Tour Testimonials

I just want to thank for the wonderful birding trip that you took my parents on last Thursday. They have done a lot of traveling and been on many birding trips all over the world but were full of praise for the half day they spent with you. Next time they visit, they will hope to spend another trip with you. Thanks again.
Andy Cartlidge (United Kingdom)

Many thanks for the visit today! We enjoyed it very much: the morning trip in Kedah after Kulim, the walk in the forest surrounded by all the noises from Gibbons’ monkeys, the bird nesting and feeding in the trees, the cicadas. Thank you for showing us the small animals such as flying lizards, termites and big spiders. We have been amazed by your ability to know where to spot the bird and to find the name of the bird seen flying at a distance. I made great pictures of the flying Hornbill and of a couple of flying lizards on a branch! We have enjoyed greatly the canopy walk, the amazing view on the scenery and to be able to spot some surrounding trees in the mysterious rain forest. Altogether, the two parts of the trip were well proportionate with more or less one hour and half each. Many thanks and hoping to visit again with you.
Jacques Teyssier (France

When I was in Penang, I was counting the days and waiting to go for bird photography guided by you. I really appreciate the efforts done by you to allow me to take the shots the way I wanted. We saw a lot of birds and many shots were taken. Next time I will make sure to book you well in advance to go for bird photography for more than one day as there are lots and lots of beautiful birds waiting to be photographed. Thank you very much and I am planning to visit Malaysia again and go for more bird photography.
Mohamed Al Musharfy (United Arab Emirates)

I wanted to take the opportunity to thank you for the 2 day birding trip around Penang and Kedah. Your choice of locations even during this low season was spot on with the many species that we saw and photographed. Your ability to identify and sight the various species benefited me as a photographer who is always focused on taking the shots so this helped a lot. I really appreciate your passion for birding and flexibility in accommodating my preferences. I will definitely book a date in October to go birding again. Look forward to our next trip together. 
Benjamin Naden (Singapore)

Thank you very much for guiding me this morning to two of your local hotspots for birds - good birdy places in an area where they are otherwise rather sparse. The White-chested Babbler and Streak-breasted Woodpecker at Air Hitam Dalam were new birds for me so that was exciting too. As for Pulau Burung, I have never seen so many Paddyfield Pipits at close range in my life! Why don't the guidebooks record the bright orange legs of some individuals - surely a really useful distinguishing feature? There were lots of obliging waders also - even if it is only the resident species at this time of year. You will not be disappointed! It was a really pleasant finish to the holiday - I only wish I had the benefit of your expertise at Fraser Hill too.
Jon Jackson (New Zealand)

A friend and I had made arrangements for a day of birding in Penang with Choy Wai Mun. We had an absolutely marvelous day! Mun is a very knowledgeable and capable leader--we enjoyed our time with him immensely! He met us in the harbor (we came by cruise ship), and took us off to Air Hitam Dalam Educational Forest. He knew exactly where to take us for particular species, knowing the birds by ear and by habitat. In several places, the birds almost came faster than we could keep up with, but we managed to get very good looks at almost everything. Many of the birds were very trusting and let us get quite close, so we managed to get some good photos too, including Crested Serpent-Eagle and Large Hawk-Cuckoo. Some of the other highlights for us were hundreds of Asian Openbill Storks, Yellow-rumped Flycatcher (Korean), Mangrove Blue-Flycatcher, Olive-winged Bulbul, Pin-striped Tit-Babbler, Scarlet-backed Flowerpecker and Ruby-cheeked Sunbirds, and three species of woodpeckers within minutes of each other: Banded, Streak-breasted, and Common Flameback! We also had two species of Barbets and two species of Kingfisher. It was hard to finally pull ourselves away from the elevated boardwalk, but we then moved on to an area of paddyfields and secondary growth where we had good looks at Herons and Egrets--including a definitive look at Intermediate Egret. We added Cuckoos, Kingfishers, Shrikes, and Pipits, as well as Greater Spotted Eagle. Before we headed back to rejoin our ship, Mun gave us some sandwiches he had made for us. He was very pleasant to talk with, and it was interesting to learn a little about Penang and the birding there. Janet and I strongly recommend Mun's services as a bird guide! 
Connie Wolcott (USA)

Our outing with Mun was very enjoyable. Despite continued dry conditions, we observed over 40 species in 4+ hours and 20+ of those species were new birds for us. We really enjoyed our first walk as the area held an array of species from numerous families. Obviously, we wish there were more such splendid habitats near Pulau Pinang! Mun is an excellent birder, very courteous, friendly and professional. We would certainly bird with him again. 
Ross and Leela Hier (USA)

