"I went on a 5-day trip to Cuba with Angel and Mariel and it was absolutely awesome! And I'm not even a real birder (my husband is). In four days we saw 22 of the 28 endemic birds in Cuba, from the dazzling Cuban Trogan to the tiny Bee Hummingbird (smallest bird in the world). Three species of owls and numerous endangered birds that felt really special to see. Angel and Mariel are wonderful--considerate, sweet-natured, well-organized, knowledgeable, and fun-loving. The group melded perfectly and it felt like family. I highly, highly recommend them." -Anne Cross, MD 01/2017
"I traveled to Cuba with Angel and Mariel Abreu in September, 2016. My friend, Karen, and I met Angel and Mariel at the Biggest Week in American Birding festival in May of 2016, and quickly decided we wanted to travel with them. The trip exceeded my expectations in many ways. We had four super guides that were intent on getting us to areas where we could see lots of Cuban endemics and near endemics, a priority for me. They made sure that all of us got to see and hear the birds and went out of their way to make sure that Karen, who missed a few birds because of illness, could see those birds before we moved on. I haven’t done the final numbers, but estimate that we saw/heard 150 species, 50 of them were lifers for me. We were also able to meet the authors of the two Cuba bird books that I had with me. Both Orlando Garrido and Nils Navarro welcomed us to their homes and were so hospitable and informative. I loved seeing the specimens of endemic Cuban birds and hearing about them, also learning about the origin of Nils’ book and his next project, the little known Zapata Rail. We also heard from two brothers who are working on various conservation projects in Cuba. What a wealth of knowledge they all are! It was so inspiring to hear first-hand from these people in their locales.
For most of our visit, we stayed in the homes of Cubans, in "casa particulares". I was a little nervous before going, but quickly had all fears allayed. Karen and I are a little on the elderly side, in our 70s, although I don’t feel old! The hosts were wonderful! We all stayed in homes close to each other. The rooms were clean, each had its own bathroom and air conditioner. We usually had breakfast there and it was more than enough food and delicious. Fruit, juice, coffee or tea, sometimes bread, omelet, pancakes. We were never hungry and I felt lucky to come home no heavier than when I left! It was fun to meet our hosts – some with parents, children, grandchildren next door. I was surprised to see that most of the Cuba we saw was very rural and I loved being out in the country. We saw many beautiful parts of the country and covered about 2/3 of the western portion in our travels. Our driver has been working with Ernesto for years and was definitely part of our excellent team. We rode in a comfortable bus with plenty of room for everyone.
If you want to truly experience Cuba, I strongly recommend traveling with Angel and Mariel, Ernesto and Tania. They have so much knowledge, are so attuned to their clients’ expectations and situations, and are flexible when plans need to be changed.
I’m so glad I went, it was unforgettable!" - Pat Folsom, Waitsfield, VT 09/2016
"These are truly 2 special people that know their birds and habitats. And they are so darn cute together! 35 lifers and 12 species of Parrots and Parakeets was only matched by the amazing cultural experiences they showed me; especially their connection to Little Havana. Thank you guys for a lifetime memory!!!" - David 06/07/16
"What a day I experienced with Angel & Mariel! Not only did we find excellent birds (16 lifers for me!) the lunch we had in Little Havana was amazing! Angel & Mariel excel at more than just birds; their knowledge of all the local fauna and history of the area is superb, plus they are two of the nicest people you will ever meet. Don't even think twice about spending time with them - just do it!" -Suzette 05/18/16
"It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience following these two fantastic naturalists around for the day. They are hard working, skilled naturalists with vast knowledge of the fauna of their region. I found their ability to find birds and other wildlife to be unmatched and their people skills made the time spent with them especially memorable. I highly recommend them to anyone needing guides for the Miami and surrounding area." -Lloyd 02/14/16
"Angel & Mariel know south FL and its birds better than anyone else. You will never find a better or nicer guide!!!"
"Peggy and I had nothing but fun the whole day with Mariel and Angel. Great guides, great people, great birds, great sights!" -Jennifer 12/29/15
"An eBird Alert by Cornell University for a rare occuring Western Spindalis sent us to Fort Lauderdale where Angel Abreu was helping everyone see it feeding on figs with Spot-breasted Orioles! Then he shared a spot where we found an Atala Hairstreak Butterfly another s FL specialty. The next day Angel guided us and we located a a rare Bartrum's Scrub-Hairstreak, Common Hill Myna, Yellow-chevroned Parakeets & a mating pair of Horned Owls. Angel is knowledgable, dependable, conscious guide & determined to satisfy and provides for a fun relaxed style within a full day of fabulous experiences with nature." - Nancy 12/08/15
I spent the last three days birding around Miami with Mariel and Angel. Their passion for nature is obvious and is equaled by their knowledge of all aspects of nature! I had a blast seeng south Florida through their eyes. I cannot wait to return!" -Bill 09/19/15
"Started the day meeting two professional birders, ended the day with eight life birds and two new friends."
