a protected treasure in the Caribbean


Turneffe is a sanctuary for marine life where human impact has been limited. A place where people can form an intimate connection with one of the last wild spaces in the Caribbean.

Located some 32 km east of Belize, Turneffe is the Island’s largest and most biodiverse coral atoll. Formed by coral pillars and surrounded by deep ocean, the Atoll encompasses a network of productive mangrove forests, sea-grass beds and coral reefs within its flats, creeks, lagoons and open seas. The Atoll forms part of the second largest barrier reef on the planet. 

In Turneffe you can find quiet forest sanctuaries where the Maya once trod, hidden blue lagoons where pirates once lurked, and diverse coral reefs full of rare marine fauna, and breathtaking natural spectacles.



Turneffe is a global ecological hotspot, providing sanctuary for a dizzying array of animals and plants, including endemic (native & restricted to Belize) and endangered species.

Turneffe was designated a marine reserve in 2012 by the Government of Belize. The island has also been recognized as one of the best fly fishing areas in the world, and is the most intact habitat remaining for the American Saltwater crocodile.  Sharks, turtles, groupers, dolphins and crocodiles can all be found living in Turneffe.

Learn more about Turneffe Wildlife


In Turneffe marine reserve, we have crafted unique experiences and identified Special Places where you can feel that same connection to Nature as we do. Learn about our atoll, immerse yourself in her magic, and reconnect with nature at your own pace.

The Wit

An underwater adventure

The Wit is a 300-feet long sunken ship, the first in Turneffe.

Diving on The Wit is a unique and wonderous experience for any sea lover. The ship has just recently been sunk. So, for a time, divers have the opportunity to observe a rare and exclusive event, as the marine life transform this human made structure into a home, a nursery, and a shelter. 

In the coming months, The Wit will also be host to many inspiring and innovative projects that merge conservation, beauty and science in mutual harmony.

The Underwater Trail

Immerse and learn in crystalline waters

The underwater trail is located near the fringing reef of Calabash. In the shallow water, start by taking an moment to notice the thousands of coral bummies, appreciate the preciousness of the crystalline sea and meet with colorful fish.

On the trail, you will be provided with a submersible card with key information written by the best scientists, giving you all the necessary information to understand the marine life as you view it. So you can swim freely and immerse yourself into the wonders of this special place.


Duration : 1h
Open access all day – come with your guide
For people who can swim and use snorkel gear.

The Calabash Nature Trail

Walk in the footsteps of the Maya

Along the path, you will see incredible creatures, mysterious lizards and beautiful song birds. You will discover how the Maya managed to survive in the wild eating only berries and local plants.

A leaflet will be provided and guide you through the Mayan’s way of life and their knowledge of the forest. A ranger will welcome you at the entrance and then let you continue your adventure at your own pace.

Duration : 30min minimum
Open access all day – come with your guide

The BlueRise App

An interactive companion

Through the App, you will learn about Turneffe’s extraordinary wildlife.

You’ll find an interactive experience explaining the different species of fish, rays, dolphins, turtles, sharks, manatees, crocodiles and birds you could meet during your visit. Photos and fun facts included.



In order to move around Turneffe’s Special Places, we will ask you to contribute to the atoll’s protection through a fee. This fee will go to fund the Turneffe atoll marine reserve management, to help keep Turneffe’s Special Places and wildlife thriving.

Get entrance tickets