Spain is one of the best places in Europe for birdwatching with well over 500 species recorded and includes more than 270 that breed here, with European-threatened species such as dupont’s lark, purple gallinule, white-headed duck, marbled teal, lammergeier, golden eagle and the endemic Spanish imperial eagle. The variety of birds is due in no small measure to its geographical location between Europe and Africa, straddling the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, with its relief forming an impressive range of habitats and climates. Although we tour most areas in Spain, we have tended to concentrate on the most southerly region Andalusia.
Andalusia is one of the last remaining wildernesses in Europe and deserves more attention from the travelling naturalist. It is a province rich in wildlife diversity, history and culture from the Phoenicians to the Spanish Civil War. It is the home of flamenco and bull fighting traditions and was the most favoured area in Spain for such characters as Hemingway and Orson Welles. Due to an extremely pleasant climate, its natural beauty, as well as exquisite cuisine, Andalusia is one of the most attractive areas on the Mediterranean.
However, all of these great assets pale in comparison to some of the richest and most diverse natural areas in the Paleartic. As a meeting point of Europe and Africa, Andalusia offers a very impressive variety of unusual fauna and flora. Here the normally mild Mediterranean clashes, in the famous Strait of Gibraltar, with the wild and unpredictable Atlantic Ocean forming large salty lagoons and wide rivers. Extensive forests, open cultivated plains, olive trees, oaks, pinsapo (Spanish) firs, high cliffs, secluded beaches and the most important sand dunes and marshes in Europe can be found in this region. The highest mountain ranges in all of Iberia are also found here, climbing to more than 12,000 feet above sea level.
For the bird watcher the southern reaches of Andalusia hold the most fantastic opportunities to witness one of life’s natural wonders ‘bird migration’. Europe and Africa are separated by only 14kms of ocean at the Strait of Gibraltar’s narrowest point and for millions of years this has served as a short and natural crossing point for thousands of birds during autumn and spring migration periods. Most impressive of the birds crossing the Straits are thousands of raptors including Short-toed and Booted Eagles who are joined by Egyptian and Griffon Vultures, with Honey Buzzard and White Stork also flocking in their thousands. It is an exciting spectacle that all should see once in their lifetime.
Andalucía - Photographers Paradise
Bird photography in spain offers stunning geographical diversity from lush meadows, green valleys, hills and snowy mountains in the Northern regions to almost desert zones in the South. This diversity of landscapes adds to the wealth of interesting and exciting bird species both endemic and migratory. For this tour, completely designed for photographers, we have chosen Andalucía. This is the most southerly province in Spain and one of the last remaining wildernesses in Europe. It is a province rich in wildlife diversity, history and culture from the Phoenicians to the Spanish Civil War. It is the home of flamenco and bull fighting traditions and was the most favoured area in Spain for such characters as Hemingway and Orson Welles. Due to an extremely pleasant climate, its natural beauty, as well as exquisite cuisine, Andalucía is one of the most attractive areas on the Mediterranean.
From Mountains to Wetlands
From the high Sierras to the famous wetlands of the Doñana the whole of this tour is based on our own local guides, using their local knowledge to produce maximum numbers of must-see birds. Along with knowing where the birds are, Spanish Nature has ensured you will also have the time to enjoy them! The timing of the daily trips allows you to relax and enjoy a hectic free and relaxing holiday. The hotels selected are of a very good quality and provide for your comfort and enjoyment. No long walks are scheduled, but plenty of observation stops will be required to get the very best from your visit. Whatever your own level of experience our guides will be there to interpret, assist and make sure you have an unforgettable holiday.
Raptor Migration and so much more
If you love your raptors, or birds in general, then this holiday is an absolute must. Literally thousands of raptors make the short sea crossing from Europe to Africa using the Strait of Gibraltar corridor. Our tour concentrates on various vantage points, maximising your opportunities for observing breathtaking scenes of migrating raptors, storks and other species, as they gather to cross the mere 12kms of ocean that separates Europe from Africa. Coming from all across Europe and Scandinavia, birds make their way to the southern reaches of Andalucia to congregate and rest, before making the journey to continental Africa. Precisely because of the short sea crossing between the Strait of Gibraltar and Africa so many birds, particularly raptors, choose this area to find their way to their wintering grounds. It is one of the wonders of our natural world and a spectacle you must witness at least once, however, be warned, having seen it, you will be tempted to visit again and again!
Do you consider a friendly atmosphere, comfort and relaxation, as well as value for money, an essential part of any well earned holiday? If you do, then all our birding and nature tours have been specifically designed to suit you!
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