Refugio de Vida Silvestre La Flor
Refugio de Vida Silvestre La Flor information
Lonely Planet review
Between July and December - peaking in August and September - some 30,000 female Olive Ridley turtles, and a few hundred very endangered leatherback turtles, visit Refugio de Vida Silvestre La Flor to nest. And you have to see turtles laying eggs on the beach, not to mention tiny baby turtles making their death-defying run for the water, at least once in your life. Several hotels, including Hotel Nina and Casa Oro Hostel, run night tours, including transportation. Bring insect repellent.
The reserve, south of San Juan del Sur along a shocking road, is managed by Fundación Cocibolca, who have been aided in their efforts by strong new pro-enviromental legislation, which offers the turtles substantially more protection than before.
The park guards sell soft drinks, but bring your own insect repellent and food. You can also camp here, but they charge an extortionate rate; you might prefer to stay at Playa El Coco, about a half-hour walk north.
Unfortunately, the level of protection of turtle rights on these trips leaves much to be desired. We can't stress strongly enough the importance of appropriate behavior on turtle tours. The laying mothers and clueless babies are extremely vulnerable. Distance and respect are vital to their welfare.