Bird Watching

Birdwatching is an eco-friendly activity par excellence: birds allow us to understand nature and connect with it in ways that only bird watchers can understand.

Birdwatching is an eco-friendly activity par excellence: In addition to not harming the environment, the activity contributes to environmental education and awareness, as birds allow us to understand nature, the fragility of its ecosystems and the global changes we face. It also allows us to appreciate nature and connect with it in ways that only bird watchers can understand.

If you’re into bird watching, you’re going to be pleasantly surprised in Greece. The Hellenic Ornithological Society has actually recorded the presence of over 440 bird species spotted in the country. It has also identified almost 200 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) which are home to “one or more globally or regionally threatened, endemic or congregatory bird species” according to the Society.

The Aegean islands, Attica, Central Greece, Crete, Epirus, the Ionian islands, Macedonia, the Peloponnese, Thessaly, and the Ionian islands are all considered prime bird-watching areas. They are chock full of lagoons, nature parks, gorges, lakes, mountains and gulfs that harbour all these species at many different elevations.

You will revel at the appearance of many types of swans, ducks, grouses, partridges, divers, grebes, pelicans, bitterns, eagles, falcons, crakes, sandpipers, gulls, terns, turtle doves, owls, woodpeckers, wagtails, wheateaters, warblers, tits, starlings, and buntings… the list goes on and on.



Location: Greece ›

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This area was revamped during the Olympic games, creating rowing lakes. The trees near the beach, including large confiers, a creek and some greenery have attracted birds here.

Mt. Penteli

While often plagued by forest fires in summer, the elevation of upto 1,100 meters on its eastern slopes may reveal several species of birds. These include Hooded Cirl Buntings, Crows, Jays, Red-backed Shrikes, Sparrow Hawks, Western Rock Nuthatches.

Mt. Parnitha

This is the highest peak near Athens towering at 1,400 meters. Past the cable car station at the upper elevations in the mornings and evenings is bound to reveal the most birds. You could spot a Coal Tit, Firecrest, Flycatcher, Great Tit, Jay, Magpie, Sardinian Warbler, Western Rock Nuthatch and more.

Mt. Lycabettus

Also noteworthy is Lycabettus or Likavitos Hill in Athens almost in the centre of town. In addition to great views of the port of Piraeus and all of Athens, a rocky area on top attracts many rock-loving birds. You might see a Bunting, Chaffinch, Great Tit, Sardinian Warbler and many more.


The closest and largest birdwatching locale in the city is the mountain of Hymettus or Imittos in Greek. It is about 20 km long and 1026 km high, offering a great location to hike and spot birds.

Nafpaktia Mountains

The climate and morphology of this area, including soil conditions and abundant water, has given rise to incredible flora. Forests of beech, cedar, chestnut, fir, oak and plane trees dominate these mountains, boasting 190 mushroom species (out of which 70 are edible). Also noteworthy are the beech woods of Mount Saradena, considered the southernmost such forest in Europe. Birds of all kinds are particularly abundant here. As a result, these mountains offer a great opportunity for some serious birdwatching.

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Gadouras River

Valley and mouth of the Gadouras river (about 10 km north of Lindos, about 8 km south of Arhangelos); east of the main road Arhangelos-Lindos. Combination of river valley with a stony/sandy bed, some fresh water pools, scrub, a kind of lagoon with high reed and various shrubs, and in the neighborhood: arable land, olive groves and grassy fields. This place is good for waders in spring and autumn (Little stint, Little ringed plover, Ringed plover, Wood sandpiper, Green sandpiper, Marsh sandpiper, Collared Pratincole); Egrets (Glossy Ibis, Little Egret, Grey Egret, Squacco Heron); Terns (White-winged black tern, Gull-billed tern). Reed Warbler, Great Reed Warbler, Olivaceaous warbler, Bee-eater, Quail, Woodchat-shrike and Short-toed Lark should be certainties in the breeding season. This is also one of the best places for Stone Curlew and Rufous Bushchats.

Rhodes town area

The beach on the north side of the town, near the Aquarium, can be good for migrating birds, egrets and seabirds, like Little Bittern, Squacco Heron, Red-throated pipit, White-winged Black Tern, Whiskered Tern, Common Tern, Balearic Shearwater, Cory`s Shearwater. During migration Monte Smith is very interesting for songbirds (Blackcap, Wood Warbler, Icterine warbler, Subalpine warbler, Flycatchers); Wheatears and Shrikes. Monte Smith holds also a strong population of Olivaceaous warblers. The old town of Rhodes has a population of Crag Martin. On or between the old walls of Rhodes-town, Little Kestrel and Hoopoe can be seen regularly. The harbour of Rhodes-town can be interesting for terns and gulls, especially Audouins Gull, Mediterranean Gull, Common gull, Common Tern and even Gull-billed Tern.


