Join us on this Magical Birding Tour in Kenya as we go in search of 11% of the world’s bird population!
Visiting Kenya is a true birder’s dream, and this tour showcases why Kenya is one of the very best birding destinations in the world. On this birding trip, you’ll be visiting all of Kenya’s Top Birding Locations with the most breathtaking scenery you can think of. Hold on to your feathers, this one’s for the hardcore birders!
This birding tour was designed for you to see the very best of Kenya’s birds. Kenya holds 11% of the world’s birdlife, so there’s plenty for you to get your binoculars into! On our Magical Kenya Birding Tour, you’ll be transecting through the south of the Equator, and then crossing back over the equator into Northern Kenya, all while enjoying the plentiful birdlife and wildlife within varied habitats and landscapes. We have allocated enough time at each site to ensure you get the most out of every destination you visit. This birding tour promises to be packed with Kenyan endemic bird species, regional rarities and migrants too. Our professional bird guides will take you to Kenya’s famous national parks, as well as the lesser-known locations. Our bird guides, will also help you identify and learn about the bird species you encounter along the way. You’ll also get the chance to see Kenya’s incredible wildlife too, including large and small mammals, reptiles, amphibians and interesting arthropods, as well as other interesting fauna and flora. This is a Kenya birding trip not to be missed. Let us take you on a birding extravaganza like no other!
Brief Birding Tour Itinerary
Day 1 – Kinangop Grasslands
We kick off our Magical Kenya Birding Tour in Kinangop Plateaus. This incredible ecosystem is home to some of the best Kenya’s endemic birds which are now unfortunately disappearing. These gorgeous grasslands offer so much birdlife they’ll be sure to get your binoculars misty! Starting on the lower grasslands and then gaining elevation as we go up to the edge of the Aberdare forest whilst also sampling the local wetlands for highland water birds along the way. Later that afternoon, we proceed to back Nairobi for the night as we wind up our trip and go through the many bird species we’ve encountered and also share all the wonderful photos you’ve acquired. It’ll be sad to say goodbye, but the memories will last forever.
Day 2 – Lake Naivasha
On the second day of this birding tour you’ll get the chance to visit the wonderful Lake Naivasha. This incredible lake has an abundance in Wildlife and Birdlife alike, and being just an hour and a half away from Nairobi, it’s no wonder why this stunning lake is so popular! It’s the most productive of all the Rift Valley lakes, so you can only imagine how much this place has to offer. With over 400 species of birds known from the area, we promise you an unforgettable day!
Day 3 & 4 – Masai Mara National Reserve
Well, what can we say about this place? Described by many as not only the best National Reserve in Kenya, but the World! Frankly, this place has it all. From Mass Migration of Wildebeest to the Big 5. Yet, the best thing of all the birding is exceptional with over 500+ species! On this birding tour, you’ll be spending two nights here, that’ll make you wanting more and more…
Day 5 & 6 – Kakamega Forest Reserve
Day 5 and 6, on this Magical Birding Tour, are very special. We’ll be heading to the incredible Kakamega Forest. it is one of Kenya’s last remaining pristine Ancient Forests, that is Kakamega. This place holds a ridiculous amount of birdlife that is bound to get your binoculars misty! Kakamega Forest is home to some truly awesome birdlife, which among them is the famous Great Blue Turaco! It’s also home to the majestic yet powerful Crowned Eagle which spends it’s days preying on the monkey species that call this wonderful forest their home.
Day 7 – Busia Grasslands
On Day 7, we will be looking for local and interesting species around much less visited locations. This one won’t disappoint!
Day 8 & 9 – Saiwa Swamp National Park
Day 9 & 10, will be packed full of birding hidden gems and Kenya’s lesser visited areas. You’ll get to visit Saiwa Swamp National Park which is famed for it’s rare mammal species such as the Sitatunga Antelope, a great swamp dwelling ungulate and the Gandalf the Grey lookalike De Brazza’s Monkey! However, due to the wetland environment, the area is rich in birdlife and home to some fascinating and eye-catching species such as the African Blue Flycatcher.
Day 11 & 12 – Lake Baringo & Lake Bogoria
On our of the 11th day of this epic Magical Kenya Birding Tour, we’ll be heading north to Lake Bogoria National Reserve. Lake Bogoria is famed for not only it’s dramatic volcanic hot springs but also for it’s Flamingo population – a staggering figure of over one million individuals have been spotted at one time! We’ll then travel to Lake Baringo where we’ll do a spot of birding and then get some well deserved rest!!
