Come visit the habitat and nesting place for the beautiful Rock partridge

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Nature & wildlife trip

Ultimate birdwatching in Dalmatia: visit ornithological reserves & meet birds at the falconry center

Enjoy the company of birds in the famous ornithological reserves of Pag Island, Vransko Lake, Guduča River, and the renowned Falconry Centre (Sokolarski centar) and gain new experiences and knowledge about the diverse avifauna of Dalmatia! Enjoy the rivers, green forests, and lush vegetation that are eagerly waiting to be discovered.

Watching birds and how they fly, sing, and nest is one of the most beautiful ways to relax in nature and a truly special experience. Despite its relatively small size, the Republic of Croatia boasts abundant natural heritage and is one of the most biologically and scenically diverse countries in Europe. There are 420 protected areas in Croatia, the most beautiful and valuable of which are the 8 national parks and 11 nature parks, where there have been 400 bird species recorded, 230 of which are breeding birds.

BirdwatchingTour of ornithological reservesVisits to wetlands and swamp habitatsVisit to a cryptodepressionVisit to the Falconry CentreMeeting birds of preyVisit to National Park Krka
Trip availableMAR-NOV
Duration5 days
Suitable for2-8 people
SupportPartially guided
Languagesen
Price per personfrom 806.00 €
Great for
  • Nature lovers
  • Photographers
  • Seniors
  • Couples
You’ll be accommodated in
  • 3-star hotel
Trip designed by Helena Šarić

True believer that wherever you go, you should go with all your heart

Activities are taking place in and around Šibenik

Croatia owes its diverse avifauna to a unique geographical position and climate as well as to a combination of Pannonian, Dinaric, Mediterranean and pre-Alpine biogeographical influences and favourable geomorphological and hydrogeological conditions, which have contributed to the formation of a wide range of habitats.

Bird lovers find Croatia extremely intriguing due to the abundance of Mediterranean species, sea and deep-sea species, wetland species and a vast diversity of bird of prey species with ranges whose northern and western edges stop in Croatia, such as the Western rock nuthatch (Sitta neumayer) and the olive-tree warbler (Hippolais olivetorum), which are species from the Balkan Peninsula and the Middle East with ranges whose westernmost part is located along the Croatian coast.

In addition to having the third largest water resources in Europe (after Iceland and Norway) and having one of the best ratios of country area to groundwater resources in the world, the Republic of Croatia boasts well-preserved natural habitats with hundreds of endemic plant and animal species, while protected areas including 11 nature parks, 8 national parks, and two strict reserves make up 10% of the country's total area.

According to the available statistics, the fauna in Croatia comprises 23,876 species and subspecies, 565 (2.4%) of which are endemic, and 1,624 (6.8%) of which are protected.

Five areas are included on the List of Internationally Important Wetland Areas due to being important waterbird habitats: Kopački Rit, Lonjsko Polje, the Neretva Delta, Crna Mlaka, and Vransko Lake.

Vransko Lake is unique in Croatia and Europe in terms of its position and features. It is actually a karst field filled with brackish water, which in turn makes it a cryptodepression.

With 400 recorded bird species, the Republic of Croatia has one of the most diverse avifauna in Europe.

Day-by-day itinerary

Day 1

Take a stroll through UNESCO protected city of Šibenik

After arrival in the city of Šibenik, check-in at the hotel, which is located in the historic centre of Šibenik. Take a short break and if you still have some spare time left we suggest that you go to the city on your own and take a stroll through the stone-paved streets of Šibenik and give in to the charm of the gorgeous Dalmatian coast. Don't forget to visit the world famous Cathedral of St. James, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage list, and is known for its wreath consisting of 74 individual portrait heads. Overnight stay at the hotel.

tip

Take a walk on the beautiful walkway along the Channel of St. Anthony, which is almost completely surrounded by pine and oak forests and marvel at the stunning scenery of the nearby islands and the city of Šibenik.

Food tip

Šibenik, as well as the whole of Dalmatia, is renowned for its exquisite cuisine based on fish, olive oil, meat delicacies, and premium wines so don't hesitate to pamper your palate at one of the excellent local restaurants.

Day 2

Pag Island Bird Adventure

After breakfast, the starting point of our amazing bird adventure is Pag, one of the most famous Croatian islands. Pag island boasts a vast and well-preserved wetland area, which is becoming scarce in Europe due to the wetland avifauna becoming increasingly endangered and the disappearance of biotopes. We will also be visiting the ornithological reserves Velo blato and Kolansko blato, the semi-artificial lake Vlacina, as well as the wetlands and swamp habitats of the island of Pag. Velo blato Ornithological Reserve is exceptionally valuable in terms of biodiversity because it is home to more than 160 species of waterbirds, 66 of which are breeding birds that have found sanctuary here, especially during nesting, migration, and wintering. This is the habitat and nesting site of an array of beautiful bird species, such as: rock partridges, crested larks, short-toed larks, tawny pipits, Eurasian hoopoes, Montagu's harriers, glossy ibises, squacco herons, purple herons, or little egrets. We will also be visiting a family farm where you will get to enjoy the local cuisine. We suggest that after getting back to the hotel, you go out for a stroll and enjoy the beauty of Šibenik while having dinner at one of the top notch local restaurants. Overnight stay at the hotel.

