Spring Standard Birding Tour (Bulgaria)

For bookings or questions, contact us at 00 359 2 400 10 50 or info@birdwatchingbulgaria.com

If you want to visit some of the most representative and valuable habitats in Bulgaria, holding the biggest part of its avian richness, this is the right moment and tour! Passing through the kingdom of the birds of prey in Europe - the Eastern Rodopi Mountains, where species of vultures, eagles, falcons and hawks  are presented during the breeding season, this part of the rou te is also especially recommended to those, who would like to enjoy the fabulous variety of passerines species from the southern complex (like Blue Rock Thrush, Masked Shrike, Rock Nuthatch, Orphean, Warbler etc.Sardinian and Subalpine Warbler etc.) The remarkable diversity of raptors and passerines, combined with different water-connected species (as Dalmatian Pelicans, Pygmy Cormorants, Ferruginous Ducks, egrets, herons, terns etc.) is also irrevocable part of the visits of other unique places both along the Black Sea Coast and the Danube River. The complete trip around Bulgaria in spring promises longer than usual species list, exceeding 200 species! Do not miss the chance and see for yourself!
 


Itinerary: 

Day 1: Arrival in Sofia (Bulgaria)
Meet your birding guide at Sofia Airport and overnight at the foot of Vitosha Mountain4; in case of early arrival, check of the newly protected bird reservoirs Mramor and Negovan, which just recently have been included in the list of the protected spots, to the north of Sofia city, part of Via Aristotelis. We may see here Eurasian Hobby, Pallid & Montagu’s Harrier, Honey-buzzard, Red-footed Falcon, Osprey, Cattle Egret, Slender-billed Gull, Collared Pratincole, Glossy Ibis, Spoonbill, Broad-billed & Marsh Sandpiper, Temminck's Stint, Sanderling, Whimbrel, Curlew, Black-tailed Godwit, Citrine Wagtail, Icterine Warbler, Bearded Reedling, Greater Short-toed Lark, Penduline-Tit.

Day 2: Steppe hills and wetlands – Balkan Mountain
Journey to the Balkan Mountain town of Kotel and stay for one night, with en-route stops for steppe hills a low ridges and open areas just at the foot of the Rhodopes, part of Via Aristotelis home of Imperial Eagle, Long-legged Buzzard, Saker Falcon, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Golden Eagle, Eleonora Falcon Stone Curlew, Calandra and Short-toed Lark, Tawny Pipit, Spotted Cucoo, Rosy Starling, Black-eared Wheatear, Buntings5 and wetlands between the cities of Pazardjik and Plovdiv city, part of Via Aristotelis home to Levant Sparrowhawk, Bitterns, Cetti’s, Icterine, Olivaceous Warblers, Roller, Bee-eater, Hoopoe, Masked and other shrikes, Golden Oriole, Spanish Sparrows, Black-headed Bunting, Collared and Black-winged Pratincole.
 
 Day 3: Danube River and Srebarna reserve
Journey to the Danube riverside reserve of Srebarna the ornithological reserve at the most Eastern Bulgarian territory, Danube valley, part of Via Pontica where the following birds could be seen Red-necked and Black-necked Grebes, Dalmatian Pelican, Pygmy Cormorant, Little Bittern, Squacco, Night and Purple Herons, Little and Great Egret, Glossy Ibis, Spoonbill, White-tailed Eagle, Black Kite, Levant Sparrowhawk, Ferruginous Duck, Pochard, Whiskered Tern, Ortolan Bunting, Penduline Tit. We will have a stopover in the Balkan Mountain a mid-altitude Dyulino Pass (Central East) with a very close vicinity to the sea home of Lesser Spotted Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Wryneck, Cirl Bunting, Sombre Tit, Bonelli’s Warbler. We will visit also Malak Preslavetz and Garvan area with quiet lily marshes adjacent to the Danube River, part of Via Pontica with possibility to see White-tailed & Booted Eagle, Red-necked & Eared Grebe, Little Bittern, Ferruginous Duck, Graylag Goose, Ruddy Shelduck, Ferruginous Duck, Red-necked Grebe, Water Rail, Little Ringed Plover, Common & Marsh Sandpiper, Greenshank, Black-winged Pratincole, Little Gull, Little Tern, Pygmy Cormorant, Little Bittern, Night & Squacco Heron, Cattle Egret, Osprey, Honey-buzzard, Levant Sparrowhawk, Goshawk, Wryneck, Middle Spotted Woodpecker, Icterine & Marsh Warbler, Thrush Nightingale, Red-breasted & Collared Flycatcher, marsh terns. Overnight in the close area of Srebarna reserve.
 
