The Aarakocra are large humanoid creatures that resemble birds.

The average Aarakocra is about 5 ft (1.5 m) tall, with a wingspan of 20 ft (6.1 m). Halfway along the edge of each wing is a hand with three human-sized fingers and an opposable thumb. An elongated fourth finger extends the length of the wing and locks into place during flight. The "wing-hands" of an Aarakocra cannot grasp objects while flying, but are nearly as useful as human hands when the creature is perched, with its wings folded back. Their powerful legs end in four sharp talons that could unlock and fold back to reveal another pair of functional hands; these lower talons can grasp even large, heavy objects in flight and carry them for long distances.

Aarakocra are quite frail, with hollow, fragile bones. Their faces combine the features of both parrots and eagles. They have gray-black beaks and black eyes. Plumage color varied, but males generally have red, orange, or yellow coloration, while females tended towards brown and gray.

Aarakocra live among the highest mountain peaks in small tribes that controlled hunting territories and shared a communal nest. The eldest male or female usually serves as leader, assisted by the tribe's shaman. Most Aarakocra are also known to be extremely claustrophobic.

Several Aarakocra tribes live in the Saugreth-Muir Mountains and mountainous regions of Drakhara; where they are hunted for sport by orcs and local Gauth.