Published: July 27th 2004July 27th 2004
My photos of insects were better than those of the birds - easier to get close.
Around Burgas are some of the most important wetlands in the world. Migrating species of many birds, travelling to Africa from Northern Europe (and Russia) follow the strip of land down to Turkey and then on through the Middle East and into Africa.
Collectively known as the Burgas Lakes, they're actually seperate areas within 10 or so kilometers of the city. Sara and I visited the PODA Protected Area, which is the easiest for the backpacker to visit (has a visitor centre) and close to the city. The Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds manages the area and welcomes visitors. We only had a few hours at the centre but with the aid of binoculars lent to us from the visitors centre we saw, cormorants, herons, waders, swans, terns, ducks, coots and many types of gull.
The nice guys who run the PODA conservation center lent us binoculars and showed us lots of things through telescopes, such as cormorant and tern chicks.
We spent time walking around the area (on the dry bits) as well. The area is full of insect life (dragonflies, butterflies) and lizards. The best views of the birds were from the roof of
Several platforms had been created to allow the birds to breed.
the visitors centre. How to get there:
It is possible to get to the PODA conservation centre via local buses, but working out the time tables and stops was tricky - we cheated and got a taxi there and a bus back. The centre is on the left side of the E-87 Burgas/Sozopol highway, with a bus stop within 400m of the entrance. Contact:
NCC Poda/BSPB, tel. +359 (0)56 850 540/541 for more information. Reprinted:
A version of this journal was printed in Issue 1 of Quest Bulgaria
There are more photos below