1-day Cape Peninsula and False Bay Birding Tour
This tour will give you a chance to see some of the Cape’s best scenery while taking in some of its best birds as well, like Orange-bellied Sunbird, Knysna Warbler, and Victorin’s Warbler.
The below is just a rough guide, and since this is run as a private 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.
We start the day at the famous Kirstenbosch Botanical Gardens. Here it is quite easy to find some important fynbos endemics such as Orange-breasted Sunbird and Cape Sugarbird. Other fine birds such as Cape Spurfowl, Southern Boubou, Cape Canary, Brimstone Canary, Cape Rock Thrush, Cape Robin-Chat, Karoo Prinia, Swee Waxbill (with luck), and a whole host of other excellent birds abound. European Honey Buzzard, a very rare bird in South Africa, is actually regular at Kirstenbosch in late summer. Many other raptors are possible in the gardens and at other sites we will visit during our Peninsula day trip – including Verreaux’s (Black)Eagle, several exciting accipiters, Jackal Buzzard (endemic), Forest Buzzard(endemic), Peregrine Falcon, Rock Kestrel, and others.
Then we embark on 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 see. En route we may observe southern right whales and other marine mammals close inshore. After a 1-hour drive we will reach the village of Rooiels, famous for Cape Rockjumper. While looking for the rockjumper, we also hope to find Cape Siskin, Orange-breasted Sunbird, Malachite Sunbird, Cape Rock Thrush, possibly Sentinel Rock Thrush, Ground Woodpecker, Verreaux’s Eagle, Rock Kestrel, and many others.
Finally, we will start heading back to Cape Town, but we will stop en route at Strandfontein Bird Sanctuary. Here, we should see wildfowl such as Cape Teal, Maccoa Duck and many others, Greater Flamingo, Great White Pelican, African Black Oystercatcher, Purple Swamphen, three grebe species, shorebirds, African Marsh Harrier, a host of heron species, four species of reed-associated warbler, Cape Bulbul, Karoo Prinia, and many more. Time permitting, we can visit Cape Point or other sites on the Cape peninsula (see Cape Peninsula Birding Tour – 1 day), but we will probably be too short of time.
Then we will continue driving beyond Rooiels 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 breeding cormorant among the penguins – two species are endemics. We can visit the nearby Harold Porter Botanical Gardens, hoping for another localized fynbos endemic, Victorin’s Warbler, along with Cape Canary, Brimstone Canary, Cape Batis, Black Saw-wing, African Paradise Flycatcher (summer), Swee Waxbill,and (as usual) so many others.
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.