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Spring in Northern Greece

Tour Code: GRC15

An 8-day birdwatching holiday to northern Greece's Dadia Forest, Evros Delta and Lake Kerkeni timed to coincide with the northward migration of numerous warblers, waders and raptors and the arrival of the region's breeding birds.

8 days from £1395(inc flights) Land Only Price: £1195 SRS: £195


Northern Greece lies on an important migration 'flyway' between Africa and Europe. In early May the forests, scrubby hillsides and wetlands will be alive with returning summer migrants, as well as other birds passing through en route to their breeding grounds further north. This tour visits three contrasting areas: the forests and hills of Dadia where we’ll look for raptors such as Black, Griffon and Egyptian Vultures; the coastal habitats of the Evros Delta which are home to Marsh and Curlew Sandpipers, Black-winged Stilt, Spur-winged Plover and many more species; and the freshwater marshes of Lake Kerkini. Huge colonies of herons, spoonbills, cormorants and pelicans are the main attraction at Lake Kerkini, but we’ll also explore the nearby woods and fields which hold Masked and Woodchat Shrikes, Black-headed Bunting and Olive-tree Warbler.
  • Enjoy the varied landscapes of northern Greece
  • Spur-winged Plover and migrating waders in the Evros Delta
  • Visit Lake Kerkeni’s huge heronry
  • Dalmatian & White Pelicans on Lake Kerkini
  • Black, Whiskered & White-winged Terns all likely
  • Search for migrant warblers, buntings and chats on Loutros Hill
  • Black, Egyptian & Griffon Vultures over the Dadia Forest
  • Colourful Bee-eaters, Hoopoes, Rollers and Golden Orioles
  • Eastern specialties such as Masked Shrike, Olive-tree Warbler and Rock Nuthatch
  • Led by expert naturalist guides

Food

All included.

Accommodation

Comfortable hotels with private facilities throughout.

Spur-winged Plover

Spur-winged Plover

Outline Itinerary Download

Day 1 Fly Thessaloniki & transfer Dadia

Day 2 Dadia Forest National Park

Day 3/4 Evros Delta

Day 5/7 Lake Kerkini

Day 8 Fly London

The birdlife of northern Greece has a decidedly eastern flavour. Tucked between Turkey, Bulgaria and the clear blue waters of the Thracian Sea, the region lies on an important migration ‘flyway’ between Africa and Europe and attracts birds from both the east and west of the continent. In early May the forests, scrubby hillsides and wetlands will be alive with returning summer migrants, as well as other birds passing through en route to their breeding grounds further north. Familiar species such as Blackcap, Nightingale and Spotted Flycatcher vie for perches with Masked Shrike, Olive-tree Warbler and Collared Flycatcher, whilst overhead, parties of Red-footed Falcons dash past. The coastal wetlands are at their best in the early spring and a few key inland lakes, such as Lake Kerkini, act as a safe haven for large colonies of herons, pelicans and other waterbirds.

This new 8-day tour complements our popular ‘Greece in Autumn’ itinerary and visits the same three contrasting areas, the forests and hills of Dadia, the coastal habitats of the Evros Delta and the freshwater marshes of Lake Kerkini. Starting with a direct flight to Thessaloniki, we then drive east for our first two nights in the Dadia Forest National Park. The Dadia Forest is one of Europe’s most important sites for raptors and is home to 20 breeding species including Black, Griffon and Egyptian Vultures, Short-toed Eagle, Booted Eagle and Levant Sparrowhawk. A short distance to the south lies the Evros Delta, a huge expanse of saline and freshwater habitats that attract numerous birds in the spring. Wood Sandpipers and Whimbrel share the mudflats with Marsh and Curlew Sandpipers, Little Stints and Spotted Redshank. Broad-billed Sandpiper and Temminck’s Stint are regularly seen and Spur-winged Plover are common. Numerous Bee-eaters hawk for insects overhead, whilst the reedfringed Athina Marshes nearby attract all three species of marsh tern (Black, Whiskered and Whitewinged), Pygmy Cormorant, Garganey and plenty of Marsh Harriers. Following a 2-night stay on the northern edge of the delta we move west for our final three nights based close to the edge of Lake Kerkini, one of Greece’s foremost birdwatching sites. Although the woodlands, fields and hills around Kerkini hold Masked Shrike, Rock Nuthatch, Black-headed Bunting and Olive-tree Warbler, the main attraction of Kerkini in May is the huge colony of herons, egrets, cormorants and Spoonbills that have taken over a flooded forest in the heart of the lake along with a large colony of Dalmatian and White Pelicans on an island nearby. We will explore this wonderful area by both minibus and boat before returning to Thessaloniki Airport for our flight home.

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DeparturesAvailableCost

Sun 6th May 2018 - Sun 13th May 2018

YES

£1395

more details

Flights: Flights are included in the tour costMore info

Regional Departures: Regional Departures are available. Call 01962 733051 for detailsMore info

Land only cost: £1195 More info

Room sharing options: More info

Visiting: Greece

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