Join Naturalist Journeys for this super popular Greece birding tour. The stunning Greek island of Lesvos is the place to be to witness the miracle of Europe’s spring migration. This is the “Point Pelee” of Southern Europe for birds returning from their winter stay in Africa. Join Naturalist Journeys for a fun migration tour as we join Naturalist Journeys' owner, Peg Abbott's, delightful colleague from National Audubon Society days, Gina Nichol, and Gina’s husband Steve Bird, at the peak of spring migration. Birding on a Greek island … does it get any better? Unpack once, set your watch to island time, and fill your days with birds!
From the small town of Skala Kalloni, we explore the island’s varied countryside, historic villages, and friendly people. This is the third largest island of the chain (large enough to have extensive pine and hardwood forests), much less visited than the other islands, and a place people describe as feeling like the “real Greece.” Meals are a real bonus to the birding. Whether searching for the island’s special birds, like Krüper’s Nuthatch and Cinereous Bunting, or marveling at the continual stream of migrants, there is no shortage of memorable sightings. We also take time to enjoy some of the island’s 70 species of orchids - wow!
Weather always plays a part in the migration spectacle. With clear skies and fine conditions, birds may fly over the island and we spend time looking at the resident European birds and shorebirds. If there are winds or storms, we may have incredible “falls” of birds. Either way, birding Lesvos is a just fantastic experience. From the slopes of Mount Olympus, to the island’s glittering rivers and lakes, to picturesque fishing villages along beautiful golden beaches, we witness landscapes that have inspired artists for many years. And, best of all, your visit is timed with the birds!
- Unpack just once and relax at our comfortable and eco-friendly hotel
- Witness terns and waders on the pond right next to our hotel
- See Pallid Harrier, European Roller, Little Owl, and dozens of Red-footed Falcon in salt pans
- Bird in nearby sheep fields for Short-toed, Golden or even Lesser or Greater Spotted Eagles
- Look for rare Cinereous Bunting on Lesbos’ volcanic western side
- Enjoy a meal at Ipsilou Monastery, built in 800 AD and a good place to see migrant fallouts
- Explore around the town of Sigri looking for hundreds of shrikes and buntings in the shadow of a beautiful Turkish castle
- Stroll the eastern side’s pine forests for Krüper’s Nuthatch
- Enjoy pre-breakfast walks to a nearby pond for Little, Spotted, and Baillon’s Crakes
Photo credits: Banners: European Bee-eater by Gerard Gorman; Collared Pranticole by Peg Abbott; Greater Flamingo by Pieter Verheij Photography; Great Spotted Woodpecker by Pieter Verheij Photography; Mytilene, Greece, courtesy lesvosgreece.gr; Ipsilou Monastery, courtesy lesvosgreece.gr; Hoopoe by Gerard Gorman, Greater Flamingo by Pieter Verheij Photography; Mytilene, Greece, courtesy lesvosgreece.gr; European Bee-eater by Gerard Gorman; European Kingfisher by Tom Dove; Purple Heron by Peg Abbott; White Stork by Pieter Verheij Photography; Mytilene, Greece, courtesy lesvosgreece.gr.