Looking for a unique family experience for the holiday season or the weekends? Come visit ARCHELON’s Rescue Centre in Glyfada
The ARCHELON Sea Turtle Rescue Centre is in essence a ‘hospital’ for injured or sick sea turtles from all over Greece and, at the same time an information & awareness point for marine life. Kids and adult visitors come close to these ancient animals, their habitats, their stories and get to meet the people who fight for their recovery and their safe return to the sea.
This special ‘hospital’ is located at the 3rd Marina of Glyfada next to the sea shore and is housed in re-designed old train carriages and containers. Visitors are greeted at the entrance by ARCHELON’s volunteers and the tour takes place on a semi-outdoor space, next to the tanks, the greenhouse and through in informative exhibition.
The operation of the Rescue Centre began in 1994 with the cooperation of the Municipality of Glyfada. Since then, the Centre has welcomed over 1250 injured or sick sea turtles. ‘Staff and volunteers fight to save the turtles In an organized care facility. Around 700 animals have returned healthy to the sea reaching a full recovery up to now’, says Dimitris Fytilis, oceanographer and Manager of the Centre.
The sea turtles and the work done by the volunteers attract the interest of many people and the Centre has become a popular destination for Greek and foreign visitors. ‘We welcome over 10,000 visitors a year on weekdays and weekends, during the hours that we are open for the public’, says Anna Karatsori, ARCHELON's Awareness Officer.
In addition, many choose to book the 45-minute educational “Sea Turtle Rescue Tour”, which is designed for small groups that decide to ‘adopt’ an injured turtle. This guided tour concludes with an audio-visual presentation in a closed space. Participants receive information about their adopted turtle a few days after their visit. ‘Taking part in the “Sea Turtle Rescue Tour” means that you are no longer just an observer of the sea turtles but rather an important part of their story’, Dimitris explains.
In the reviews of people who took the tour we read:
‘A brilliant and informative tour. The volunteers that showed us around are clearly passionate about their work, and share the information in a lively and interesting way’ - Jennie Reeves
‘I have had such an amazing experience and have already recommended it to so many people. It is so lovely to see how much the volunteers care for the turtles. […] I enjoyed every minute of this tour and I am so pleased to have had the opportunity to visit. Hopefully one day I will return as a volunteer’ - Hollie Wood
‘Great tour that deepened our understanding about why sea turtles got injured and what the Centre does every day to help them. It gave my girls (age 8 & 10) some food for thought and ideas about what they can do in the future’ - Jermaine Chow
The Sea Turtle Rescue Centre is located at the 3rd Marina of Glyfada (TRAM stop ‘Paleo Dimarhio’). There is partial access for wheelchair (observation deck and toilet).
Free admission to the public on weekdays: Monday - Friday 13.00 - 15.00 and on weekends 11.00 - 17.00, with the possibility of a brief tour by a volunteer (up to 15 minutes - Greek and English).
The”Sea Turtle Rescue Tour” is available upon reservation, for groups of 1-8 people (not counting children under 4) who will make a donation for the care of a sea turtle for 10 days (50 Euros). The tour takes place at specific times every day, outside free admission hours, in Greek and in English and it is suitable for adults and children. It lasts 45 minutes and includes information about sea turtles, their rescue, care and protection of their nesting beaches. More information and reservations are to be found online.
Contact info: 210 8982600 (Monday – Friday, 9:00-17:00), email@example.com
Note that the Rescue Centre will be closed for the following dates: 24/12/2022, 25/12/2022, 26/12/2022, 31/12/2022, 01/01/2023, 06/01/2023
This year our gifts also give back a bit of history!
The «different» project for sea turtles in Amvrakikos Gulf
- OUR NEWS02/02/2024
Sea turtles in the Greek wetlands of international importance
World Wetlands Day is celebrated every year on February 2. These vulnerable areas of the planet are a refuge for migratory birds and other wildlife species, including sea turtles. ARCHELON is present in wetlands that play an important role for sea turtles, such as the Amvrakikos Gulf.
- OUR NEWS24/01/2024
Why are ARCHELON’s projects international?
ARCHELON’s sea turtle conservation projects are organized with the valuable contribution of volunteers who come to Greece every year not just from Europe but from more distant places such as South Korea, Australia, and Colombia. Speaking English while carrying out fieldwork or public awareness activities as well as when interacting with each other in the campsites is essential to the projects.
