Evros Delta: An ecotouristic glance!

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Evros Delta: An ecotouristic glance!

A Dalmatian Pelican floats downwind over the Drana Lagoon in the Greek part of the Evros Delta; distant hills in Turkey.
May 8, 2014

My friends Maria-Daphne and Theodora and I visited Delta Evros after our ferry ride from Samothrace...just before my flight from nearby Alexandroupolis to Athens. It was a windy, foggy day, not for photography. The west side of the Greek Delta is only 20 minutes from Alexandroupolis Airport; an appeal to all who wish to see this legendary national wetland park. Since the girls are fairly new to birds, I thought I'd share one of my favorite spots with them.

We first stopped at the Evros Delta Tourist Center where we met Eleni Makrigianni, who has worked here for many years in the conservation field. We enjoyed this place - admiring the artistic and interpretive work of my friend Vassilis Hatsirvassanis. In fact, this center was the first center we collaborated with in 1999 (this project was developed by OM EPE and OIKOS LLC for the Ministry of Environmental Protection).

We then took the one hour drive to Delta (yes, right before my flight...). You can't "see" Delta in an hour. This is one of our largest wetlands, situated on the rugged border with Turkey. But I want to take the girls to Drana Lagoon and promise the flamingos...

After all, we have a few birds, not so many in the wild winds. I counted about 37 species. And we lost. If we didn't use the GPS, we would have stumbled on some narrow roads and had to backtrack a lot to avoid falling into a deep drainage ditch!

We love this quick look.
We even saw a red flying fox and got a closer look at a Greek tortoise. Beautiful wild mute swans, starlings, cormorant chicks and wagging tails. Big bee-eaters, red-backed wax wings and black-headed pregnant, and magnificent black storks. Delta steppe plains - mustard yellow, bright purple milk thistle, wet grassy meadows.

It would be a waste even without the flamingos... and I have to go back to Athens!

Three tips for enjoying the Delta:

one) Please use one of the excellent local neighborhood guides or take a minibus tour (ask at the Loutra Traianoupolis tourist center!).
2) Be sure to try the boat ride.
3) Provide an appropriate time and date - winter, midsummer, fall are best.






















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