This wildlife travel guide is meant to be like a trailer for the new Attenborough series. Because we also have individual travel guides for more specific wildlife vacations, such as our safaris, bear watching and whale watching. The travel guide below gives you the perfect introduction to getting your head around the extraordinary life on earth, and where to go to find it.
Top 10 wildlife photography
tours in Europe
Wildlife photography vacations in Europe allow you to learn, experience and immerse yourself in some of the continent’s last remaining wilderness areas, as well as introducing you to some of the most elusive and exciting animals in Europe. From Arctic foxes, terns and puffins in Norway and Iceland, to bears, wolverines and moose in the deep, dark forests of Finland and Romania – we’ve highlighted some of our best wildlife photography tours in Europe. All you have to do is pack your camera and go.
Our Europe wildlife Vacations
1. Polar bear expedition, Svalbard
Join a photography expedition to the icy Svalbard archipelago in the far north of Norway. The itinerary is tailored by experts who know the wildlife – and photographers' needs – down to a T. Expect longer shore landings, excursions timed to maximise the light, and small group Zodiac trips with room for camera kit. Conservationists and nature photographers like David Yarrow lead the way, revealing the creaking, always changing landscapes where polar bears, whales, walruses and colossal guillemot colonies live.
2. Bird watching in IcelandImagine training your binoculars on Arctic sea cliffs soaring out of the sea. From a distance, it’s hard to make out what’s emerging from the tiny holes in the cliff face. However, close up you’ll see the unmistakable red and gold beaks of tufted puffins as they leave their burrows to hunt.
Puffins aren’t the only birds you’ll see on a wildlife photography tour of Iceland. Thanks to the midnight sun this close to the Arctic Circle in summertime, places like Grimsey Island and Lake Myvatn offer long days (and nights) of watching out for razorbills, kittiwakes, Arctic terns, tufted ducks and pink-footed geese.
When to go: June
Our top trip: Iceland birds and landscapes photography tour
See all our trips: Iceland wildlife vacations
Read more: Iceland photography guide
3. Photograph wolverines in FinlandIn the realm of the deep, dark Finnish woodlands, predators roam. Rightfully fearful of people, watching and photographing wolverines in the wild takes patience, practise and expert local knowledge. This is your opportunity to join specialist wildlife watchers and researchers as you undertake a tour of eastern Finland, where wolverines are appearing in increasing numbers. Get cosy in a wilderness lodge, camp out in a photography hide, and wait for the moment that a wolverine appears right in front of your camera’s lens.
When to go: April to October
Our top trip: Wolverine photography tour in Finland
See all our trips: Finland vacations
Read more: Wildlife photography travel guide
Our top Europe wildlife Vacation
6 night live-aboard tour in the stunning fjords 0f Norway
From US $6600 6 days ex flights
Small group travel:
2022: 5 Nov, 12 Nov
2022: 5 Nov, 12 Nov
If you'd like to chat about Europe wildlife or need help finding a vacation to suit you we're very happy to help.
4. Go wild in Norway
Fulufjellet National Park in Norway is one of Europe’s last true wildernesses. Armed with a camera (and thermal underwear) this is your chance to camp out in Fulufjellet and embark on a wildlife photography tour that watches out for bears, wolves, lynx, wolverines, birds, reptiles, butterflies and amphibians.
5. Photography & sailing, ScotlandThe islands, lochs and castles of the Inner Hebrides are some of the best places to sail on a wildlife photography tour of Scotland. Scotland’s north-west shores are alive with marine and birdlife, so living aboard a fully crewed small sailing boat is a great way to get up close to the action. A flexible itinerary lets the skipper and photographers make the most of the tides, as well as taking advantage of impromptu animal encounters around the islands of Eigg, Rum and Mull.
