Wildlife watching trip 2023, APRIL 9-16 or 16-23

Malaga in spring’s wildlife tour

Clients: Wildlife hollydays

Summary

Circuit aiming at visiting best natural and protected areas in the province of Málaga and at observing general wildlife. Tour program based on : 

https://g3-guides.com/en/project/the-malaga-wildlife-tour/

 

Key-points of the tour

  • Arrival at Málaga airport: 2023, April the XXX at midday
  • 8 days of activities in the field
  • 7 nights hosted in rural hotels in double rooms (supplement for simple rooms available)
  • Lunch in the field picnic
  • Departure in Málaga airport: April the XXX at midday
  • Not included: transportations.

 

Guadalhorce River estuary
DAY 1 | Transfer from Malaga airport - Guadalhorce River estuary

We will meet at Malaga international airport and quickly move to visit the nº1 birdwatching site in the area at the Guadalhorce River estuary, with high diversity of waders and waterfowls (e.g. White-headed duck). We will walk along the sea side at a wild beach and check for marine birds. Lagoons are also home to southern mediterranean species of dragonflies. We will then travel and be hosted near Antequera for three nights.

Accomodation at Antequera

Torcal de Antequera amazing geology

AVOID VISIT TORCAL DURING WEEKEND

DAY 2 | Torcal de Antequera

Morning dedicated to the most famous Iberian limestone landscape: the Torcal de Antequera, a maze of cliffs and eroded rocks scattered with small trees. This karst is perfect for Spanish ibex, Blue Rock-Thrush and Black Wheatear. Various Mediterranean orchids and butterflies are found among the species-rich chalk grassland.

Accomodation at Antequera

Torcal de Antequera amazing geology
DAY 3 | Steppe birds - Fuente de Piedra lagoon

We will then move towards a nearby farmland range in Seville province, where we will mostly search for steppe birds: Calandra Lark, Lesser Kestrel and so on. We will finish our day at Fuente de Piedra, a truly classic site hosting the largest colony of Greater Flamingo in the Mediterranean Basin.

Accomodation at Antequera

Classic Ronda bridge picture, an interesting bird habitat
DAY 4 | Cliffs at El Chorro, Caminto del Rey and Ronda Gash

A big colony of Griffon Vulture is thriving at El Chorro Gorge, alongside with many other raptors. Mountainous landscapes are breath-taking. The shy Bonelli’s Eagle is a (uneasy) target for the day. We will walk the Caminito del Rey, a must-see and very popular path located on a cliff side (tickets are not allways easy to reserve). Later, we will move to the lovely town of Ronda and walk a short hike which allow to look at common crops and fruit trees and their many associated insects. El Tajo gorge and Ronda surrounding landscapes are unforgettable sceneries. We will then be hosted in Serranía de Ronda at the scenic white village of Benarrabá for four nights.

Accomodation at Benarrabá: Banuh Rabbah hotel. Dinner at Kabilah restaurant.

Views from the Mirador de África, Genal's Valley & Los Alcornocales
DAY 5 | Los Alcornocales and Moth trapping

A circular journey within the province of Cadiz where moisture is higher and vegetation lusher. We will discover the largest European forest of Cork Oak Los Alcornocales and its surrounding area. Various short stops will allow to search for plenty of insects, birds and flowers. Visited habitats include forests, dehesas, grasslands, carrion site and rivers. The Mirador de Africa will allow us to gaze over another continent (!) and to observe (with a bit of luck) hill-topping butterflies. Night trapping will allow to look at nocturnal invertebrates (moths, mantis).

Accomodation at Benarrabá: Banuh Rabbah hotel. Paella at Genal Field Station.

Grazalema Natural Park is famous for its biodiversity
DAY 6 | Sierra de Grazalema

The Serranía de Ronda has been celebrated since the Romantic travelers, for the beauty of its town, the folk and above all nature. We will explore the spectacular high plateau of “Llanos de Libárin Sierra de Grazalema, a large Portuguese Oak dehesa, surrounded by cliffs and grazed by sheep and goats. Little known, yet full of wildlife and flowers. We will have plenty of opportunities to search for mountain birds. Later in the afternoon, on our way, we will cross the River Guadiaro (good site for dragonflies) and move towards the Genal River valley.

Accomodation at Benarrabá: Banuh Rabbah hotel. Tapas bar.

Spanish fir (Abies pinsapo) forest in Sierra Bermeja
DAY 7 | Sierra Bermeja and Sierra de Las Nieves

We will cross the Genal Valley, quite unique for retaining the Mediterranean tradition of polyculture within the forest and visit Sierra Bermeja, a red mountain made of the rare peridotite rock and home to the endemic Spanish fir (Abies pinsapo). Nice panorama over the coast. Our last site is a little-known river located in Costa del Sol, near Marbella, part of Sierra de Las Nieves National Park, which host the highest diversity of aquatic life (dragonflies, fishes), etc. in the region. A variety of habitats will allow for very nice species. Farewell party

Accomodation at Benarrabá: Banuh Rabbah hotel. Farewell party at Kabilah restaurant.

We hope you enjoyed your trip
DAY 8 | Back to the airport

Transfer in the morning in order to be back early and safe. We will stop en route at various view points.