Neotropical seasonally dry forests (NSDFs) are widely distributed and possess high levels of species richness and endemism; however, their biogeography remains only partially understood. Using species distribution modelling and parsimony analysis of endemicity, we analysed the distributional patterns of the NSDF avifauna in order to identify their areas of endemism and provide a better understanding of the historical relationships among those areas. The strict consensus trees revealed 17 areas of endemism for NSDFs, which involve four large regions: Baja California, Caribbean–Antilles islands, Mesoamerica and South America. These well-resolved clades are circumscribed by geographical and ecological barriers associated with the Gulf of California, the leading edge of the Caribbean plate, the Tehuantepec Isthmus, the Polochic–Motagua fault, the Nicaragua Depression, the Chocó forest, the Amazon basin and the Andean Cordillera. Relationships among groups of NSDFs found here suggest that evolution of their avifauna involved a mixture of vicariance and dispersal events. Our results support the idea of independent diversification patterns and biogeographical processes in each region, including those previously associated with the Pleistocene Arc Hypothesis for NSDFs of south-eastern South America. This study provides a biogeographical framework to open new lines of research related to the biotic diversification of NSDFs.