It is surprising to note how, just 10 minutes from the centre of A Coruña, it is possible to see with great ease (at the right time) hundreds of waterbirds. And just twenty minutes driving time away, there are cliffs where dozens of birds breed. Join us on this ride along the Ría do Burgo and Costa de Dexo, two of the most outstanding spaces in the region of As Mariñas.

Bird watching at the city gates

An echo of what was once, the Ría do Burgo maintains, despite the pressure of development and changes in the landscape of its banks since the 1960s, a remarkable diversity of birds, which can be seen with true ease.

This wetland, which is the innermost part of the Ría de A Coruña (itself formed by the estuary of the river Mero) is very close to the city and is well connected.

The routes

Route by car: Faro de Mera - O Temple

BEST TIME

From September to March

DISTANCE

14 Km

DURATION

2 hours

DIFFICULTY

None

COUNCILS

A Coruña, Culleredo, Oleiros

PATH

Faro de Mera - O Temple

Key points on the route:

  1. The route begins at the Mera lighthouse (1); look out for european shag, northern gannet, balearic shearwater and alpine swift.
  2. Next, make your way towards Mera beach (2), where you can spot common scoter and mediterranean gull.
  3. Briefly visit the Mera lagoon (3) to see iberian chiffchaff.
  4. Further south, the bay and the island of Santa Cruz (4) host numerous gulls, such as the mediterranean gull, European herring and great black-backed gulls and sandwich tern. The beaches of Santa Cristina (6) and Bastiagueiro (5) are ideal for watching scoters, and murres -the former- and red-throated and great northern loons -the latter.
  5. After crossing the A Pasaxe bridge and leaving behind O Burgo, the journey leads to the vicinity of the botanical gardens and seafront promenade (7), with the view of the reedbed and intertidal zone of the estuary with abundant waders, gulls and passerines.
  6. While passing the O Burgo bridge (8) look out for mediterranean gull and pied wagtail.
  7. The route ends in O Temple (9), where common house martins and eurasian crag martins can be seen.

 

Route on foot: Canaval - O Seixo Branco point - Dexo - Canaval

BEST TIME

From September to early July

DISTANCE

7 Km

DURATION

2-3 hours on foot

DIFFICULTY

None

COUNCILS

Oleiros

PATH

Canaval - O Seixo Branco point - Dexo - Canaval

Key points on the route:

  1. This is a coastal route that begins in the vicinity of the Canaval point (1), where the permitted area for vehicle access ends. While crossing an area of coastal gorse until the spectacular Seixo Branco (2) look for alpine swift and red-billed chough.
  2. Moving eastward along the coast (3) it is possible to glimpse european shag, common kestrel and northern raven.
  3. Back in the village of Dexo, walk along the edge of a pine forest with abundant thicket (4) in which sardinian warbler and cirl bunting may be found. The route ends by returning to Canaval (5).

Route on foot: Santa Cruz de Liáns island and park (Oleiros)

BEST TIME

From November to March

DISTANCE

2 Km

DURATION

1-2 hours on foot

DIFFICULTY

None

COUNCILS

Oleiros

PATH

Santa Cruz de Liáns island and park (Oleiros)

Key points on the route:

  1. This is a brief route that starts from the Luis Seoane park (1), where mediterranean gull and iberian chiffchaff can be seen.
  2. Continue along the seafront promenade next to the intertidal zone (2) to see mediterranean gull, european herring gull, great black-backed gull and sandwich tern.
  3. On reaching a wooden bridge leading to the island of O Castelo and Santa Cruz de Lians (3) look out for firecrest and watch the estuary for common scoter and northern gannet.
The birds

From September to May we only have to be aware of the tide (it is best when it is mid-tide and rising) to see species such as the grey plover, dunlin and red knot, common redshank and common greenshank and european whimbrel and eurasian curlew from a short distance. There are not only waders: spoonbills, grey herons, egrets and, of course, a large number of mute swans introduced a few years ago in the area are easily see through our binoculars. Kingfishers several species of gulls, sandwich terns and, occasionally, ducks and an occasional razorbill round off the estuary's cast of waterbirds. The land birds include the eurasian rock pipit, western yellow wagtail and migrating bluethroat. Going north past the town of Mera, watchers can also see cliff birds: european shaqs, kestrels, alpine swifts and red-billed choughs, all inhabitants of the Costa de Dexo.

Tips and resources
  • Bring suitable footwear (rubber boots or waterproof shoes) in autumn and winter.

  • Use of a telescope is recommended for watching waterbirds.

  • Only travel on trails and do not trespass on farm land.

Arriba