Mon Repos Turtle Encounter tours
From November to March, join our expert Park Rangers for a rare and wonderful night experience with endangered marine turtles.
- Conventional vehicle
- Photo credit: Robert Ashdown © Queensland Government
- Photo credit: Robert Ashdown © Queensland Government
- Photo credit: Robert Ashdown © Queensland Government
- Photo credit: © Rowan Bestmann for Tourism and Events Queensland
Turtle Encounter Tours bookings are open
Get in quickly to secure your night-time Turtle Encounters tours booking. Turtle tour season operates nightly from November to late March. Your ticket also includes access to the Turtle Centre, including Turtle Tales Immersive Experience and Milbi Café and gift shop. To book your ticket, please read the details below to ensure you have the best possible Turtle Encounter experience.
From November to late March, visitors have a unique opportunity to catch a glimpse of a turtle’s world—at least for one night!
Mon Repos is special! It supports the largest concentration of nesting marine turtles on the eastern Australian mainland and has the most significant loggerhead turtle nesting population in the South Pacific region. The success of nesting and hatching turtles at Mon Repos is critical for the survival of the endangered loggerhead turtle.
Witness an ancient life cycle of the animal kingdom as majestic sea turtles make their journey to the shore to lay their eggs. Delight at the sight of their young, hatching weeks later, and making their perilous journey to the sea.
To protect nesting and hatching turtles, only Turtle Encounter tour participants are allowed on Mon Repos beach after 6pm to witness this incredible natural journey.
Book a spot and join our Park Rangers on a guided Turtle Encounter tour for your chance to see majestic female turtles laying their eggs (November to January) or watch young hatchlings dig free and hustle down the beach (January to March).
Primary and Secondary schools can also book a Turtle Encounter tour—it is an exciting way for your students to learn about turtles, their conservation and the important turtle research that scientists are undertaking.
Bookings are essential and can be made through Bundaberg Visitor Information Centre.
Read about tour ticket prices.
Please read our Conditions of entry before your visit.
Be aware that Turtle Encounter tours are close-proximity activities where you may want to wear a mask.
- Be respectful of others by not visiting if you are unwell or displaying COVID or flu-like symptoms.
- Stay within your family* or social group wherever possible.
- Use sanitising stations found throughout the Turtle Centre.
Home to the largest concentration of nesting Loggerhead turtles in the South Pacific, Mon Repos Turtle Centre (near Bundaberg in Queensland) is the most accessible turtle rookery on Australia's East Coast. Loggerheads are an endangered…
Things to know before you visit
Turtles are wild marine animals—unlike people they don’t watch the time!
- A turtle’s arrival can’t be predicted—some nights multiple turtles arrive early, sometimes only a few arrive at a time, and some turtles arrive after midnight.
- On nights where multiple turtles arrive early, there are enough turtles for multiple tour groups to go onto the beach at the same time for an early night experience. When turtles arrive later, your tour might begin as late as midnight.
- Expect to wait for your Turtle Encounter tour’s turtle and be prepared for a longer wait if turtles are arriving late—pack a favourite book or similar activity that is easy to carry.
- Your total visit time for Mon Repos Turtle Encounter tour can be up to five hours.
- Occasionally turtles do not arrive or hatch. While this is unusual, we can’t guarantee you will see nesting turtles or hatchlings.
A moderate level of fitness is required for the Turtle Encounter tour—for some of the evening you will be outside on the beach. Visitors need to be able to:
- Walk through sandy conditions for up to 1.6km (return journey) at night in natural light or with limited light in some sections.
- Stand on uneven, sandy surfaces for approximately two hours.
- Traverse sandy surfaces, including short steep sandy sections on vegetated dunes, and boardwalk ramps.
Turtle Encounter group allocation
When you book on a Turtle Encounter tour you will be allocated to a group for the entire evening. Be aware that:
- Turtle Encounter groups comprises of up to 50 people.
- Allocation of a Turtle Encounter group is predetermined when you make a booking. To ensure your family or social group are in the same Turtle Encounter group, please make one booking for your family and/or social group.
- Turtle Encounter groups will be guided to the beach by Park Rangers and Turtle Guides when turtles arrive. Each group must stay together during the event.
Bring and wear what you need for the best Turtle Encounter experience.
- Wear footwear suitable for walking along a sandy beach.
- Bring a jumper or a wind cheater as it can be cold and windy on the beach at night.
- Pack rain jackets as shelter is limited and umbrellas are not allowed on the beach.
- Bring your own water bottle (a water refill station is provided at the Turtle Centre); face masks if desired for this close-proximity activity; and insect repellent.
- Be prepared for a long wait in the Turtle Centre—turtle arrival time is unpredictable.
