Traveling to Africa to swim with a turtle? / Do a volunteer? Solo travel? Sounds crazy right?
I have done this trip with only one backpack, my brave heart went for a 7 days’ trip with a big excitement. This actually became the most amazing trip I have ever done.
After a long exciting safari tour which was 4 days – 3 night in Arusha, Tanzania, I chose to have a bit relaxation in Nugwi, Zanzibar to enjoy the clear beach, white sands and the nature.
10 minutes walk from my hotel I found Baraka Natural Aquarium. It is just a small area but you will find hundreds of turtles with different sizes. You can get the seaweed from this place and feed them. So they enjoyed their lunch with me.
Playing and especially swimming with them makes you so relaxed and feel like you return to your childhood time. Another tourist took this picture and captured the moment I played happily with the turtles.
The villagers of Nungwi opened this turtle sanctuary in a large natural tidal pool near the lighthouse in 1993 and since then these sea creatures have enjoyed protection from being hunted and eaten.
You can see turtles of various species and sizes. The entrance fee is only 5 $ (this fee is provided for funding an education project for local children, hopefully demonstrating the benefits of turtle conservation). The idea developed by the local people there is amazing and meaningful – protecting the nature, animals and attracting tourists.
I spoke with some of the people there, who raised up those turtles. They said that if fishermen accidentally catch a turtle in their net, they will bring them back to the aquarium. Likewise, turtle eggs discovered on the beach are brought here to hatch as well. While they grow up locals will return them back to the mother Ocean. On a single day every February, a highlight of the year is happening – when local people, tourists, hotels and dive centers cooperate with conservationists to assist hundreds of hatching baby turtles surviving their perilous journey across the beach and out to the open sea.
Africa, Safari, beach and swimming with turtles… what else you need more for an memorable trip…
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