France is such an easy choice for Brits if you’re looking for a big dose of culture without having to venture too far. Already seen the Eiffel Tower and the lavender fields of Provence? Why not do some wildlife spotting in Camargue and check out their flamingos?
France’s flocking flamingos
If getting off the usual French tourist trail is a top priority, then Camargue is a perfect destination. While everyone is toasting on the Côte d’Azur, you can be spotting the country’s flamingos preening in the nearby marches in the Camargue Nature Park. This corner of southern France is a haven for wildlife, especially for flamingoes that flock by the hundreds in the Pont de Gau bird park.
The park is home to the “greater” flamingo, officially Phoenicopterus Roseus, which is very big and very pink!
The Camargue is about a half hour drive from the southern city of Arles. It’s best to hire a car in France to explore this part of Provence. The areas shallow lagoons attraction thousands of flamingos every year and is one of the most important wetland sites in all of Europe. The park itself is protected by the French government for its salt fields, rice farms and swamps, making it perfect bird watching territory.
Best time to visit
The thing about flamingos is that they don’t like to breed unless there are surrounded by a whole lot of other flamingos which brings us to the point that the best time to see a lot of flamingoes in one place is when love is in the air and breeding season arrives. In Camargue that’s winter, sometime between November and March, ideally January and February. As for time of day, head to the park at sunset to see the flamingos en masse take off in flight.
What’s your favourite part of France to visit? Planning any road trips this summer?