Barbados Sea Turtles
OK, so maybe we don't have any dolphins in Barbados, but you can still have an experience of a lifetime as you swim with the turtles!
Barbados is home to a healthy population of hawksbill and leatherback turtles. Once endangered by over-fishing, these great creatures are now protected and monitored throughout the island.
In some areas the local fishermen feed and care for them, scraping barnacles of their backs and making sure that their nesting area is safe.
Turtles are sociable and tend to stay in the same area, following a steady routine. So long as they do not leave a habitat, they can be seen playing and feeding along the inshore reefs. In certain monitored areas they have become accustomed to humans and are relatively tame. You can swim with them as they feed amongst the coral. A good way to do this is with a sailboat tour and snorkeling picnic.
If you are in Barbados at the right time you may even take a moonlight cruise to see turtles nesting. Pregnant turtles come out of the water to lay their eggs in the soft sand along the shore. When the eggs hatch the tiny newborn turtles emerge from the sand and make their way to sea. Hatchlings that emerge during the day (when it is unsafe for them) are collected by the Barbados Sea Turtle Project and then released at sunset.
There is lovely story of the opening of the Turtle Beach Resort. The grand opening was, by coincidence, planned for a turtle hatching night. The bright lights of the hotel, and maybe the champagne, confused the baby turtles who waded into the hotel cocktail party instead of into the sea. Delighted guests helped them find their way to safety.