When it comes to wildlife, the first thought that crosses the minds of most of us is – African Safaris. While Africa is indeed the hot spot for wildlife lovers, Europe too is an excellent destination for those seeking new adventures in the bush.
Some of the big beasts you can spot in Europe include bison, wolves, bears, and whales. This pretty much proves that you can have exciting action packed wildlife destination in Europe as well.
Get ready to unravel the European wildlife drama this year and explore wildlife holidays in and around Europe. There is plenty of adventure and excitement that awaits you in this beautiful continent that boasts of an impressive share of flora and fauna.
Several amazing wildlife species can be found in outstanding habitats that cover deep deciduous forests, wide spread-out steppe, massive wetlands, and charming alpine meadows. You can look forward to enthralling encounters with Iberian Lynx and Wolves in Spain; Polar Bears in Spitsbergen or Whales in the Azores, among others.
Here are some of the leading destinations that make for an excellent choice to enjoy wildlife in Europe.
Spain – For Mammals such as Wolf, Brown Bear, and Lynx
Spain, the second largest country in Europe, boasts of a variety of flora and fauna. Here, you would come across interesting wild animals like wolf, bear, and lynx along with a wide variety of bird species such as raptors, sandgrouse, wallcreeper, lark, and many more. All of this comes with the backdrop of the most spectacular scenery filed with birds, plants, and exotic butterflies.
Finland – For European Brown Bears, Reindeer and Northern Birds
Finland, located on the western edge of the massive Siberian taiga forest is made of thousands of lakes and islands. The taiga forest and ferns cover the mostly flat land of Finland which is sparsely populated. Take a wildlife holiday break in Finland to enjoy its resident birds such as woodpeckers and crossbills. Other attractions include Hawk Owls, Ural, Eagle, and Great Grey. Visit the Oulanka National Park to see Reindeer & Elk. Parrots and pine grosbeak are popular northern birds as well found here.
Greece – For a Wealth of Waterbirds and Butterflies
Greece is made of unspoiled habitats that are rich with unique flora and fauna. The picturesque regions boast of high diversity of wildlife and nature; made of alpine meadows and forested slopes that are home to some unique species. You can enjoy spotting a large number of birds in the wetlands in Greece like Purple Herons, Squacco Herons, Little Bitterns and more. This is your chance to spot well over fifty species of butterflies, and some famous names include Clouded Yellows, Black-veined Whites & Grecian Copper. Don’t forget your zoom lens and high powered binoculars to capture them in all of their natural beauty.
Germany – For Wildlife Flowers and Butterflies
Germany is famous for its unforgettable mountain scenery with stunning views and has a very strong identity of its own. If you love watching birds and butterflies, head for the southernmost region of Germany where you can spot wildflowers as well. There is a vast variety of birds such as Golden Eagle, Hazelhen & Capercaillie and wildflowers like White & Red Helleborines plus Lady’s Slipper Orchid that add to the colourful identity of the region. Martagon Lily & Whorled Solomon’s Seal are among the most popular flowers and lots of colourful butterflies flutter around all the time. Konigssee and Mount Weizmann are very popular among tourists who visit the Berchtesgaden National Park.
Romania – For Brown Bears and Birds
Romania lies amidst shallow lakes and forested islands and is just a short distance from the mouth of the river Danube. The wetland area that spreads across 3,000 square kilometres boasts of a rich diversity of wildlife. The most valuable habitat is home to Cormorants, Night Herons, Squacco Herons, Purple Herons & Glossy Ibis. You will come across nesting populations of Great White Egrets, White Pelicans, and Dalmatian. You can also spot Brown Bears on Carpathian hillsides as well as ducks, terns & geese, Grebes plus White-tailed Eagles and can explore the region on foot or by boat.
Poland – For Bison, Wolf, and Lynx
Poland may be one of the most underdeveloped regions of Europe but doesn’t fall short when it comes to exploring wildlife. It is home to some of the most important habitats globally that are teeming with birds, insects, and mammals. Some of the notable attractions include European Bison, Wolf, Lynx, and other added attractions are the wonderful species of European woodpecker. Explore the region that is made of huge seasonal marshes and forests.
Austria – For Wild Flowers, Ground Squirrel and Great White Egrets
The landlocked country of central Europe, Austria is mountainous and rich in natural and cultural diversity. The lowland regions are home to diverse flora and a wide variety of bird and insect life. What is so special about the wildlife in Austria are its wildflowers species such as wetland orchids, Siberian Blue Iris, and Austrian Sage. You can also spot dragonflies, butterflies, and exciting species like Fire-bellied Toads. Other highlights include Black-necked Grebes, Little & Spotted Crakes plus Great White Egrets.
Scotland – For Pine Marten, Mountain Hare and Scottish Wildcat
Scotland is indeed one of the most popular spots in Europe for wildlife holidays. The region is made of a vast array of diverse habitats like lakes, forests, and mountains. Along with enjoying those breathtaking sunsets and glorious beaches, get ready to enjoy exciting wildlife holidays in Scotland that is home to some of the most iconic bird and mammal species. There is plenty of wildlife watching to do here in the rugged peninsulas and forests of Scotland that are home to Red Roe, Mountain Hare and Sika Deer. Along the west coast, you can watch a variety of whale and dolphin species. Other attractions include spring bird migrations and gatherings of waterfowl in winter.
Italy – For Alpine Ibex, Flora and Fauna
Italy makes for a fantastic destination for mammals thanks to Umbria & Italian Alps plus the Italian Dolomites. Get ready for exciting wildlife holidays and spotting flora, birds & butterflies. Visit Abruzzo National Park to spot brown bears, wild boar, wolves, and butterflies. You can also take wonderful mountain walks in the mountainous landscape of Alps, Dolomites and Apennines and the beautiful Lake Como and Lake Maggiore. Enjoy spotting Alpine ibex population in the national park of the Gran Paradiso as well as other species such as golden eagles, Eurasian badger, and black woodpeckers. Landscape & wildlife photographers love coming to Italy because of its diverse flora and fauna and picture postcard views.
Although there are many more regions and spots in Europe to explore the wildlife, the above listed are the most popular and most-visited destinations in Europe for wildlife and nature lovers.