A total of 24 criteria aspects have been established in order to attend the needs that birders have when travelling worldwide.

One feather means that an establishment complies with the five basic criteria required by the Lonely Birder Approved hallmark. The rest of the 19 criteria aspects are optional and they all depend on how many of these are fulfilled by the establishment which will vary the number of feathers awarded to them.


  • The establishment must be situated in a natural area or nearby.

    The accommodation and/or restaurant-bar must be within a Special Protection Area or a Site of Community Importance or at least 10 minutes drive from these areas.
  • The establishment has information available about birds of the area.

    The owner/staff that runs and manages the establishment must be able to provide birders with good information about the birds to watch on site, preferably in writing, i.e. booklets, flyers etc.
  • Guiding services must be available on site or at least the contacts of the local guides in the area.

    If the owner is not a guide herself/himself, information about local guiding services must be provided.
  • A library area has to be available for clients with at least ten books and one specialised birding magazine.

  • Flexible timetables (i.e. early breakfast before sunrise, late check-in available after sunset and also for example late dinner served for those birders who are out late birding in spring and summer).

    Early breakfast before sunrise, late check-in available after sunset and also for example late dinner served for those birders who are out late birding in spring and summer.


  • The owners are members of conservation societies (10 points)

    They should be able to identify themselves with their membership ID.
  • Active participation in research and/or conservationist projects (10 points)

    Censuses, specific studies, environmental volunteer programmes, etc.
  • There are birding routes close to the establishment (10 points)

    The birding client can easily follow routes from the establishment on foot using signs and/or maps provided by the establishment. If there aren’t routes starting from the establishment, there should be some available no more than 10 minutes away on foot.
  • Food is served and this is good or very good quality/price value (8 points).

    Despite the personal opinions of this standard, the quality of the products should agree with the price of the dishes.
  • Nest boxes in the garden or nearby (7 points)

    At least 2 nest boxes (of any kind) in the garden. If there are no suitable places in the garden the nest boxes can be placed in the surroundings of the establishment (i.e. in the neighboring forest).
  • Bird feeders in the garden (7 points)

  • Bird baths in the garden or nearby (7 points)

    Have drinking troughs for birds in any format (fountains, small artificial rafts, etc.), with water available especially in the hottest seasons.
  • Updated bird list of birds seen at the establishment (7 points)

  • Use of energy efficient mechanisms and renewable energy (bioconstruction criteria, biomass…) (7 points)

  • Sale of birding souvenirs (books, field guides, posters, t-shirts…) or there is a nearby specialised establishment that does (6 points)

  • Photography hides available (their own or another company’s) (6 points)

  • They have a book where clients can record the ornithological sightings (5 points)

  • Themed decoration (5 points)

  • Promote the conservation of birds and their environment (5 points)

  • The establishment has lovely views and guests can birdwatch from the same (5 points)

  • Library with more than 20 specialised books and more than 2 specialised magazines (5 points)

  • Free Wi-fi (4 points)

  • Recycle (4 points)

  • Safe parking (2 points)