On your 12th day, we’ll go birding around the stunning Lake Baringo as well as going onto the lake via a leisurely boat ride to find the trickier to spot species whilst looking out for African Fish Eagles hunting and displaying their territory calls. After lunch where we’ll take you birding around the scrubland in search of interesting species of this region.
Day 13 & 14 – Lake Nakuru National Park
Renowned as the “Birdwatcher’s Paradise”, this park will blow your feathers off! Up to a million flamingos have been recorded here at one given time. That’s a million flamingos people! It was also the first National Park in Africa to be established due to the abundance of birdlife found there.
Lake Nakuru National Park, also gives you the opportunity to see 4 of the ‘Big 5’ mammal species, along with many other interesting fauna..
The park is also famed for it’s Black Rhino population, which is unfortunately now endangered.
Day 15 – Thompson’s Falls
On our 14th day of the birding tour, we’ll be taking you to the spectacular Thompson’s Falls where not only is their a breathtaking waterfall but there’s also as huge amount of birdlife to be seen and if luck is on our side we’ll get to encounter the elusive and beautiful Cape Eagle-owl. Make sure your binoculars are well dusted for this one!
Day 16 – Mount Kenya
On Day 16, we’ll be birding at Africa’s second largest mountain, Mt Kenya. Expect to be blown away by engaging in some altitude birding and being immersed in one of Africa’s most unique environments with a wide array of unique species to be encountered.
Day 17, 18 & 19 – Samburu National Reserve
On Day 17, 18 & 19 of this birding tour, we’ll be heading to Samburu National Reserve where you’ll spend the next three days. Samburu is one of the very best reserves in Africa and is actually where the settings for the films Born Free and Out of Africa. Here you’ll get the opportunity see some birding gems such as the Steel-blue Whydah and the Egyptian Vulture along with some unbelievably good game viewing!
This is a true highlight of the birding tour, which will not be forgotten in a hurry.
Day 20 – Nairobi National Park
On our 20th day of the tour you’ll get a taste of Kenya’s oldest yet still very valuable National Park, the one and only Nairobi National Park! This irreplaceable park will give you a chance to experience forest, grassland, terrestrial and wetland species with over 500 species have been recorded!
Day 21, 22 & 23 – Tsavo East National Park & Taita Hills
The sight of red stained elephants wallowing, rolling and spraying each other with the midnight blue waters of palm-shaded Galana River is one of the most evocative images in Africa. This, along with the 300 kilometre long Yatta Plateau, the longest lava flow in the world, make for a unforgettable time. Tsavo really is a world wonder. Oh, and I forgot about the part with the infamous man-eating lions… but don’t worry, you’re safe with us! Tsavo is the largest protected area in Kenya and is home to large mammals and vast herds of dust with elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion, leopard, pods of hippo, crocodile, waterbucks, lesser kudu, gerenuk and much more. However, the prolific birdlife here is absolutely incredible, with over 500 recorded species! This place will serve you well for two days as you soak in the wildlife and birdlife alike, and you too become red from the Tsavo dust.
After you’ve dusted yourself off, we’ll head to the beautiful Taita Hills, where you’ll find many endemic species such as the Taita White-eye, Taita Thrush and Taita Apalis.
Day 24 – Shimba Hills National Reserve
On Day 24 of this Magical Kenya Birding Tour, we’ll be heading to Shimba Hills, a local protected area within the coastal region, is one of the best birding and game drive spots in the Kenyan southern end. This area is famous for hosting the Sable Antelope, one of the most beautiful ungulates in Kenya and is also home to a large population of African Elephants. Close to the Tanzanian border, this park offers the chance to see species from further south while just a short drive from Kenya’s most popular coastal spots.
Day 25 & 26 – Arabuko Sokoke Forest & Mida Creek
Boy, you guys sure are in for treat on this one! Arabuko Sokoke Forest Reserve is a staggering 420 km2 coastal forest. It is the largest and most intact coastal forest in all of East Africa, with 20% of all Kenya’s bird species, 30% butterfly species and at least 24 rare and endemic bird, mammal and butterfly species! It’s pretty incredible, I’m not going to lie to you! As well as doing some of the best birding in the world, you’ll also get the chance to cool off and go for a dip in some of the creeks too. Don’t forget to bring your swimming gear!
