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Iberian Wildlife and Birding Tour, Andalucía, Spain - 10 Days

Iberian Wildlife and Birding Tour, Andalucía, Spain
1595

Andalucían Tour for Iberian Birds and Mammals

This 10-day Iberian Wildlife and Birding Tour, Andalucía is designed to introduce you to not only the most emblematic protected areas of this area of Spain, but also its special history, customs and cuisine.

The trip visits seven of the eight Andalucían provinces and two National Parks - the Sierra Nevada and Doñana. It also takes in the Natural Parks of Padul Lagoons, Tabernas Desert, Sierras de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas, Sierra de Andújar, Odiel Marshes, the area around Tarifa and the mouth of the Guadalhorce River.

The Tabernas Desert is located 30km north of Almería. It is protected by mountains that isolate it from the mild Mediterranean climate, so its extreme temperatures make it a unique place. The flora is typical of the dry climate, with numerous types of brush, cactus, palm trees, thistles, and Holm Oaks. Despite its inhospitable landscape this area has many Iberian wildlife species, especially around the few water courses.

The Sierras de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas Natural Park impresses the visitor with its steep mountains interspersed with deep valleys and lush forests of Spanish pines. This is the largest protected area in Spain with its 209,920 hectares and it is where you can see Golden Eagles and Griffon Vultures as well as having a good chance to catch a glimpse of the mighty Lammergeier.

The Sierra de Andújar Natural Park contains the most extensive expanse of natural vegetation found in the Sierra Morena mountain range. Characteristic species are Holm and Cork Oaks. One unique geological feature of the area are the curious rounded granite shapes that form bowls. These are used by local farmers as livestock watering holes.

The dense scrub abounds with Iberian wildlife such as Wild Boar, and shelters the largest population in the world of Iberian Lynx. Spanish Imperial Eagle are found here, along with other large raptors such as the Golden Eagle and the Black Vulture.

As a complete contrast to searching for Iberian wildlife in the mountains and desert plateaus, this Andalucían tour culminates at Tarifa and the Straits of Gibraltar to witness the migration of thousands of birds as they travel between their breeding and wintering grounds of northern Europe and Africa.

Here there will also be the chance to see a completely different type of wildlife of the Iberian area, the many cetacean species that pass by the southern coast of Spain. A boat trip out into the Straits will give closer views of these and a wonderful selection of seabirds too.

Iberian Wildlife and Birding Tour, Andalucía highlights include:

  • Amazing raptors, including Lammergeier, Golden Eagle, Griffon and Black Vultures
  • The captivating dry landscape of the Tabernas Desert
  • The most extensive protected area of mountain and forest in Spain
  • The mass migration of birds across the Straits of Gibraltar

As an alternative way of birding, do you have the inclination for a day trip on horseback? If so, take a look at the Horseback Birding Trip in Doñana, Spain.

Alternative tour name: Andalucía Trip to See Iberian Wildlife
Day 1
Day 1 - Arrival & La Laguna de Padul

Pick up from the Group at Malaga Airport.

Picnic lunch

Transfer and visit to La Laguna de Padul (1hour and 40 min.).

It is considered to be the main natural wetland of the province and is the largest area of Carrizal in Andalusia after Doñana. It consists of a series of swampy areas located mainly in depressed areas around the two existing peat farms, which are a redoubt of an old, larger lagoon system.

Checkin at Hotel in Dílar. 18km from La Laguna de Padul.

Day 2
Day 2 - Sierra Nevada National Park

Departure to Sierra Nevada National Park.

The birds of Sierra Nevada make up a group of the utmost interest. Although they are not as abundant as the poultry communities located in the lowlands or coastal wetlands, they form "edge" populations that fascinate with the adaptation to the difficult conditions imposed by the highest Mediterranean mountain of the Iberian Peninsula.

Picnic lunch

Observation of birds, flora and fauna of medium and high mountain throughout the day.

A local guide will accompany us to discover species of flora and fauna unique in Andalusia.

Return to the hotel at sunset.

Day 3
Day 3 - Desierto de Tabernas

Transfer to the Desierto de Tabernas.

