AGS Tour - Western Australia - 2016
Dates: 4-23 September 2016
Leader: Mark Hanger
Cost: £3,800 (inc flights; single supplement £460)
Australia is a vast, ancient and ecologically diverse continent. Isolated for eons by desert and ocean, the state of Western Australia is home to one of the most diverse floras in the world with over 12,500 plant species which make it a particularly fascinating place for the lover of wildflowers and natural history.
Springtime in Western Australia, with daily temperatures of 16-25°C, is the perfect time to study and enjoy this incredibly rich and spectacular flora along, the unique wildlife, along with the beauty and diversity of its natural history. The national park at Kalbarri includes dramatic canyons, gorges and wildlife. Desert predominates inland, and luxuriant jarrah/karri (Eucalyptus marginata and E. diversicolor) forest, not to mention excellent vineyards, dot the deep south. To round it all off, the Western Australian coast is magical.
The leader of the programme is ecologist and botanist, Mark Hanger from Nature Quest. Travel is by comfortable small coach equipped with an excellent nature library of reference books. Accommodation is in comfortable hotels and motor lodges, usually with private facilities.
The south-west of Western Australia is a vast botanical garden. The arid interior stands in stark contrast to a magnificent scenically dramatic coast. Both offer a huge variety of endemic spectacular flowering plants. Tall forest, woodlands, shrubland, and heath are home to over 4,000 species - 80% of which grow nowhere else- a truly remarkable flora.
Mid-spring is the time when the flowers are at their best; Banksias, Grevilleas, Hakeas, Wild Peas, Myrtles, Kangaroo Paws and many more all combine to create a colourful botanical extravaganza. Many are alongside the roads, so for the most part, walking is easy on this trip. There are a small number of walks in rougher hill country.
The tour, which commences and concludes in Perth, concentrates on discovering and acquiring an insight into the magnificent array of wildflowers in the state, whilst also gaining a deeper appreciation and understanding of the wider natural heritage.
Accommodation: comfortable hotels and motels generally with en suite facilities
Local Travel: air conditioned comfortable small coach
Conditions: most areas easily accessible to all. Climate is 'Mediterranean', with temperatures from 16-30ºC expected.