You don’t have to be a dedicated birdwatcher to enjoy visiting some of these amazing destinations. All of the destinations that made our list are worth visiting just for their natural beauty and a chance to get to see some of the world’s most intact ecosystems. It’s worth reading up on each one to pick the right time to visit as some of the spots are home to migratory birds that are best viewed in specific seasons. Bird watching is fast become a popular pastime and it’s a great way to slow down and enjoy nature.
1. Manu National Park, Peru
Manú National Park (Parque Nacional del Manú) is a biosphere reserve located in Madre de Dios and Paucartambo, Cusco. The reserve is a destination for birdwatchers from all over the world, as it is home to over 1000 species of birds, more than the number of bird species found in the United States and Canada combined. It is also acclaimed as having one of the highest abundances of land vertebrates ever found in Latin American tropical forests.
2. Cape May, United States
National Historic Landmark City and the last exit on the Garden State Parkway, Cape May is now one of the most popular vacation spots on New Jersey’s shoreline. Very well restored, the authenticity and air of classical American resort towns is very evident here. Beautiful beaches are the three-sectioned city’s main attraction. The Atlantic Ocean blows fresh salty air toward the coast and sea gulls fly in circles overhead.
3. Kruger National Park, South Africa
Kruger National Park, in northeastern South Africa, is one of Africa’s largest game reserves. Its high density of wild animals includes the Big 5: lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffalos. Hundreds of other mammals make their home here, as do diverse bird species such as vultures, eagles and storks. Mountains, bush plains and tropical forests are all part of the landscape.
4. Borneo, Indonesia
Borneo is the third largest island in the World and is located north of Java, Indonesia, at the geographic centre of Maritime Southeast Asia. The Borneo rainforest is 130 million years old, making it the oldest rainforest in the world. There are about 15,000 species of flowering plants with 3,000 species of trees (267 species are dipterocarps), 221 species of terrestrial mammals and 420 species of resident birds in Borneo.
5. Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea, in the southwestern Pacific, encompasses the eastern half of New Guinea and its offshore islands. A country of immense cultural and biological diversity, it’s known for its beaches, coral reefs and scuba diving. Inland are active volcanoes, granite Mt. Wilhelm and dense rainforest, which hikers traverse via the Kokoda Trail.
6. Cairns, Australia
Cairns is located on the east coast of Cape York Peninsula on a coastal strip between the Coral Sea and the Great Dividing Range. The northern part of the city is located on Trinity Bay and the city centre is located on Trinity Inlet. Some of the city’s suburbs are located on flood plains. Cairns is a popular travel destination for tourists because of its tropical climate and access to the Great Barrier Reef, one of the seven natural wonders of the world.
7. Panama Canal, Panama
The Panama Canal is a 77-kilometre (48 mi) ship canal in Panama that joins the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean and is a key conduit for international maritime trade. One of the largest and most difficult engineering projects ever undertaken, the canal had an enormous impact on shipping between the two oceans, replacing the long and treacherous route via either the Strait of Magellan or Cape Horn at the southernmost tip of South America.
8. Great Rift Valley, Kenya
The Great Rift Valley is a large trough that runs through Kenya from north to south. The valley is bordered by escarpments to the east and west. This system has one of the most diverse populations of birds in the World, and is the home of thirteen globally threatened species of bird. It is an important nesting and breeding site for Great White Pelicans, and is the most important feeding area for lesser flamingos in the world.
9. Otago, New Zaland
Otago is a region of New Zealand in the south of the South Island. The region covers an area of approximately 32,000 square kilometres (12,000 sq mi) making it the country’s third largest region. Major centres of what is now the Otago Region of the old province include Dunedin (the principal city of the region), Oamaru, Balclutha, Alexandra, and the major tourist centres Queenstown and Wanaka.
10. Danube Delta, Romania
The Danube Delta is the second largest river delta in Europe, after the Volga Delta, and is the best preserved on the continent. The greater part of the Danube Delta lies in Romania. The Danube Delta has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1991. Its wetlands support vast flocks of migratory birds, including the endangered Pygmy Cormorant. The Danube delta hosts over 300 species of birds as well as 45 freshwater fish species in its numerous lakes and marshes.