BirdLife South Africa aims to promote South Africa as a top-class bird watching destination which is vital for the long-term conservation of the country’s wild birds and their habitats. The BirdLife South Africa Birding Routes provide birders information on where to go birding, who to go birding with and where to stay in South Africa.

An integral part of the Birding Routes is partnerships with local accommodation establishments. Global trends in ecotourism have indicated a willingness from ecotourists to support establishments that undertake activities that are in line with the principles of responsible tourism. BirdLife South Africa has undertaken to ensure that all the accommodation establishments that they support operate in an environmentally and social sustainable manner in line with the mission statement of BirdLife South Africa.

By displaying the BirdLife South Africa’s “Birder Friendly” branding, establishments are easily recognised by birders. Their commitment demonstrates that they are promoting their Birder Friendly Establishment (BFE) as a prime avitourism destination, whilst doing their bit for bird conservation in South Africa.

Birder Friendly Criteria

Establishments are required to meet certain criteria in order to qualify for ‘Birder Friendly’ status:

  • Catering to the specific needs of birders
  • Being Responsible Tourism operators
  • Supporting BirdLife South Africa’ strategic objective of conserving wild birds and their habitats

The Benefits

For an annual subscription of R1 385 (South Africa) or R2 190 (SADC countries), BirdLife South Africa is committed to offering members of the Birder Friendly scheme the following benefits:

  • Use of the ‘Birder Friendly’ logo and branding on marketing materials
  • A listing on the BirdLife South Africa website
  • Permission for advertisements in our BirdLife South Africa Facebook group (40 000 members, 2 posts a month) and monthly E-newsletter (10 000 readers, two newsletter adverts a year)
  • Information and advice on how to make enterprises both bird and birder friendly
  • “Birder Friendly Establishments” will be marketed through the website and e-newsletter
  • Promoting establishments to bird tour operators
  • Listing of special offers on the BirdLife South Africa website and in e-newsletters
  • BirdLife South Africa membership, which includes:
    • Six issues of African Birdlife magazine
    • BirdLife South Africa supporters’ card
    • BirdLife South Africa supporters’ sticker
    • Invitations to BirdLife South Africa talks and events

Birder Friendly Application Process

Download the application form and self-assessment questionnaire.

Please complete and return via email:

For more information on how to register as a ‘Birder Friendly Establishment”, please contact our Avitourism Project Manager, Andrew de Blocq, on or

Find a Birder Friendly Establishment

The South African BFEs are listed according to provinces and nearest city/town.  Click on a province below to view more details about BFEs in the area.

South Africa

Neighbouring Countries