- Know the light restrictions—it is essential that you pack to minimise light impacts on turtles and follow light restrictions:
- Light up shoes and glow sticks are not permitted.
- When permitted, only torches of 100 lumens or less can be used.
- Photography and filming are only permitted during the designated photography time periods announced by your tour guide. During this time only photography (limited flash and mobile phone use), videoing without constant light, and use of devices that do not emit an external light, such as a GoPro, are permitted.
- Dim all mobile device screens and smart watches and store them safely in your bag before departing on your guided Turtle Encounters tour.
Before you visit, read about:
- Mon Repos Conservation Park Conditions of entry
- Cut the glow program to understand why there are artificial light restrictions during Turtle Encounter tours to protect endangered marine turtles and learn how you can help protect marine turtles.
On the night
Arrive on time for your tour group booking.
While Park Rangers, Researchers and volunteer turtle guides patrol the beach for turtles, you can spend time exploring the Turtle Centre to learn more about amazing marine turtles. Your Turtle Encounter tickets include access to the Turtle Centre including Turtle Tales Immersive Experience, Milbi Cafe and gift shop on the night of your visit.
As female turtles arrive to nest or hatchlings begin to emerge, tour groups are progressively gathered and your adventure truly begins.
When you hear your Turtle Encounter tour group number called:
- Gather your family or social group together and follow instructions from Park Rangers and volunteer turtle guides.
- Dim mobile device screens and smart watches and put them away.
- Always listen to Park Rangers and turtle guides on the beach and follow their instructions.
- Keep lights off, avoid sudden movements and remain with your allocated group. Nesting turtles are easily disturbed by artificial light and movement especially when leaving the water, crossing the beach and digging their nests. When permitted, only torches of 100 lumens or less can be used.
- Wait for your Turtle Encounter tour guide to let you know when you can take photographs—there is a designated time during the viewing when limited flash photography, videoing without constant light, and using devices that do not emit an external light, such as GoPros, are permitted.
Share your experience
When you are back in the Mon Repos Turtle Centre, if you have been lucky enough to capture a great photo of your turtle encounter, why not post your photo on Instagram and tag #QldParks and #southerngreatbarrierreef.
Drop by the Turtle Centre information desk after your tour. For a donation you can take home a certificate with information to remember your experience and show to your family and friends. All donations go towards helping marine turtles.
Opening hours, booking information and admission fees
Mon Repos Turtle Encounter tours operate from November to late March (closed 24, 25 and 31 December) from 6.30pm till late, 7 nights-a-week.
Bookings are essential and can be made through Bundaberg Visitor Information Centre—book quickly to ensure your Turtle Encounter adventure.
Your Turtle Encounters ticket also includes access to:
- the Turtle Tales immersive experience, from 6.30pm on the night of your tour as part of the Turtle Encounter tours experience.
- the Milbi Cafe and gift shop from 5.00pm.
Before you book your Turtle Encounters tour, please read essential information:
- Mon Repos Conditions of entry
- Things to know before you go—information about fitness needed, what to bring, what to expect.
- Bundaberg Tourism cancellation policy. Be aware that full refunds may not be available and cancellation fees apply.
- Due to the sandy beach, conventional wheelchairs are not suitable for this tour. Some all-terrain wheelchair users may be able to access this tour with assistance. The tours are on a soft, sandy beach at night and up onto the foredunes where turtles nest. For further information about access for people with mobility disabilities, contact the Mon Repos Turtle Centre.
|Ticket||Price (single visit)|
|Children under 5 years||Free of charge|
Child (5–14 years)
Adult (15 years or older)
Primary and Secondary school education group#
*Family is a group of up to 4 related people, comprising of 2 adults and 2 children.
**Concession—a person is eligible for a ‘card’ concession if they have:
- a Centrelink issued Commonwealth Seniors Health card, Health Care card or Pensioner Concession card
- a Department of Veteran’s Affairs Gold, White or Orange DVA card
- a secondary school official student photo ID card
- a full-time student card from a tertiary institution (TAFE or University).
#Organised Primary and Secondary school education group price (minimum 10 participants) is per person.
Thank you—when you purchase a ticket, you are contributing to the conservation of marine turtles.
Getting there and getting around
- Mon Repos Conservation Park map
- From the park entrance at 141 Mon Repos Road, follow Rookery Road for 750m to the Mon Repos Turtle Centre car park.
Note: Park access from Nielson Park and Bargara is via Bargara Road, turn right at Bargara State School into Potters Road, right again at Grange Road and then continue straight ahead to Mon Repos Road.
Read more park access information.
For more safety information see Visiting Mon Repos safely.
- Mon Repos Turtle Encounters 29 August to 30 December 2023