A World Class Bird Sanctuary
Birds of Eden is the biggest free flight aviary in the world, and home to over three thousand exotic and indigenous birds.
Explore the beautiful indigenous forest that the sanctuary encompasses, taking in the incredible wildlife and enjoying close-up encounters with the birds. The mission of Birds of Eden is to educate the public about the birds and the dangers of keeping both indigenous and exotic birds as pets. The award-winning bird sanctuary provides a forever home where previously caged birds can live a life of free-flight in a habitat as large and natural as is possible, as well as providing an extraordinary experience for their guests, who can walk through the beautiful grounds at their own leisure. Discover the tranquility and beauty of the world’s largest bird sanctuary and all that it has to offer.
Petting/touching of the wildlife is not permitted Although tours are self-guided, guides are available, free of charge. However, if a guide is required, please book in advance.
The tour of the sanctuary is self-guided, and therefore guests may move through the sanctuary at their own pace
All guests are welcome
Don't forget to bring along a camera
Monday to Sunday
08h00 - 17h00
Click to See Additional Info on this Adventure
Birds of Eden opened in December 2005 and is the largest free-flight single dome aviary in the world. The sanctuary encompasses 2.3ha of partly forested land, covered by a 3.2ha mesh and criss-crossed by a 1.2km walkway, which visitors may explore at their own pace.
The aviary’s highest point is approximately 55m since the terrain includes a deep gorge with a waterfall, thus allowing ample flying space for its winged inhabitants. The sanctuary is home to over 3,500 birds of around 280 species, as well as many other animals such as golden-handed tamarins, bush babies, giant bats and the indigenous blou duiker bush buck.
The feathered inhabitants of the aviary are comprised of a mixture of exotic, as well as African birds. This includes previously caged pets, hand reared and imprinted individuals, which in turn explains why some of our inhabitants, mainly being the parrots, (of which we have 60 different species) are unafraid of human beings and seemingly tame. All new arrivals at Birds of Eden go through a process of rehabilitation before their final release into the main aviary. Most of the birds that arrive at Birds of Eden have a history of being caged in small environments.
Many of the birds we home have never encountered other birds. Therefore the main rehabilitation process involves socialization with other birds in large outdoor pre-release aviaries. Here they are given the chance to build up flight muscles, flight control (i.e. practicing landings, change of direction etc.) The rest of the release process is based on instinct and it is rather remarkable – all the birds instinctively know which area of the aviary suits their needs, how and where to look for, and find food, water and shelter from the weather. Species recognition is generally immediate. Releasing new birds into the main aviary immediately without them going through rehabilitation would be tantamount to running a marathon without any training.
Birds of Eden is totally self-sustaining because of its visitors. Every paying guest that enters the bird sanctuary directly sustains Birds of Eden. The funds that Birds of Eden manage to save, after expenses, enable them to develop further wildlife sanctuaries.
Birds of Eden, Plettenberg Bay
Directions from Cape Town’s side
Monkeyland (an associated sanctuary with Birds of Eden) is situated about 150km from Mossel Bay and about 50km from Knysna. The exact location is The Crags, which is 16km east from Plettenberg Bay. Simply take the N2, pass Knysna, pass Plettenberg Bay and continue past Keurboomstrand on to The Crags. You will notice a Monkeyland sign on the N2, near the BP Garage (the Garage is also known as the Garden Route Superrette). Take the turn-off (on the right) at this BP Garage and follow the Monkeyland signs for a further 2km. We are situated 2km off the N2, and the tarred road is well signed.
Directions from Port Elizabeth’s side
Monkeyland (an associated sanctuary with Birds of Eden) is situated about 240km from PE (on the N2) the ocean), pass the Nature’s Valley turn-off (about 16km from the toll gate), continue a further 500 meters on the N2 and turn to your left at the Monkeyland sign. Follow the signs for 2km on the tarred road.
S 33° 57' 41.094" E 23° 29' 0.837"