The Tabernas Desert is located 30 kilometres north of Almería, in the municipality of Tabernas that gives it its name. It is protected by mountains that isolate it from the mild Mediterranean climate, so its extreme temperatures make it a unique place in Andalusia and even throughout Europe.

The landscape of taverns is unmatched, in its 280 square kilometres of extension mix the plains, mountains, and rivers in a unique climate that form an ecosystem worth knowing.

The mountains and hills surrounding the Tabernas Desert are dry and with little vegetation, but not everything is dry in this desert, as three riverbeds run through its ravines.

The flora is typical of the dry climate, so the scarce vegetation is reduced to numerous types of brush, which are the most common shrubs among the steep hills. In addition to the cactus, palm trees, thistles, and holm oaks, in its channels are formed small oasis inhabited by vegetation that survives thanks to the humidity of these areas.

Thanks to its varied fauna the Tabernas desert has a zoological reserve with about 200 species.

Lunch at a typical local bar.

The red partridge nests next to the espartals of the mountain and some perishable falcons and lost and real eagles, who live in Sierra Alhamilla, use these areas as hunting territories. The royal owl hunts rabbits and small rodents. There are also foxes that hunt at sunset and at night.

In the slopes surrounding the ramblas nest a lot of birds such as the zuritapigeon, the carraca, the vulgar kestling, the common owl, the guajillo, the rock plane, the royal swift, the blonde collalba, the squeaky sparrow (Petronia petronia) or the trumpeted shrimp(Bucanetes githagineus),which normally inhabits the Saharan oasis. The tarajes groves(Tamarix gallica)and the vegetation of the banks of the riverbed are the place chosen by various species of birds, such as warblers, jilgueros, greenbirds and oropéndolas, and even waterfowl such as andarríos, chortilejos and herons. There are also steppe birds such as cogujadas, earths, alcaravanes, sisones and ortegas.

Bird watching throughout the day touring the most interesting places in search of unique species on the European continent.

Return at dusk to the same hotel.

Day 4
Day 4 - Jaén Province

Transfer to Cazorla Natural Park, Segura and Las Villas. (2 hours approx.).

The Sierras de Cazorla, Segura and Las Villas Natural Park impress the visitor with its steep mid-mountain relief. High-rise rock walls are interspersed with deep valleys and lush forests of laric pines. Water is another of the main elements of this natural area, the largest protected area in Spain with its 209,920 hectares.

In 1960 it was declared National Hunting Coto Cazorla-Segura and today there are many who continue to practice this activity supported by the populations of goats, deer, gamo, muflon and wild boar, species that can also be enjoyed, but in a more relaxed way, in the wildlife park of Collado del Almendral, in the vicinity of Coto Ríos. Another attraction of the place is its plants and animals, easy to see in space.

At the top of the rocks, you can contemplate the flight of the golden eagle and the griffon vulture and lately with a little luck the BoneBreaker, recently reintroduced into these mountains. In the interior, the visitor will discover forests of larician pines, blacks or carrascos dotted with holm oaks, oaks and aceres. Hopefully, you will enjoy some of the dozens of exclusive species of the place such as the violet of Cazorla or the lizard of Valverde.

All-day tour in the Park

Picnic lunch

At sunset check-in at Hotel in Burunchel.

Day 5
Day 5 - Sierra de Andújar Natural Park

The Sierra de Andújar Natural Park is a sample of the typical Sierra Morena landscape.

A large number of threatened emblematic species find their refuge here, between the Mediterranean mountain and the pastures of the heart of the park, the rugged northern mountains and the dense pine forests of the south. The mountain landscape that makes up this space preserves the most extensive natural vegetation spots of Sierra Morena.

Its most characteristic species are holm oak and cork oak, in adehesada form, and at the highest altitudes where moisture is highest, whining. Among this vegetation stand out curious rounded granite shapes known in the area as bowling. This material is used for many uses, including unique livestock watering holes.

In one of the farms of the park, you can see the bulls of lidia feeding on these original containers. The Junquillo trail allows the walker to appreciate how the farms contribute to the high diversity of the space. On its route, you can see the landscape disparity between livestock farms and those dedicated to the kinetic activity, in which a dense scrub abounds that shelters the boar, deer, gamo, and other animals characteristic of the place.