Choy Wai Mun is the real deal: extremely knowledgeable about Malaysian birds and their habitats; and he is an excellent, sensitive and patient guide. Our 1-day tour surpassed our expectations. We saw many beautiful and fascinating birds than we could have possibly seen without Mun. He's a real expert and gave us just the right amount of information.
Lucinda Broadbent and Louise Scott (Scotland)

We had been in Penang for almost a week and were feeling rather jaded, having wandered around the city and seen all the sights. We had seen some birds, of course, notably in the Botanical Gardens and on Penang Hill but were desperately in need of some more intensive birding. We therefore signed up for a half-day tour with Mun – and what a half-day it was! From the time he picked us up at dawn to the time he dropped us off around lunch-time we saw 54 bird species, fifteen of which were new to me. The first stop was a patch of swamp forest on the mainland. The highlights here were probably the stunning Yellow-rumped and Mangrove Blue Flycatchers, but they were matched by good views of a Crested Serpent Eagle, Drongo Cuckoo, Green-billed Malkoha, Stork-billed Kingfisher and two woodpeckers, the Streak-breasted and Common Flameback. We also had nice sightings of the secretive Abbott’s Babbler and Pin-striped Tit-Babbler while even the rather dab Olive-winged Bulbul was a new one for me (its call was the nearest that I have encountered in Asia to the African bulbuls I know so well). Other new species for me included the Ashy Minivet, Pink-necked Green Pigeon and Crow-billed Drongo but I was sorry to have missed the Chestnut-winged Cuckoo that was spotted by my son. After that, we went to an area of extensive paddyfields and the highlights here were large numbers of Grey-headed Lapwings and a female Pied Harrier that had just caught some small animal. We saw an Asian Openbill while the usual egrets and small herons, along with Black-winged Stilts, Common and Wood Sandpipers, and Zitting Cisticola took me back toAfrica. But the mega-twitch here was an Eastern Imperial Eagle perched on a pylon; unfortunately we were unable to get very close to it but Mun got a picture of it and when enlarged we could see its main features. This was our last day in Malaysia and I cannot think of a better way to have spent it. If we ever go back to Penang we will certainly take the tour again – perhaps for a whole day. 
Brian Marshall (New Zealand)

One of the highlights of our trip to Penang was the birding that we did with Choy Wai Mun. It was a wonderful experience and Mun's knowledge of birds was amazing. Not only recognition but bird songs and he obviously loves what he does. We had two outings with him, one half day and a full day. What made it exciting was that he took us to varied habitats. We were not disappointed and in all we 95 species and we have only seen 5 of this list before. Mun is a very experienced birder and a very nice man. We certainly will book a trip with him again if we go back to Penang. Thank you very much Mun for making our birding trips very enjoyable.
John and Josie Vickers (United Kingdom)

First of all, we would like to thank Mun for two mornings of excellent birding with good opportunities for bird photography. My son, Lucas, particularly enjoyed the first morning with us at Air Hitam Dalam when he managed to see the Spotted Wood-owl, Crested Serpent-eagle, Mangrove Blue Flycatcher and Greater Racket-tailed Drongo. We would like to commend Mun for the well-organized tours with sufficient time at each location for bird sightings and his patience in guiding us. He is an excellent birder, very familiar with the local areas and good at spotting birds. As we are novices in birding and photography, he took the patience to locate the birds and advice the best spots to photograph them. It was an interesting adventure for all of us. We would like to thank him once again and we also enjoy reading his blog. We are sure that we will join another birding trip with him when we visit Penang again.
Nigel, Lucas and Jimmy Oh (Singapore)

Mun provided a very organized and fruitful bird tour. I was picked up promptly in a quality vehicle, that could easily accommodate his normal group of three. He was very attentive to my comfort all day as he took me to the current hotspots in the Penang vicinity - places that a casual visitor would have a difficult time finding. Even though this was not the migratory season, Mun was able to guide me to seeing for than 50 species, about half of which I had not seen previously in Malaysia. The highlight was the bee-eater nesting area, with more than a dozen moving between their burrows and wires over head. A very good day.
Elizabeth Abele (USA)

A great morning birding with Mun at Air Hitam Dalam - a gracious, punctual and polite host - happy to let me take my time capturing bird photographs. Highly knowledgeable of the area and great at spotting and call recognition. I got four lifers on the trip - only missing out on the Black-and-red Broadbill because of the pair of Crested Serpent-Eagles that seemed to be following us all morning! If you want a bird guide in Penang, Mun is the man.
Darren Bellerby (United Kingdom)