From its sand dunes the flowing have been seen: Short-toed Lark, Crested Lark, Tawny Pipit, Hoopoe, Woodchat Shrike, Lesser Grey Shrike and Black-headed Bunting. The chain of little fields, sometimes irrigated, provide good habitats for larks and pipits during migration and winter (Calandra Lark, Sky Lark). In autumn a sea-watch can be satisfactory with species like Shag, Eleonora`s Falcon, Buzzard, Long-legged Buzzard, Honey-buzzard and Cory`s Shearwater.

Appolakia Reservoir

The only deep and permanent freshwater can be found at the Appolakia Reservoir built in the late eighties. Take the road from Appolakia to Gennadi. At the north end of the reservoir an area of marsh and reed beds attracts species like Grey Heron, Little Egret, Glossy Ibis, Purple Heron, Black-winged Stilt, Snipe, Wood Sandpiper, Marsh Sandpiper, Temminck`s Stint. It is the most certain place to see species like Little Grebe, Coot and Moorhen, sometimes accompanied by Garganey, Mallard, Black Necked Grebe or Kingfisher.


An interesting area for the combination of various habitats: olive groves, scrub, two riverbeds, and small pools with small reed beds, some wasteland and a golf course. This site is interesting during migration for waders (Wood sandpiper, Dunlin, Little ringed plover, Little stints); Egrets (Night Heron, Squacco Heron, Little Egret, Glossy Ibis, Little Bittern) and Garganey. The golf course and surroundings are likely to produce species like Short-toed Larks, Tawny Pipit, Red-throated pipit (the latter during migration). During the breeding season Red-backed Shrike, Stone Curlew, Rufous Bushchat and Kingfisher are almost certainties, together with species like Bee-eater, Quail, Reed Warbler and Olivaceous warblers.

Arki Islets

If you’re a nature lover and a birdwatcher, the Arki network of tiny islands is a perfect day trip for you. Arki’s islets boast rugged landscapes that attract migratory birds because of their pristine and vital ecosystem. Whole cliffs and boulders are often covered in birds. Migratory and domestic birds, lizards and flora create a unique ecosystem around Patmos, supported by this well preserved pristine habitat. Don’t miss out on the island’s environmental research center on Arki. Then hike through the islands to find secret coves perfect for swimming.

Wetlands and Lake around Grikos Bay and Petra

Patmos’ insistence on resisting commercial development led to the preservation of pristine ecosystems close to town. Nature lovers and birdwatchers will love the wetlands and lake near Petra. They are both protected sites where a vibrant ecosystem of wild ducks, swans and heron seek refuge. Patmos is a vital stop for migratory birds, and as such will delight nature lovers.

Kalodiki Marsh

This incredible marsh lies in the northernmost section of the prefecture and spills into part of neighbouring Ioannina region as well. Despite the fact that it occupies a space between 100 -150 meters (depending on which season it is) the Kalodiki Marsh is an invaluable ecosystem with over 300 types of plants, 120 species of birds, 20 different mammals, 11 reptiles, 5 kinds of amphibians and several fish species. Kalodiki Marsh is part of the Natura 2000 initiative designed to protect such important ecological environments. The marsh presents an excellent stage for bird watching in an area that contains undeniable beauty. Observers have the opportunity of witnessing Night Herons, Black Herons, Golden Eagles, Vultures, Little Grebes, wild ducks, turtle doves, blackbirds, magpies and starlings.

Louros River

Due to the pollution of the Louros River, fewer and fewer birds have been seen here in recent years. Despite this fact, this river is still a great place to observe species such as Dalmatian Pelicans, Spoonbills, ducks, and black-winged stilts.

Acherontas River

The Acheron River Delta is included in the Natura 2000 program and is an area frequented by more than 100 different species of birds. It’s a wonderful place to encounter the natural habitat of these creatures, and if you’re lucky enough, you’ll spot one of the many raptors such as spotted eagles and hawks that frequent river banks.

Lake Ziros

The incredible beauty of Lake Ziros is an ideal backdrop for bird watching throughout the area. The large variety of plants, fish and small animals provide an ecosystem which supports a large and diverse population of birds. Throughout the year, spectators may encounter Little Grebes, Night Herons, Cormorants, Gulls and many more species that nest and feed throughout the lake.

