World Heritage Listed Lord Howe Island
$AU4295 (plus GST) per person twin share. Single supplement $AU1250 (plus GST)
Please note: WildNature Photo Expeditions will endeavour to find someone to share with you, from the photography group. If no one is available to share, then a single supplement will be added and you will have your own room.
About Lord Howe Island
Rising majestically out of the Tasman Sea 550km off Australia, World Heritage Listed Lord Howe Island is a photographer's paradise.
Fed by a mix of warm and cool currents from The Great Barrier Reef, New Caledonia, New Zealand and Australia, this crossroads in the South Pacific is a treasure-trove of fauna and flora housed on a 7 million year old extinct volcano.
At the southern end of the island, the often cloud-covered twin peaks of Mt Gower and Mt Lidgebird rise perpendicular form the sea. To the north, the sheltered coral lagoon (one of the most southerly coral reefs in the world) arcs around the tiny settlement of Lord Howe. Ancient rainforests cover the slopes, and kilometre after kilometre of white sandy beaches and rocky shores await exploration by you and your camera.
Spring has been chosen not only for its favourable weather and warming seas, but particularly for the incredible bird-life, which descends on the island for the breeding season. Many exotic sea-bird species nest on the rocky shores, including terns, shearwaters, gannets and tropic-birds, along with the famous Lord Howe Island Woodhen in the forested areas.
About the Lord Howe Island Tour
This workshop will be presented by professional wildlife and nature photographer and tutor, Michael Snedic. Upon arrival at Lord Howe you’ll be transferred to our workshop base, the centrally-located Ocean View Lodge, only a short stroll from the beach. Your package includes fully-cooked breakfasts (with coffee/tea) each morning and a Welcome Dinner on Sunday night. It will include a blend of structured lectures including informal discussions and one-on-one tuition time, as well as a boat cruise with snorkelling. These sessions will be interspersed with free time to make up your week of photographic learning.
This workshop is suited to the beginner, intermediate or serious enthusiast. A digital SLR (Single Lens Reflex) camera is recommended, however, any camera that has manual functions would also be suitable. A wide-angle and telephoto lens (and a macro lens if you own one) is recommended. A sturdy tripod is also necessary, especially for our landscape photography sessions.
You can book return flights via Qantas link from Sydney (I can recommend a travel agent who can help you with your flight booking, if required).
One of the wonderful things about visiting the island at this time is the abundance of birdlife and their relative fearlessness. Unlike some other locations you won't need 800mm lenses to make full-frame portraits of the birds. Telephoto lenses up to 200 or 300mm can be fine, although there'll always be times you want more. For landscapes, a decent wide-angled lens is recommended. A tripod is also essential for our sunrise/sunset shoots and they can be packed into your main suitcase.
When capturing photos of action such as birds in flight, the optical viewfinders and fast autofocus of DSLRs really shine. We will be helping you take advantage of all these features. Some of the "CSC"/mirrorless cameras can do good work here too. Compact cameras make reasonable backup cameras, but their reduced image quality and sluggishness would make them frustrating as primary camera bodies.
If your luggage allowance allows, we encouraged you to take a laptop computer to help you review and safely store your photos. Reviewing your images is an important step in improving your techniques for the next photo session and making the most of your limited time on the island.
Many of the locations we will visit on the island are a short walk from our accommodation, for some we'll travel by bus but some can require uphill climbing on uneven paths. It's not highly-technical climbing though, and we will have rests along the way. As far as your gear goes this does mean that not only do you need to be able to get your gear to the island, you'll need to be able to carry it along bush tracks. There's not much scope for roller camera bags in the field!
There is web access available via WiFi at our accommodation and at various locations around the island.
Some of the topics that will be covered:
- Birds (including birds-in-flight0
- Exposure and metering
- Focusing points and styles
- Image critique
- And much more!