We chanced upon Mun through his engaging and informative blog and decided to do a half-day tour with him. Our trip to the Air Hitam Dalam Educational Forest unfortunately fell on a rainy morning, and so did not yield as many bird sightings as anticipated. However, being new to birding, we still saw some interesting birds and were pleased to get some good pictures. We would definitely have missed some of the birds like the Ashy Tailorbird, Common Iora and Abbott's Babbler on our own. Mun is a pleasant, friendly and very knowledgeable birder. We enjoyed the outing and have no hesitation in recommending Mun as a birding guide.
Jay and PK (Malaysia)

I had the good fortune to hire Mun as a bird guide for a one-day tour from Penang. He was an able bird spotter and an amiable companion. His good relationship with other birders and bird photographers enabled him to garner the latest info on the best birds to get. He was also willing to provide additional information on the other sites that I would visit later on my trip.
Billy Clarke (Ireland)

Thank you for the great day of birding in Kedah. Trogons, bulbuls, barbets, woodpeckers and even gibbons were definitely worth the effort. Photography was tough but you made my day very enjoyable and even delivered on my desire to photograph the White-throated Kingfisher on something other than a fence post! The Mangrove Blue Flycatcher in Penang was a big hit also. At the end of a hot day the Coconut Milk Shake that you bought hit the spot. I only wish that I had more time and I certainly will look you up again the next time I have some free time in Penang. A million thanks, as we say in Costa Rica...Pura Vida...Best Regards.
Paul Leh (Costa Rica)

We certainly had some luck on the 4th of November. Probably my best birding experiences ever. For me, the owls were the most special - three beautiful species and each offering a great view. Flycatchers, kingfishers and the falconet were among the close runners-up. I reckon we had good sightings of about 70 different bird species together with 1 playful otter. That is some half day! The swamp forest at Air Hitam Dalam is a really excellent place to walk and bird. I didn't expect much from the paddy fields at Kubang Semang. How wrong could I have been? The birds all seemed to come out and show off in the renewed sunshine. Thanks for a great tour and for sharing your expertise. I spent another week on Penang Island and made some time each day to find local places to go for a walk. Identifying birds was loads easier after the tour. Hopefully I can get back to Penang one day and see some more - another tour with you will be top of the list.
Andy Prichard (United Kingdom)

I was impressed with Mun's blog and engaged him for a 2-day birding tour. We visited Sungai Sedim Recreational Forest, Kubang Semang Paddy Fields, Air Hitam Dalam Educational Forest on day one and Bukit Larut and Kuala Gula Bird Sanctuary on day two. Most of the birds were first time sightings for me. Highlights for day one were 9 species of Bulbuls, about 5 varieties of Flowerpeckers and Leafbirds at a fruiting tree in Sugai Sedim; Grey-headed Lapwings and a pair of Brahminy Kites with a snake kill at Kubang Semang; Mangrone Blue Flycaycher, Black Kite and Asian Brown Flycatcher at Air Hitam Dalam. For day two, Orange-breasted Trogon, Brown Fuvetta, Pygmy Cupwing at Bukit Larut; Black-capped Kingfisher, Stork-billed Kingfisher, Collared Kingfisher, Herons, Milky Stork, Red Collared Dove, Dollarbird at Kuala Gula. Mun has a keen interest in birding and proficient with bird calls. He is punctual, professional, patient, calm and pleasant. His accommodative spirit and physical strength is worth appreciating. We fully enjoyed the birding tour
R. N. Kumar (India)

We really enjoyed our trip to Chuping. You did a marvelous job arranging and driving us around. I am glad we found you for the trip. My objectives for the trip were well met and also made new friends. With your help, we we have seen some amazing stuff especially the eagles, harriers and kestrels. Thanks for all your help bringing us around. 
Jerry Liew (Singapore)

