Sea turtles species identification guide

Turtles are among the most emblematic sea creatures. There are 7 species of sea turtles in the world, three of which can be easily observed by snorkelers: the green sea turtle, the hawksbill sea turtle, and to a lesser extent the loggerhead sea turtle. These three species are living in all the warm and temperate seas of the planet. Sea turtles are mainly found on seagrass beds or on coral reefs, including at shallow depths.

Where to snorkel with sea turtles?

The green sea turtle is the most common turtle species. It mainly feeds on shallow seagrass beds, which makes it easy to spot when snorkeling. At some specific spots in the Caribbean (Mexico, Saint Vincent, Martinique, Bonaire), Indonesia, Australia or New Caledonia, green sea turtle sightings are almost guaranteed. Large green sea turtle subpopulations are also found in Hawaii and the Galapagos Islands, where they are easy to spot. The Seychelles are the best place in the world to swim with hawksbill sea turtles, which can be recognized by their beak-shaped mouths. They are also numerous at reefs in the Maldives and in Indonesia, notably in Bali and the Gili Islands. The discreet loggerhead sea turtle is the most commonly spotted species in the Mediterranean (especially in Greece and Cyprus).

Sea turtles species

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Check out our top12 snorkeling spots to swim with sea turtles!

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Have a look at the best identification fish guides to learn more about marine life!

Want to learn more about the species you observed or photographed under water? The identification guides are true treasures for those curious to know about the undersea world! These books show, in the form of images or drawings, the species of certain environments (such as coral reefs) or certain regions of the world (such as the Mediterranean, the Caribbean or the Red Sea). If some guides are limited to fish, others describe all the local underwater fauna and flora. True scientific works, the identification guides are also a beautiful way to prepare for our future snorkeling explorations!