- Sunrise shoots at Ned’s and Blinky’s Beaches
- Seascape shoots at Malabar Sea Cliffs and Signal Point
- Cruise and snorkelling at North Bay
- Mt Eliza and North Bay bird shoot
- Mt Gower and Mt Lidgebird photography from sea level
- Bird photography including LHI Woodhens, Sooty Terns, White Terns and many more
- Photography tuition by Michael Snedic, as per itinerary
- Accommodation (twin share) at Ocean View Apartments
- Transport to photographic locations around the island
- Two hour boat cruise, which includes snorkelling
- Fully-cooked scrumptious breakfasts including coffee/tea (except on last morning)
- Flights to and from Lord Howe Island
- Lunches and dinners
- Any extra personal expenses (extra hot drinks, alcohol etc)
Michael is an experienced and widely-published wildlife and nature photographer, writer, tutor, presenter and photography competition judge. His articles and images have featured in magazines such as Australian Photography +Digital, Australian Geographic, Wildlife Australia, Australian Birdlife as well as the BBC Wildlife, Nature TTL and WildArt (all based in the U.K.). His images have featured in numerous calendars, diaries, books and many other publications, including billboards and he has published two coffee table books on Australian wildlife. Michael is a Nikon School tutor in Queensland, Australia and regularly conducts wildlife and nature photography workshops and tours across Australia and the world. In Australia, these include Lamington National Park (Queensland), Lord Howe Island, Norfolk Island, Lady Elliot Island (Queensland), Bunya Mountains (Queensland), Tasmania (Cradle Mountain, Tarkine and Freycinet), Northern Territory, the Kimberley and Tropical North Queensland. Overseas photo adventures presented include Africa (Kenya, Botswana, Gorillas in Rwanda), Antarctica, Arctic, Subantarctic (including Macquarie Island) and the remote islands of Japan.
NB – The sample itinerary provided may be subject to change or variation due to prevailing weather conditions and/or other localised circumstances, that are out of the control of Michael Snedic.
After arriving on Lord Howe and a quick settle-in at your accommodation at Ocean View Lodge, we will meet for introductions and a session titled “Getting to know your digital camera and settings”. Michael will also let you know what to expect from the week ahead
It’s up early for a pre-dawn shoot at Ned’s Beach, just a short distance from our base. Here you will photograph the sunrise over the beach.
After breakfast, we’ll head off for a cruise onto the lagoon in a glass-bottom boat, which will include some snorkelling in one of the most renowned coral/fish areas in the world! You will see amazing coral reefs, as well as huge green turtles, rays, sea snakes and lots of incredibly beautiful fish, in all sorts of shapes and colours. Time to get those underwater compact cameras out :-))
After our snorkel, we will land ashore and have morning tea, followed by a bird photography session. With the variety of birds on Lord Howe Island, we should find lots of subjects to photograph, including thousands upon thousands of Sooty Terns nesting on the beach, then it’s off for a short walk to photograph Old Gulch. This is followed by a walk up the Mt Eliza track, for a chance to photograph the spectacular views over the turquoise lagoon of North Bay, southward to the twin peaks of Mt Gower and Mt Lidgbird. We will return via boat back to our starting point, close to our accommodation.
After a sleep in and breakfast, Michael will present and audio-visual on wildlife and landscape photography. This will be followed by a trip out towards the southern end of the island, where we will look for and photograph as many bird species as we can find, include the Lord Howe Island Woodhen.
In the afternoon we will head to Lover's Bay for some seascape photography and any other birds we can find.
Morning shoot at Blinky's Beach.
After breakfast, there will be an image critique session, where Michael will offer critique on photos taken so far.
Late in the afternoon, we start our slow walk to the top of the sea cliffs at Malabar (situated just behind our accommodation). The cliffs themselves are spectacular and the views to the north across the Admiralty Islands are remarkable. If you enjoy macro photography, there are various macro subjects along the way, as well as different bird species such as Masked Boobies and Red-tailed Tropicbirds at the top of the cliff. On the way back, there will be a sunset shoot where you can get great shots overlooking the island, before heading back to base.
Free Day. This is your chance for your own personal explorations, or a time to relax. Options include a guided Mt Gower climb; a SCUBA dive; another snorkelling trip or fishing charter, or maybe a boat trip out to Ball's Pyramid. You could also revisit your favourite locations and subjects again with your camera, either on foot, by bicycle or hiring a car for a day.
This morning we will head to the jetty to photograph the delightful white terns as they hover and land on the Norfolk Island pine trees.
After breakfast, we spend time playing with light and shade in the palm forest called 'Valley of the Shadows'. Photogenic fig trees, with amazing aerial roots and buttresses, are one of the many forest highlights.
Our final session is a seascape shoot from the jetty and along the shores near Signal Point.
This morning you’ll have free time to pack and prepare for the trip home and say your goodbyes. Departures for home cities are at various times through the day.
No matter what your level of experience, Michael will help you gain valuable photographic technique that will ultimately lead to you taking better quality photos. With a professional wildlife and nature photographer and experienced photography tutor on hand throughout the week, there will be many opportunities to ask any photography-related questions, specific to your own personal needs.
Your position on the tour will be guaranteed immediately upon payment of non-refundable deposit of AU900.00 (plus GST) The balance will be due up to 90 days prior to the start of the workshop.
Cancellation up to 90 days before departure non-refundable or transferable. Cancellation between 90 and 60 days before departure - 50% of total workshop price forfeited. Cancellation less than 60 days before departure or during tour, no refund available.