, battery chargers etc..
- monopod or tripod (with gimbal head or other ball head equivalent)
In addition... we can by request also go through some computer techniques... everything from archiving and cataloguing your photo collection in Lightroom to exporting your raw files using Lightroom and/or Capture One to working on and fine tuning your images in Photoshop...
This is a single location stay... the hotel where we will be based is 500 metres from the Lake and is right at the heart of all ecological and environmental initiatives in relation to the Lake and the wider region. The hotel is a lovely establishment of traditionally furnished rooms with their own fireplace where both the accommodation and food is fantastic.
Transportation throughout the trip will be by 4x4 Landrover
When to go..?
To try to help you decide which time of the year you might prefer.. a few facts about the Lake...
Dalmatian Pelicans are in residence all year round though in late winter/spring (Jan-March) their colour and plumage are really resplendent to attract the females...
Flamingos peak in numbers in early December.
From spring to autumn the Lake is at its fullest which means access is possible to the submerged forest by canoe... allowing us to get really up close to nesting cormorants and other birds.. Spring to Autumn is also when the forest and lake really bloom with all the flowers and lilies.... not to mention the extraordinary insect life that is in abundance at this time of the year.
In winter the level of the lake is a lot lower which means no canoe trips to the forest.. though we do still access via 4x4 and boats... the surrounding mountains are usually snow-capped making for beautiful images and the light is especially crisp.
- all accommodations for the duration of your stay
- breakfasts, lunches & dinners (lunches will normally be of the "packed" variety so that we don't cut short trips into the lake or mountains by having to return to the hotel or village to eat)...;
- refreshments on excursions;
- transfers to and from Thessaloniki airport;
- 3 organised excursions with canoe (only spring/summer tours), 4x4 and Boats;
- day trips by car or on foot either around the lake or up the mountains for bird watching & photography tutorials;
- a 30"x20" photographic print of your favourite photo from the trip;
Flights should be booked to Thessaloniki Airport where you will be met and driven to the hotel... about an hour and fifteen minutes away... check out RyanAir or Aegean Airlines for flights direct to Thessaloniki.. or alternatively you can fly to Athens and connect to Thessaloniki.. booked separately internal flights with Olympic or Aegean are usually quite cheap from Athens to Thessaloniki and there are usually more than 5 flights a day to choose from..
What's not included..
- Insurance (recommended you have full health, medical, travel and equipment insurance);
- alcoholic drinks;
Every tour is tailored to meet the physical abilities of our guests and most excursions will not be strenuous at all.
WIldlife & Bird-Watching
We do offer guided wildlife & bird-watching holidays in Kerkini, Evros Delta, Prespes, and many other locations throughout Greece so please get in touch if you would like further information on these.
Wildlife & Bird photography workshops, tours & holidays:
Our group sizes are usually only 4 people to ensure the least possible disturbance to the birds & animals and maximum potential for us to successfully photograph them as well as give you the best attention and help we can.
07/12/2017 - 11/12/2017
Flamingos & Winter Birds at Lake Kerkini
wildlife photography workshop
3 places available
25/01/2018 - 29/01/2018
wildlife photography workshop
2 places available
29/01/2018 - 02/02/2018
wildlife photography workshop
one place available again after a guest changed to earlier week.
21/04/2018 - 28/04/2018
Prespes Lakes Spring Migration
7 Day - photography trip to the magical and little visited Prespes Lakes in North-West Greece.. Bearded Tit, Penduline Tit, Otter, Short-toed Eagle, Goosander are all on our list for this trip as well as a few surprises.. which may even include Brown Bears..!