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Take a Cycle on the Wild Side

Posted 18 Apr 2019

Sir David Attenborough’s new nature documentary ‘Our Planet’ lets us experience watching the planet’s beautiful (and occasionally terrifying) wildlife from the safety of our homes. However, what if we told you that you don’t need to travel all the way to the savannahs of Africa or the tundras of the Arctic to see amazing wildlife? Here are some of the wonderful animals you can see on our European cycling tours.

Camargue horses and flamingoes

Camargue horses and pink flamingoes - Provence, France

The Camargue National Park is just east of Arles; it is a vast plain made up of large lagoons, reed-covered marshes and sandbars. The national park is a haven for over 500 different types of bird, wild bulls and the famous Camargue horses. One particular bird that frequents the lagoons of the national park is the great pink flamingo. Huge colonies of pink flamingoes are known to flock to the islands to nest and feed on the naturally rich land. You can watch the flamingoes and horses from the many nature-watching towers set up around the national park.

Starry Nights in Provence Self Guided Cycling Tour

Brown bears

Brown bears and Balkan lynx - Lovćen National Park, Montenegro

Montenegro, or ‘Black Mountain’, is a perfect destination for outdoor and nature enthusiasts. The terrain around Lovćen National Park and Lake Skadar is extremely varied with lush woodlands, wide plains, steep mountains; all blessed with an abundance of wildlife. One animal that you should look out for, which may come as a surprise to some, is the brown bear, preferably viewed from a safe distance. Montenegro is also home to Europe’s largest cat, the Balkan lynx, although, seeing the animal is extremely rare. If you enjoy birdwatching, golden eagles and peregrine falcons are also a common sight.

Coastal Montenegro Guided Cycling Tour

beavers

Beavers and boars - Loire Valley, France

The Loire Valley, set deep in the heart of France, is filled with incredibly lush flora. The Loire is also home to an abundance of species of animals including an array of amphibians, reptiles, wild boar and even bushy-tailed wildcats. One animal that you might see as you’re pedalling alongside the river is the wild beaver. Beavers are thriving in the Loire Valley, especially around the Chaumont Sur Loire area, and seeing them hard at work building dams can be easy if you keep your eyes peeled for their natural structures.

Rivers of the Loire Self-Guided Cycling tour

Chameleon

Birds and reptiles - The Algarve, Portugal

Birdwatching in the Algarve is becoming increasingly popular; the region is home to over 380 different species of birds ranging from seabirds and ducks to large birds of prey and even flamingoes. The region is well known for its naturally rich biomes, from wetlands to woodlands, that attract a variety of animals. If amphibians and reptiles interest you, and if you’re lucky enough, you might catch a glimpse of a European chameleon, terrapin or an Eyed-lizard.

Coastal Cycling in the Algarve Self Guided Cycling tour

wolf

Wolves, birds and bears - Triglavski National Park, Slovenia

The Julian Alps in northeastern Slovenia is home to lots of diverse wildlife. Our Essence of Slovenia tour takes you deep into the Triglavski National Park where you can stop to watch some of the incredible fauna here. Aside from a plethora of species of deers, squirrels and birds, you may also be lucky enough to spot a Slovenian brown bear or a pack of wolves; both of which regularly roam the forests and are still in good numbers.

Essence of Slovenia Self Guided Cycling Tour

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