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Travel
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As with other birders I like to travel from time to time, although it can be difficult to tear myself away from Skogsøy and Tjeldstø. Birding takes up the majority of my free time but concessions must be made to the rest of the family - and this generally means package holidays to warmer climes.



Holidays for me have been family events rather than birding trips. Finding a flight is usually first on the list for the holiday. You can find business class tickets online for as cheap as a coach flight ticket. A business class flight is much more relaxing and comfortable so it's always a great option for the cost. However, binoculars are always packed, mountain bikes rented and the local areas explored.  I have tended to opt for car free birding preferring to bird either by mountain bike or on foot for any number of reasons. This page presents some recommendations for trips that combine birding with family holidays:

There are books to cover most destinations - the birding guides I have used can be found on the books page.

One tip I have for birders wanting to bird on a family holiday, rather than full on birding trips is to use a "binocluar booster" which turns binoculars into a telescope. These handy devices do not give the same kind of good quality as a proper scope but they save weight and worries about theft (....hotel safes aren't that big!) AND they can give that added extra that may just save the day.


Birding Madeira
Click on the image above to go to Madeira page



Not Birding Thailand and Laos, November 2014
Click on the image above to go to (Not) Birding Thailand and Laos pages (November 2014)


(Not) Birding Laos
Click on the image above to go to the (Not) Birding Laos page (November 2014)






S'Albufera, Mallorca

Mallorca

Mallorca is a fantastic place for a birder with a family. I have had three trips here - in late May,  July, and August. For the first two trips I stayed with the same tour operator whislt the third trip was unplanned. Staying in the north east of the island is to be recommended - ideal for non-birding families and with VERY accessible birding by foot or bicyle.

A gallery of some of the birdlife that can be seen in Mallorca can be viewed here.


The following book is to be heartily recommended:




Trip lists/reports can be downloaded below.

Mallorca July/August 2001
Mallorca  May 2005
Mallorca August 2007 (lots of pictures!)

S'albufera web site

Birding Lanzarote
Click on the picture above for more information and pictures

Lanzarote

A surprisingly good variety of birds can be seen here - although quality rather than quantity is the keyword here. All my visits here (1998, 2004 and 2007) have been late autumn or mid-winter breaks to escape the grips of the tough Norwegian winter. Staying at Playa Blanca gives straightforward access to Fuerteventura on the ferry - and there are birding localities within walking distance of the harbour.

There are plenty of specialty species to be seen here such as Houbara Bustard, Cream-coloured Courser and Trumpeter Finch.

Most of the islands specialities can be seen using bicycle from Playa Blanca - although for a "full on" birding holiday a hire car would be recommended.

For more details about Lanzarote please see dedicated web page here.




Houbara Bustard, Lanzarote Yellow-legged Gull
Houbara Bustard, Lanzarote, March 2012 Yellow-legged Gull, Lanzarote, October 2007


Lanzarote January 2004 Lanzarote Oct-Nov 2007 Lanzarote March 2012

Accomodation in the Canary Islands





Birding Crete
Click on the picture above for more information and pictures

Crete

I have visited Crete in June / July 2000, autumn 2006, July 2009 and June 2010. A fantastic island - and a place to which I will no doubt be returning to many times in the future. For birders car hire is a must unless one is lucky with hotel location, try www.rhinocarhire.com for good prices. The north coast is very developed in some places and therefore one must travel some distance to get away from the resorts.

All my visits have been based on the north coast, between east of Rethymon and 15km west of Chania.

For more details see the dedicated Crete page here


The following book is essential for visiting birders and is now in its 5th edition - but buy before you go as a copy I found in a bookshop in Chania was prohibitively expensive.

Birdwatching Guide to Crete

Aghia lake Samaria Gorge
Aghia Lake, a prime wetland in the north of the island The Samaria Gorge and the area around Omalos are great sites for many of the island's specialities.
Ferruginous Duck Red Rumped Swallow
Ferruginous Duck, Lake Aghia, July 2009 Red-rumped Swallow


Checklist for Crete, June/July 2000 Trip report Crete, September / October 2006 Trip Report Crete July 2009 Trip Report June 2010




Skagen, Denmark
Perfect for a family holiday and good birding - a great raptor migration point in spring but with year round birding interest. I have only made one midsummer visit to this location but would definitely go back.



Migrating Sparrowhawk at Falsterbo, Sweden
Click on the above picture for more information and pictures

Falsterbo, Sweden

Arguably the best place to bird in Europe, Falsterbo requires no introduction to European birders. Although not particularly noted for rarities it is a migration fanatics dream. A very family friendly birding destination, at least early in the season when the rest of the family can enjoy the wonderful sandy beach. There is also a golf course and all manner of other activities in the area. The city of Malmø is within easy bus or driving distance.

I have visited Falsterbo a number of times between July and October and always had excellent birding. Apart from the birding the opportunity to meet other birders from all over Europe is another attraction of this locality.

There is a good choice of accomodation in the area ranging from the campsite and the bird observatory to hotels.

There is a very regular bus service from Malmø to Falsterbo. Malmø itself is easy to get to, either by flying direct or by train from Copenhagen.

For further details about Falsterbo please click here.

The lighthouse at Falsterbo A very quiet day at the heath, Falsterbo
Falsterbo lighthouse viewed from "nabben" The heath is the most popular location for watching raptors

Birding Iceland
Click on the above picture for more information and pictures

(Not) Birding the Rhine Valley, August 2015


And the rest of the world
California February 2006 - making the most of those coffee breaks
Gulf States Tour, April 2008 - Crewchange mayhem
No time in Rio, February 2012


And if these locations are not enough - check out some more extreme experiences then check out the more exotic galleries section here

Sheathbill
Sheathbill Cape Pigeons



Travel links

Birding Bulgaria:

Nature Tourism Bhutan
Nature Tourism Bhutan



Real Birder Real Birder
Worldwide birding trip reports and independent travel arrangements for birdwatching holidays


 Birding Pal






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