Kent is known as the Garden of England for good reason. With rich farmland, lush wooded areas, marshes and coastal beaches, Kent really has it all. What’s more, all of these areas act as the perfect habitat for many birds. The county of Kent is home to more than 400 species of bird, making it a bird watcher’s paradise. If you’re a keen bird watcher new to the Kent area, coming to visit our county or a Kent resident who would like to start bird watching as a hobby, you’ll want to know which are the top Kent bird watching locations.
We’ve compiled a list of some of Kent’s best locations for bird watching. From woodland forests to coastal nature reserves, there are plenty of fantastic places to observe Kent’s birds in their natural habitat.
Located in southwest Kent, Bedgebury Pinetum has a fascinating history dating back over a thousand years and plays an important role in conserving species of conifer trees. The thickly wooded area is home to many different species of birds, from waders to owls, geese, duck, dove and many more. Some species call Bedgebury home year-round while others visit the woodland area on their seasonal migrations.
Crowd pleasers like the little Owl and the magnificent Mandarin Duck are often sighted, but some rarer species like the bullfinch, garden warbler, spotted flycatcher and Whitethroat can be observed at Bedgebury. You can visit their website for more information.
The coastal area of Dungeness boasts numerous species of bird, including those migrating. The Dungeness Bird Observatory offers several different locations for observing birds each offering a slightly different habitat, attracting different types of birds. For example, the Long Pits area are excellent for spotting migrant birds and the Patch is ideal for spotting seabirds.
Gulls and geese are particularly common in the area, but numerous other species can also be spotted including Jack Snipes, sanderlings, whooper swans, wigeons and many more. More details can be found on their website.
Located on the Isle of Sheppey, Elmley National Nature Reserve takes bird watching to another level. Serious bird watchers can even book a shepherd hut to stay the night and make the most of the evening and early morning hours in order to catch a glimpse of various bird species. The Reserve has a number of hides and overlook points where the Swale Estuary and wading pools.
Species that can be glimpsed here are redshanks, kestrels, buzzards, various species of owl and plover, as well as godwits. You can find out more on their website.
Located in East Kent, Sandwich Bay Bird Observatory is a brilliant trust dedicated to conserving the natural environment in the area and the wildlife that calls it home. The Observatory manages several reserves in the area, including Restharrow Scrape, Hares Boz and Restharrow Dunes Nature Reserve. Each of these reserves offers a beautiful habitat for many species of birds.
At Sandwich Bay Bird Observatory there are many birds to be seen, including many species of duck, scoter, mute swans, pink-footed goose, teal, eider and many, many more. More details can be found on their website.