Of the seven different species of sea turtles, you are most likely to see two while visiting the panhandle: Green and Loggerhead. These turtles are protected by the Endangered Species Act. While visiting the beach, it is important to keep the beaches clean, dark, and flat, especially during turtle nesting/hatching season from May through September. Before leaving the beach be sure to pick up your trash and flatten out any sandcastles or fill any holes in the sand.
Additionally, late-night beachgoers are encouraged to utilize turtle-friendly flashlights, which are provided for free at a number of locations around Destin. A sea turtle nest hatches on average 150-200 hatchlings and only a small percentage survive and make it to maturity. Follow these simple steps to help protect the lives of these endangered sea turtles. To see a turtle in the wild, your best chance is to rent or take a cruise aboard a boat in the Destin Harbor. Sea turtles typically swim away from chaos, so stop your motor and be patient. Similar to viewing sharks, if you really want to see a sea turtle, the Gulfarium's CARE Center is always a great option.
Another great way to support local wildlife and leave the Destin community better than when you arrived is to Vacation Forward when you visit the Emerald Coast.