Strongyli Observatory

Situated on a small hill within walking distance of the eponymous village, the observatory features a telescope allowing visitors to spot one of the many species of birds in the area. Common species here include the Sardinian and sub-alpine Warbler as well as the Roufus Bush Robin. Larger raptors such as the Lesser Spotted Eagle and Marsh Harrier are seen less frequently.

Amvrakikos Gulf

As the largest wetlands area in Greece, the Amvrakikos or Ambracian Gulf supports a diverse eco-system that supports over 290 different species of birds, 75 of which are considered endangered. While several of these live year-round within the marshes of the gulf, the majority spend their winters here or come to mate and raise their offspring.

Aoos Gorge

The Aoos Gorge is smaller than Vikos Gorge but it still offers bird watchers some great opportunities for spotting large raptors. Aoos Gorge is navigable by foot, and those who walk through it are much more likely to spot one of the many species of eagles, hawks and vultures that inhabit the area.

Vikos Gorge

The spectacular Vikos Gorge is an area of mesmerising beauty and bird watchers will most likely encounter several raptors throughout. There are several lookout points that allow observers to watch without actually descending into the gorge. The best is that at Oxia, which overlooks the deepest section of the gorge. It lies just 3 kilometres outside the village of Monodendri. However, there’s no denying that bird watchers who make the trip through the gorge will be rewarded with viewing various raptors as well as many endangered species of birds.

Ioannina and Lake Pamvotida

Ioannina’s location on the banks of Lake Pamvotida has made even the city a place where bird watchers can catch a glimpse of several species. The areas around the lake and on the small island across are known for types such as the Lesser Kestrel, Scops Owl, Penduline Tit, Little Grebe, Pygmy Cormorant and Whiskered Tern.

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Bird Watching

Birdwatching is an eco-friendly activity par excellence: birds allow us to understand nature and connect with it in ways that only bird watchers can understand.

Imbros Gorge

Easily one of the most beautiful gorges in all of Crete, the Imbros gorge is often overlooked by hikers who choose Samaria instead, but this gorge is impressive in its own right. Again regarded specifically as a hiking site, the Imbros Gorge is a fantastic natural habitat for a variety of birds including the Raven, the Griffon Vulture, the Falcon and the Alpine Swift.

Lake Kournas

Set amongst a stunning backdrop of mountains Lake Kournas is the only natural freshwater lake in all of Crete and covers an area of approximately 579,000 square meters and is only 22.5 meters at its deepest point. Home to different species including Herons, Cormorants, Ducks, and Warblers. As one of only two freshwater lakes on the island, Lake Kournas is a wonderful spot to take a rented kayak and while away the day atop its calm waters. On site visitors can rent a pedal boat or canoe to travel around the area.

Georgioupolis Lake

Just south of the town of Georgioupolis is the lake of Georgioupolis which is home to a number of different species of birds such as Herons, the Black-winged Stilt, Waders, various species of Ducks and Geese, as well as Coots and the Great Reed Warbler.

Lake Agia

One of only two freshwater lakes on the entire island, Lake Agia is a manmade lake in the Northwest of Crete. Initially built as a water supply for the island, no-one anticipated the ecosystem that would one day flourish here. Today, this tranquil setting is home to over 200 different varieties of birds. Species that can be found here include Ducks, Geese, Wood Sandpiper, Swallow, Black-winged stilt, Reed Warbler, Pelican and Little Crake to name just a few.

Lefka Ori (White Mountains)

A UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves site, the White Mountains offer an incredible opportunity for the hiker in both winter and summer. Generally regarded for its fantastic hiking, the White Mountains provide an ideal habitat for bird lovers and nature enthusiasts looking for species of large birds like Eagles and Vultures, the Golden Eagle and the Red-Billed Chough.

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Gyra Lagoon, Lefkada Town

One of the most unique features of this beautiful island is the lagoon that’s located literally in the middle of town. Despite the noise from nearby traffic, birds adapted well and have made Gira Lagoon a favorite migratory stop, which makes for interesting birdwatching. You can either cycle along the perimeter of the lagoon or walk as you keep an eye out for pelicans, flamingos and ducks. Visit the windmill that stands nearby.

Melissas Gorge (near Kavalos village)

For more birdwatching, hike through Melissas Gorge near Kavalos village by following the river. Look out for falcons and hawks amongst centuries’ old oaks and wild rosebushes. Combine birdwatching with sightseeing by exploring the watermills that line the river and which were once a vital part of the island’s commercial history.