"What a wonderful team of Outdoor Professionals. We saw an outstanding array of migrating and year round birds. Angel and Mariel led us to the habitat of eight new species of birds which were specialties of the Miami area. The last time we had that many new birds in one day was ten years ago, on our first day as birders. Their understanding of birds was enhanced and complimented by their knowledge of native plants, butterflies, insects and reptiles, and the history of Miami. They shared so much with us, it was impossible to absorb it all. But with all their knowledge, we never felt as if they were talking down to us. All the time we felt as if we were with family, sharing experiences and observations. However, their sharing didn’t stop with items of nature. They helped us with a settings problem on our camera, which was preventing us from focusing properly, and confirmed a problem with my truck. But what stood out most with us was the obvious warmth and caring attitude these two have for each other. This was one of the most pleasant and rewarding days of our ten years of birding." -Deb 04/28/15
"Awesome people! Highly recommend! Looking for a Nature tour in South Florida? This is the one!" -Tim 04/26/15
"Mariel and Angel are wonderful people and guides for Birds, nature and more in Florida." -Dawn 03/13/15
"There is nobody I'd rather be birding with in Florida than Angel and Mariel. Some serious passion and enthusiasm. Birding with the Abreus is always a good time, even over this winter in the pouring rain they managed to get me my lifer scissor-tailed flycatcher and the best look at a bald eagle I've ever had in Florida. The Abreus are extremely dedicated to getting you the birds, yet always follow proper birding ethics and are invested in bird conservation as well. I cannot recommend them enough. And Mariel's cookies aren't bad either!" -Aron 01/15/15
"Nature is Awesome is the place to go for your complete South Florida birding hookup. These guys are highly knowledgeable not only on bird ID, but have the inside track on where to find all the specialties. The best part about booking a trip with NIA is that they are sensational people, full of joy and living life the right way - always giving back to make our natural resources richer and their community stronger. Can't wait to see them again!" -Matt 01/14/15
"Birding the Miami-Dade area is a bit more challenging than birding other large metro areas! Between the traffic, the language barrier, a bit more crime, and very localized species, it's a lot more challenging on your own than with a guide. But the birds are GREAT! So if you're not from the South Florida area, I highly recommend Angel and Mariel Abreu as guides. They are native Miamians, bilingual, and know all the little neighborhoods to find Miami's highly sought-after birds. In one day we covered from Key Largo (Black-whiskered Vireo) to Cutler (Cave Swallows) to Kendall (Red-whiskered Bulbul) -- and much more. I highly recommend the Abreus. They are fun, energetic, and knowledgable, so you'll have a great time, learn a lot, and see lots of great birds!" -Diana 01/14/15
"What a fantastic experience with two of the nicest people! Spent half a day speed birding and got every bird on my list! Boy do they know Miami inside and out!!!" -Kristin 01/13/15
"For birding in South Florida, you just can't beat Nature is Awesome Tours! My dear friends, Mariel and Angel Abreu are two of the greatest people that I have met during my 22 years of birding all over America. They are smart, fun to be with and can put you on the birds you need. Mariel and Angel are energetic and completely dependable, and no one will work harder to make sure that you get your birds and have a great time doing it. As a bonus, Mariel is a fabulous baker, and she always has a treat in store for their customers. I highly recommend them!!" -Pierre 01/13/15
"During my 2014 bicycle big year, "Biking for Birds", I was put in touch with Angel and Mariel by any number of birders. I had spent a bit of time birding in South Florida prior to 2014, but I had spent zero experience with metro-Miami. Enter Angel, Mariel, and Nature is Awesome Tours. They met me near Kendall for what turned into a full day of birding - with a big twist. After our initial successes with Red-whiskered bulbul, Angel and I biked (yes, he biked with me!) around the city ticking birds such as White-winged parakeet, Bronzed cowbird, Common myna, Spot-breasted oriole, and White-crowned pigeon. I had allocated 2-3 days to find these birds that with their help took only a single day. Angel and Mariel are incredibly friendly. They are completely professional while still being personally accessible. If you are looking for bird finding help in South Florida, particularly the metro-Miami area, your first phone call should be to Angel and Mariel at Nature is Awesome Tours!" -Dorian 01/13/15