Fayoum is a paradise for bird lovers, with its diverse ecosystem attracting a variety of migratory birds throughout the year. Bird watching tours in Fayoum offer visitors a unique opportunity to explore this stunning region and observe its feathered inhabitants in their natural habitat. From the shores of Qarun Lake to the desert oasis of Wadi El Rayan, there are numerous sites to visit and species to discover.
Bird watching in Fayoum has its special charm and meaning. Fayoum is a great destination for bird watching enthusiasts, with its diverse wetlands, desert habitats, and agricultural areas attracting a wide range of bird species. Whether you're an experienced birder or a novice, Fayoum offers plenty of opportunities to observe and appreciate the region's diverse bird life. Some of the most popular spots for bird watching in Fayoum include:
- Qarun Lake Nature Reserve is a large saltwater lake of international importance and is home to a variety of waterbirds, including flamingos, great crested grebes, and cormorants. The Qarun lake protected area in the Fayoum oasis, one of Egypt’s richest and most treasured natural landmarks. Almost half of Egypt’s 431 bird species have been sighted and recorded at one point or another at Lake Qarun, a vital wintering destination for migrating water birds where every birdwatcher’s dream come true! Here you can catch a glimpse of the Flamingos and a White Pelican.
- Wadi El-Rayan protected area is located about 65 km southwest of Fayoum. It consists of two interconnected lakes providing habitat for a range of waterbirds. It's an important habitat for many bird species, including the black-winged stilt, the white pelican, the little grebe, the red-necked phalarope, and the western marsh harrier.
- Tunis Village agricultural area is known for its fruit orchards, which attract a variety of bird species, including hoopoes, bee-eaters, and yellow wagtails. This small oasis surrounded by desert is a great place to see the grey hypocolius, the pale rockfinch, and the desert wheatear, among other species.
- Gabal el Qatrani is a national park and UNESCO World Heritage site known for its fossilized whale skeletons and ancient reptile fossils, but it's also an important habitat for many bird species, including the white-eyed gull, the Eurasian spoonbill, the greater flamingo, and the osprey.
- Mudawara Mountain is an area near Wadi El Rayan where you can see the Sinai rosefinch, the Barbary falcon, and the Egyptian vulture, among other species.
- Lake Moeris is a bit farther from Fayoum, but it's worth the trip for the bird watching opportunities. Look out for species such as the white pelican, the ruddy shelduck, and the pied avocet.
The best time to watch birds in Fayoum is during the winter months, from November to February. This is when many migratory bird species arrive in the area to escape the colder weather in Europe and Asia. During this time, you can expect to see a wide variety of bird species, including waterfowl, waders, raptors, and passerines. Local guides advise to start birding tours from September. The best birds watching tours to Fayoum can be done from the end of October until the end of March.
In addition to the winter months, spring (March to May) is also a good time to watch birds in Fayoum, as many resident bird species begin breeding during this time. The weather during spring is also mild and pleasant, making it a great time to explore the outdoors.
It's important to note that some bird species are more active during the early morning and late afternoon, so it's best to plan your bird watching activities around these times.
Fayoum is home to a wide variety of bird species, both resident and migratory. Here are some of the birds you can watch in Fayoum:
Waterfowl: White pelican, great cormorant, pygmy cormorant, ruddy shelduck, garganey, northern shoveler, common pochard, ferruginous duck.
Waders: Black-winged stilt, pied avocet, common redshank, marsh sandpiper, common greenshank, wood sandpiper, little stint, curlew sandpiper.
Raptors: Western marsh harrier, osprey, Barbary falcon, Bonelli's eagle, steppe eagle, Eurasian kestrel, Egyptian vulture.
Passerines: Grey hypocolius, desert wheatear, Eurasian stonechat, black-eared wheatear, western yellow wagtail, red-throated pipit, tree pipit, yellow-breasted bunting.
Others: Greater flamingo, black-necked grebe, white-eyed gull, Slender-billed gull, common tern, little grebe, red-necked phalarope.
These are just some of the bird species you can see in Fayoum. The exact species you'll see depend on the time of year you visit and the specific areas you explore.
As for the types of bird watching tours you can experience in Fayoum we can divide them into 3 options:
- Fayoum half day bird watching tour from Cairo. It takes 4 hours and you explore two places at Lake Qarun.
- Fayoum one day bird watching tour. During the day you explore 6 places, 4 in Qarun Lake Nature Reserve and two in Wadi El-Rayan protected area.
- Multi-day tours like Cairo to Fayoum 3 day bird watching tour. You can choose between two or three day tours to Fayoum oasis for birds watching activities to explore more areas.