Birding Hotspots of a Lifetime

Planning a birding trip? See our recommendations for six birding hotspots around the world that everyone should see.

I need to start with a disclaimer. It’s nearly impossible to pick only six places in the whole world to go birding. And it might be even harder to recommend just one tour company for each place. Birding tourism is really booming. Dozens of companies seem to be popping up, promising you the best vacation of your life, full of jaw-dropping birds.

While I’ve been to only one of these birding hotspots myself (I adore Alaska), I really pulled out all the stops for this story, talking to bird experts and friends from around the country. After much research, I present you with these six great places to go, along with six great companies that can get you there.

If you’re planning a birding adventure, I strongly encourage you to contact some of these companies and see how they might be able to help. Selecting a company to go birding with is much like picking out a new pair of shoes. You can’t go by looks alone; you really have to try them on. I mean, you’re probably looking at spending thousands of dollars for one of these trips. So contact these companies and try them on for size—ask them questions, get their advice, talk to them about what areas you want to visit. Chances are, you’ll figure out the right fit and will soon be on your way to the trip of a lifetime.

Belize

Tourism in Belize is at an all-time high, and the locals are welcoming birders with open arms. This tiny country (it’s only 170 miles long) has fewer than 300,000 people, and it has managed to preserve enormous sections of habitat for all kinds of wildlife. With nearly 600 species of birds alone, you’ll discover loads you’ve never heard of.

The Belize Audubon Society is the place to start if you want to learn about the country and the birds you’ll find there. It’ll point you toward wildlife sanctuaries that are home to species like the ornate hawk-eagle, the boat-billed heron and the American pygmy kingfisher. And don’t forget to look for tropical birds like the scarlet macaw and the keel-billed toucan, which is the national bird of Belize.

CHECK OUT: Belize is a hot spot, so you’ll find lots of tour companies. Our favorite is Wildside Nature Tours. Owner Kevin Loughlin started Wildside after a trip to Belize more than 20 years ago. The country changed his life, and now he wants to share that passion with others.

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  1. says

    Most wonderful city forever these birding hotspots myself I really pulled out all the stops for this story, talking to bird experts and friends from around the land .

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