Rekawa is a coastal waterbody which is situated in Hambantota district in the Southern Province. Located just 10 km east of Tangalle beach, it is an important sea turtle nesting sites in Sri Lanka. The lagoon is close to the Indian Ocean with a 3 km narrow inland waterway and a mangrove belt has encircled most parts of the lagoon. The Rekawa lagoon has a rich biodiversity with a variety of flora like mangroves and fauna like fish, crustaceans and birds.
Rare Sea Turtles species like Hawksbill, Leatherback, Olive Ridley and Green turtles can be seen laying their eggs under the shores. Simply, five out of seven of marine turtle species of the world are found in Sri Lanka and arrive at Rekawa to lay eggs. Majority of these species are recognized as endangered species.
To protect these wonderful endangered species, the Rekawa Turtle Watch was formed. This marine turtle conservation project works on protecting the nesting sites of the turtles and ensures that they hatch safely. The certified guides and spotters will help check the turtles. To prevent the disturbance for the turtles, torches and flash photography is prohibited. Unlike the turtle hatcheries in south Sri Lanka, the eggs here are left undisturbed in the sand and are protected.
The visitors can check the turtles as groups every evening of the year between 8.30pm to 11.30pm. Although you will need to be patient to check out the turtles.
The best time period to check out these beautiful sea turtles is during the months between January and April especially when there is a full moon. One can easily view more turtles during a night with moonlight.
If you are a true nature lover, Rekawa Turtle Watching should be in your to-do list. Checking out these turtles will be worth an effort.