Day 27 – Dakatcha Woodlands
On our last day of this incredible Magical Kenya Birding Tour, we’ll be venturing into the lush woodlands of Dakatcha, in hope of seeing the endemic Clarke’s Weaver. It’s the only place in the world where this unique weaver species nests. Our partners Nature Kenya & RSPB are working tirelessly to stop this woodland from being cleared for the Jatropha curcas crop – whose seeds produce oil which is used to make bio-diesel. Seeing it on the last day would be the icing on the cake – fingers crossed!
If needed we can arrange domestics flights for you back to Nairobi or you can simply relax on gorgeous white sands of Malindi whilst sipping on a cocktail!
*Buff-crested Bustard - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Beautiful Sunbird- Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Taita Thrush (Kenya endemic) - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Montagu's Harrier - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Pangani Longclaw - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Sokoke Scops Owl - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Crested Guineafowl - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
*Rosy-throated Longclaw - Photo credit: Bob Longhorn
Key Bird Species
Popular Species on this Kenya Birding Tour: Cape Eagle-Owl, Northern Puffback, Taita White-eye, Superb Starling, Sokoke Scops Owl, Ross’s Turaco, African Blue Flycatcher, Blue-headed Bee-eater, Golden-breasted Starling, Sharpe’s Longclaw
Below is a list of species likely to be encountered on this birding tour!
Retz’s Helmetshrike, Chestnut-fronted Helmetshrike, Little Spotted Woodpecker, Mombasa Woodpecker, Brown- headed Parrot, Black-headed Apalis, Eastern Nicator, Common Scimitarbill, Malindi Pipit, Senegal Plover, Clarke’s Weaver, Southern Banded Snake-Eagle, Lizard Buzzard, Red-tailed Ant- Thrush, Sokoke Pipit, Four-coloured Bush-Shrike, Yellow-bellied Greenbul, Crested Guineafowl, East Coast Akalat, Fischer’s Turaco, Trumpeter Hornbill, Little Yellow Flycatcher, African Wood Owl, Green Barbet, Green Tinkerbird, Red-capped Robin-Chat, Plain-backed Sunbird, Amani Sunbird, Common Greenshank, Crab Plover, Grey Plover, Sooty Gull, Sanderling, Greater Sand Plover, Greater Crested Tern, Sokoke Scops Owl, African Barred Owlet, Fiery-necked Nightjar, Sokoke Pipit, White-eared Barbet, Green Tinkerbird, Tiny Greenbul, Flappet Lark, African Golden Oriole, Golden Pipit, Bohm’s Spinetail, African Hawk-Eagle, Two-banded Courser, Somali Courser, Somali Crombec, Somali Sparrow, Red-winged Lark, Three-streaked Tchagra, Black-headed Plover, Spotted Thick-knee, Golden-breasted Starling, Shelley’s Starling, Fischer’s Starling, Tawny Eagle, Martial Eagle, Lesser Spotted Eagle and Eastern Paradise Whydah. Taita White-eye, Taita Thrush and Taita Apalis. Other birds will be likely too including Stripe- cheeked Greenbul, African Paradise Flycatcher, Evergreen Forest warbler, Yellow-throated Woodland Warbler, Crowned Eagle, Great Sparrowhawk, Mountain Wagtail, African Black Duck, Red-fronted Parrot, Jackson’s Francolin, Moorland Chat, Abyssinian Crimsonwing, Abyssinian Ground Thrush, Hartlaub’s Turaco, Scarlet-tufted Malachite Sunbird, Black-headed Waxbill, Slender-billed Starling, Waller’s Starling, Montane White-eye, Eastern Double-collared Sunbird, Hunter’s Cisticola, Moorland Francolin, Violet-backed Starling, Green Pigeon, Meyer’s Parrot, Straw-tailed Whydah, Steel-blue Whydah, Rufous Bush Chat, Magpie Starling, Egyptian Vulture, Donaldson-Smith’s Sparrow- Weaver, Lichtenstein’s Sandgrouse, William’s Lark, Friedmann’s Lark, Somali Ostrich, Somali Courser, White-headed Mousebird, Hunter’s Sunbird, Shining Sunbird, Chestnut-bellied Sandgrouse, Somali Bee-eater, Stone Partridge, Eastern