Four lakes surrounding Burgas (Pomoriysko, Atanasovsko, Mandrensko and Burgasko) comprise 9500 hectares and represent the largest wetland system in Bulgaria. The area is home to some 260 bird species, nearly 70% of the country’s total. This conservation centre, about 8km south of Burgas, was established in 1998 to protect the habitat and offers visitors an excellent chance to spot numerous scarce and endangered birds.
Also boasting a signposted 2.5km eco-trail, the conservation centre lies at the westernmost point of the Black Sea and along a key bird migration route. Late August and September sees the highest numbers of migrating birds, but each part of the year brings something different; key species include Dalmatian pelicans, herons, avocets and terns.
The centre is easiest to reach by car, following the main road south to Sozopol (look for signs for the 'Poda' turn-off). Burgas public bus 17 runs here from the Zapad bus station. See the Poda website for bus departure times.