Sea turtles have been nesting on Tanzania’s beaches for over 150 million years. It really is one of the wonders of the natural world and yet so few of us will ever have the chance to witness it because sea turtles spend almost all of their life at sea.
Become one of those lucky few and experience the magic yourself! You can observe sea turtle hatchlings in their first moments of life as they emerge from their nest and make their first instinctive dash to the warm waters of the Indian Ocean and start their long journey to adulthood. After 30 years, the female hatchlings, then measuring over a metre in length, will return to the very same beach to lay their own eggs.
Sea turtle ecotourism in Tanzania is being proudly led by coastal communities. Community Conservation Officers monitor the nest during its 55 day incubation period and protect it from potential predators including mongoose and monitor lizards. When it is ready for hatching, community Turtle Tour Guides lead you to the nest while telling you all the amazing sea turtle facts that you never knew.
If you are in Dar es Salaam it’s so easy. Sea turtle nests are hatching on beaches just 30km south of the city! Sea Sense has teamed up with safari operator Authentic Tanzania who offer fully guided trips to watch this amazing event. Authentic Tanzania is committed to conservation and donates 40% of the costs of each trip to Sea Sense to support our sea turtle conservation programme. Contact them now to get on their sea turtle mailing list.
Explore further afield and watch sea turtle hatchlings in Mafia and Pangani. These are two of the most important nesting sites in Tanzania. Sea Sense has formed partnerships with some local hotels so that you have the chance to visit a nesting beach. Contact Sea Sense to find out where the top turtle spots are.
Sea Sense charges a small fee per person for the sea turtle hatching experience. Half of the money generated is used to fund the sea turtle conservation programme and contribute towards monthly allowances for our patrol teams and Tour Guides. The other half is donated to local communities. Sea Sense has established 'Village Environment Funds' in seven villages close to nesting beaches and the money is used to fund community development projects including school renovations, purchase of desks and books and improvements to village dispensaries. The donations have ensured that communities see a clear link between sea turtle conservation and economic benefits for their communities. The revenue generated by sea turtle ecotourism is growing each year and since the start of the initiative, more than $6,500 has been donated to local communities.