Yellow-billed Hornbill, African Orange- bellied Parrot, Vulturine Guineafowl, Rufous Chatterer, Bateleur, Martial Eagle, Tawny Eagle, Slender-billed Starling, Tacazze Sunbird, African Yellow White-eye, Montane White-eye, Crowned Eagle, African Harrier Hawk, Cape Wagtail, Peregrine Falcon, Crowned Hornbill, Cape Eagle-Owl, Black-crowned Night-Heron, Long-tailed Widowbird, Lesser Swamp Warbler, Levaillant’s Cisticola, Grey-headed Gull, African Snipe, Allen’s Gallinule, Collared Pratincole, Common Teal, Fulvous Whistling Duck, Garganey, Knob-billed Duck, Maccoa Duck, Northern Pintail, Northern Shoveler, Ferruginous Duck, Lesser Jacana, Whiskered Tern, White-winged (Black) Tern, Black-tailed Godwit, Sharpe’s Longclaw, Jackson’s Widowbird, Ospey, African Marsh Harrier, Greater Flamingo, Lesser Flamingo, African Fish Eagle, African Jacana, Black Crake, Goliath Heron, Little Bittern, Purple Heron and White-faced Whistling Duck, Spotted Eagle-Owl, Northern White-faced Scops Owl, Shikra, Dark Chanting-Goshawk, Verreaux’s Eagle, Slender-tailed Nightjar, Heuglin’s Courser, Blue-capped Cordon-bleu, D’Arnaud’s Barbet, Black-throated Barbet, Brubru, Grey-headed Bushshrike, Jackson’s Golden-backed Weaver, Northern Masked Weaver, White-billed Buffalo-Weaver, Beautiful Sunbird, Jackson’s Hornbill, Yellow-billed Hornbill, Hemprich’s Hornbill, Northern Red Bishop, Brown-tailed Rock Chat, Mocking Cliff-Chat, Bristle-crowned Starling, Crowned Eagle, Black-faced Rufous Warbler, Chapin’s Flycatcher, Yellow-mantled Widowbird, Red-headed Bluebill, Uganda Woodland Warbler, White-chinned Prinia, Buff-throated Apalis, Turner’s Eremomela, Green Hylia, Yellow-bellied Hyliota, Vieillot’s Black Weaver, Olive-Green Camaroptera, African Broadbill, Snowy-headed Robin-Chat, Hairy-breasted Barbet, Green-throated Sunbird, Mackinnon’s Fiscal, White-spotted Flufftail, Dusky Tit, Bocage’s Bush-Shrike, Luhder’s Bush- Shrike, Black-crowned Waxbill, White-breasted Negrofinch, Yellow-crested Woodpecker, Equatorial Akalat, White-tailed Ant-Thrush, Chapin’s Flycatcher, Blue-headed Bee-eater, Common Wattle-eye, Jameson’s Wattle-eye, Yellow-bellied Wattle-eye, Gambaga Flycatcher, White-naped Raven, Ross’s Turaco, Papyrus Gonolek, Papyrus Canary, Northern Brown-throated Weaver, Double-toothed Barbet, Black-billed Barbet, Slender-billed Weaver, Greater Swamp Warbler, Papyrus Yellow Warbler, Red-chested Sunbird, Eastern Grey Plantain-eater, Swamp Flycatcher, Carruther’s Cisticola, Familiar Chat, Sooty Chat, Rufous-bellied Heron, Pennant-winged Nightjar, Square-tailed Nightjar, Dusky Nightjar, Schalow’s Turaco, Grey-crested Helmetshrike, Red-necked Spurfowl, Red-winged Francolin, Black Coucal, Kori Bustard, Bush Pipit, White-tailed Lark, Flappet Lark, Maccoa Duck, Great White Pelican, Common Greenshank, Ruff, Green Sandpiper, Hilderbrandt’s Francolin, Arrow-marked Babbler, African Fish Eagle, Verreaux’s Eagle, Tawny Eagle, Osprey, Hybrid Lovebird, Red-throated Wryneck, Buff-bellied Warbler, Grey Crowned Crane, Black Cuckoo, African Hoopoe, Malachite Kingfisher, Pied Kingfisher, Giant Kingfisher, Aberdare Cisticola, Levaillant’s Cisticola, Wing-snapping Cisticola, Mountain Yellow Warbler, Cinnamon Bracken Warbler, Jackson’s Francolin, Common Quail, Long-tailed Widowbird, Jackson’s Widowbird, Angola Swallow, Montane Nightjar, Sharpe’s Longclaw, Martial Eagle, Mountain Buzzard, Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawk, Red-throated Pipit, Black- tailed Godwit, African Snipe, Lesser Jacana and Olive Ibis.
*Lilac-breasted Roller - Photos credit: Bob Longhorn
*Jackson's Hornbill - Photos credit: Bob Longhorn
There's no place like East Africa!
*Golden-breasted Starling - Photos credit: Bob Longhorn
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