Day 4: Northern coastal lakes – Suha Reka - Kavarna
Today we will continue our journey to the Northern coastal lakes with en-route stop at the Suha Reka (Dry River) a karst terrain, with places forming pools and reservoirs, the cliffy shores surrounded by heathlands and steppes, part of Via Pontica where is a possibility to see Ruddy Shelduck Honey Buzzard, Long-legged Buzzard, Lesser Spotted Eagle, Eagle Owl, Ortolan Bunting, Roller, Beeeater, Short-toed and Woodlark, Tawny Pipit, Stone Curlew, Barred Warbler, Red-backed and Lesser Grey Shrike. We will stay in Kavarna, located at the northern coastal steppes, and cliffs, an ornithology important place part of Via Pontica (Mediterranean Shag, Stone Curlew, Spotted Cuckoo, Alpine Swift, Calandra and Short-toed Larks, Olive-tree Warbler, Pied Wheatear, Tawny Pipit, Rosy Starling, Common and Demoiselle Crane, Black-headed Bunting). Overnight stay in Kavarna.
 
Day 5: Wetlands and beaches of Shabla and Durankulak
Today we will spend the day at the vast area of wetlands and beaches of Shabla and Durankulak an ornithology important place part of Via Pontica -Levant Sparrowhawk, Ruddy Shelduck, Black-winged Stilt, Marsh Sandpiper, Bee-eater, Golden Oriole, Lesser Grey Shrike, Black-headed Bunting, Rose-coloured Starlings, Black-necked Grebe, Bitterns, Purple Heron, Whiskered and White-winged Terns, Red-footed Falcon, White-Tailed Eagle, Osprey, Ferruginous Duck, Red-crested Pochard, Tawny Pipit, Paddyfield Warbler, Bluethroat. Overnight stay in Kavarna.
 
Day 6: Cape Kaliakra – Dyulino Pass - Burgas
After the Cape Kaliakra cliffs and steppes ornithology important part of Via Pontica - Mediterranean Shag, Stone Curlew, Spotted Cuckoo, Alpine Swift, Calandra and Short-toed Larks, Olive-tree Warbler, Pied Wheatear, Tawny Pipit, Rosy Starling, Common and Demoiselle Crane, Black-headed Bunting. We continue our journey to Burgas and on the way, we will stop along Dyulino pass where we may see Lesser Spotted Eagle, Short-toed Eagle, Wryneck, Cirl Bunting, Sombre Tit, Bonelli’s Warbler. Overnight stay in Burgas.
 
Day 7: Burgas - Pomorie
Today we will spend the day in the rich southern coastal lakes – the Mirrors of Burgas and Pomorie the wetlands of Mandra-Poda, Atanasovsko and Pomoriysko containing fresh, brackish and sea, hipper saline waters, OIP part of Via Pontica -Greater Flamingo, White and Dalmatian Pelicans, Pygmy Cormorant, Goosander, Red-breasted merganser, Curlew and Whimbrel, Night, Squacco and Purple Herons, Little Egret, Spoonbill, Glossy Ibis, Mediterranean Gulls, Little, Whiskered and Gull-Billed Terns, Collared Pratincole, Avocet, Black-winged Stilts, Great Snipe, Kentish Plover, Curlew Sandpipers, Stints, Godwits, Penduline Tit, Savi’s and Paddyfield Warblers, Bearded Tit, ducks. Overnight stay in Burgas

Day 8: Burgas – Strandja- Sakar-Madzharovo
Today we will head up to the Eastern Rhodopes - the realm of the birds of prey in Eastern Europe. During our trip we will stop in the mountains of Strandja and Sakar. The mountains of Strandja (South East) and Sakar (Central) are low altitude, lowly populated mountain areas with the basins of the rivers Maritza and Tundja. The mountain Strandja is a part of Via Pontica and mountain Sakar is a part of Via Aristotelis - a project for conservation of the Lesser Kestrel (Imperial, Lesser Spotted, Booted Eagle, Spotted Eagle Long-legged Buzzard, Pallid and Montagu`s Harrier, Saker Falcon, Levant Sparrowhawk, Tawny Pipit, Calandra and Short-toed Lark, Masked Shrike, Stone Curlew, Olive-tree Warbler, Grey-headed, Middle Spotted and White-backed Woodpecker, Red-Backed Shrike, Corncrake, Pygmy Cormorant, Dalmatian Pelican, Ferroginous Duck, Great Snipe). One overnight at the town of Madjarovo.
 
