• Welcome to BirdForum, the internet's largest birding community with thousands of members from all over the world. The forums are dedicated to wild birds, birding, binoculars and equipment and all that goes with it.

    Please register for an account to take part in the discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.
ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

Santa Katharina Monastery - BirdForum Opus

Stub.png This article is incomplete.
This article is missing one or more sections. You can help the BirdForum Opus by expanding it.

Photo by NicoleB
St. Catherine's Monastery, South Sinai, December 2009

Alternative name: St. Catherine's Monastery


Situated in the center of the southern Sinai Peninsula, St. Catherine's monastery is a well-known tourist attraction and famous among birders as one of the very few reliable sites for the very local Sinai Rosefinch.

The monastery lies on the slopes of Mt Sinai and its gardens attract many migrants. Wadis and hills in this area hold a good selection of typical Sinai birds and part of the surrounding area has now been designated a national park.


Notable Species

Tristram's Grackle, MALE
Photo by NicoleB
St. Catherine's Monastery, South Sinai, December 2009

The rosefinch is fairly common here and often to be seen around the souvenir stalls near the car-park. Tristram's Starling is another desert speciality that occurs here and one of the most sought-after Western Palearctic birds, Desert Owl, may be found in the mountains around the monastery. This species has been found in this area but it may not be present every year.

Other typical Sinai species include Sand Partridge and Chukar Partridge and passerines such as Desert Lark and Bar-tailed Desert Lark, Rock Martin and Hooded Wheatear and White-tailed Wheatear. Palestine Sunbird has been recorded and may now be established in the area.


A major Western Palearctic rarity has been seen here, a Thick-billed Warbler in November 1991.


Birds you can see here include:

Chukar Partridge, Sand Partridge, Rock Dove, Laughing Dove, Desert Owl, Desert Lark, Crested Lark, Rock Martin, Pied Wagtail, Hooded Wheatear, White-tailed Wheatear, Streaked Scrub Warbler, Common Chiffchaff, Palestine Sunbird, Tristram's Starling, Greenfinch, Sinai Rosefinch, White-crowned Black Wheatear

Other Wildlife

To do

Site Information

History and Use

To do

Areas of Interest

To do

Access and Facilities

Santa Katharina Monastery can be reached by road from Cairo, Suez or Sharm el Sheik (250km), and can be visited in a day from Eilat in Israel.

There is a holiday village nearby providing accommodation. Basic accommodation is available on site by booking ahead of time.

Contact Details

To do

External Links

Content and images originally posted by Steve