We were picked up from our hotel by Mun at 6.30am as arranged, and taken to the mainland state of Kedah. First stop was at Sungai Sedim, where on a 2-hour walk in the forest we saw both Crimson-breasted and Orange-bellied Flowerpeckers, several bulbul species, a spectacular Scarlet-rumped Trogon, a Raffles's Malkoha, a Japanese Sparrowhawk, all in all 25 species. Next stop was Kulim High-Tech Park to see a Barred Eagle-owl, which was where Mun had seen it roosting in the past. At the nearby oxidation pond, we added another 15 species, including Baya Weavers, a Red-wattled Lapwing and several beautiful Blue-tailed Bee-eaters. The next two stops were between paddy fields at Permatang Pauh, with Yellow Wagtails, 4 egret species, Grey-headed Lapwings, Black-winged Stilts, Wood Sandpipers, several Little Ringed Plovers, a few Long-toed Stints and a Paddyfield Pipit. our last stop was at Air Hitam Dalam, where Mun added another two owls to our list, a Brown Boobook (very similar to our Australian Southern Boobook) and a Buffy Fish-owl. Also seen included a Greater Racket-tailed Drongo, Green-billed Malkohas, Pied Fantails (looking something like a cross between our Willie Wagtail and a Grey Fantail), a splendid Banded Woodpecker and a Lineated Barbet that came out of hiding at last. Lastly, he called in a Stork-billed Kingfisher. We had an excellent birding day, with just under 70 species seen. Mun certainly knew the best places, and he was very good company for the day.
Barbara and Peter Bansemer (Australia)

My introduction to Malaysian birding couldn't have been better than my tour with Mun. An early morning drive from Georgetown had us listening to the dawn chorus at Air Hitam Dalam on the mainland before setting off on our remnant swamp forest bird walk. Olive-winged Bulbuls, Mangrove Blue Flycatchers, Brown Boobooks, Collared Kingfishers, Crested Serpent-Eagle, Greater Coucal and excellent views of a foraging Banded Woodpecker were some of our exciting finds. We then drove to the adjacent paddy fields and had superb views of 4 Egret species, Black-winged Stilts and Grey-headed Lapwings, as well as man-made swiftlet houses that are part of Penang's heritage. Mun is a knowledgeable birder and a great companion and I highly recommend his tours. Don't forget to check out his excellent blog for high quality bird photos.
Matthew A. Platt (United Kingdom)

It was an absolute pleasure to go out birding with Mun around Penang. He knows the region, species and behavioural pattern of the birds in the region like the back of his hand. Right from the e-mail communications to the fielding trips to the way he took care of logistics...he is a thorough professional. More importantly he is an ethical birder and guide, which is becoming a rare commodity these days. Would recommend him wholeheartedly to anyone who wants to go birding around the region.
Chandrasekar Subramanian (India)

I was very fortunate to come across Mun's website shortly before heading to Penang. I spent a great day birding with him at several sites. We ended up having close encounters with Crested Serpent-eagles; great looks at swamp forest specialities; smashing views of shorebirds at Teluk Air Tawar and a stunning Barred Eagle-owl to cap it off beautifully. Mun's extensive knowledge of the birds and good locations around Penang was of tremendous help to make me connect with birds I have been searching for quite some time. I strongly recommend him as a birding guide if you happen to be in the area.
Barry Martin (Canada)

I had a fantastic day birding with Mun, visiting several locations near to Penang. Mun is an excellent guide and I can highly recommend him. He is very knowledgeable about the birds and good at finding them, and also excellent company. If I return to Penang, I would certainly use Mun again.
Nick French (United Kingdom)

Thank you very much for working so hard to make the day a success in spite of the poor weather conditions. I think we saw a great number of species - if that had been our aim we could have easily have gathered more. But more importantly focused on quality. Great to see the Barred eagle-owl, Black Kites, White-shouldered Starlings, Rosy Starling, Temminck's Stint and Black-thighed Falconet. The Mangrove Blue Flycatcher's performance was outstanding. I also saw a good cross-section of habitats. And again, I appreciate your efforts and you are a good company for a day in the field.
Rob Arnold (United Kingdom/Singapore)

I went on a guided birding tour for two full days with Mun and found him to be extremely knowledgeable about all the birds that we came across. He worked very hard to ensure that my two days chasing birds were a success. And it was, very successful. I would highly recommend Mun. Plus, he's a pretty cool guy.
Bob Perata (USA)

I would like to thank you for showing me the birding spots around Penang. Your knowledge on birds and recognizing them by their calls is really incredible. I had a lot of fun taking photos of them. Hopefully I can have another outing with you soon. I really appreciate your effort in locating the Barred Eagle-owl. I will definitely recommend you to my friends. In fact, I already did.
PK Lee (Singapore)

I would like to say a big thank you to Mun for a fantastic full day of birding. It was my best ever birding day, with many lifers, albeit as an enthusiastic amateur. Mun knws it all, the sites, the bird calls, the I.D. of them, even when they are hardly visible for a half a second in a crowded canopy. Not only that, one learns so much about their habits, dwellings and all things encompassing the art of birding. I can thoroughly recommend Mun as your expert guide to birding and associated nature. Thanks again Mun till our next trip :-))
Kieron (United Kingdom)

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