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See giant leatherback turtles nesting at Tortuguero

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Watch an extraordinary natural event take place on Tortuguero's beaches as giant leatherback turtles arrive en masse to lay their eggs.

Tortuguero is an important habitat for the famous leatherback turtle, an ocean giant often measuring as much as 2m in length and weighing up to 600kg. These remarkable creatures return to the beach on which they were born to give birth to the next generation between March and June, and if your timing is right you could have the privilege of witnessing this humbling spectacle for yourself.

It is an extremely impressive, even moving sight as hundreds of sea turtles crawl up the beach on flippers little accustomed to land, seeking a safe nesting place for their young. Once the mothers have laid their eggs – usually over 100 per nest – they cover them with sand and return to the ocean.

Over the next few nights, visitors can observe the newborn turtles emerging from the shelter of their eggs and struggling towards the sea. The few that survive will one day come back to this very beach to play their part in the endless natural cycle.

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Your edit for Latin American inspiration

Our exciting range of articles on Latin America explore everything from iconic destinations and lesser-known cultural gems to delicious traditional recipes. You’ll also find exclusive travel tips, first-hand client reviews and the chance to get your personal questions answered by our travel experts.

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Real Latin America Experts

  • Sophie Barber
    Sophie Barber - Travel Consultant

    Sophie lived in Chile before joining us and has travelled extensively across Latin America, from Mexico to the furthest tip of Patagonia.

  • Kathryn Rhodes
    Kathryn Rhodes - Travel Consultant

    Kathryn backpacked across Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before joining us. She has a degree in Philosophy and French and is a keen netball player.

  • Evie Oswald
    Evie Oswald - Travel Consultant

    It’s hard to believe that Evie has had time to cram so much in to her life so far. Having lived as a child in the Americas and Europe she found herself immediately attracted to Latin America.

  • Ben Line
    Ben Line - Travel Consultant

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Manager of the Tailor-made Department.

  • Hannah Waterhouse
    Hannah Waterhouse - Travel Consultant

    Hannah had an early introduction to Latin America when her family moved to Ecuador and she returned to study in Buenos Aires for a year before backpacking across the continent.

  • Hannah Donaldson
    Hannah Donaldson - Travel Consultant

    Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is an invaluable part of our Group Tours team.

Meet the team