When to go: June
Our top trip: Photography and sailing vacation in Scotland
See all our trips: Scotland wildlife vacations
Read more: Scotland wildlife travel guide
6. Autumn colours & wildlife in LaplandSpend a week with a pro photographer who’ll show you around northern Lapland. Kuhmo, near the Russian border, is a highlight – you’ll head to a remote cabin where you can watch out for bears, wolves and wolverines. Your guide will help you get the most out of your camera and the rolling backdrop of autumnal forests, rushing rivers, Arctic lakes, wild national parks and the Northern Lights. Small hotels are key, so you’ll meet the people who live in this remote region of Finnish Lapland too.
When to go: August and September
Our top trip: Lapland photography vacation: autumn colours
See all our trips: Lapland vacations
Read more: Lapland travel guide
7. Bird photography in Romania
Set against the backdrop of the Danube Delta, this trip is an opportunity to snap pelicans, egrets, geese, ducks and white-tailed eagles in the marshes and wetlands. Also, if you’re very lucky, you might have a chance to capture the otters, hares, mink and boar that reside here. As a biosphere reserve, the Danube Delta’s wetlands and reed beds have become one of the largest protected areas for wildlife watching in the world. Set out on foot and by boat with an expert wildlife watching guide.
8. Photographing brown bears in FinlandPhotographing wild brown bears in Finland is surprisingly straightforward… if you know where to look. Firstly, you need to know how to access isolated areas of Finland’s woodland. Secondly, you need patience. And finally, you need an expert guide who can point out the snuffling brown bear nose coming into view. Camping out in a wildlife hide, you’ll use camera traps and thermal imaging, and get the chance to photograph badgers, beavers, reindeer, moose and pine martens.
When to go: May to September
Our top trip: Bear photography tour in Finland
See all our trips: Finland vacations
Read more: Bear watching in Finland guide
9. Wildlife photography tours in the Spanish PyreneesFine-tune your craft at photographer-led workshops, before embarking on practical expeditions around the lakes and mountain foothills of Ordesa and Monte Perdido National Park in the Spanish Pyrenees. Bearded vultures and golden eagles glide in the skies and wildflowers attract clouds of butterflies endemic to the region. It’s all part of a small group vacation based in a renovated mountain farmhouse and led by an award-winning photography tutor.
When to go: All year round
Our top trip: Photography vacation in the Spanish Pyrenees
See all our trips: Spanish Pyrenees vacations
Read more: Spanish Pyrenees wildlife guide
10. Capturing puffins in the Faroe Islands
Bird photography is the name of the game in the Faroe Islands, where colonies of puffins, kittiwakes and northern fulmars cling to cliffs and wave-swept islands. Each boat trip and hike is led by an expert photography guide, while evening workshops cover subjects like creative composition and image development. All cameras and abilities are welcome – even phone cameras.
More about Europe wildlife
Wildlife vacations in Europe introduce you to everything from whales in Iceland to lynx and bears in Romania.
Our map reveals where to see wildlife in Europe, whether that's sailing through the Arctic or hiking in Spain.
Joining an expert tracking guide is the best way to undertake bear watching vacations in Romania's Carpathian Mountains. Our guide explains all.
Our guide explains why the Norwegian fjords north of Tromso are one of the best places in the world to admire killer whales in the wild.
Yes, there are polar bears in Norway – you’ve just got to sail to Svalbard, where the hardiest of wildlife and people prosper, on an expert polar bear tour.
Loggerheads are an emblem of the Greek seas. Help them out on a turtle conservation vacation in the Peloponnese.
Whale watching in the Azores is essentially a seaborne safari. Over 15 species have been spotted near this far-flung Atlantic archipelago.
Read about whale watching in Iceland, where you can sail with guides to spy minke, humpback fin and killer whales.
Looking for good news? Rewilding in Europe is boosting landscapes and wildlife, while providing jobs and exciting futures.
Our best bear watching tours in Europe track Eurasian brown bears and the fearless polar bears of the Arctic.
Take a safari – in Europe! You won’t see the Big Five, but there are bears, whales and lynx waiting for you here.
Wildlife conservation in Europe gets you up close to some of the world’s most amazing animals and projects.
Wildlife vacations in Scotland invite you to sail whale-rich waters, hike through deer forests and visit behemoth island bird colonies.