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Birdwatching walks

Two linnet birds perched on top of the flowering heath at Studland Bay, Dorset
Two linnet birds perched on top of the flowering heath at Studland Bay, Dorset | © National Trust Images/Rob Coleman

The places we care for are home to a wide variety of native and migrant birds, including wildfowl, waders, songbirds and birds of prey. Choose from our selection of walks and combine coastal or countryside scenery with birdwatching opportunities all year round.

Please don't feed waterfowl

Feeding ducks, swans and other waterfowl can be harmful to the birds and may pollute waterways.

Blakeney Freshes, Norfolk
Blakeney Freshes is a popular spot for bird watching. In autumn and winter, large swirling flocks of golden plover move between the harbour and the marshes, while the fields and salt marsh provide grazing for wigeon and dark brent geese from Siberia.Spot birds at Blakeney Point
Lizard Point, Cornwall
Choughs are the national bird of Cornwall, but by the mid-20th century they had vanished from Cornish shores. Your donations allowed us to buy land at Lizard Point and recreate the conditions for choughs to thrive. In 2001, wild choughs were once again sighted on the Lizard and have been breeding here ever since.Spot birds at Lizard Point
Craster to Low Newton, Northumberland
Keep a look out for eider ducks, know locally as Cuddy's ducks, in the sheltered rockpools along this walk. On the shoreline, you might see waders like oystercatchers, dunlins, ringed plovers, turnstones and redshanks. And you can also spot linnets and yellowhammers in the scrub and grassland behind the dunes and castle.Spot birds in Craster and Low Newton
A waxwing sits in branches with red berries and a blue sky
A winter visiting waxwing (Bombycilla garrulus) among hawthorn berries | © National Trust Images/Dougie Holden
Cwm Ivy, Gower
There are lots of birds to spot at Cwm Ivy, including egrets, kingfishers and lapwings. There are two bird hides, which makes this a great place for a day of birdwatching.Spot birds at Cwm Ivy
Calke Abbey, Derbyshire
As well as a grand Baroque mansion, Calke has secret walled gardens and a large parkland, much of which is a National Nature Reserve. You can see birds of prey like hobbies, buzzards and red kites here, particularly in the summer months, along with woodland birds such as woodpeckers, tree creepers, nuthatches, starlings and tits. Autumn visitors include bramblings and siskin finches.Spot birds at Calke Abbey
Souter Lighthouse and the Leas, Tyne and Wear
The Leas and Whitburn Coastal Park are hotspots for migratory birds in the UK. Pay a visit to the bird hide in autumn to see snow buntings, waxwings and dunnocks arriving from the north, as many summer birds depart for places with hotter weather.Spot birds at Souter Lighthouse
Redwing at Stowe, Buckinghamshire
Redwing at Stowe, Buckinghamshire | © National Trust Images/David Humphries
Wicken Fen, Cambridgeshire
This nature reserve is teeming with wildlife, including a wide variety of bird species. In the summer and early autumn there are swallows and martins. As they fly south, migrants such as wigeons, redwings and fieldfares begin to appear, along with hen harriers returning from their summer breeding grounds in northern Britain.Spot birds at Wicken Fen
St Helens Duver, Isle of Wight
You can see brent geese and wigeons at St Helens Duver between October and March, feeding on the eelgrass beds off St Helens Ledges and in the harbour. The area is also important for migrant wading birds such as dunlins, redshanks, sanderlings and turnstones. On the dunes, you may spot common whitethroats, wheatears, chiffchaffs and linnets.Spot birds at St Helens Duver
Tennyson Down, Isle of Wight
The cliffs, fields and high downs around Tennyson Down, and at the Island’s most southerly point near Knowles Farm, are excellent sites for birdwatching. Peregrine falcons and ravens patrol the coast, migrant terns and ducks pass by out at sea and the scrub attracts migrant warblers and chats.Spot birds at Tennyson Down

Top tips for feeding birds safely

Always avoid feeding waterbirds such as ducks and swans. To safely feed garden birds, follow these top tips:

  • Buy accredited bird food from reputable sources

  • Only provide food for a few days/feed in moderation to avoid food going off

  • Keep bird feeders separated so birds aren’t in too close contact

  • Regularly clean and disinfect feeders

  • Wash your hands thoroughly after handling bird feeders/faeces

Our partners

Cotswold Outdoor

We’ve partnered with Cotswold Outdoor to help everyone make the most of their time outdoors in the places we care for.

Visit website 

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