Macro trip July 2019 , Natures Images, UK
Miro is so enthusiastic and knowledgeable about the wildlife of his country. He found many species for us and helped with photographic set ups. He wanted us to get the most from this trip. Even when we had a downpour he found something for us to do.
Miro & Ellie gave as much tuition as we required and were always prepared to show how to get that out of the ordinary shot. Also, we were shown techniques that were new to us.
Bulgarian Spring Reptiles & Macro Trip, April 2019, Natures Images, UK
It’s Ellie & Miro, the pace is always ideal for all clients as they are extremely considerate in their approach and are always aware of any activity that presents some form of difficulty to any of us. In this respect they are both faultless.
Ellie, Miroslav and Angel are not a UK trip leader plus local guides, they function as an obvious team in which each one has their own defined role to play. This makes for a very highly organised and efficient operation. During my time in work, the difference between a ‘team’ and a group of people needing to work together, was obvious and quite often dictated whether a job ran smoothly or not. All three most certainly form a cohesive and highly effective team.
Miro and Angel have no equal when it comes to finding subjects to photograph and everyone should go to Blago’s place at least once in their lives. Miro & Angel are very highly qualified experts in their field. A significant amount of scientific research was being carried out by them after we had photographed what they found for us and this was extremely interesting. It made the photography seem both worthwhile and less intrusive.
They are also licensed and skilled in the handling of the wildlife which was a major advantage to us as some of the subjects were either fragile or venomous. The creatures were not stressed any more than was necessary in catching them in the first place and were always returned to the location at which they were found. This impressed us all.
We received ‘tuition’ in a lot more than photography on this trip due to the presence of real-world herpetologists rather than just ‘local guides’. The science side of things was interesting to all of us.
All three were efficient, friendly and very good company. The latter being very important in bringing the group together. Nature’s Images leaders tend to already know their clients, they are regulars. This isn’t always the case with the clients themselves and although we’re not asking for party-party, a little social involvement ‘after work’ goes a very long way to enhancing the entire experience for us. Ellie, Miro and Angel, when he got back from the field, are experts in this side of things too.
A very enjoyable trip (which I had expected!) with a good mix between the staged ‘set ups’ at the hotels and photography in the natural environment. It was interesting to see the science being done (measurements and DNA sampling) and to see the creatures released back into the wild (in the location they were found) after we had photographed them. We had a larger variety of creatures to capture than I had expected. Miro is so skillful at handling the subjects and as he is also a photographer he knows what we are after in terms of backgrounds, lighting, etc but it was also interesting and educational that he could give us lots of information about our subjects.
Ellie and Miro had endless patience and skill controlling the creatures as we tried to get what we were after. A very small group like this meant there was space for two people per creature (there is no room for more when you are getting in close) and no hanging about waiting while others take a turn.
Having a third person (Angel) collecting the subject matter worked really well and it was good to feel that there was some scientific benefit to be had from all this. It is a fairly relaxed trip in terms of pace but this allows for plenty of time to try and get the right image which is necessary for macro work.
Ellie and Miro are always a delight to travel with and their endless patience and good humour help to make the trip. As on previous trips they worked well as a team and it was all well organised.
Ellie, Miro, and Angel were all very helpful and accommodating. The tuition was right at my level. Most importantly, I have quite a bit of experience and I didn’t feel I was being talked down to or patronized at any point.
I’m grateful for the help Ellie and Miro gave me, excelent tuition, above expectations and an excellent holiday.
Mike Lane, UK
Miro worked hard for us all week. He had obviously thought through what he was going to do and was well prepared. His knowledge and enthusiasm for his subjects was obvious and he clearly understood what we photographers needed.
I suspect we were a demanding group always wanting more and more pictures, but his patience and understanding of us and the subjects was exemplary.
An excellent week photographing subjects we would never have found by ourselves.
David Pattyn, The Netherlands
Miro found us many different species and we had a wonderful week with him at the end of April. Not only is he a fantastic guide (finding snakes in the most unexpected places) but he is also a really funny guy making us laugh all the time and driving us around in his car while we were all singing ABBA songs with him. If you need a guide for snakes and reptiles in Southern Europe…look no further, you will not be disappointed.
Andreas Lentfer, Germany
He is a tireless worker when it comes to providing photographers with the best conditions to get their favourite shots. He constantly uses his vast knowledge of Bulgarian wildlife and creates opportunities for unforgetable moments for his guests. I, as a colleague, feel very privileged to be able to work together with Miro in a professional team and I know from many customers, that it is a lot of fun to spend some time with him out there in the Bulgarian wilderness.
Helmut Weller, Germany
In June 2017, I was for the fourth time on nature photo-workshop in Bulgaria. On all visits Miro has guided me.
I resume that he is a fantastic guide! With his modest, always polite, but highly professional style, he understands
his customers’ wishes. Meanwhile he was able to integrate his professional qualification into the guided tours,
I mean as a reptile specialist. I thank Miro for the wonderful time with him.
