Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand 

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand leatherback hatching

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – When?

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand take place in the summer months in South Africa

  • Watching Tours commence:          1 November each year
  • Viewing Tours cease:                      31 March
  • November – January:                      Best time for nesting
  • Nesting Time:                                   Invariably this occurs at high tide on moonless lit nights.
  • February – March:                           Hatching period.
Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand Bhanga Nek

Image of Bhanga Nek at Kosi Bay, Isimangaliso Wetland Park, Zululand.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – Where?

In the 100 kilometres section of the 300 kilometres protected beach section known as the Maputoland Turtle Sanctuary within a South African World Heritage Site, Isimanagaliso Wetland Park. North of St Lucia in the Kwa-ZuluNatal province, specifically Bhanga Nek, 9 Mile Point to Botelier Point and Mabibi Beach area.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – How?

There are 4 x 4 “road” transport with minimal walking, or then road with a fair amount of walking and swimming with turtles depending on the tour operator and area.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – What Turtles?

For nesting and hatching there are only two active species, the gigantic Leatherback with very lengthy flippers and the smaller Loggerhead. Both females of the species have the amazing ability to locate the same beach spot from which they were produced to nest and hatch their own offspring. The nesting time is approximately 2 months. 70-100 eggs are laid each time and Marine Scientists claim one in a thousand will reach maturity. Each female can lay 8 -10 times in a season.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand Leahterback after nesting

Leatherbacks have a rubbery shell, are 130-170 cms long and can weigh 900 kgs, whereas Loggerheads are 70-100 cms and 150-300 kgs.

When in a swimming viewing experience that take’s place in protected bays and offshore, Green Turtles, Olive Ridley and Hawksbill turtles can also be seen.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – Threats

During nesting and hatching marine bird life, water mongoose and monitor lizards are a threat. Plastic pollution is probably the greatest threat to turtles. Zululand News strongly promotes the banning of one use plastic straws in Zululand.

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand – The Experience

Bring comfortable shoes and a warm waterproof jacket, a small backpack and a flask of coffee and a light snack for turtle nesting. It is a lengthy process but worthwhile.

The nesting can be a life changing experience as there is something very intriguing, almost mystical about the process. Definitely highly recommended and not to be missed.

If you are in this area we also recommend Whale Watching Tours St Lucia Isimangaliso Zululand   

Comprehensive St Lucia KZN Guide

KZN Travel Guide App – Zululand in your pocket

Turtle Watching Tours St Lucia KZN Zululand South African Specialist

The WEB WRITER is certified with S.A.Tourism as a “South African Specialist”. This means they are experts in South African Travel and entitled to use the term and associated logo when giving advise.

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