Fantasizing about upcoming birdwatching holidays? Read our guide to planning the best birding vacations—from the Great Texas Birding Trail to Costa Rica.
For those avian enthusiasts looking to supplement their daily sightseeing routine: consider birdwatching holidays!
True bird lovers out there know that no two ornithological adventures are the same. Even if you go to the same birding site every day—and even if you watch the same bird on each of those occasions—you’ll be able to take in a unique experience every time. But there are other places you can go.
Imagine taking a boat ride down the Amazon River or hiking the Swiss Alps and seeing what kinds of strange and wonderful birds live out there. Birdwatching holidays are great for anyone who has an interest in birds, both professionally and as a hobby.
Most tour companies that take you to these locales offer great amenities as well. The prices may be kind of steep in some regions, but it generally includes lodging, transportation, meals, and a host of great bonus features like:
- Digital photos
Local Birdwatching Holidays: US Locations
You don’t have to go very far to have a new birding experience. There are plenty of wonderful places in the U.S. that offer some truly tremendous birdwatching adventures.
Some of the more beautiful and inspiring locations to see include:
Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail – This long stretch of 43 trails spans the state’s entire Gulf Coast. You can see over 400 species of birds at over 300 sites along this beautiful trail system. Tours are available from a number of different companies, as well.
Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail – Modeled after the Texas Coastal Trail, this is 2,000 miles of birding in paradise. At any one of nine different Gateway locations, you can borrow a pair of binoculars for free. See if you can spot the endangered Florida Scrub Jay!
Alaska Tours – An outfit called Birdfinders offers a really excellent 16-day Alaskan tour that will take you all over the state and offer you glimpses of some extremely rare birds while you’re there. If you’re lucky, you may just get the chance to set your sights on a Spectacled Eider or the terribly elusive Bristle-thighed Curlew.
Birdwatching Holidays: Global
If you have the extra money and want to see some really foreign fliers, book yourself on one of any number of international birdwatching holidays.
From South Africa to Sweden, Costa Rica to Corsica, and Bulgaria to Brazil, there are countless birding adventures open to you.
Obviously, these tours are much more expensive than the local ones, but it’s a great excuse to get out of the country and take in some new sites. You can coast down the waters of the Nile looking at cranes or hike through the mountains of Central America watching birds of prey hunt during the afternoons. Birdwatching holidays are great opportunities to broaden your horizons and expand your appreciation for nature’s free-fliers.
Particularly impressive is an 8-day Amazon adventure from Explorama. On this expedition you’ll spend time on the Amazon Canopy Walkway observing an amazing array of birds you’ve never seen before—except maybe in those books that line the shelves of your study. Along the Amazon you’ll see such birds as:
- Black Vultures
- Greater Kiskadees
- Black-fronted Nunbirds
- Golden-headed Manakins
- Red-Throated Caracaras
Birders need more bird watching supplies than just binoculars! Discover the best bird watching kits, identification supplies, birding vests & other accessories.
To have the best birding experience possible, you need more than just a pair of binoculars—you need a collection of bird watching supplies.
Binoculars may be the most important element in your grab-bag of birding equipment, but there are plenty of accessories that lend a helping hand to your ornithological outings. Some products are made to enhance the binocs themselves, others are designed to offer you more comfort in the wilds, and still others are meant to keep you safe and sound during your adventures.
Bird watching binoculars get you close to the action, but it is the accessories that make it worth your while to do so.
Birding Watching Kit: What Do You Need?
So, you have your great birding binocs in hand—what else should you have with you?
Let’s take a look at a variety of different bird watching supplies that may be in your best interest to have close by. It goes without saying that you won’t need all of these things all of the time, but you’ll certainly need some of them most of the time.
- Lens Caps – The last thing you need is to lose your lens caps in the middle of the woods. Pick up a pair of tethered caps and you can look at birds all day long without worrying about them getting accidentally left behind.
- Doubler – You’ll be looking at all kinds of birds in all kinds of places, so it’s a great idea to have a doubler handy. These nifty accessories attach to your eyepieces and double your device’s magnification.
- Cleaning Kit – Because you never know what sort of elements you’ll find yourself in and when your specs may need a good cleaning.
Other Birding Watching Accessories
- Flashlight – This is a must-have for all outdoor birding situations: finding your way home in the dark, seeing the forest floor when the sun is hiding behind the trees, and searching for broken egg shells among the pine needles.
- GPS – A great way to know where you are at all times, the global positioning system will also tell you where you’ve been and where you’re going.
- Compass – The old-school GPS unit—a compass is a must-have for any outdoor enthusiast.
There are, of course, many more pieces of bird watching equipment and bird identification accessories available, but these are some of the most basic and necessary. You may also find yourself down the line looking for a birding vest, binocular harness, or tripod mount. Don’t worry, this is just a sign that you’ve got the birding bug and can’t get enough. Welcome to the club!
Bird Watching Products: Reviews
It can be difficult to pick out the right bird watching supplies, especially if you’re new to the sport. To give you a leg up on the other newbies, here’s a look at a few of the best birding products you may want to get your hands on.
Zhumell Field Binoculars Harness –
This very inexpensive product is a great way to reduce the strain on your neck while carrying your binocs along the birding trails. It’s suitable for all binoculars that feature a strap connection.
Vortex Tethered Lens Caps –
For less than ten dollars, you can make sure your lenses always stay protected in the wilds. With tethered caps, you can spend less time worrying about losing them, and more time enjoying the soaring sights.
Celestron TrekGuide Digital Compass –
Super easy to use—not to mention highly affordable—this Celestron-made digital compass is fantastic for any birding holidays. It features a standard directional compass, the altitude in both feet and meters, barometric pressure, and even weather forecasts.
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