Turtle season is between November – March.
From October to March, loggerhead and Leatherback turtles nest at Bhanga Nek and all along the Maputaland coast. Every summer they make their annual pilgrimage to the beaches to lay their eggs.
Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife has a turtle monitoring project in Maputaland from the north of Sodwana Bay to Bhanga Nek. Bhanga Nek Community Guides runs tours in the area during the laying/nesting season between November and March.
A typical tour starts after sunset around 18h30 and runs for 2 to 4 hours, depending on sightings. You wander down the beach near Bhanga Nek on the lookout for the seasonal visitors. The loggerhead and leatherback turtles return to the sandy beaches on which they were born to lay their own eggs. The females laborious dig in the sand and lay their eggs. Later the hatchlings run the gauntlet of ghost crabs and other predators in their attempts to reach the sea. The sight of the huge turtles hauling themselves in an ungainly fashion up the beach, digging a pit in the sand with their hind flippers and then depositing some 100 or so eggs that resemble ping pong balls is mesmerising stuff. It’s made even more fascinating by the passionate, knowledgeable guides. Watching this can be a moving experience.
No driving on the beaches is allowed and all turtle tours are by foot. No members of the public are allowed to walk on the beach at night during the turtle nesting season.
Turtle tours to Bhanga Nek can be arranged through us. We pick you up from your accommodation in Kosi Bay and bring you back after the tour.
We depart at about 17h00 from Mangusi to Bhanga Nek, where we meet a local turtle guide for an informative talk before you set off for a walk along the beach to spot the turtles. Please note this walk can be tiring for the very old or very young and we only return to Mangusi at about 23h00.
Give us a call at 072 446 1525. Seats are limited!