1-day Cape Mountains and Fynbos Birding Tour

Tour Costs

Price: R6,000 / $342 / £269 / €315 for one person, then R500 / $28 / £22 / €26 per extra person sharing

Single Supplement: n/a

Recommended Field Guide

(Please also read our blogs about recommended field guides for the seven continents here)

Tour Details

Duration: 1 day
Tour start: Cape Town
Tour end: Cape Town

Price includes:

Guiding fees
Vehicle rental and fuel
Entrance fees
A light lunch (a sit-down restaurant meal would be for your account)

Price excludes:

Breakfast and dinner
Incidentals and gifts
Gratuities (please see our tipping guidelines blog)
All flights
Personal insurance

1-day Cape Mountains and Fynbos Birding Tour


This 1-day Mountain and Fynbos birding tour will give you a chance to see some of the Cape’s best scenery while taking in a number of its top birds, including Cape-fynbos endemics like Cape RockjumperOrange-breasted Sunbird, Cape Sugarbird, Cape Siskin, and Victorin’s Warbler. The Cape’s unique fynbos (one of the world’s six floristic kingdoms) has an amazing diversity of endemic plant species and because of this several bird species are endemic to the fynbos. This Cape Town birding tour targets many of these Cape endemics and takes in some spectacular scenery along the way. We recommend this Mountain and Fynbos birding tour if you are after some of the Cape’s charismatic and better-known endemic bird species, in particular Cape Rockjumper and Cape Sugarbird.

Cape Mountains and Fynbos birding tourCape Rockjumper should be seen in the Cape Fold Mountains near Betty’s Bay.


The below is just a rough guide, and since this is run as a private birding tour it is completely flexible. Also, we try to fit a lot in today, so please be aware that all of it is time-permitting.

Our Mountain and Fynbos birding tour starts with one of the most beautiful coastal drives anywhere, first along a long, white, sandy beach, then along a rocky coastline where high Cape Fold mountains come right down to the sea. En route we may observe Southern Right Whales (winter) and other marine mammals close inshore. After a one-hour drive we will reach the village of Rooi Els, famous for hosting Cape Rockjumper. While looking for the rockjumper we also hope to find Cape Siskin, Orange-breasted Sunbird, Malachite Sunbird, Cape Rock Thrush, Neddicky, Ground Woodpecker, and Cape Grassbird. Sentinel Rock Thrush may be seen in winter and spring only. We will keep a lookout overhead for raptors which breed nearby, such as Verreaux’s Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, Jackal Buzzard, and Rock Kestrel. In the nearby scrub we should find Yellow Bishop, Cape Sugarbird, Cape Bulbul, Grey-backed Cisticola, and Karoo Prinia.

Cape Mountains and Fynbos birding tourCape Sugarbird, a Cape fynbos endemic.


We will then continue driving beyond Rooi Els for about 20 minutes to the beautiful coastal village of Betty’s Bay. Here we can observe one of only three mainland African Penguin colonies, and we will also get good views of four species of Cormorants (Bank, Cape, Crowned, and White-breasted), of which one species is endemic.

Cape Mountain and Fynbos birding tourWe will visit an African Penguin colony in Betty’s Bay.


We next visit the nearby Harold Porter National Botanical Garden, hoping for another localized fynbos endemic, Victorin’s Warbler, along with Cape and Brimstone Canaries, Cape Spurfowl, Cape Batis, Cape Bulbul, Cape Robin-Chat, Fiscal Flycatcher, Southern Boubou, Black Saw-wing, African Paradise Flycatcher (summer), Southern Double-collared Sunbird, Swee Waxbill, and, as usual, so many others. Blue-mantled Crested Flycatcher and Olive Woodpecker both occur; but they are low in densities.

Fynbos Buttonquail does occur nearby; however, it is notoriously difficult to see and requires a lot of walking through tough habitat. Therefore, we do not normally try for this species on this Cape Town birding tour; however, if you are particularly interested in the buttonquail we can of course try for it. The same applies for Striped Flufftail (another notorious skulker!), which is possible to find in the area (August – October only) but requires a lot of time and dedication.

Finally, we will start heading back to Cape Town. But, depending on time, we might stop en route at Strandfontein Bird Sanctuary. Here we should see wildfowl such as Cape, Red-billed, and Blue-billed Teals, Cape Shoveler, Maccoa Duck, Southern Pochard, and many others. Common waterbirds include Greater and Lesser Flamingos, Great White Pelican, African Oystercatcher, African Swamphen, Great Crested and Black-necked Grebes, various shorebirds, and African Marsh Harrier, as well as Little Rush and Lesser Swamp Warblers. In the surrounding scrub we may find Cape Bulbul, Karoo Prinia, Cape Longclaw, and many more. The Eucalyptus stands occasionally host Black and Rufous-breasted Sparrowhawks, while Peregrine Falcon is occasionally seen harassing unsuspecting waterbirds.

The guide for day trips is allocated only after you have booked, as all of them are run as private trips. But we always use the country’s top birding guides.

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