- OUR NEWS17/01/2024
ARCHELON has been running a special hospital for sea turtles with tanks and impressive old train wagons for 30 years in Glyfada
Turtles with IV and bandages, rehabilitation and recovery tanks, special environmental enrichment equipment, recovery greenhouses, and… renovated train wagons! The hospital for injured and sick turtles that ARCHELON has set up in the 3rd marina of Glyfada, next to the sea, is certainly something out of the ordinary.
- OUR NEWS05/01/2024
What happened in the world of ARCHELON in 2023?
A world record for reproductive life for a sea turtle and 40 years of ARCHELON’s actions for protecting sea turtles are some of the moments we celebrated together this year. So, what happened in the world of ARCHELON in 2023? Here are some highlights of the past year.
- OUR NEWS21/12/2023
Assuming responsibility for the environment brings more meaning into our lives
“ARCHELON is an opportunity, not only for the animals and the ecosystems, but also for us who participate in it and for the society in which we operate”. Thomas Arapis, President and founding member of ARCHELON, talks about the efforts of the organization and about what he aspires for the future.
- OUR NEWS20/12/2023
Forty years later: the world of ARCHELON has expanded
Thomas Arapis, President and founding member of the Association gives the current coordinates of ARCHELON. "We encounter many turtles in our daily activities, and even more people, many more people actually, who help us. Amongst them are the people who work for us, they stand out for they represent the Association out there, through thick and thin".
- OUR NEWS20/12/2023
19 Environmental NGOs ask the Greek Government not to consent to a change in the wolf protection status in Europe
- OUR NEWS15/12/2023
Messages of love from the world turtle community!
Celebrating ARCHELON's 40th Anniversary we have received warm messages from the turtle community worldwide
- OUR NEWS14/12/2023
When the past becomes a lighthouse for the future
Thomas Arapis, the President of ARCHELON and one of its founding members talks about the quality and values, and the people who marked the setting up and subsequent action of ARCHELON. “Dimitris Margaritoulis taught us, not only the methodology for monitoring and protecting them, but also what it means to organize tasks, take responsibility, work as a team, evaluate our course and cooperate with each other”, he says.
- OUR NEWS12/12/2023
Notes of a volunteer (Part 2): Ηead trauma happens more often and is more serious than you think
Jessica Van Damme who volunteered at the ARCHELON Sea Turtle Rescue Centre for 6 weeks in 2023, talks about what she learned while taking care of sea turtles with human caused injuries.
- OUR NEWS04/12/2023
Notes of a volunteer (Part 1): Jessica Van Damme was at the Rescue Centre
“During my 6-week stay, there were more than 30 injured sea turtles being treated at the Rescue Centre. Seven of them were successfully released, but, during the same period there were five new arrivals – all turtles with human-caused injuries. We, humans, are their biggest threat!”, writes Jessica.
- OUR NEWS30/11/2023
Summer 2024: Come back to sea turtle conservation as a leader!
Joining or returning to ARCHELON’s sea turtle projects as a Field Leader will give you the opportunity to lead specific activities as well as train and help others in the projects. These positions provide a higher level of experience in nature conservation/ environment protection, as well as improved communication and leadership skills. Hurry and apply now! Only a limited number of experienced and skilled volunteers are selected to serve as leaders in each project.
- OUR NEWS23/11/2023
The establishment of the “Amvrakikos Alliance”
The Alliance's vision in collaboration with the local community is to highlight the unique ecological value and the natural and cultural heritage of Amvrakikos, for the most effective management, restoration, and protection of its ecosystems and biodiversity.
- OUR NEWS16/11/2023
Kids Beach Competition 2023: Turtles made of natural materials that stole our hearts!
The little friends of ARCHELON who participated in the Kids Beach Competition 2023 formed turtles from pebbles, sand, water, rocks, sticks, leaves and shells, spreading the message of protecting sea turtles on the various beaches of Greece. Angeliki's (7 years old) little turtle on top of the big rock stole 694 hearts and became the winner!
- OUR NEWS15/11/2023
The Field Leaders of 2023 and their role
Matthew from the UK, Noha from France, David from the Netherlands, Aris from Greece started one summer as volunteers knowing little about turtles and their protection. Their experience made them return to the conservation projects as Field Leaders to take on more responsibilities, as trainers and mentors for new volunteers.