Day 3

Spot a Falcon in Flight

After breakfast we will set off on a new adventure. Sharpen your senses because we will be visiting the special ornithological reserve of Vransko Lake, which is the highlight feature of the eponymous nature park and a "hot spot" - an area with a large variety of ornithophous fauna. The Park area is a very important resting place and a feeding place for a whole range of endangered European species. There are more than 100,000 birdworms regularly coming to winter, four types of endagered species on the European level and seven species endangered at national level.

For lunch you will be treated to culinary delicacies from the local farm. During our visit to the Falconry Centre, which is nestled in the heart of the Mediterranean wilderness you can catch an awe-inspiring glimpse of a falcon in flight. It is the only such centre in Croatia and the habitat of various species of birds of prey as well as a must-visit location for everyone looking for a taste of adventure in the wilderness. Also located here is a rehabilitation centre for injured, sick, and starving birds in need of medical attention. After an eventful day in the company of these gorgeous feathered creatures, we will return to Šibenik. Overnight stay at the hotel.

tip

Vransko lake is included on the List of Internationally Important Wetland Areas and is the largest natural lake in Croatia as well as an important resting and feeding place for a multitude of rare and endangered European bird species. More than 100,000 waterbirds come here for the winter.

Day 4

Bird life surrounded by Cascades & Waterfalls of Krka National Park

After breakfast, we are going on a tour of the exceptionally valuable ornithological reserve, which is part of Krka National Park and is located at the mouth of the Guduča River. This is the habitat and nesting site of an array of beautiful bird species, such as: grey herons, mallards, coots, little grebes, black-necked grebes, great crested, grebes pygmy cormorants, great cormorants, Caspian gulls, black-headed gulls and mute swans. The Krka River is famous for its lavish cascades and waterfalls as well as an abundance of flora and fauna, including 221 bird species, which makes this area an ornithological reserve with one of the most diverse avifauna.

We will be stopping at a local farm where you will have homemade lunch in the surrounding of the Krka River and its stunning scenery. Return to Šibenik. Overnight stay at the hotel.

tip

In the evening, we recommend you visit one of the most beautiful sites in Šibenik, a plateau with four wells in the immediate vicinity of the Cathedral of St. James. Also located here is the multimedia exhibition centre 'Wells - The Secrets of Šibenik', which has been given a special award by the Croatian National Tourist Board for its innovative presentation of cultural heritage. At Bunari Wine Bar, which is located underneath the complex you can savour premium wine varieties from the Šibenik region.

Day 5

Medieval Mediterranean Garden

After breakfast it is time for check-out from your hotel. If you have some spare time left before your departure, we recommend that you visit a unique landmark, the Medieval Mediterranean Garden of St. Lawrence Monastery.

You won't find many areas with three distinct landscapes changing in quick succession: the vast archipelago unfolding before the stunning Dalmatian coast, a Mediterranean wetland with a unique scenery and ecosystem, and the idyllic rural hinterland. We have no doubt that you will return home feeling a sense of oneness with nature and being completely overwhelmed with what you saw and experienced.

tip

Medieval Mediterranean Garden of St. Lawrence Monastery is the only garden of its kind in Croatia and one of just a few such gardens in this part of Europe. If you enjoy peace and quiet surrounded by nature and diverse Mediterranean greenery, then make sure to visit this beautiful garden, which is located in the historic centre of Šibenik and revel in its idyllic ambience.

What's included?

  • Four nights with breakfast in a double room at a 3-star hotel in Šibenik
  • Tourist tax.
  • Full-day excursion to Pag Island.

Excursion includes: transfer, services of a licenced tour guide - bird ringer (tour is in English, other languages are available on request), visit to the Velo blato and Kolansko blato ornithological reserves, semi- artificial lake Vlacina, wetlands and swamp habitats of Pag Island, lunch at a family farm

  • Full-day excursion to Vransko Lake and a guided tour of the Falconry Centre and the bird of prey rehabilitation centre, transfer, lunch at a family farm
  • Full-day excursion to the important ornithological reserve of Guduča River at Krka National Park as well as other important bird habitats at Krka National Park in the company of a licenced tour guide, transfer, lunch
  • VAT

What's not included?

  • Drinks on excursions
  • Personal expenses
  • Insurance

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