Norte

Little Owl Athene noctua ©Nigel Blake Website
Birding Norte

Região Norte (North Region), is one of the five mainland regions and is, as the name implies in the northern part of Portugal. Its capital is the city of Porto. The region has over four million inhabitants more than any other region. Northern Portugal is a mountainous areas. Its peaks known as serras include Serra do Gerês (1544 m), Peneda (1416 m), Marão (1415 m) and Soajo (1415 m). Some of these areas include the three largest natural parks: the Peneda-Gerês National Park, Montesinho Natural Park, and the Alvão Natural Park.

The coast (Costa Verde) is a flat strip of land enclosed by sandy beaches to the west and and hills to the east, the largest of which is the coastal plain between the Cávado and the Ave rivers. The area is known for the long stretch of picturesque sand dunes which accumulated during the Little Ice Age, part of which is protected in the Northern Littoral Natural Park.The Minho, Lima, Neiva, Cávado, Ave and the Douro are the most preeminent rivers flowing into the Atlantic Ocean. Inland, the Tâmega is a major tributary which empties into the Douro river. The Douro is one of the most important rivers in the Iberian Peninsula. The Minho river marks the northwestern Portuguese-Spanish border and is the second most important river.

There are four World Heritage Sites: the Alto Douro Wine Region, the Prehistoric Rock-Art Sites in the Côa Valley, the Porto historical Center and the Guimarães historical Center. Throughout the region the rivers, waterfalls, vineyards and fertile plots combine with the ancestral monuments in urban centres.

Contributors
Useful Reading

  • Books, CDs etc

    See the Fatbirder Portugal page for fieldguies etc. to Portugal or the Iberian penninsular as a whole ISBN: Buy this book from NHBS.com
Guides & Tour Operators


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  • Rotas da Terra

    Tour Operator
    Apresentamo-vos a Rotas da Terra Lda. Somos a mais antiga empresa de animação turística do Alto Tâmega e Barroso, fundada com o propósito de vos ajudar a descobrir Trás-os-Montes. Sedeados em Chaves, desenvolvemos actividades em todo Trás-os-Montes, Galiza e Parque Nacional Peneda-Gerês…
Trip Reports


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  • 2013 [10 October] - Steve Flynn - North Portugal & Bay of Biscay

    Report
    …I had the opportunity to visit Portugal which involved driving a van to the Algarve for an event run by my family’s business and as a reward I had an expenses paid opportunity to stay on for two or three days to do some birding, which I accepted without hesitation. I was away for seven days and include below the sightings from the non-birding days, because, well there is no such thing as a bird-free day if you’re a birder is there?…
  • 2015 [06 June] - Chris Durdin

    PDF Report
    ...It was superb for birds: turtle dove, subalpine warbler, hoopoe, Bonelli’s warbler and golden oriole calling. An Egyptian vulture surprised Domingos: not because it’s unusual but as we’d seen this species before griffon vulture, as well as seeing Bonelli’s eagle before golden eagle.
  • 2016 [05 May] - Rob Macklin

    PDF Report
    Birds just kept on turning up as a woodlark sang in full view from overhead telephone wires and was joined in song by our first Thekla lark. Three golden orioles were singing and giving us brief views, a woodchat shrike sat atop a dead branch out in the open, a green woodpecker called, a quail sang ‘wet-my-lips’ from the herbage, a cuckoo flew over and our first Iberian grey shrike hunted for insects over the scrub.

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