Though Waxwings in their breeding grounds of northern Scandinavia and Russia feed on flying insects, in winter their diet is very heavily fruit-based. When they come over to winter in the UK in numbers (which occurs periodically, every few years), their diet is largely berries, particularly those of Rowan and cotoneaster.
So, the best place to find Waxwings is in gardens or along streets with berry-bearing trees or bushes. Or, classically, and most productively in car parks in towns and cities, where berry-bearing bushes, hedges and trees are the town planners’ vegetation of choice for breaking up the lines and decorating car parking areas.
Waxwings are most often encountered in the north and east of the country, but in a good Waxwing winter, they may spread as far as the south-west English counties.
To look for Waxwings, get to know your town’s or city’s best concentration of fruiting trees (which are often near supermarkets!). And keep checking through the winter to see if the crested Viking invaders arrive! They are a sight to brighten up any Christmas shopping trip!