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Bird watching

Latvia is a superb location for bird watching because migration routes cross the country – in autumn many birds are traveling from Scandinavia and northern Russia across Latvia to South Europe, and returning in spring. The country’s location by the sea, its lakes, rivers, forests and floodlands make it a good dwelling place for many species of migratory birds.

In Latvia one can observe not only broadly common birds like woodpeckers and tits, but also exotic birds. The great white pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus) has been spotted on a multi-apartment building in Latvia’s north-western Ventspils city, and the cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus) has also visited Latvia, as well as other rare birds.

Bird watching sites

One of the best bird watching sites is Pape in Kurzeme seashore, 40 kilometers from Liepaja, where there is an ornithological field station.

Swans, bitterns, marsh harriers, common kestrels, different kinds of warblers can be watched there. You may be lucky to see such rare birds as the northern gannet or the Leach’s storm-petrel.

Kolka Cape, Mersrags Cape and Salacgriva are the best locations to watch sea birds. Many interesting water birds can be observed by:

  • Zebrus Lake by Dobele,
  • Engure Lake,
  • Kanieris Lake,
  • Satini ponds by Saldus,
  • Nagli fishery ponds by Lubana Lake.

In order to watch birds, you even don’t have to go far from Riga. Many birds can be watched by Mangalsala Breakwater – Riga Sea Gate, where the Daugava River flows into the sea, and the National Botanical Garden in Salaspils.

Bird watching excursions

The Latvian Ornithological Society every year is organizing free-of-charge excursions and even competitions. Interesting excursions are offered also by the society’s company -

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