Africa is one of the most diverse birding destinations in the world, with 2 339 species recorded on the continent. Of these more than half are endemic, with 14 entire families making up 156 species found nowhere else.
You’re spoiled for choice when choosing a top birding destination in Africa, especially since some of the top birding spots coincide with Africa’s great safari destinations which gives you the chance for incredible wildlife viewing at the same time.
You’ll find that most hotels and resorts are especially accommodating towards birders, and there are many tour companies dedicated to the task of sharing Africa’s birdlife with you.
Some of the best birding destination in Africa Include:
South Africa has an excellent tourist infrastructure, 960 species of birds, and many outstanding birding spots. It’s no surprise that many birders return here time and time again, even after they’ve ticked off every species on their list.
It is possible to visit all of South Africa’s best birding spots on self-drive tours while staying in luxury accommodation, which only adds to the appeal.
Some of South Africa’s top birding spots are:
- iSimangaliso Wetland Park – A world heritage wetland site packed with riverine, bushveld and ocean species.
- Kruger National Park – Home to over 500 species of birds.
- Western Cape Coast – Here you will find hundreds of seabirds, including pelagic species from Antarctica during Winter (May – September).
- Southern Drakensberg and Sani Pass – Boasting a wide spectrum of habits and species ranging from sugarbirds to bearded vultures.
- Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park (shared with Namibia) – Over 40 species of raptor are known to inhabit the skies over this arid park.
- Wakkerstroom – Home of larks and other rarely-seen high-altitude grassland species.
- Nylsvley Nature Reserve – Where over 80 000 birds gather during the summer.
Known mainly for its desert landscapes, Namibia will amaze you with its vast diversity of habitats and over 676 bird species to track down.
Another favorite among international travelers, Namibia is a fascinating country, filled with unique attractions, animals and plants.
- Windhoek – Great place to start in Namibia. Home to about 300 species.
- Walvis Bay – Where 80% of Africa’s flamingos spend some time every year.
- Namib-Naukluft Park – Home to the endemic dune lark.
- Fish River Canyon – Where fish eagles patrol the heights.
- Etosha National Park – With over 400 species to see.
- Skeleton Coast – Packed with marine and wetland species where rivers meet the sea.
- Caprivi – A treasure trove of woodland and wetland species.
- Ais-Ais Richtersveld National Park – Hundreds of species flock to the hills, ridges, grasslands, woodlands and dams found here.
Read more about birding in Namibia.
Tanzania is another top safari destination for adventurous travelers with Africa’s longest species list of 1 100 in total. Of these, over 800 species are permanent residents while the rest appear regularly according to the seasons.
This makes this east African country a must for any serious birder’s to-do list.
Some of Tanzania’s top spots include:
- Ngorongoro Crater – Where you can see all of Africa’s largest birds in one day.
- Serengeti National Park – Overflowing with over 400 species of birds.
- Lake Manyara National Park – A paradise for water-loving species.
Botswana is one of Africa’s lesser-known safari gems with a wealth of wild spaces to explore and 600 bird species to admire.
Botswana’s’ best birding destinations include:
- Okavango Delta – a watery wonderland of arboreal, wetland and grassland species.
- Moremi Game Reserve – hundreds of birds in diverse habitats from floodplains to forests.
- Chobe National Park – with its rich Chobe Riverfront habitats.
- Kalahari Desert – for desert specials and rare falcons, finches and eagle owls.
- Makgadikgadi Salt Pan – One of Botswana’s most important wetland areas.
Wherever there’s a top safari destination, you’ll find a birding experience to match, and Zambia is no exception.
Put these amazing Zambian birding spots on the list for your next trip:
- Lochinvar National Park – Home to huge congregations of water birds.
- South Luangwa National Park – One of the best places to see crowned cranes.
- Bangweulu Swamps – Famous for its shoebill storks.
- Kasanka National Park – Where rare Pel’s fishing owls and wattled cranes may be found.
Other Top Spots for Bird watching in Africa
Some of the other don’t’ miss locations to enjoy birding outings in Africa include:
Wherever you go in Africa, you are bound to find birds that will turn your head.
Get in touch for more information about birding trips in Africa and let’s start working on your wish list.
Please Note: The details shared herein were correct at the time of publishing. However, with time some of this information may change. We recommend confirming information with suppliers prior to making final travel arrangements. If you do happen to find an issue with any information we’ve shared here, please feel free to contact us so that we can make the relevant changes.