ACE Nature Tours
Introduction from Dr Roland Randall
As one of ACE’s longest standing tour directors, I am delighted to introduce to you the first brochure dedicated entirely to its rich and comprehensive nature programme. The timing is particularly important as – having led tours for ACE since the 1980s – I will soon be retiring and handing over the tour directing reins to my colleagues, while continuing to take an active role in developing the natural history programme.
An intriguing blend
Marcus Kohler for example – a keen bird and animal ecologist – has recently developed a fascinating autumn tour to the Isles of Scilly to coincide with the bird migration, interwoven with many other aspects of these islands, including their Bronze and Iron Age past.
Since I started working for ACE, a number of highly experienced and engaging tour leaders have come on board, including Dr Peter Exley, geologist Dr Morag Hunter, biogeographer and Mediterranean specialist Dr Harriet Allan and botanist Professor John Parker. These experts have impressed me not only in their specialist subjects, but also in the broader ecology of the areas in which they have researched.
This absorbing combination exemplifies a hallmark of ACE’s approach to natural history – an immersive blend of natural history with history, archaeology, geology and landscape (and, of course, good food!) that is hard to find elsewhere. There is always something new for the general interest traveller, but also opportunities for the more specialised person to hone their ornithological or botanical skills in company with an expert in the field.
The on-tour experience
Most of our tours take us out into the field throughout the day, exploring the ecology of the localities in which we are staying. In the evening, either before or after dinner, there is the opportunity to hear a talk, enter into discussions or review the highlights of the day (or go to the bar or to bed instead!). Nothing is compulsory, but most people find an in-depth look at natural history and how it impinges on, and is affected by, other subjects, an intriguing and rewarding experience.
Roland Randall, botanist, biogeographer and Chair of Trustees, The ACE Foundation
June 20 - 27, 2017; £1725 | Kevin Hand
Islay, the ‘Queen of the Hebrides’, will be our base for this rewarding study of the area’s flora and fauna
July 3 - 8, 2017; £1095 | Kevin Hand
Encounter waders and eider ducks at Lindisfarne and witness kittiwakes, shags and razorbills vie for a nesting place on Staple Island, while puffins bring sand eels back to their young in burrows under the turf.
July 8 - 15, 2017; £1715 | Peter Exley & Andrew Wilson
Survey the spectacular archaeological treasures of the Orkney Islands, whose Neolithic monuments are a UNESCO World Heritage site and take ferries over to Rousay, Westray and Papa Westray, for an introduction to island life in the extreme north of Britain.
August 4 - 12, 2017; £2295 | Kevin Hand
Travel above the Arctic Circle to explore some of Europe’s largest remaining wilderness landscapes: from taiga forest to sparse tundra and dramatic coastline.
September 1 - 16, 2017; £3695 | John Parker
Travel through the magnificent scenery of the Cape, from sandy coastlines to rugged mountains, at a time when the landscape is carpeted with dazzling displays of spring flowers
September 5 - 12, 2017; £2065 | Marcus Kohler
More peaceful and relaxed than mainland Britain, Scilly embraces five inhabited islands and dozens of rocky outcrops, rich in sea birds. Our September tour with ecologist and ornithologist Marcus Kohler concentrates on the birdlife of the isles and coincides with the flow of autumn migration.
September 10 - 17, 2017; £2095 | Peter Exley
October 7 - 23, 2017; £6045 | Mark Hanger
This new natural history tour travels to the astonishing islands found halfway between Australia and Fiji, offering the chance to experience the wonders of the natural world.
October 13 - 20, 2017; £1845 | Kevin Hand
Albania's forested landscapes and coastal lagoons reveal a walth of flora and fauna on this natural history tour.
ACE Nature Tours brochure
To view the full range of ACE Nature Tours please click on the image above or contact the ACE office to request a brochure.