Birdwatching in Navarre: the best way to enjoy nature


Comunidad Foral de Navarra

Experience the pleasure of watching birds in their natural habitat. You can do so in the stunning countryside of Navarre in northern Spain. Its geographical situation makes it a vital stop on Europe's most important migratory routes. Come and be amazed by a unique spectacle. It's easy.

Navarre has great ornithological diversity. In addition, the region has many protected nature areas to discover. This is because it is a region of contrasts where you can easily go from arid steppe to lush forest.

This huge variety of habitats makes the region home to a large number of species: from residents of the steppe to birds of prey, forest and aquatic species... some 330 different types of birds can be found in Navarre.

Some recommendations

Before setting off, make sure you have binoculars unless you intend to go to completely open spaces. In this case you will need a telescope in order to see far-away birds clearly. If you don't have any, they are available at the observatories at El Bordón and Laguna de Pitillas lake, where you can also pick up all the documentation you'll need to recognise and distinguish the region's different birds. There are four ornithological information points around the region. Three are also Visitor Centres where you can learn more about the area through exhibitions, audiovisual displays and information panels. They are in Lumbier, Ochagavía and Roncal.

If you're birdwatching for the first time, don't worry: Navarre has twelve specially prepared places with good access and varied flora and fauna. Any time of year is good to come. Nevertheless, we would recommend avoiding the hottest part of the day in summer. One place you will love is the Bárdenas Reales Nature Reserve. This is a semi-desert area with large canyons and cliffs. Here you can see different types of birds depending on the time of year. In summer you'll find the black kite, hoopoe and Montagu's harrier, amongst others. If you come in winter, on the other hand, species include the heron and the grosbeak.

The surroundings of the Señorío de Bertiz Nature Reserve are far removed from the landscapes described above –a spectacular Atlantic forest of oak and beech. If you come in summer you can see the lesser spotted woodpecker, the white wagtail and the dipper, amongst others. The honey buzzard, spotted flycatcher and the cuckoo are some of the winter stars.

If you prefer mountain landscapes then be sure to head for the Sierra de Urbasa-Andia Nature Reserve where you'll find birds such as the red kite and the treecreeper.

On your next trip to Navarre, you can become a privileged observer of the hundreds of birds that nest in its stunning landscapes.

More information on this activity:

If you're interested in birdwatching in Spain, we recommend you read: Birdwatching in Extremadura

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