The Danube valley in Austria between the cities of Melk and Krems in Lower Austria is called the Wachau. The Wachau valley is famous for its high-quality wines, but also a nice area for birding. Cirl Bunting, Rock Bunting, Wood Lark and European Bee-eater are just some of the species you can see there. Other nice birds are Golden Oriole, Hoopoe, Wryneck, Grey-headed Woodpecker and Red-backed Shrike. See the extended list below. For the complete list of breeding birds you can go to the website of the Ornithologische Arbeitsgemeinschaft Wachau (OAGW), which is the local Consortium which looks after the birds in the Wachau, see the link below. And if you are lucky you will see the beautiful European Green Lizard while you are birding.
You can visit the area with public transport from Vienna very easily. Especially in spring and summer try to avoid driving with your car, where possible, respect nature. Train, bicycle and bus have a good network to explore the Wachau. Don´t miss the famous white wines (Riesling, Grüner Veltliner among others) in different characteristic brands (Steinfeder, Federspiel, Smaragd). There is a very good variety of excellent Restaurants and Heurigen (local wine tavern).
Terrain and HabitatForest, Wetland, Agriculture, Scattered trees and bushes, Valley, River, City/village
ConditionsFlat, Hilly, Dry, Open landscape
Is a telescope useful?No
Good birding seasonAll year round
Best time to visitSpring
Difficulty walking trailEasy
Accessible byFoot, Wheelchair
Birdwatching hide / platformNo
If you need further information visit the website of the OAGW: https://oagw.at. Don´t miss a Smaragd (Riesling or Grüner Veltliner are the best known), it´s the best white-wine-area of the world.
You should also visit Spitz with the famous Tausendeimerberg or Weißenkirchen, if you want to search for White-backed Woodpecker, Collared Flycatcher and other birds of primeval forest-types you can visit the southside of the Wachau with places like Rossatz, and the "Arnsdörfer" (Oberarnsdort, Hofarnsdorf, Mitterarnsdort, Bacharnsdorf).