Abundant birds and wide-open spaces beckon across Namibia
There’s a lot more to Namibia than many people think. Far from being simply a vast expanse of desert, the country boasts a remarkable array of diverse species and unique habitats.
These things all contribute to making birdwatching in Namibia a bucket list item for any avian enthusiast.
Keep reading to explore all the reasons why Namibia is one of the world’s best destinations for birdwatchers.
Namibia’s diverse environments support equally varied species of birds, including one endemic species, the dune lark, and 29 near endemics.
The country is home to over 600 species of birds which you can view in tandem with several unique wildlife species against a backdrop of dramatic scenery.
Some of the rarest bird species in the world occur in Namibia. These include:
- Ruppell’s vulture
- Hartlaub’s spurfowl
- Ludwig’s bustard
- Black-faced babbler
Namibia is home to some of the world’s most dramatically beautiful birds too, like the violet woodhoopoe, the rosy-faced lovebird, the crimson-breasted shrike, and the elegant blue crane.
Apart from bushveld and desert species, Namibia’s long coastline supports numerous sea-loving species, while the Zambezi Region is perfect for riverine birds.
Namibia Is an Excellent Tourist Destination
Travellers to Namibia are often surprised by the country’s solid infrastructure. Major cities have excellent shops, banks, hospitals, and service businesses.
Namibia’s major roads are in good condition, but you’ll need a 4×4 if you’re planning to visit some of the more remote areas.
With a mean rainfall of only 278 mm per year, you seldom need to worry about poor weather during your birdwatching sprees, making it much easier to spot the birds.
It can get very hot in the summer, but Namibia is an excellent year-round birding destination, especially during the December to March breeding season.
Most of the country’s birding hotspots are located at or near major tourist attractions, so you can enjoy multiple experiences in one trip to Namibia. Not only does the country offer opportunities to view stunning natural scenes, it’s also a place to enjoy exciting high-adrenaline activities, unique local cuisine, outstanding safaris, and diverse cultural experiences.
Plenty of Wonderful Wild Spaces
Namibia is one of the least densely populated countries on earth, which means you’ll find plenty of open spaces and places to enjoy your birdwatching activities undisturbed.
Additionally, almost half the country is available to wildlife thanks to:
- 20 national parks
- 86 conservancies
- 43 community forests
- 7 Concessions
- 1 forest reserve
There are also many wild spaces where animals roam free outside these official areas.
The Namib Desert is a World Heritage site renowned for its uniquely adapted animals, birds, and plants and the country is home to five wetlands of international importance where birds flourish.
When you visit these areas, not only will you enjoy some of the world’s best birding, but you’re also contributing to conservation and sustaining the communities who work so hard to protect Namibia’s pristine environment.
Abundant Choices for Birdwatching in Namibia
Thanks to Namibia’s natural abundance and concerted conservation efforts, you’ll find no shortage of places to enjoy birdwatching. Some of the best ones are:
- Zambezi Region (Caprivi Strip)
You’ll find plenty of birds in Namibia’s most lush environment, where over 500 migrant species visit every year. Notable species include the African skimmer, carmine bee-eaters, Pel’s fishing owls, pearl-breasted swallows, and coppery-tailed coucals.
- Etosha National Park
During the rainy season, Etosha National Park attracts an abundance of birds, with over 300 different species of birds either resident or migrant to this area. These include 30 different types of raptors, lesser flamingos, Abdim’s stork, dwarf bittern, sanderling, marsh sandpiper, and the rare Monteiro’s hornbill
This impactful landmark rises over 1 000 metres above Namibia’s Damaraland. This important birding site is home to Layard’s warbler, Stark’s lark, Ruppell’s bustard, the rufous-vented warbler, and the rare, near-endemic Herero chat.
- Walvis Bay
Located close to the adventure hub of Swakopmund, Walvis Bay is an excellent fishing destination and one of southern Africa’s most diverse and important birdlife environments. The current bird count for this area stands at 100 different species including greater flamingos, dune larks, grey plovers, black terns, Arctic terns, black-necked grebes, and Cape teals.
Apart from these excellent birding destinations, you’ll find a few places in Windhoek where you can relax in the company of birds. Most notable of these are, the restaurant at Arebbusch Travel Lodge, Avis Dam, Daan Viljoen Game Park, the National Botanical Gardens, and, of course, the city sewage works.
Your Namibian Birdwatching Adventure Begins Here
Explore our travel blog for more information about Namibia’s birding hotspots and book your spot at Arebbusch Travel Lodge in Windhoek, where you can enjoy abundant bird sightings from the start of your trip.
Book your trip today and discover the wonders of Namibia’s birds!
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.