El Salvador's Sea Turtles

El Salvador is the smallest country in Central America. Its Pacific coastline has beaches where four species of sea turtles - hawksbills, olive ridleys, leatherbacks, and greens - nest on its beaches or forage in its waters.  

Sea Turtle Hotspots

Jiquilisco BayBahia Jiquilisco is a Biosphere Reserve that protects some of El Salvador's most important natural habitat. Located along the southeast Pacific coast, the reserve protects roughly 400 square kilometers, which includes 50 km of coastline (about 31 miles). This bay is one of two major nesting areas for the critically endangered hawksbill turtle in the Eastern Pacific, comprising about 45% of the region's nests. 

Hawksbill in Jiquilisco Bay

Hawksbill in Jiquilisco Bay


Sea Turtle Species in El Salvador

Hawksbill: Jiquilisco Bay is an important area for the critically endangered Eastern Pacific hawksbill, who nest from May to October.

Olive Ridley: This species nests year round though the main nesting season is July - December.

Green: These turtles forage in Jiquilisco Bay and also nest in small numbers here on a handful of beaches between June and December.


Learn more about sea turtles in El Salvador:

Download our Tour Catalog

Download our Tour Catalog

Photo credits: Brad Nahill/SEE Turtles, Michael Liles