Where to Swim with Sea Turtles in Barbados

Barbados is home to beautiful blue beaches and lots of sea turtles. The most popular being the green turtle. The good news is that you don’t need to book a catamaran cruise to see them. This is perfect if you are travelling Barbados on a budget! They are found off many beaches along the west coast. Some of them are slightly further out than others.

Make sure that when you are snorkeling in Barbados that you wear some sort of bright colored flag or floaty to let others know where you are. Unfortunately we have had a lot of accidents where people swim out without any markers which makes them very hard to spot from boats and jetskis.

Hop on a paddleboard and find turtles with WhatsUp Barbados. Ryan is a fantastic instructor, give him a follow on his Instagram below!


Grab your mask, snorkels and floats, here are the top places to find sea turtles in Barbados.

Freights Bay

If you are planning to take a surfing lesson with Boosy’s Surf School, you can tick this off at the same time. Freights Bay is home to a few sea turtles. If you are not planning to take a surf lesson then make your way down to the beach and paddle out on a boogie board and you will see a few pop up every now and then!

Where to swim with Sea Turtles in Barbados

Sea Turtle spotting at Freights Bay

Carlisle Bay & Pebbles Beach

If you are spending the day at Pebbles beach you can spend some time with sea turtles here. Or you can continue north along the beach and swim or walk under the pier passing the Barbados Yacht Club. Swim out carefully, there are lots of boats in the area. There are also a few ship wrecks slightly further out but it is recommended to go with a group since the area is busy.

Where to find sea turtles in Barbados

Jason at Pebbles Beach. Continue North to find more sea turtles around Carlisle Bay

Paynes Bay

If you are staying on the west coast then Paynes Bay is probably closer for you. Walk across to Paynes Bay using the public access by One Sandy Lane. Turn left and walk down the beach. Again, this spot is quite busy so take a marker or flag with you so people can see you while you snorkel.

Alleyne’s Bay (Lonestar)

The turtles are located just off Lonestar Restaurant. You can’t miss this spot since many of the catamarans and glass bottom boats come here. The crews from the boats usually throw some food in the water to attract them as well. The best time to come to this spot would probably be early morning before the boats start arriving. It gets super busy here so watch out for incoming feet and hands while you swim around!

Where to find sea turtles in Barbados

Before the mad rush of boats arrive at Lonestar

Good luck spotting sea turtles in Barbados.


  • Kevan May 12, 2017 at 9:59 am

    The photo of the turtle swimming is amazing and seems to jump off the computer screen. My wife and I went to Hawaii and she was fascinated by the turtles on the beach there so I may need to add Barbados to our “to do list.” Although she may be freaked out a little bit about having to watch for boats when snorkeling, I think the blue skies and white sands will convince her.

    • Stace May 12, 2017 at 10:14 am

      The boats are pretty good though. If you start swimming far it’s dangerous but most turtles are probably only about 20 feet from shore so it’s not too bad

  • Natasha May 12, 2017 at 10:32 am

    Barbados just pushed itself RIGHT up the bucketlist. I would love to do something like this. I really want to show my son these animals up close. Thanks for recommending Barbados!

    • Stace May 12, 2017 at 10:37 am

      Oh my gosh he would absolutely love it!

  • Ha May 12, 2017 at 10:52 am

    The first picture from your Instagram is amazing! I would love to visit Barbados one day and do the same. Probably I will take a surfing lesson with Boosy’s Surf School 🙂

    • Stace May 12, 2017 at 10:55 am

      That’s actually a friend’s Instagram! He has many more amazing pics you can check out

  • Natalie May 12, 2017 at 11:20 am

    The color of that water is just impossibly blue!! Gorgeous!! Thanks for the tips about the flag…we travel with the kids and safety is so important. Once, in Hawaii, I accidentally came very, very close to a turtle while swimming near a water fall. The water churned up the sand and mud so I couldn’t see him and was really shocked for a second when my hand brushed him. AMAZING!!

    • Stace May 12, 2017 at 11:24 am

      Yes flags are important some areas are better than others with boats but it’s always better to be safe than sorry

  • Divsi May 12, 2017 at 11:41 am

    What a wonderful adventure this is! Absolutely loved the picture of the turtle swimming. To swim with it would be such a delight! And given the scorching heat in India right now I d give anything to dive in those mesmerising blue waters!

  • yukti May 12, 2017 at 1:56 pm

    Beautiful blue waters of Barbados and swimming turtles too. As I dont know swimming but love to go there for clear blue waters. Turtles are also worthwatching and new experience for me.

  • Iza c/o Kathy James (Walk About Wanderer) May 13, 2017 at 1:00 am

    These are all beautiful beaches. The water is so blue. It is nice that you have written this article because I have read reviews that you need to book a cruise to swim with the turtles. It can be very expensive and not practical.

    • Stace May 13, 2017 at 5:59 am

      Yes it is really expensive to do the cruises!

  • Abhinav Singh May 13, 2017 at 4:54 pm

    Good that you mentioned the idea of wearing bright colored flag. Such accidents can happen. Sea turtles are such amazing creatures. Slow, saint like and yet so strong. I once attended a turtle festival in Velas, Maharashtra (India) where they conserve and release olive ridley turtles.

  • Karen May 13, 2017 at 5:15 pm

    Wow, the photography throughout this article is superb. Great tips .. makes me want to jump on a plane now

  • Vicki Louise May 14, 2017 at 9:46 pm

    The first photo of the turtle in the clear blue water from your instructor is absolutely incredible! So clear and sharp!
    I’d love to spend some time in the water with these incredible creatures – they are just so graceful. It’s nice there are a few spots that you can see they too!

  • Susanna May 15, 2017 at 6:52 am

    I love that you can just paddle out and see the turtles right there without a fancy boar tour. This way you can experience them in a quiet nature. I saw a turtle diving in Australia, but the water was a bit murky and we had to go down pretty deep, but this seems to be easy and fun!

  • Ivan May 18, 2017 at 6:14 pm

    This is absolutely incredible colors and the turtle looks so realistic! Hope future generations will be able to enjoy their look as well!
    Barbados was never on my radar to my shame, I think now I will improve it!

  • David Broadfoot September 29, 2017 at 3:19 am

    Go to Worthing beach as they come in to feed a couple of times today and will swim right beside you.

  • Michael January 12, 2018 at 11:13 am

    Nice write up.

    Some questions about Carlisle bay. You mention Pebble Beach, and heading north to the Yacht Club and a pier. Looking at a google map, I see the Barbados Yacht Club on Bay street, south of where Pebble beach is mentioned. There is a pier further south, at the Radisson. North, there is another pier near a place called The Boatyard, this area is listed as Brownes Beach (though oddly, south of Pebble Beach is also listed as Brownes Beach).

    Can you give me some other landmarks. If we were to walk from the cruise dock, how far south down the beach along Carlisle Bay would you recommend we go?


    • Stace January 12, 2018 at 12:00 pm

      Hi there. Pebbles beach is where the Cruisin club is and the pier is the Radisson. On the north side of the Radisson pier is Yatch club and that whole beach is called Brownes beach which extends all the way to Bridgetown. I hope this helps a bit. My best recommendation would be to get to the Cruising Club which is located on Pebbles beach.
      Feel free to email us wanderingbajans@gmail.com if you need anything else!

      • Michael January 13, 2018 at 7:39 am

        Thanks very much for the timely response. We’re looking forward to it.


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