Build a bee hotel

Offer solitary bees five-star accommodation with an easy-to-make bee hotel.

A singular bee flying into a wooden bee hotel

This activity can be completed as part of Schools/Families Wild Challenge or Nature on your Doorstep and counts as the Helping Nature activity Homes for minibeasts (for Schools) and Build a bug hotel (for Families).

Estimated time: 3-4 hours Season: Autumn, Summer, Spring Skill level: Not too tricky


A box of holes

In a nutshell, you're aiming to make a box or container stuffed full of different-sized hollow tubes, each with a dead end, around 15cm or so long.

You can get really creative with your materials and designs; just make sure your masterpiece is robust enough to stay outdoors for several years.

Buying a ready-made bee hotel is the easy way to do it if you don’t have the time or the right tools. Choose one with several different sizes of tubes – different species of bee like different diameter tunnels.

Make your bee hotel

We've come up with a simple design for you to try, but if you are nifty with carpentry, feel free to make your own. For our version, source a plank of timber (with the FSC logo, which means it comes from a sustainable source) about 1.5 cm thick and cut into the shapes shown to make a box with three compartments. Nail it together.

If you make your own, make sure it is 15 cm deep and the roof has a good overhang to keep off the rain. How you design your roof depends on your carpentry prowess. You can turn it vertically, give it a pitched roof or make it in the shape of St Paul's Cathedral. Please send us your pictures.

Note: the dimensions shown are for 15mm thick wood. If your wood is different to that, the dimensions of the Base should be 510mm minus 2 x thickness of the wood, and the side pieces should be 135mm + thickness of wood.

Partnering with

The RSPB is a member of BirdLife International.More