If swimming with turtles is high on your Maldives’ holiday to-do list, you will be pleased to learn that Hurawalhi lies in Lhaviyani Atoll, one of the country’s turtle hotspots. The atoll is home to 287 identified sea turtles (with hundreds more awaiting to yet be discovered!), which offers you a unique chance to come up close and personal with these interesting marine reptiles in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.
Your snorkelling adventures in nearby shallow lagoons and coral reefs will be all the more special and unique knowing that you’re swimming in an atoll where nearly half of the Maldives’ green sea turtles live. What’s even more exciting is that almost a half of these 170 turtles can be found in a lagoon close to Hurawalhi, which is where our Resident Marine Biologist takes our snorkellers to.
In addition to the larger green sea turtles – they are an endangered species that can weigh up to 230 kg – you can also keep your fingers crossed to spot some of the 103 hawksbill turtles that we’ve identified in the atoll so far; in fact, 7 of these are even residents around Hurawalhi! Hawksbill turtles, whose conservation status is ‘critically endangered’, are known for their sharp, hawk-like beak, can be up to a meter long and reach some 80 kg.
‘If they’re residents, do they have names then?’, you may ask. Certainly – you could spot our most sighted hawksbill, Gloria, or Flugger, who was identified and adopted by Hurawalhi’s guests in January 2018, along with other familiar and hopefully some new faces.
Join a Turtle Tour with Marine Biologist for a fun and educative experience, during which you not only try to come face to face with these ancient creatures, but also find out more about their nesting habits, long journeys hatchlings take, and what we do to help turtles that get caught in ghost nets.