Day 9: The cliffs around Madzharovo, the meanders of Arda River and the lakes of the Eastern Rhodopes
It will be an active birding day. Birding will be along Arda River and the adjacent cliffs around Madjarovo – a desolated ornithologically important place (OIP) including low-altitude mountain area with the cliffs over the meanders of Arda River near Madjarovo (copper and zinc mining center in the past), Krumovitza River and the Studen Kladenetz and Ivaylovgrad reservoirs. The following bird species could be seen - Black Stork, Griffon and Egyptian Vultures, Short-toed, White-tailed, Golden, Booted Eagle, Long-legged Buzzard, Lanner Falcon, Scops Owl, Nightjar, Rufus-tailed and Blue Rock Thrush, Barred, Orphean, Sardinian and Subalpine Warblers, Cirl and Rock Buntings, Red-rumped Swallows, Black-eared Wheatears, Rock Nuthatch, Grey-headed, Green and Black Woodpecker. Overnight stay in Madjarovo.
 
Day 10: Studen Kladenetz Reservoir – Krumovgrad
Today we will have a short journey with stops at the vulture feeding grounds and Studen Kladenetz reservoir a desolated ornithologically important place (OIP) including low-altitude mountain area with the cliffs over the meanders of Arda River near Madjarovo (copper and zinc mining center in the past), Krumovitza River near Krumovgrad and the Studen Kladenetz and Ivaylovgrad reservoirs. (Black Stork, Griffon and Egyptian Vultures, Short-toed, White-tailed, Golden, Booted Eagle, Long-legged Buzzard, Lanner Falcon, Scops Owl, Nightjar, Rufus-tailed and Blue Rock Thrush, Barred, Orphean, Sardinian and Subalpine Warblers, Cirl and Rock Buntings, Red-rumped Swallows, Black-eared Wheatears, Rock Nuthatch, Grey-headed, Green and Black Woodpecker). Overnight stay in the Eastern Rhodopes in the town of Krumovgrad.
 
Day 11: Krumovitsa River – Studen Kladenetz reservoir- Trigrad
After a morning birding along Krumovitza Riverand Studen Kladenetz reservoir, After a morning birding along Krumovitza River 1 and Studen Kladenetz reservoir, a transfer to the central Rhodopes for 1 overnight at the village of Trigrad. 
 
Day 12: Trigrad-Sofia
After checking the Trigrad Gorge for the Wallcreeper, we head back to Sofia along the picturesque Vacha Resrevoir. Highlights of the day:The Trigrad Gorge – deeply cut by the name sake river and surrounded by cavy cliffs, including also the adjacent Buynovo Gorge, the upper flow of Vacha River, and the forestry reserves of Mursalitza and Chaira where we may observe Wallcreeper, Golden Eagle, Peregrine and Eleonora Falcon, Black Stork, Black and Grey-headed Woodpecker, Capercaillie, Hazel Grouse, Goldcrest, Crossbill, Bullfinch, Nutcracker, Corncrake, Pygmy Owl. Overnigth stay in Sofia. 

Day 13: Departure from Sofia
Departure after an early morning birding in the Vitosha Mountain - mid altitude mountain in very close vicinity to the capital Sofia, part of Via Aristotelis, birding for Corncrake, Tengmalm`s and Scops Owl, Ring Ouzel, Pygmy Owl, Nightjar, Black, White-backed and Three-toed Woodpecker, Yellowhammer, Ortolan Bunting, Nutcracker. Transfer to airport for departure.
 
The tour is optimal as it includes all important hotspots and habitats, and it is also adaptable and can be reduced or prolonged upon request with respect to the customers’ schedule and flight dates.
 

 


Price Includes:
overnights in standart hotels and guesthouses with en-suite facilities incl. breakfast
pick up/drop off at Sofia airport
English-speaking guide/ornithologist
luggage and private transfers throughout the tour
entrance fees for Poda lagoon and Cape Kaliakra
VAT and all local taxes.

Not Included:
other meals except breakfast
ordering lunchpacks is also possible for the daily tours although stops for lunches in small restaurants will be carried out whenever possible
tips
alcohol drinks
other entrance fees
personal expenses

Extra Services:
Supplement pr. pers at 2 p. - 180 EUR
Supplement pr. pers at 3 p. - 150 EUR