Indiana is a fantastic place to go bird watching. The city of Indianapolis is home to a number of urban parks, and if you’re interested in birding, you might also want to check out the sand dunes along Lake Michigan or one of the many other excellent hotspots for bird watching in Indiana. Indiana’s strongest feature is its proximity to Lake Michigan’s 40 miles of shoreline, which are home to many prime birding spots. In these spots, you can observe kittiwakes, jaegers, and other elusive species. Eagle Creek Park in Indianapolis is a fantastic location to go bird watching. Stay tuned to find out where to find the best birdwatching spots and organizations in Indiana!
Indiana’s Best Free Spots for Birding
Indiana is a great spot to go birdwatching since it has a wide variety of beautiful locations, many of which are free to visit. You can take a guided birdwatching trip, but if you’d rather explore on your own, the information below will be very helpful in your search for local or migratory birds.
Indiana Dunes State Park – Part Permit Required
If you live in Indiana, you should get an Indiana State Park permit so you can explore the state’s 32 state parks. The permit isn’t free, but it only costs $50 annually for locals, $70 annually for visitors, $25 annually for people on Social Security, and $25 annually for veterans. Senior citizens (those aged 65 and up) pay only $25 annually to renew their passport permission. Even though I’m about to tell you about some of the best places to go birdwatching in the world, you won’t have to spend much to enjoy them throughout the year. Located on the edge of Lake Michigan, this fantastic area for birdwatching is a regular stopover for migrating songbirds and a home to many species of waterfowl.
Eagle Creek Park – Small Fee Enter, Paid Parking
There is a nominal fee of $1.50 for pedestrians and bicyclists to access the park, but this won’t put too much of a dent in anyone’s wallet. I’ll detail the parking rates in a bit, but rest assured they’re not excessive. Eagle Creek Park is one of the largest top 10 municipal parks in the United States, which is only one of the many reasons you should come. Moreover, the park’s Ornithology Center and the plethora of birdwatchers make it a top choice among self-sufficient parks for avian observation. There’s a lot to do here, like go on hikes and rent out buildings. Another great perk is the bird walks that take place every Sunday from 9 am to 11 am.
Cost of Parking:
- Residents of Marion County are required to pay a motor vehicle fee of $5 per day or $50 annually.
- Vehicle Registration Fee ($6/day / $60/year) for vehicles registered outside of the county
- Cost of Admission for Buses, $15 Per Day
Willow Slough Fish & Wildlife Area – Free Entrance
The state of Indiana is in charge of managing this spectacular wildlife region, and the wetland area that straddles the state line is the primary draw for visitors. The area is excellent for birdwatching, especially if you’re interested in seeing ducks and other marsh birds. However, this is not the only choice available to you because there have been more than 270 different types of bird species identified in the region. If you’re nearby, stop by right away to make plans for a birdwatching trip with your loved ones.