The extensive and privileged list of animals in the natural park is one of its biggest claims, as it includes threatened carnivores such as the Iberian lynx, which has here the largest population in the world, or the wolf, which has its main Andalusian redoubt among these mountains. Some specimens of the important Iberian imperial eagle population and other large raptors, such as the golden eagle or the black vulture, are easy to spot from the Jabalí-Encinarejo trail.

At the end of the itinerary, the Encinarejo reservoir presents great attractions for the visitor, both for its natural and landscape richness and for harbouring recreational areas intended for the recreation of users. A pleasant walk along the Jándula River, under the shade of its lush gallery forest, complete the possibilities of this environment.

We will visit different natural enclaves where you can observe birds until noon.

Check-in and lunch at the hotel

Departure in search of the most threatened feline on the planet: the Iberian Lynx.

Dinner at the hotel.

Day 6
Day 6 - Doñana National Park

Departure before sunrise to try to spot the Lynx from another observation point.

Transfer to Doñana

Lunch along the way

Doñana, given its privileged geographical location between two continents and its proximity to the meeting place of the Atlantic and Mediterranean, the Strait of Gibraltar, in Doñana you can see more than 300 different species of birds a year, being a place of passage, breeding and wintering for thousands of them (aquatic and terrestrial) European and African. Waterfowl from all over Western Europe rest here, with countless species located in the marshes and surroundings from Africa and Europe.

With different scientific institutions inside that ensure the proper development of the neighbouring counties and the conservation of some very delicate species that inhabit it, it is considered the largest ecological reserve in Europe. It was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1994. In 2016 the park received 376,287 visits.

Day 7
Day 7 - Odiel Marshes & Doñana National Park

Visit to the Odiel Marshes and Doñana National Park.

Dinner at the hotel.

Day 8
Day 8 - Tarifa - Birding

Transfer to Tarifa.

Visit strait observatories to see the migration of large gliding birds such as storks and raptors.

Lunch

Visit to the Janda

Dinner at the hotel

Day 9
Day 9 - Tarifa - Whale Watching & Sea-watching

Visit to Strait observatories to see Migration.

Lunch

Excursión en barco para Whale-watching and Sea-watching.

Dinner at the hotel.

Day 10
Day 10 - Departure

Transfer to Malaga airport.

Depending on the departure time of the flight, we can make our last stop birdwatching at the Mouth of the Guadalhorce River, where we can observe Aguila Pescadora, Malvasía, Avetorillo, among others.

Go home.

Red Deer, Fallow Deer, Mouflon, Spanish Ibex, Wild Board, Greater Flamingos, Eurasian Spoonbills, , Spanish Imperial Eagle, Booted and Short-toed Eagles, Western Osprey, Black-crowned Night Heron, Little Bittern, Purple Heron, Glossy Ibis, Eurasian Spoonbill, Purple Swamphen, White Storks, Greater Short-toed Lark, Little Stint, Curlew Sandpiper, Black-winged Stilt, Marbled Duck, Ferruginous Duck, Gull-billed and Caspian Terns, Eurasian Hoope, Bee eater,…..until 400 species of Birds.

What is included?

  • Free transfers
  • All meals
  • Accomodations
  • Liability insurance
  • Tour leader (Professional nature guide) and local guides
  • Optical material
  • Bibliographic material

What is not included?

  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Flights
  • Any items of a personal nature
  • Tips

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Why book with Living Doñana?

It is an impressive journey through the wildest places of the Iberian Peninsula where we will discover the very interesting fauna that hides its different ecosystems, from the high mountains, deciduous forests, Mediterranean forests, natural marshes

You can send your enquiry via the form below.


10 Days

Price & Availability

From
EUR1,595 / per person
Based on twin/double room
Single Suppliment EUR 180
Group Discount Available
Group Discount Guide
Refer to Group Discount Terms
This tour is operated by: Living Doñana
4.97 based on 6 reviews

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4.97 Based on 6 reviews
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Tour Facts

  • Andalucía
  • On Request
  • Multi-Day Tour
  • Wildlife
  • 2 to 8px
  • 10 Days
  • February to May
  • + 15 years
  • Leisurely
  • No
  • English
  • Málaga-Costa del Sol Airport
  • Málaga-Costa del Sol Airport