Macro trip June 2018 , Natures Images, UK
Both Ellie and Miroslav worked their socks off to keep us where we needed to be and a significant amount of adjustment to both structure and pace was necessary more or less on the fly due to up and down weather conditions. I couldn’t be more impressed with the effort both Ellie and Miro put in to make sure we got what we came for and this was done with the very best by way of attitude and humour from both of them. This was most definitely a trip with ‘trying conditions’ and both deserve the very highest praise for what they achieved.
Both Ellie and Miro are a delight to travel with, down to their organisational skills, expert knowledge and considerate treatment of clients such as supplying picnic treats (especially chocolate!). Their good humour helped to keep us going when we were squelching in our boots. I enjoyed the extra variety that Miro can provide with his expert knowledge of tortoises and amphibians.
Ellie and Miro were an absolute joy. They took us to some wonderful locations and some additional ones that were not on the itinerary. The help was not just down to the photography, they also helped with luggage etc. Their knowledge was incredible and they worked so hard to see that we saw everything. When the weather turned nasty they made changes to the itinerary to try to give us the best opportunities. I would rate them at 100%.
Miro’s knowledge of reptiles was incredible and somehow he always managed to find us the subjects.
Bert Kroonenberg, The Netherlands
This year my trip to Bulgaria has been my third. The guide, Miro Slavchev, is a very devoted and accomplished biologist, ornithologist as well as herpetologist, with a great love for nature. He spends quite a lot of his scarce time to educating ,especially young, people on the importance of preserving biological diversity in his beautiful country. He uses his own photographs, also those he made during the excursions, he organizes for us, foreign photographers, to impress the young Bulgarians with the beauty of their homeland and nurture their love for it.
The first time I made a trip with Miro was during spring in 2015.
Our little group had the opportunity to photograph bee-eaters in copula, and the males feeding bees to the females, rollers, hoopoes, golden orioles, wrynecks and many other species. Very exciting and rewarding. Many of the birds have become quite rare in my home country, The Netherlands, since rationalized agriculture has kicked in.
The next trip took place in winter 2017.
Golden eagles, Dalmatian Pelicans, Eurasian nutcrackers were all on the menu. Again a very rewarding trip.
In all of these excursions our guide went through great length to create special photo opportunities. When working with the pelicans he presented the pelicans with fresh fish in a special way to create most interesting behavior.
Jays and Nutcrackers were fed with peanuts. The fights for the nuts between Jays among each other and similarly between the nutcrackers made for great photography.
Now this year it was a different trip because the species we were looking for where not species of birds. Instead our subjects were reptiles, amphibians, insects and spiders. A lot of macro photography as you can guess.
The mere number of different snakes, lizards, toads we saw has been astounding.
This fact in itself made the trip very much worthwhile.
We made photographs of the big herpetological three: the rare leopard snake, Elaphe situla (the most beautiful snake to be found in the whole of Europe), the Telescopus fallax, the nocturnal cat snake with the cat like eyes and also the also very rare sand boa Eryx jaculus. One of the few boas (maybe the only boa?) to be found on the Old continent. Also when working with these animals we were presented with lots of opportunities and creative ideas for making special pictures.
Finally I need to mention how Miroslav has been taking care for us. Our guide often guessed our needs before we got aware of them our selves. It has been a very exciting and satisfying experience to make the herpetology trip.
Jean-Philippe Maurer, France
I am a birder or mainly a birder so when Miro offered me to join him on his newly created herpetology trip in Bulgaria I had a little hesitation… But not for too long I knew Miro for years and his dedication, his devotion actually to his guests and to the success of his trips. So I said yes to this learning experience and did not regret it for a second! I must have been convincing enough and finally I came to BG together with 3 friends all eager to do good shots of reptiles and amphibians and we did!
Despite a few days with cold and rainy weather Miro managed to keep us busy every day with great subjects. Not only did we get great picture opportunities but we also learned a lot about our subjects. Here again it was a real pleasure to be with a top-notch scientist and a true expert who knew where to find and how to manage reptiles & amphibians. It has been a great experience for us and also a great time in a very welcoming country! Having managed to shoot more than 20 species in 8 days is a good summary! It goes without saying that Dr Miroslav Slavchev is as respectful with the animals we were working with as he is with his guests! It was a great pleasure to be with you Miro and you managed very well our expectations, we will be back, for sure!
Evelyne Pellaton, Switzerland
“This is my second trip with Miro. He’s a very nice and pleasant guide, always helpful and doing his best in order that all will be O.K. for you. His knowledge about Bulgaria, it’s inhabitants, it’s landscape and it’s animals are great.”
Nikos Petrou, Greece
I first met Miro 5 years ago, when he was my guide on a memorable photography trip organised by Emil Enchev, and have since traveled many times with him.
Miro is very knowledgeable about all wildlife, not only his beloved reptiles and amphibians, and about the best locations in Bulgaria. He also has a keen eye for the terrain and photography conditions and he will work hard to get things just right for the best shots.
