Planning Your Birdwatching Tour in Nepal
Nepal’s rich avian diversity has made it a popular destination for birdwatching. With a record of over 890 bird species within the territory, Nepal is home to a wide variety of bird habitats, be it common or rare. Not only that, Nepal is situated in between a major bird migration route and hence, has been developed widely for birdwatching tourism.
If you are planning a birdwatching tour in Nepal, it is definitely a good idea. Nepal is a natural home to a range of wildlife and birds. You will be able to find the best birding spots and even get a chance to see rare and endangered species of birds like the Red-headed vulture, Himalayan snow cock, Spiny babbler, and others.
What to Expect on Your Birdwatching Tour in Nepal?
The Birdwatching Tour in Nepal can get exciting if you plan it well. When booking a birdwatching tour package, look for customer reviews and testimonials, and also, plan your tour duration. You can have a more customizable experience if you hire a renowned bird-watching guide.
In Nepal’s expedition, you can find it entertaining to encounter endangered birds like the Himalayan Monal, found in high-altitude forests. You can also gaze at a unique bird Spiny Babbler only found in Nepal in the lowlands, with a long tail and spiny feathers. In the grasslands, you can observe the rare Bengal Florican bird, one of the largest bustards in the world.
- Early mornings and late afternoons are best-suited for bird-watching
- Long walks and hikes to find suitable birding spots
- Expect to view the tranquil ambiance of Nepal
- Delicious cuisines, diverse landscapes, and varieties of birdwatching spots
- Endemic bird like Spiny Babbler, and other rare birds like Satyr Tragopan, Red-faced Liocichla.
Selecting Your Ideal Birdwatching Destinations
Based on your interests, budget, fitness level, and some favorable destinations at that particular time of the year, you can select birdwatching destinations. For your convenience, you have suggested top 5 favorable birding spots in Nepal.
Several birdwatching spots in Nepal like Shivapuri National Park, Nagarjun, Pulchowki, Chitlang, Godawari, Raniban, Toudaha, and Manohara, are emerging as popular ones. Birds like the Red-billed blue magpie, common hill myna, Himalayan bulbul, and Nepal barbet, are found in forests, parks, and lakes in Kathmandu.
2. Chitwan National Park
Chitwan National Park is one of the favorite tourist destinations for birdwatching. Above 543 species of birds, like Asian OpenBill, Black-chinned Yuhina, Blossom-headed Parakeet, grey-crowned prinia, great oriental darter, and other common birds are spotted in Chitwan. Kingfishers, Hornbills, Spiny babblers, and small chirping birds like bitterns add charm to this perfect birdwatching getaway.
3. Bardiya National Park
Bardiya National Park is a popular hub for encountering different bird species. Lesser Florican, Sarus Crane, White-rumped Vulture, and Bengal Florican are some of the most visited birds in these regions. You can trace the bird steps along the Babai River, Badhaiya Lake, Satkhalauwa Lake, and more.
4. Shuklaphanta Wildlife Reserve
With over 424 species of birds recorded within Shuklaphanta Wildlife Reserve, Kanchanpur is a popular destination for birdwatching. Warblers, flycatchers, Swamp Francolin, Grass Owl, Asian woolly neck, and Bengal florican are some most-watched birds in this Far-Western Development region of Nepal.
5. Koshitappu Wildlife Reserve
Koshitappu Wildlife Reserve is home to around 525 species of birds, residents, and migratory all kinds of variants can be spotted in the reserved area. Swamp Francolin, Rofous-vented Grass babbler, and Black-necked Stork, are some of the specialties of this important bird area in Nepal.
5 Tips for Birding Activities
There are certain things to consider before you opt for a birdwatching tour in Nepal, for leading a memorable experience. Below are some useful tips for happy birdwatching:
- Make sure you research the right time for birdwatching in Nepal
- Pack Appropriate gear for the Birdwatching Tour in Nepal
- Hire an experienced and reputed birdwatching tour operator
- Do not disturb the birds in their habitat and be patient during birdwatching
- Nepal has great bird-watching destinations, choose wisely for a unique experience
What to Pack for the BirdWatching Tour in Nepal?
When packing for your favorite birdwatching activity, it is essential for you to stay alert on the time of the year, your clothing essentials, and gear as per altitude changes in Nepal. `From carrying binoculars to getting yourself insect repellent, you should be aware of what you are packing. Some of the essentials you need to pack are as follows:
Comfortable seasonal clothing and shoes
You need to pack all those comfortable and seasonal pairs of clothes and shoes you might need on your war to birdwatching tour in Nepal. Make sure these essential items are breathable options and provide support and traction to your long hour of walks.
Binocular and Camera
Binoculars and a Camera are essential tools that you will need to captivate the birds. Binoculars magnify vision while the zoom lens in a Camera allows you to take photos and record from a distance without disturbing birds.
Snacks are something you cannot miss out on to recharge yourself through challenging times on a birdwatching tour in Nepal. Staying hydrated is equally important to keep yourself moving. Carrying nutrient-rich snacks like canned nuts, dried fruits, and energy bars are easy to eat and also, help you attain stable conditions when you face energy low and deficiency during an outdoor adventure.
First-aid kit and other essentials
Including medicines in your backpack that you may need on this journey is suggested. You will be prepared for emergencies, and treat minor injuries, and illness with a basic first aid kit and skills, which will prevent you from panicking at times as such. A thermometer, tweezers, bandages, antiseptic wipes, allergy medication, and pain relievers are essential to pack.
Also, getting insect repellent, sunscreen, hat, and sunglasses to protect yourself would help you. Rain gear, a bird feeder, a tripod for the camera, a notebook pen, and insect repellent are effective for having a smooth experience.
When to Find Seasonal Migratory Birds in Nepal?
If you are unaware of when to go birdwatching? Let us tell you that the best time to visit Nepal for birdwatching is during the spring and fall migration seasons. Millions of birds pass through Nepal to their breeding or wintering grounds during these times.
1. Spring Migration Season:
From March to May is the spring migration season for birds in Nepal. During these times, you can observe birds like Indian peafowl, lesser florican, and the red-headed vulture, which migrates to breed in Nepal.
2. Fall Migration Season
Fall migration season between December to February is an ideal time when you can see birds from cold places moving to Nepal for warmth. Those birds that are evident during this time are ferruginous duck, common crane, white-fronted goose, black-necked stork, and others.
Despite these seasons being the best time to see wild varieties and species of birds, other times are also fine if you want to explore the avian diversity in Nepal.
Birdwatching tours in Nepal can be an extraordinary and memorable experience for bird lovers. Exploring the country’s rich avian diversity can be exciting for nature enthusiasts. Bird behavior, their natural and migrational habitats, serene lakeside, and birdwatching adventure all complete your memorable experience. By immersing yourself in the diverse landscape and culture, you can captivate the view of endemic birds, rare species, and common birds in Nepal. All in all, Nepal is a well-known bird sanctuary in Nepal.