Koutavos Lagoon in Argostoli town

Birdwatchers will enjoy exploring Koutavos Lagoon in Argostoli, as a number of birds seek shelter here. Ducks, geese, swans, warblers, flycatchers and herons are some of the species you’ll be able to spot. This is an important ecosystem for Caretta-Caretta sea turtles as well, and you can combine your birdwatching with a relaxing stroll through the eucalyptus forest on the banks of the lagoon. Although close to the island’s capital, you’ll feel like you’re in the middle of a quiet slice of countryside.

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Nestos River and Nestos Delta

The Nestos river has attracted eco-visitors for decades, a perfect locale for hiking, horseback riding, birdwatching, mountain climbing, canoeing, cycling, kayaking and rappelling. These activities in the land of Orpheus take place in magical corners of the Xanthi region like Galani, Komnina, Kromniko, Livadero, Stavroupolis, Toxotes and others. The Nestos Delta in Xanthi, where the river meets the sea, is also another enchanting place with dreamy sceneries. Worth nothing too is the area of Abdera which hosts a unique ecosystem of lakes, lagoons and valuable wetlands.

Lake Vistonis

In the southeast area of Xanthi lies Porto Lagos, famous for its Lake Vistonis. Every year, Ecologists assemble from all over the world to experience over 260 species of wild birds, who mostly migrate to the region during the winter season. A great show of aquatic birds and herons can be enjoyed here.

Management Authority for Lake Kerkini, Kato Poroia

This organization polices the area to make sure no illegal hunting or intrusive practices are taking place.

Lake Kerkini Center for Ecotourism, Lithotopos

This is the place to go to learn what options for excursions there are on or around the lake. Also exhibits samples of plant life, insects, fowl and fauna in a mini museum.

Kerkini Wetland Information Center, Kerkini

Make a quick stop here to learn how the lake was created and what is being done to preserve and protect it for future generations. Using traditional boats called ‘plaves’, visitors can experience the beauty of the water on the lake at a safe distance from the birds, enjoying the wet forest and birdwatching at the same time, all year round.

Bird Watching on Lake Kerkini

One of the the top bird sites for birdwatching in all of Greece, Lake Kerkini is an extremely important area for the passage, wintering and breeding of both waterfowl and raptors as well as for the breeding of migratory songbirds.

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The Lesser Kestrel – protection of a species

The Lesser Kestrel (Kirkinezi in Greek) is one of the most characteristic examples of birds have adapted their lifestyle in order to coexist with humans, feeding mostly on larger insects and small rodents.

Polydendri Forest

This is an important habitat for raptors and the falcons, which spend its summers here. Breeding species include the European honey buzzard Pernis apivorus, the Egyptian vulture Neophron percnopterus, the Short-toed Eagle Circaetus gallicus, the Levant sparrowhawl Accipiter brevipes, the Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus, the Lesser Spotted Eagle Aquila pomarina, the Booted Eagle Hieraaetus pennatus, the Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus, the Roller Coracias garrulus and the Middle Spotted Woodpecker Dendrocopos medius.

Lake Karla

Cormorant, coot, and mallard duck are just some of the types of waterfowl living in Lake Karla, which has developed into a very important wetland that’s home to many types of birds.

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Rock Climbing

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Mountain Climbing

Discover mountain climbing in Greece… There are at least 300 large and small mountains dotting the Greek landscape, chock full of forests, valleys, traditional villages, fauna and flora that will literally leave you spellbound.


Those who cycle know that there’s nothing greater than feeling the elements around you and enjoying the ever-changing scenery by bike.

Horseback Riding

The horse is a mystical, magical animal that commands respect, part of nature and its beautiful forces. One of the pleasures in life is to experience this nature in company of a horse, and discover the Greek countryside while horseback riding.

Skiing – Snowboarding

Who would have thought that Greece is such a skier’s paradise! Yet with over a dozen bona fide ski resorts and over 130 ski runs in total, you’ll be at a loss to choose between them all.


What better way to harness the forces of nature than through the exhilarating, eco-friendly sport of windsurfing. Windsurfing in Greece is simply awesome, for lack of a better word.


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Malagari Beach

A sandy beach not ideal for families as the sea here is often quite tumultuous. The beach is 2km from Vathi and also close to a local winery.


What an eco-friendly way to take to the skies, and there’s nowhere better to do it than in the blue skies of Greece. Paragliding world cup competitions have been held in the country often, with flying success!

Mourtia Beach

A small pebble beach with a natural marina for small boats, in northeast Samos, located 6km from Vathi. Nearby you’ll find Mikri Lakka beach and the Monastery of Zodochou Pigis.