Birds & Wine – Rio Clarillo NP and Concha & Toro Vineyard
The Chilean central valleys are nestled between the high snow-capped peaks of the Andes and the Pacific Ocean. They have rich volcanic soil, temperatures that fluctuate between 10ºC (50ºF) and 30ºC (86ºF), a lot of sun, and are irrigated by glacier-fed rivers born in the Andes. All these conditions create an environment ideal for growing wine.
Chile has a 400 year long history of winemaking. French, Italian and Spanish immigrants brought and cultivated the first varieties. Perhaps the varieties that Chile is most well known for are Carmenere and Cabernet Sauvignon. We’ll visit one of Chile’s oldest wineries Concha y Toro for a lovely wine tasting.
To top it off, the valleys of central Chile hold the highest bird diversity in the country. Rio Clarillo is located in the foothills of the Andes. This park protects an extensive area of native Mediterranean vegetation, amounting to the largest such area close to Santiago. Here we can find several Chilean endemic species, such as Moustached Turca, White-throated and Dusky Tapaculo, Dusky-tailed Canastero; as well as other typical Chilean species such as: Austral Pygmy-Owl, Giant Hummingbird, Striped Woodpecker, Chilean Flicker, Plain-mantled Tit-Spinetail, Chilean Elaenia, Tufted Tit-Tyrant, Fire-eyed Diucon, Rufous-tailed Plantcutter, Chilean Mockingbird, Common Diuca-Finch and Long-tailed Meadowlark. Culpeo Foxes are also frequently spotted on the trails.
After spending the morning in park, we will visit the nearby Concha y Toro vineyard, which was founded in 1883. This vineyard is famous worldwide for its wines: Casillero del Diablo and Don Melchor. If you would like to enjoy a tasting of world-class wines accompanied by exceptional birding, this is the ideal tour for you!
This tour can easily be combined with our other Birds & Wine tour to the Casablanca Valley.
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Vacation Style Holiday TypeLaid Back Birders, Wine Tours
Activity Level Birding
Private trips can be organized on any day from September to May.
- Many of Chile’s endemics in one day
- Fantastic Chilean wines and food
- Relaxed pace; short easy walks
Ease of Birding
- Most species show easily, with some trickier skulking species
- Concha y Toro tour with wine tasting
- Transport (1-3 SUV, 4-6 minivan)
- Pick up/drop off at your hotel in Santiago/airport
- English speaking guide with birding equipment
- Snack (water, fruit, cereal bar)
- Park entrance fee
- eBird checklists for the day’s stops
RIO CLARILLO AND CONCHA Y TORO
Starting time: pick-up at your hotel in Santiago around 6:30 a.m. Note that starting may vary slightly depending on time of sunrise.
See map insert for an overview of the route and main hotspots visited during the tour.
Ending time: drop-off at your hotel in Santiago around 5:30 p.m