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Turtle Conservation Project Turtle Watch

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Address: Rekawa Beach | Visitor Centre, Rekawa, Sri Lanka
Phone Number: +94 76 685 7380
Website
Description: Our Turtle Watch was founded by the Turtle Conservation Project (TCP), a...
Our Turtle Watch was founded by the Turtle Conservation Project (TCP), a NGO that started the nature tourism program in Rekawa. It involves ex turtle egg poachers working as turtle nest protectors and tour guides has won several global awards in the appreciation of services provided to the community, environment, economy, culture and tourism. For more information, visit their (old) website. Since 2010, TCP stopped its activities and handed the conservation & eco-tourism program over to the local community. Our Turtle Watch is nowadays a small scale community-run project by NFR (Nature Friends of Rekawa) and is dedicated to providing a safe and secure nesting environment on one of Sri Lanka's most important turtle beaches. The project employs previous turtle egg-poachers as 'nest protectors' who monitor the beach 24-hours a day to ensure all nests are safe from both natural and human predators. Providing "in situ" nest protection is the most effective form of turtle nest conservation, and will help ensure these wonderful creatures are protected for future generations. What to expect during a Turtle Watch? We will be waiting at our visitor centre (or on the beach) until a turtle is spotted by one of our nest protectors, who are patrolling the beach. They will sign our guide & volunteers. For all information, please visit our website Our project asks a donation of 1000 Rs. per person (500 Rs. for children). 100% of the proceeds goes to our conservation activities and and the local community. We will ask you to pay the fee before we enter the beach. A reservation is not required. Please kindly note that our Turtle watch is run by locals, of which many do not speak English. Please refer to the multilingual information in the Visitor Centre or proactively approach one of our guides or volunteers with your questions. They'll be happy to answer them!
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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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Visitor rating
  • 34
    Excellent
  • 10
    Very good
  • 8
    Average
  • 9
    Poor
  • 11
    Terrible
Good intentioned project marred by inconsiderate tourists and lack of control by project staff

We visited from Tangalle by tuktuk - you will need to organise transport to visit this place as it is quite far from the main road. In principle, this project is a great idea... read more

3 of 5 starsReviewed April 18, 2015
HKDave
,
Hong Kong, China
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72 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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English first
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2015

It's sad to confirm a lot of the previous reports...A business that will destroy this place...Too many tourists, not respecting the few rules...using white lights, smoking....A completely drunk local disturbing tourtes and tourists...But when I asked to the guide if this man wasn't a problem he answered me: "no , not at all"...even if he was falling down every 5... More 

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Winterswijk
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
3 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2015

When we visited the beach at daytime we saw a lot of dogs eating the turtles eggs. This was a really bad experience. At night we went with the tour, but there where so many people. There was so much noise. We felt sorry for the turtles. This good be great if there was a good friendly staff and smaller... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2015 via mobile

We went to the turtle watch on sunday may 3thd at night. This was an amazing experience as we assisted to 3 different scenarios : - the egg laying moment when the turtle is in trance where you can see her deliver about a 100 eggs in the hole she has dig by herself right before. Then we saw her... More 

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Istanbul, Turkey
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
6 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2015

Though we were at least 30 people looking at the same turtle coming on land it was a fantastic experience. I felt comfortable letting the guys from the project give usdirections as to how to enjoy the turtles without disturbing them. Brought my son of 8. He was very impressed and excited. There is some waiting time and uncertainty to... More 

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Hong Kong, China
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
58 attraction reviews
165 helpful votes 165 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2015

We visited from Tangalle by tuktuk - you will need to organise transport to visit this place as it is quite far from the main road. In principle, this project is a great idea – convert local turtle poachers into protectors and get tourist dollars to support the local community. You start at the village around 8pm where a building... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
Kandy, Sri Lanka
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2015

The walk along the beach on a moonless night is not pleasant. Take a red light torch with you and go. The numbers are too much. May be can be allocated to two guides.

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Quebec, Quebec, Canada
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
5 attraction reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2015 via mobile

We stopped in rekawa for a night to see the turtle nesting and our experience was horrible. We were about 50 visitors waiting at the building, which display some good information about turtles. After what seemed like 2 hours, we finaly went down to the beach, not 10 at a time like mentioned,but all 50 of us at once only... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2015

This is meant to be a "turtle conservation" project, but my experience was awful because there were too many people there for it to be responsible. I felt like we were disturbing natural patterns, crowding the poor turtles, and incredibly, more than 10 people nearly stepped on small hatching turtles on their way to the sea because it is impossible... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Hong Kong, China
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2015

I think I must have visited on the same night as the reviewer Holly E below, because I had exactly the same experience. I appreciate the efforts that this conservation project is making to protect endangered species of turtles. Having said this, like many conservation efforts in the developing world, Rekawa Turtle Watch seems to be caught in a double... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
London, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2015 via mobile

I went to the beach last night, and it could have been a completely magical experience. The beach was dark, the sky full of amazing stars and we could hear a sea turtle as she was digging her nest. Sadly, as soon as the guide gave us the go-ahead to come closer and see her, 30 odd people pushed forward.... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 2

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