In addition, he is tireless and has a great sense of humour: all in all an excellent companion and guide!
Eagles & Pelicans January 2017 Natures Images
“I enjoyed Ellie and Miro, together with the scenery and accommodation. That is why I have booked on the Med Macro trip for 2018.”
“Ellie and Emil and Miro worked tirelessly to ensure we got photographs. How they managed it sometimes was beyond belief. Great guides !!”
“The guides were extremely helpful and could not have done more. They gave us every opportunity and made some extras.”
“I will never forget the lengths that Ellie, Miro and Emil went too to keep the show on the road – well beyond the call of duty.”
Macro trip June 2015 , Natures Images
“Miro was a definite bonus and added reptiles to the photographic mix which suited me”
“(Expectations were) far exceeded! Bulgaria is a beautiful country with fantastic scenery and the wild flower meadows were a pure delight. The food was also excellent! I was impressed by the variety of subjects we got”
“The guides really knew where to find things and I liked the fact that the itinerary was flexible to allow us to do so”
Desmond Dugan, Scotland
“Miro, 2014 was my first and only visit to Bulgaria. It was a very special trip. Not just because of the close encounters with eagles, vultures and lots of other species, but your attention to detail and the professional service you provided to us.
The excellent accommodation, the warm hospitality and the great picnics in the hides were very much appreciated. To cap it all, I came home with lots of memories and cracking images which are constant reminders of this special trip.
Well done you and many thanks”.
Marko König, Germany
“Miro did a great job. He knows the right time to be on the best places to find great possibilities for good pictures.”
John Sheppard, England
” I’ve known Miro for many years and have benefited from his guiding services on numerous occasions. No one will work harder to satisfy your expectations and deliver the sighting or photographic opportunity that you are seeking. He is driven to deliver a successful trip that meets all of your expectations.
More than this his humor is infectious and I can wholeheartedly recommend spending some time in his company you will not regret it. ”
Bernard Schouwey, Switzerland
Miro is a very professional guide, always on time, in good mood. His enthusiasm is communicative and he share his knowledge with pleasure. We enjoyed very much the time spent with him. He is also a photograph and therefore, he understands and takes into account the wishes and the requirements of the customers. We can recommend his services to anyone may need them!
Patrice Mariolan, France
Thank you a lot Miro for for your professionalism, availability and friendliness.
See you very soon, I hope.
Hans Schröder, Germany
My ex- girlfriend Yvonne told me once to choose a guided photo touring in Europe instead to visit Alaska or Africa. I wasn´t still sure with the first visit to Bulgaria if I did the right thing but on place I was starting being enthused.
Focus on birds, insects and reptiles I found with Miro a competent guide who is knowing really a lot about all kind of animals. In all three visits the guides were focused on finding the right spots, keeping the focus on the wellness of the photographers and the animals too.
So I did this guided tours three times and hopefully I will be back in Bulgaria soon. I had really wonderful times in a great environment which needs to be protected. And I never met a person before who knows to handle viperous animals like him . First to get a good shot and finally to understand those animals and human misunderstanding.
Great thanks to Miro and his unknown guide Yvonne ;o)) – we will keep in touch, I’ll be back.
Josef Schöllhammer, Austria
During my yearly tours in the last 3 years my guide was always Miro. I was very happy to spent all the time with him. He knows the best places and always he was very help– and careful. He did an excellent job previous years, so I’m very happy to stay in Bulgaria in May and June 2017 again with him.
Gerd, Hans Peter and Nicola, Germany (Herpetology workshop, April 2018)
In February 2017 we enjoyed the professional and kind guidance of Miro who showed us not only pelicans and spotted nutcrackers. We saw beautiful landscapes and heard a lot of interesting information about the Bulgarian wildlife. We were impressed by his knowledge, his friendliness and daily commitment. Miro also dealt with our special requests willingly. We decided to come back next year for the Herpetology workshop!
Christian Brysch, Germany
I went to Bulgaria for the first time in 2014. I came to see the bee-eaters with their beautiful colors! I was quite happy to found a whole colony and was lucky to shoot excellent pictures of this rare species! It was also exciting to get to know more about the other wildlife in Bulgaria , for example having the chance to meet an Aesculapian snake. I was very pleased to have Miro as a professional guide. In 2015 and 2016 we went into the mountains for the Golden Eagles ,which was very fascinating, too.
Rico Beer, Switzerland
On the occasion of four visits to Bulgaria between 2013 and 2016, I was able to collect many wonderful impressions. The many habitats in an intact biosphere, which I was allowed to use for my photography, impressed me deeply. I also like to think back to Miro, who has contributed a lot with his dedicated support to our beautiful memories and successes.
Paul Foster (Natures images, April 2018)
How did the holiday compare to your expectations? Better than expected, Miro and Ellie are excellent guides, Miro is very knowledgeable together with an equally high standard of bad jokes lol.
Karlheinz Erz, Germany, May 2018
Miroslav Slavchev supportet me very well by doing these pictures. Thank you very much Miro.